Title: Segmenting markets by the 50 American states: the COVID-19 case

Authors: Edward T. Vieira Jr.; Yulong Li; Anthony D. Scotina

Addresses: School of Business, Simmons University, Boston, MA, USA ' School of Business, Simmons University, Boston, MA, USA ' Division of Mathematics, Computing, and Statistics, Simmons University, Boston, MA, USA

Abstract: This paper segments the 50 American states by COVID-19 vaccination rates, the Big Five personality traits, religiosity, and 2020 presidential election voting patterns to understand the states as segments with unique characteristics that make them receptive to persuasive COVID-19 vaccination appeals. We collected data by state of the Big Five personality traits, average religiosity, vaccination information, percentage vote for Biden, and governors' political affiliation. Next, we deployed a two-step cluster analysis method where we first used a distance measure to separate groups and then a probabilistic approach to choose the optimal subgroup model to classify the states by the analysis variables. We found three clusters: traditionalists (n = 22), progressives (n = 23), and independents (n = 5). We discovered positive relationships among resident vaccination rates and three of the Big Five traits and religiosity. Differences by state and national political perspectives were statistically significant.

Keywords: COVID-19; vaccination rate; Big Five personality traits; religiosity; politics; marketing segmentation; messaging.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSSS.2021.124961

International Journal of Society Systems Science, 2021 Vol.13 No.4, pp.259 - 277

Received: 11 Nov 2021
Received in revised form: 19 Mar 2022
Accepted: 24 Apr 2022

Published online: 18 Aug 2022 *

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