From anxiety to control: Mask-wearing, perceived marketplace influence, and emotional well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic

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Conference Proceeding

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Mask-wearing has been one of the most prominent, conflicted, and deeply divided issues in the United States during the COVID-19 pandemic. Across two studies, we seek to understand how beliefs and behaviors around mask-wearing are associated with the relationship between anxiety about the coronavirus and feelings of control over one's health outcomes during the pandemic. In Study 1, we find that beliefs in the response efficacy of mask-wearing moderate the relationship between anxiety and control. Study 2 extends these results by investigating the underlying process. Specifically, we find that the relationship between anxiety and control is mediated by self-reported mask-wearing behavior and that the relationship between anxiety and mask-wearing behavior is moderated by consumers' perceived marketplace influence. These findings have important public policy and marketing implications in the context of physical, emotional, and economic well-being.

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