It can be easy to get caught up in the online marketing world and forget that some of the more traditional offline marketing ideas can work very well for marketing your business locally. And more than likely will cost a lot less then any paid online ads that you might consider doing.
I’m definitely not advising you neglect your online presence as people are looking for products and services online all the time – however making sure you are visible in the local community offline could open up a whole new market of pet lovers that might otherwise not be aware of what you do.
10 Offline Marketing Ideas For Your Pet Business
#1. Talking To People
Talking to pet owners when you are out and about is a great way to get to know more people who might need your services.
I wouldn’t recommend promoting your services as soon as you meet people (or you might find people start to avoid you!) but definitely getting to know people and when the opportunity comes up mentioning how you can help them.
For example, if they talk about going on vacation you could mention your Pet Sitting services.
Flyers, door hangers, posters all work really well in getting your business noticed in your local area. Flyers through doors works extremely well.
However, you do need to check if this is allowed where you live. Some places are fine with it and others its against the law – so please do check first.
#3. Law Signs/Banners/Billboards
Again, these can all work really well. But you do need to be cautious of where you place them and make sure you are not breaking any laws.
Sometimes people will allow you to place them on their private property for a small fee. But make sure you consider if pet owners will be passing that location. For example, is it near a pet store, on a commute to work route.
#4. Pet Events/Non Pet Events
Pet events are a great place to meet lots of pet owners and share what you have to offer. However non pet events can also be amazing too.
When you have a booth at a non pet event you tend to stand out – rather than getting lost amongst all the other pet businesses.
Wedding events are particularly good if you offer a wedding service for pet owners.
#5. Branded Clothing
What I love about branded clothing is that it will often start a conversation about your products and services without you needing to initiate it.
For example, if you shirt clearly indicates that you are a dog walker you will find people approach you and ask you if you are available to help with their dog.
#6. Car Decals
Car decals are another way of promoting your business and getting pet owners to approach you about your services. Depending on the type you opt for it can be an investment – but in my experience it definitely pays off.
Be sure to get something that is easy to read and nicely branded. It’s definitely worth hiring someone to design it for you.
#7. Visit Shelters/Rescues
If you can create a relationship with local rescues/shelters so that you can get referrals from them when they rehome animals.
Perhaps you could give them something they can add to the rehoming pack they give to families who are adopting pets.
You could also do some events with them to raise money and get your brand noticed by more people. Be sure to track the ROI on these activities for the time you invest, as sometimes event and fund raising can take a lot of your time.
#8. Visit Building Managers
In some complexes you will find that there is a building manager or a concierge service. If you can get a meeting with these people and create a relationship then you could find you get lots of referrals.
You may even be able to negotiate to be the official service provider for that building.
Consider putting something in their welcome pack for new residents or if they have a resident newsletter then you could see if you could place an announcement about your services in there.
#9. Instore Collaborations
Local pet stores might be interested in you coming in to offer something to their customers. For example, if you offer a nail clipping service you could offer it instore to their customers and cross promote your other services.
Or maybe you could offer to come and provide educational information about pets. For example, if you were a dog trainer you could offer to provide dog training tips to visitors to the store.
If you are going to do this then make sure they advertise you being there so that you get lots of people coming in store to see you.
#10. Magazine Adverts
These can be expensive, so please proceed with caution and perhaps talk to other businesses who have placed ads in them and see what their ROI was.
They can work very well if it’s something in the local neighborhood that lots of pet owners might end up reading.
I wouldn’t commit to a long term contract until you have see that you will get business from it.
Remember – something that sounds too good to be true – usually is!
I’d love to hear what other things you do offline to market your pet business. Let me know in the comments below.