Facebook has launched another push to help maximize COVID-19 vaccine take-up, this time via new, in-feed alerts which will prompt users to get the vaccine, as soon as they're eligible to do so.
As you can see in this example, once vaccines are available in your region, Facebook will show users these prompts within their News Feed to help raise awareness of that availability.
Facebook's taking the same approach to this as it did to prompt election participation in the US - as explained by Facebook:
"Just as we ran state-specific notifications in News Feed about registering to vote and voting by mail ahead of each state’s deadlines, we’re tailoring COVID-19 vaccine notifications to coincide with each state opening their eligibility to all adults so we don’t promote vaccines before everyone is eligible. We are ultimately rolling out these notifications nationally across the US and globally as more countries expand vaccinations."
So as the vaccines become publicly available in your region, Facebook will prompt users, based on age, as to how they can go about getting a vaccination.
"When a state says the general public is eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine, we’ll show a notification to people in that state that connects them with their state health department or our Vaccine Finder. We’re already doing this in states such as Alaska, Mississippi, Texas and Utah."
It's the latest in Facebook's efforts to prompt vaccine take-up - over the past month, Facebook has also added new updates in its COVID-19 Information Center which show when people are eligible to be vaccinated, a new tool that shows users in the US where they can get vaccinated, along with links to make an appointment, and new stickers and frames, in Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, to encourage take-up.
Given its massive reach, Facebook is in a good position to help maximize vaccine messaging, and it's looking to do its part through these various initiatives.
And those efforts are having an impact:
"From January through March, over 3 million people in the US clicked through our News Feed promotions and our COVID-19 Information Center to visit their state health website or local provider. And showing people this information right in their News Feed is having a positive impact on vaccine registrations."
Again, given Facebook's reach, and the capacity to highlight friends and family who have taken the vaccine, it can play a key role in helping to ensure take-up, which will ultimately bring us closer to a return to normalcy.
Of course, Facebook has also played a role in spreading vaccine misinformation over time, which it's also looking to address, and will be working to better assess moving forward.
But even so, right now, maximizing vaccine take-up is key, and these initiatives will help to boost that push.