Conscious Consumption

Vegans and Vaccines: A Tale of Competing Identity Goals

Michael B. Beverland




Keywords: Identity Consumption, Self-Authentication, Vaccination, COVID-19, Veganism, Goal Conflict

Many vegans feel torn between their personal beliefs about animal exploitation and their desire to protect themselves and loved ones from COVID-19, as well as to act as responsible members of society. The dilemma between being true to vegan values and protection gets even more critical as accessing many of the services that make life worth living may require a vaccine certificate.
To be at ease with themselves, consumers with competing identity goals use several strategies. They create their own echo chambers to justify their decision for themselves or they compensate for inconsistent behavior. Organizations can apply certain strategies to help consumers overcome such conflicts and act in desired ways, like taking vaccinations. These strategies include building partnerships with other organizations and further segmenting relevant groups to identify and concentrate on more open sub-groups and convince them with specific and targeted information and materials.

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Michael B. Beverland, Professor of Marketing, University of Sussex Business School, Brighton, UK & Adjunct Professor of Marketing, Copenhagen Business School., M.Beverland@sussex.ac.uk