Friday, April 24, 2009

*Savvy Ways to Attract Customers & Clients for Your Pet Business*

So you have:

*Your pet business website launched --> check

*Your business cards printed and ready for distribution --> check

*Your excitement in hand to finally be doing something you love --> and check.

You're all set up raring to go, when you notice that after a few months of your 'grand opening' you're not really seeing any traffic or business for that matter to your new budding pet business. What do you do, what did you do wrong and why haven't 'they' come?  
Well hot shot there could be a couple of reasons but we'll just look at a few ways to bring in some happy, returning customer/clients.

-->1) Form alliances with complimentary pet business owners - Key word here is complimentary.  If you sell rockin doggy collars, you may team up with an organic doggy bedding company.  Ask if you can cross-sell each other's products, or point customers in each others direction.  You can be casual about this too, maybe one of your product pictures with you pup wearing your collars, and lying in a beautiful pet bed could be used as a plug for your new alliance. And vice versa.  Be creative about this, as it can become very beneficial for both parties involved if done correctly.

-->2) Blog, Blog, Blog - You've heard it before but you need to have a blog and you need to post to it at the least once a week.  Blogs with search-rich keywords in the heading will be easily found in the major search engines.  What's important in a blog, well whatever your readers want to read about. You, your company, news, fun stuff, pictures of your business or products. Referrals to other cool sites, products, and/or reviews.  If you're concerned about time, outsource your writing.  There is also some great tips that I use too. (psst want to know them, join the BBP :)

-->3) Contests & Giveaways & Discount Codes - Everybody likes free stuff, who wouldn't so why not offer free samples to customers, people in the neighborhood walking their dogs, or known animal lovers?  You know that the pet lover community is very warm, and when you're giving stuff away, you're instantly 'in there'.  

--> 4) Team up with pet-friendly apartment complexes, and vets - Most apartment complexes that allow pets have a newsletter that they distribute to their residents weekly or monthly.  Why not go to them and offer their residents a discounted rate for your services, or a discount code for your products in their newsletter with your banner or ad?  Most apt complexes won't even charge you to do this, and if they do try to bargain using  the discount for their residents angle. :)  Same goes for vets. A lot of vets are doing newsletters now too, hook up with some local vets and ask if you can leave samples and a well-packaged product or business cards. Again get creative here for your best outcome. 

Customers are just like you, so think about how you'd like to be found or approached.  Keep all of your marketing materials and samples professional and you'll present your business is an upbeat manner.  

--> Don't chase your tail action point: Check your brochures, business cards and handouts. Are they bright and happy or dark and depressing does it represent your company well? Does it all have a coesion that is well-represented?  What about pictures, are there pictures to grab attention. Make sure this is all in order, you may be a small business, but you don't have to appear that way! 

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