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Quota sampling using Facebook advertisements

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 December 2018

Baobao Zhang*
Affiliation:
Department of Political Science, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA
Matto Mildenberger
Affiliation:
Department of Political Science, University of California, Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA, USA
Peter D. Howe
Affiliation:
Department of Environment and Society, Utah State University, Logan, UT, USA
Jennifer Marlon
Affiliation:
School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA
Seth A. Rosenthal
Affiliation:
School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA
Anthony Leiserowitz
Affiliation:
School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA
*
*Corresponding author. Email: baobao.zhang@yale.edu

Abstract

Researchers in different social science disciplines have successfully used Facebook to recruit subjects for their studies. However, such convenience samples are not generally representative of the population. We developed and validated a new quota sampling method to recruit respondents using Facebook advertisements. Additionally, we published an R package to semi-automate this quota sampling process using the Facebook Marketing API. To test the method, we used Facebook advertisements to quota sample 2432 US respondents for a survey on climate change public opinion. We conducted a contemporaneous nationally representative survey asking identical questions using a high-quality online survey panel whose respondents were recruited using probability sampling. Many results from the Facebook-sampled survey are similar to those from the online panel survey; furthermore, results from the Facebook-sampled survey approximate results from the American Community Survey (ACS) for a set of validation questions. These findings suggest that using Facebook to recruit respondents is a viable option for survey researchers wishing to approximate population-level public opinion.

Type
Research Notes
Copyright
Copyright © The European Political Science Association 2018

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