Pet Industry Marketers: Attract That $60B in 2015 Spending

Fun toys are just part of the major spending in the pet industry

Pet Industry Marketers: Attract That $60B in 2015 Spending

Last week at the Global Pet Expo 2015, the American Pet Products Association (APPA) released its 2015 numbers on pet spending. The APPA’s annual comprehensive report covers pet spending in the segments of food, supplies/over-the-counter (OTC) medications, veterinary care, live animal purchases and other services.

Overall, pet spending reached $58 billion in 2014. But get ready. In 2015, pet owners are going to bust through all previous spending records by shelling out a projected $60 billion. Wow!

Let’s look at the highlights of that report, and what they mean if you’re responsible for marketing pet products or veterinary services.

Bob Vetere, President and CEO of the APPA, said, “The pet industry continues to outpace most other retail segments.” Are we surprised? Probably not if you’re selling pet products, veterinary business-to-business products or pet services. It’s an exciting time to be in our industry as indicated by the following facts from the APPA report.

  • Pet services, which includes grooming, boarding, walking, training, daycare and even spa services for our pampered pets, saw the largest growth again this year and exceeded expectations at close to 10 percent. It is expected to grow another eight percent this year.”
  • Veterinary care is second in growth. “Even though visits to the vet have been flat to down recently, expenditures per visit continue to go up as more expensive procedures grow in popularity. As in years past, veterinary care spending is expected to grow another 4.6 percent to over $15.7 billion in 2015.”
  • Pet food is king. “The food category is by far the leading source of dollars spent within the industry.”

Now, let’s talk about YOU. How is your business going to capitalize on this growth?

Consider these pet and veterinary marketing ideas to boost your business this year.


1. Make sure your website is fabulous. Is your content speaking to your customers, optimized for search engines and setting your solutions apart from the others in your category? Right now, many websites are not up-to-date or they’re stale, “corporate” or downright boring. It’s time to pump new life into your content and wow visitors. (Identify gaps and opportunities with a pet website Content Audit.)

2. Answer customer questions online. Use your blog, FAQ page and even videos to answer the questions you get all the time about using your products or how they solve customer problems. Then, post a quick message on social media, with a link to these helpful tips. You’ll bring in loads of traffic if you’re solving your customers’ needs!

3. Use REAL photos. Are you stuck in the old-school world of stock images? Ack! Replace those photos as soon as possible with real photos of your products, your team and your customers… and tag those photos with captions and SEO tags that help bring in more traffic.

4. Rethink PR (Public Relations). Pet stories are WILDLY POPULAR online and in broadcast news. How can you present your pet product or service in a unique and compelling way? Brainstorm ideas with your staff. Get creative. And then send out a video release to the appropriate media (vet industry trade magazines or pet bloggers, etc.).

5. Revive your email list. Email is still extremely effective if you’re sending highly useful and valuable messages. When’s the last time you tested email messages or promotions? Gosh, don’t leave money on the table. This is your list of people who opted in at one point or another because they like you. Give them reasons to come back and spend again.

These are just five marketing ideas for 2015, but there are so many other ways to reach your audiences. Don’t worry about the competition. Just be the best you can be in your content marketing!

Until next time,
Here’s to a profitable pet website.

Pam Foster

P.S. If you’re looking for help with any of these ideas, contact me.