I found an image on the Internet, can I use it for my pet business marketing?

Chances are that if you found a photo or image on the Internet then it probably belongs to someone else. But how do you know?

The Visual Communication Guy on Visually has put a thoughtful graphic to help you, and your employees or staff, know if an image is allowed to be used in your pet business marketing - and that includes posting on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, on your blog and more.

Be careful and be safe in protecting your business, keep this chart handy.


Mark your calendars for Undercover Boss (UK) featuring Pets Corner.

If you live in the UK, mark your calendars for the next episode of Undercover Boss, airing on channel 4, 9pm Tue 29 July.

This episode will focus on the owner of nationwide retailer Pets Corner who goes undercover in his own business to see if a potentially risky multi-million pound investment to grow the business is likely to succeed. 

Steve Charman is responsible for over 450 staff and a turnover in excess of £30 million. He is going undercover to investigate the company's operations before they change strategy for the future. As he battles to keep his identity secret, Steve investigates whether there is disorder in the shops, if sales staff are struggling, and how suppliers are paid. Confronting whether there are problems within the organisation that cannot be ignored, he questions whether his expansion plan can succeed.

And if you're not in the UK you may be able to watch it live on the Channel 4 Undercover Boss website.


Five essential things you need to do after SuperZoo to make the most of your involvement.

You signed up, you paid thousands of dollars, you attended SuperZoo, so now what?

The most important steps in attending SuperZoo occur when you return from the event. The following are our top five essential things you need to do to make the most of your involvement and recoup the marketing expenses you incurred to attend:

Send thank yous.

Get out the list of contacts you made at the show, review your notes, and send a thank you note via email to all the visitors to your booth, those that you networked with, as well as the event organizers. And if you'd like to stand out from the crowd, why not send a hand written thank you the old fashion way via the US Postal Service. Sending these notes will keep you top of mind in the eyes of the new and renewed contacts you made at the show.

Follow up, follow up, follow up.

I can't stress this enough with my clients.....make follow up with your leads a priority. According to the Center for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR), nearly 80% of leads generated are never followed up. Start by focusing your attention on the 'big fish' first; the most important prospects, customers and leads that you made and those most seriously interested in what you have to offer; then progress through the remainder of your list. Remember you don't have to completely 'close the sale' at this point, the important thing is to 'close to the next step'.

Keep your promises.

Were you asked to send a sell sheet? A brochure? An order form? A replacement order? Did you receive new orders? Throughout the show, it's my bet that your contacts asked for something. Fulfill all your promises and requests as soon as you return to the office to positively maintain current and new business contacts.

Measure your success.

We recommend a complete evaluation of the success of your involvement in SuperZoo, right after the show and again about 6 months later. Measure the number of qualified and unqualified leads you received, the number of contacts and orders placed immediately and at later dates, the number and quality of other contacts you made, i.e., media, partnerships, private label ops, etc. Then weigh those potential and current sales against the cost of attendance. Did you measure up?

Get social.

Hop on all your social media sites and talk about your involvement in SuperZoo (hopefully you did this during the show, as well). Showcase your booth, talk about those you met, publish selfies with the great contacts you made, re-publish any important announcements you made at the show. etc. Engage your social media contacts, ask questions and more.

The most important thing is do not let people forget about you. Keep up over time with your contacts and leads. Sales don't happen overnight.

For more information about how you can get the most from your the trade shows you attend for your pet business, contact us today for a 30 minute free consultation.


News from SuperZoo 2014

News coming out of Super Zoo 2014...

PetHub.com announced today a breakthrough in pet safety and companion animal protection with the launch of its new, evolutionary PetHub Signal™ electronic ID tag.

Chicken Soup for the Soul To Premiere Exciting New Products And Programs At SuperZoo To Promote The Happiness And Wellness Of Pets

Petmate Showcases More Than 175 Products At SuperZoo 2014

ThunderWorks Continues to Expand Product Line at SuperZoo 2014

Buddy Pouch to Introduce Innovative Product on QVC and at SuperZoo Pet Tradeshow

The Ultimate Dog Pool, LLC Set to Make Waves at the Superzoo Pet Product Expo in Las Vegas with the Release of Their Newest Product, The "Summer Splash"

Tuggo Dog Toys seeking retailers and distributors at Superzoo

Eco-Friendly Packing Innovator Has “Box” Announcement for SuperZoo

SuperZoo to Add Hundreds More Booths in 2015 to Meet Exhibitor Demand

Get the SuperZoo app for a chance to win. Pet Product News International will give away an iPad at the end of each day at SuperZoo! Just visit their booth (#17103) and show you've downloaded the app to enter the drawing.


The elements that make up a great logo for your pet business or pet product.

Back in the Internet heyday, as VP of marketing for a new tech start-up, one of my first orders of business was to reinvent the company's name, logo and product names and logos, and build their brand in their specific marketplace.

Over the years I've helped many pet business with naming their business, naming their products and consequently helped them invent and/or re-invent their logos to build their brand.

With all the pet products and services hitting the market, a great logo (and a great business and/or product name) is essential to your pet business, and it's acceptance and ability to stand out in a crowd.

Whatever logo you decide upon, it must have the ability to:

  • Instantly relate to your key prospective and current customer.
  • Appeal to your target demographics.
  • Define what your business does and can do in the future.
  • Tell your audiences who your company is and what it stands for.
  • Endure (with slight modifications) for the life of your business and/or product/service.
  • Inspire all the elements that end users want in a pet product/service company - trust, loyalty and implied superiority.
  • Be identifiable.
  • Be versatile.
  • Be appropriate.
  • Be memorable and unique.
Creating a logo (as well as company name, and product/service name) is one of the most important and challenging aspects of marketing your pet business.

What are the key elements to consider when creating your company and/or product logo?
  • Keep it simple. Simple designs stand out, are clean, more memorable and are more instantly recognizable to the audience.
  • Consider all media where your logo will be seen and appear including business cards, your website, social media, on your product packaging and more.
  • Avoid your logo being literal and work toward it being hypothetical, speculative, imaginative and theoretical.
  • Plan for the future. Over time you may need to re-invent and re-format your logo to change with trends. 
  • Keep in mind that different colors, shapes, words, symbols and fonts/typefaces provide different impressions to individuals. Research and utilize elements that speak to your audience (demographics) by taking into consideration what your company does, and what your customers and prospective customers want and need.
  • Take into consideration your competitive advantage. A good logo can give the impression to help your pet business (and product/service) stand out from the sea of competition.

There is a process that creative types go through to create, design and develop a great logo. Contact Pawsible Marketing today to get ideas on how we can help you with your company logo (or product/service) logo.


Facebook: Is spending time and money on this social media platform the right thing for your pet business?

Facebook is one of the most prolific social media channels on the Internet.

But now that Facebook has changed, I often get asked if it's worth it as a marketing tool or tactic for pet businesses.

I've had my business pages and personal page on Facebook for over six years, now. During that time I've seen Facebook change a lot; from a small group of fun, interesting friends, new and old acquaintances, clients, customers and prospective clients and customers; to an overwhelming number of people, companies, groups, posts and interactions. So many that it's difficult to keep up.

Facebook used to be an easy, free way to market your pet business. You post on your FB page and all your FB fans (or 'likers') would see it. But it's changed.

How? Through Facebook's new algorithms, they have changed how many and who see your FB page posts. I've seen analytics drop from 90% of people seeing my posts back in the earlier years to just about 10% seeing my posts now, even though my fan base has grown considerably.

There are a lot of people speculating as to why Facebook page post reach has gone down. And now Facebook has finally come out and explained it. They are indicating there are several factors occurring as to why your FB page posts are not getting seen by as many of your fans as they used to; they explain it as content overpopulation (meaning there is just too much content on FB for your fans to see everything) and that is why FB has chosen to rank the importance of your FB page posts based on the past and current FB behavior of your fan. Only those posts that FB ranks most important will appear in your FB fans news feed.

So what do I think? Is it still a great marketing tool?

Yes, it is can be and it is for now. But you have to 'do' Facebook right for it to help your pet business and increase your sales.

There are two specific things you can do to do it right.

1. The first thing is to post content that encourages your fans to interact with your page and your posts. Why? Because if your fans interact (leave comments on your page, and like and comment on your posts) with your page, they are more likely to see more of your posts in their newsfeed based on Facebook's new algorithms.

2. The second thing you can do is convert your Facebook fans to other types of 'sticky.' Facebook fans are sticky people. What do I mean by sticky? They are people that are stuck to you, that you can market to consistently over time, so that when they want or need your product you are right in front of them. Sticky people are the most important prospective and current clients for your pet business. You want them and you want a lot of them.

Facebook used to be easy to market to market to your Facebook 'sticky' fans (those who liked your page). But now that Facebook has changed their algorithms and don't show your posts to all of your likers it's more difficult to market to Facebook fans, not all of them are 'sticky' anymore. So you have to find other ways to create 'sticky' situations with those Facebook fans.

There are several ways to do this.

Some companies ask that their Facebook 'likers' select 'get notifications' on their Facebook page to ensure they see their posts, but what I've found is that doesn't really work. I tried it out on my own pages and still didn't see my own page posts in my newsfeed.

Others request that you add your email address to their email newsletter system before liking a page.

And still other companies utilize promotions on their Facebook page to achieve email addresses of their Facebook fans.

Why emails? Because emails are another form of 'sticky.'

Some of these are good ideas, some aren't.

What you need to remember is that it's important to put yourself in your customer's, or prospective customer's, shoes. What would you like from a company that's on Facebook? What are your interests, what are your likes, what information or 'deals' do you want from a company?

By putting yourself in your customer's, or prospective customer's, shoes you can increase your Facebook fan base, and create 'sticky' relationships for your pet business, ultimately providing a means to effectively market consistently over time and build increased sales for your pet business.

What are a few tactics you can use to take advantage of this free marketing platform, now?
  • Build your Facebook fan base the right way and get fans that really want to purchase your pet business products and/or services.
  • Reach more of your Facebook fan base, despite the fact that Facebook is constricting your post's visibility by posting content that invites interaction.
  • Engage your Facebook audience for higher conversion.
  • Convert Facebook fans to other forms of 'stickiness.'
Until another social media site comes along and supersedes Facebook as the best free place to market your pet business on the internet, Pawsible Marketing can help you best take advantage of Facebook's platform to build your brand and increase your pet business product and/or service sales. Contact us today to learn more.

Image credits:
Walter Rumsby

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