COVID-19 vaccines have already begun rolling out in a number of nations internationally, with the vast majority of nations selecting to prioritize frontliners and the aged for vaccine distribution.
However other than those that want it out of occupational necessity (or in any other case), Indonesia can be prioritizing social media influencers in its preliminary rollout of China’s Sinovac CoronaVac vaccine.
Wait, influencers? What even? Why?
Indonesia is likely one of the world’s largest shoppers of social media, similar to Fb and Instagram.
And in a December 2020 ballot, it was revealed that simply 37 p.c of Indonesians have been keen to get vaccinated, whereas 40 p.c have been contemplating it, and 17 p.c refused outright.
Contemplating the truth that Indonesia is probably the most populous nation in Southeast Asia, at over 270 million, the quantity of individuals keen to get vaccinated may be very, very low.
The Indonesian authorities is hoping to make use of social media influencers to “hopefully convey positive influence and messages” concerning the vaccine and encourage extra folks to get the jab when their time comes, Ahyani Raksanagara, Head of Bandung’s well being company, instructed Reuters.
On January 13, 2021, Indonesian President Joko Widodo was administered the nation’s first dose of the Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine.
Excluding Indonesia’s 1.5 million frontliners, social media influencers are to observe swimsuit.
Amongst them was Indonesian tv character, Raffi Ahmad. With practically 50 million followers on Instagram, Ahmad is taken into account a really perfect candidate for Indonesia’s influencer-led vaccine communication technique.
“Alhamdulillah (Praise be to God) a vaccine. Don’t be afraid of vaccines,” the 33-year-old wrote beneath a video he posted on Instagram.
In a separate Instagram put up, the influencer poses with President Widodo after getting his jab.
“Reward be to God I used to be among the many first to be vaccinated right now, together with Jokowi. Thanks in your belief. To my beloved Indonesia, let’s get vaccinated. No must be afraid,” Ahmad wrote within the accompanying caption.
Indonesia’s well being ministry has not revealed precisely what number of influencers might be a part of the nation’s vaccine communication technique. Nonetheless, the federal government is banking on their broad attain to get as many individuals vaccinated as doable.
Understandably, not everybody thinks the influencer-focused marketing campaign is a good suggestion.
In actual fact, the choice to prioritize influencers for COVID-19 vaccines backfired immensely when images of a mask-less Ahmad partying with different (equally mask-less) influencers surfaced on Twitter. The photograph was purportedly taken simply hours after Ahmad obtained his first jab.
“Getting the vaccine first doesn’t imply you can begin wandering round. You’re chosen for the preliminary ration of vaccines as a result of you’ve got loads followers. That being mentioned, please constantly set a superb instance,” Munaf mentioned. “Please you are able to do higher than this. Your followers are relying on you.”
In keeping with Irma Hidayana, co-founder of pandemic knowledge initiative LaporCOVID-19, the federal government ought to have kicked off their vaccination marketing campaign with a healthcare employee versus an influencer.
“It also shows the government is inconsistent in prioritizing who gets the vaccine first,” mentioned Hidayana.
Ahmad has since apologized on Instagram as authorities start their investigations into his well being and security violations.
Learn extra Indonesia COVID-19 tales:
President Jokowi is the primary to obtain the COVID-19 vaccine in Indonesia
Jakarta man who flew to Bali apparently booked whole flight to keep away from COVID-19
Indonesia greenlights breathalyzer that may detect COVID-19 inside two minutes
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Cowl picture sourced from @raffinagita1717 / Instagram.