According to a survey conducted in 2019 by the American Pet Products Association (APPA), more than 85 million families or about 67 percent of households in the United States own pets. Around 63.4 million households own at least one dog and 42.7 million households own at least one cat. Freshwater fish, which is present in 11.5 million households, held the top spot for the total number of pets by type of animal, numbering at 139.3 million. In addition to this, the amount of money spent on pets has grown to more than 75 billion from just around 48 billion in 2010.
These numbers only tell us that many families based in the US have furred, scaled, or feathered family members and they’re more than willing to invest in the health and happiness of their pets. It’s a growing trend that many pet product merchants are profiting from.
That said, even if your company offers non-pet-related products and services, pets are a serious business opportunity. Considering pet owners when developing strategies for your marketing efforts offers unique opportunities for widening your company’s market and creating better connections with individual consumers. If you’re interested in catering to pet parents, here are a few ideas:
Let Your Customers Create Unique Memories with Their Pets
Even though your company might not offer products that cater to pets in the first place, coming up with marketing campaigns that incorporate pet products can be a great way to show that your company deeply cares about something that matters to your customers. Giving away pet products that complement the actual products and services that you market to consumers sends the message that you have the same values. This gives the impression that you’re willing to go the extra mile so that people—and their beloved pets—can enjoy your goods and services.
You can, for example, offer pet toys that take the form of your logo or product. Even if you’re offering food or beverages that are not for pet consumption, your customers can still enjoy your products while their pet plays with their food- or beverage-shaped stuffed toy. If you offer clothing items or sporting goods, you can give away custom wholesale dog bandanas in your brand’s colors, which pets can wear as they accompany their owners while running or working out.
Indeed, the possibilities are endless. You can order custom beer can- and wine bottle-shaped stuffed dog toys if you have a recognizable logo, branded collars, and dog beds if you want to make your brand more visible and memorable, or even giveaway quality pet items alongside your products. These custom pet items will delight your customers and allow them to share the experience of enjoying your products alongside their pets. There’s also a chance that they’ll post a picture of the pet merchandise and your products at the same time, which means free user-generated marketing materials for your brand, ones that will make a significant impact on their social circles.
Expand Your Goods and Services to Pets and Their Owners
Even if your business is not specifically targeting pet owners, it’s still possible to convert pet-owning consumers into loyal customers with the use of pet products. You can do this by going out of your way to make sure that pets are welcome to your business, even though your business mainly caters to persons from different backgrounds and demographics.
If you have a hotel or rental property, for example, you can go out of your way to advertise that your establishment is pet-friendly. Give pet owners a warm welcome by providing them with pet products like complimentary dog beds, cat litter, or pet toys upon checking into your establishment.
You may target a wide range of customers and clients, but offering pet products can help you make it to the shortlist of establishments that pet-owning clients will want to support. With these pet-friendly perks, you can make sure that many pet owners will consider your establishment the next time they’re in town.
Highlight Your Brand’s Values by Partnering with Organizations
You don’t necessarily have to sell or rent out your company’s custom pet products to make a lasting good impression. It’s also an option to offer branded pet products to animal- and pet-welfare organizations in your area.
You can partner with a shelter, for example, and run a campaign where people can support animal-welfare-related causes. Upon reaching a particular goal, your company can donate custom pet food or a fraction of your profits to the said cause. Perhaps you can sponsor an event with the organization and offer participants branded pet products as a token of your appreciation for their support. This will not only support a worthy cause but will also serve as undeniable proof that your business is a champion for responsible pet ownership.
Fostering a deeper connection with your customers by focusing on their pets is a great way of attracting more customers to your brand, even though pet products may not be your area of specialization. What other marketing strategies can you think of that incorporates the use of pet products?