The Marketing Of Obamacare

It’s about to begin in earnest:

The exchanges need roughly 2.7 million healthy 18-t0-35-year-olds to sign up to be solvent. The majority of that group is nonwhite and male, according to Simas’ data, and a third are located in just three states: California, Texas and Florida. If too few choose to enroll because they don’t know about the law, don’t like it, or feel they don’t need insurance, the exchanges will fail. And so will the law.

The Administration has plotted an extensive social-media campaign designed to reach the young and healthy and is soliciting sports teams to help raise awareness. More than 10 staffers in the Office of Public Engagement are marshalling the help of Latino and African American groups and community nonprofits. And [David] Simas has spent countless hours surrounded by maps of media markets and demographic data on the uninsured trying to remind prospective enrollees of the benefits available to them: “It’s that guy in Dallas, it’s the woman in Los Angeles, it’s the family in Miami-Dade,” he says.

Kyle Cheney reports that the “Obama administration has reached out to the NBA about a potential marketing partnership to promote the health law.” Jonathan Cohn comments

[I]f the NBA signs on, a model for the project might be a campaign that the Boston Red Sox undertook in 2007, when Massachusetts was rolling out the health reforms that became a model for Obamacare. The Red Sox ads for health reform in Massachusetts have a certain legendary status in health policy circles—and for good reason. They leveraged the celebrity status of beloved sports heroes, not to promote the reforms themselves but to make two very simple points: Everybody can get sick and, for the first time, everybody can get health insurance.

Sandhya Somashekhar looks at how attaching Obama’s name to the law changes approval of it:

According to the poll, overall favorability of the law jumps from 35 percent to 42 percent when the term “Obamacare” is used. That’s almost entirely due to the enthusiastic reception it gets from Democrats, 58 percent of whom responded favorably to “health reform law,” compared with 73 percent for “Obamacare.”

Independents in the poll reacted about the same to both descriptors (about a third responded favorably while around a half responded unfavorably). Among Republicans, 76 percent responded unfavorably to “the health reform law.” That number jumped to 86 percent when “Obamacare” was used.

The ad above was created by a pro-Obama group:

The ad highlights the ways the Affordable Care Act is already helping some Americans as part of a “major education campaign” by the issue advocacy group Organizing for Action, founded out of Obama’s 2012 campaign. The group is spending seven-figures on a series of ads, which complement White House and administration efforts to build support for the law.