How complete is your pet marketing?

Getting ahead in the pet industry can be incredibly challenging. It’s even harder when your pet marketing isn’t complete. Here’s why what you write is a key component for successful pet marketing.

Is starting a pet business the right choice for me?

The pet industry is incredibly attractive because it’s incredibly lucrative. It’s also apparently recession-proof and even immune to the pandemic, which means more wanting a piece of the pet business pie.

No wonder so many of us are becoming petrepreneurs—and why it feels like new brands are joining the fray every single day. Innovative pet food manufacturers, fancy pet grooming supplies, pet subscription box services, creative pet toys, smart pet tech, and niche pet health products just to name a few.

Let’s take a quick look at why the demand for pet products and services remains robust.

  • Isolating alone? Pet companionship makes it all better. That’s why we’ve seen an increase in pet adoption (and, unfortunately, even pet theft) during all these lockdowns / shelter in place orders. And with pet ownership comes the need for daily pet essentials: food, supplies (e.g. leash & harness, food & water bowls, grooming items etc.), vet care, health products, training, insurance and more.
  • We love to pamper our pets. And when the going gets tough, we don’t mind being frugal for ourselves, so that we can splurge on our best bud.
  • In some countries, there’s a growing preference for fur babies over actual babies. That is, singles and couples are choosing to have pets instead of children. In turn, a fraction of what they would have spent on kids now goes to a wide range of products and services for their fur babies.

The numbers are good. So who wouldn’t want to turn their passion – their love of all things furry, feathery or even scaly – into their bread and butter?

Don’t overlook THIS vital element of pet industry marketing

The problem is with more competition comes more stress. I’m talking about the bang-your-head-against-the-wall kind of frustration felt from wondering: what do I have to do to actually start making money with this pet business?

Or more specifically:

  • How do I market my pet products in such a crowded space?
  • What’s the best way to break through all the noise?
  • How will I make a steady income?
  • Where will I find my first customers?
  • How can I build a sustainable brand?

You see, getting a business started is one thing but keeping it going is another. That’s probably why you’re reading this post. You want to improve your pet marketing. And in the process, you’re wondering if you might have missed something that could be getting in the way of better sales.

Who can resist a great deal? Not me, that’s for sure!

That’s why you’ll definitely want to check out my most popular copywriting packages. There’s something for every budget!

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The pet industry is attractive because it’s so profitable

Let’s have a show of hands.

  • How many go to bed at night discouraged because what you thought would happen after launching your pet brand hasn’t happened yet? That is, you aren’t making the sales you thought you could and would?
  • Who’s worrying about the ever growing number of competitors in the pet industry?
  • Do you occasionally feel like you’ve bitten off more than you can chew?

The good news: you’re not alone. The bad news: it’s not going to get any easier.  Clearly, you need a solid pet marketing strategy. That strategy extends beyond what and where you’re going to advertise or how to expand your reach. It’s more than pricing and distribution channels. Your pet marketing needs something equally important that’s often left as an afterthought: charismatic pet copywriting.

Copywriting is the neglected component of pet marketing. Where does it rank in your list of priorities?

I’d like to ask you three questions.

  1. Compared with the resources you put into designing a modern website, beautiful logo and professional photography, how much went into your pet copywriting?
  2. Do you put as much care into your product descriptions or blog posts as you do in piecing together the perfect few lines for your social media posts?
  3. How much thought went into crafting your brand voice, planning and incorporating important SEO keywords and even writing attractive Meta descriptions?

Pet copywriting isn’t the postscript to your pet marketing efforts—it’s a fundamental component.

Frankly, if you’re willing to invest in a website developer, graphic designer or professional photographer, then securing the services of a pet copywriter should also be a no-brainer. Why? Because what you write matters. Actually, let me correct that statement: your pet product marketing will never be complete without the right text to support it!

How can copywriting help your pet product marketing?

You can’t always physically speak with your customers. Much of the time you’ll be communicating through words such as those on your website, in e-mails, in social media posts and on your packaging. All the more reason for high quality pet copy—what you write will do the talking for you.

#1: It helps your pet business website stand out

Search for pet-related products or services and you’ll find hundreds of suitable page results to choose from. Great for the searcher, not so great for the brand that has to break through all that noise just to get some attention.

In other words: when you have so many competitors, you need every advantage you can get. You want to land your pages in prime positions and get as many click-throughs as possible. After all, the more visitors, the higher the likelihood of getting paying customers. You know what helps? Awesome pet website copywriting!

Your web copy is so important for a variety of reasons.

First, it sets the tone for who you are. That is, it conveys your brand’s personality and values—that’s something readers care about. How you come across influences how readers perceive you as a business and, consequently, whether they want to support you.

Second, it communicates what makes you different from all the other pet food manufacturers, pet care services, etc. Put another way, it answers the question: are you worth trying? Let’s say you make travel crates for cats. What makes your brand a better purchase than brands A, B and C?

We’ve all stumbled upon a brand website that simply didn’t appeal to us. Maybe it’s the writing style, language or the tone and voice used. Whatever it is, it doesn’t keep you on the page. As a business, how and what you write is what helps you connect with – and win over – potential customers. That’s the third reason copywriting is so important.

The little (big) details of web copywriting

Keep in mind that all web copy has to work double duty. It must satisfy real people and search engine algorithms. That is, you need to write for specific buyer personas. You must also include SEO best practices – including keyword research – to get your pages to rank.

We’re not done yet! Your web copywriting goes beyond the text on your pages. To end where we began (with search results), you also want to create attractive (and accurate) meta descriptions. After all, those few lines might be the first thing future customers’ see before interacting with your brand. It goes without saying: your snippet should compel them to click through.

#2: They sell your products and services

Did you know that over 85% of shoppers consider product descriptions very important when making a purchase decision?

That means the success of your pet product marketing hinges – partially – on the quality of your pet product pages and descriptions. (There are, of course, other must-haves that you can read about here, here and here as well as elsewhere on this blog.)

If you’re a direct-to-consumer brand or adding an e-commerce component to your website, then you need to pay extra attention to your product descriptions.

That’s because great product descriptions help sell your products and services. Photos are necessary but it’s the information provided in a description that convinces a reader to add to cart; search for stores that carry your items; or schedule an appointment.

And when combined with keyword research, SEO best practices and meta descriptions, they’re useful in bringing individuals with purchase intent to your product pages.

#3: They can jump-start or revitalise sales

Landing pages aren’t always top of mind for small or new pet businesses. In fact, they might even be unfamiliar territory—especially for those without a marketing background.

What are landing pages? What are the benefits of using them? How do you set one up? What even goes on one? Those are the most common questions.

Many simply don’t know what landing pages are for or how to harness them to their advantage. So let me start this section by giving a brief overview.

Think of landing pages as very specific sales pages for a very specific audience. They tackle one topic and are designed to support one goal. That goal could be sales, newsletter sign-ups, enquiries – you get the picture.

They can be stand-alone but they’re most often linked to a pay-per-click ad campaign, whereby an ad you run, let’s say on Google, drives traffic to the landing page rather than a generic product page or the homepage. As you can imagine, a targeted page is far more effective in boosting conversions than a page that has to multitask.

Landing pages are a tremendous asset and should be part of any decent pet marketing strategy. The best ones:

  • Have convincing text that resonates with a certain segment of readers’ pain points, aspirations or needs.
  • Offer a distraction-free environment that helps move readers down the sales funnel.
  • Make it easy for readers to convert – to do what you want them to do on that page – with a convincing call to action.

Landing pages are notoriously hard to get right. They have to be interesting, persuasive and laser-focused. That means, among others, you have to really understand your ideal reader; choose between long-form and short-form copy; think about your keywords; craft an effective call to action; and ensure message match.

Landing pages also require frequent maintenance. What I mean is they need to be tested and adjusted until you get optimal results.

Here’s how you might use landing pages in the pet industry

Let’s say you own a pet grooming business and you want to attract households with dogs that get excessively anxious at the groomers. In that case, you might want to set up a landing page around the topic of “pet grooming for difficult dogs”.

Individuals with nervous dogs have a hard time with grooming, so they look up that topic online—and they see your ad. Because your ad speaks to them (they can relate), they click through for more information.

The link takes them to your landing page where you address their struggles and offer a clear solution in the form of your services. You then encourage them to get in touch to schedule a stress-free grooming experience for their beloved pet.

Now let’s say you’re a pet nutritionist also offering made-to-order pet food for pets with dietary restrictions. You could create a wide array of relevant landing pages. For example:

  • a landing page dedicated to diet consultation and weight management for overweight dogs;
  • a service creating custom meal plans for cats with kidney disease;
  • and your special raw meat birthday cakes for cats and dogs to name a few.

To summarize, you create landing pages to target niche segments of your desired market with services, products or solutions that would appeal to them.

#4: Your business’ blog expands your reach

Blogging might also rank low on your list of online pet marketing priorities. Running paid ads on Google, Facebook or elsewhere might be more important for you than writing content. But if you’re on a tight budget, consider the benefits of blogging for your business.

Quality blog posts can do so much for your pet business. Here’s a quick overview:

  • They help your brand get found on search engines by those most likely to be interested in your products and services. You can reach people that you might have never been able to without the blog.
  • You attract people to your website without having to pay for ads. The secondary benefit? Your posts will continue to do so even in the future.
  • They help you get new leads. That is, readers might become customers in the future. Because once you get them on your blog, it’s easier to direct them to other pages on your website.
  • You build credibility as well as authority in your field by showcasing knowledge as well as expertise.

I’ll be the first to admit, though, that blogging isn’t easy—especially when you’re doing it to support your marketing goals. It’s time-consuming, requires a lot of research, has to organically incorporate keywords and search terms you want to rank for all while ensuring your writing stays on brand.

Put another way: you need to think about the people who will read your post and how to best write for them. But you also have to consider how to get your posts to rank highly on search engines. Then there are the meta descriptions and graphical elements that have to be optimised for search engines. That’s a pretty long checklist of things to watch out for. And yet without content writing, your pet marketing is incomplete.

#5: It makes list building easier and e-mail campaigns more successful

You might be thinking: I don’t have any (or many) customers yet. Who’s going to want to sign up for my e-mail list? Even without customers, you need to be thinking about building your e-mail list. You should be doing this from day one. Better yet, stop thinking and start building that list as soon as possible. One great way to do that is to offer a useful freebie in exchange for the person’s e-mail address.

How might that look in practice? Let’s assume you make hypoallergenic pet food. To get people to give up their e-mail address, you might offer a downloadable PDF explainer on the most common food allergens for cats and dogs. If you’re a dog trainer or pet behavioural specialist, you could give away an introductory e-book on expert training tips for first-time dog owners.

As you can see, copywriting is absolutely crucial here, too. Not just in creating an enticing sign-up page but also in creating that valuable freebie. We all want and expect quality—especially if our e-mail address (or other personal data) is at stake.

And once you have a list built up, it’s time to plan as well as write suitable e-mail marketing campaigns. Those campaigns might promote special offers, announce new product / service launches, or simply be important updates that customers would appreciate knowing.

It’s important to note that an e-mail marketing campaign isn’t just about the e-mail’s contents. You also need an attractive subject line and calls to action.

#6: They make your products more attractive

When you’re out shopping, have you noticed that a product’s packaging design and colour are what initially draws your eye in to an item on the shelf? But that’s not what compels you to add the item to your cart. You first read what’s written. And it’s that text – packaging copy – that ultimately convinces you to purchase it.

That’s how important your package copy is.

You need to sell your product in as few words as possible – that is, within the very limited space provided by 6 panels of packaging keeping in mind that there are also regulatory requirements, e.g manufacturing and best by dates, ingredient lists, and so on that you must abide by.

#7: You will make a great impression

When you’re a new or small business competing with well-established brands, it’s so important to make a great first impression. One way to do that is to include a printed package insert into the shipment. That can be a little note to thank the person for their purchase, a discount code or voucher that they can redeem on their next purchase (to encourage repeat purchases), product use information (for relevant items) or maybe seasonal greetings for Christmas. You get the idea. It’s a simple inclusion that can make a big difference to your pet marketing. Whether it’s a hand-written note or professionally printed, what you say sets the mood for this unboxing session.

Quality copywriting is a requisite for successful pet marketing

I hope this post showed you just how important it is to invest in great copywriting for your pet brand. You need it for successful pet marketing.

It’s really not enough to whip up a few paragraphs and call it a day. It’s not enough to leave it to the last minute or delegate it to whoever happens to have some extra time for writing. And you can’t just set it and forget it either. Your copywriting will always be a work in progress.

So if you’ve never paid attention to your sales and marketing copy before – if it’s been less important than everything else you’re doing – now’s the time to go back and re-evaluate.

Having said all that, copywriting can’t work miracles, so always manage your expectations. Words alone can’t take you from zero to hero. You need a great product. And you should solve a need and therefore have a viable market. But without investing in your copywriting, you’re simply not going to achieve your full potential.