Benefits of Advertising Your Pet-Sitting Business Both Online and Offline
As a pet sitter, you want to convince every client that you will care for their pet as well as they would — but first they have to know you. Depending on your area, you may have competition from other pet-sitting services. Here are some ways to market your services AND stand out.
Tips and Tricks to Gather Attention Online
Before you start running ads or printing flyers, you have to make sure that your online presence is worth advertising. Look at your website. Is it modern and easily navigable? Do the colors and fonts flow, not clash? Is your logo prominently featured on the home page? Is everything spelled and punctuated correctly? If any of these answers is no, you should probably give your site an overhaul.
Next, check out your business and social network listings. Do you have an official profile in every manageable major forum, where someone who’s heard your name might search for you? Claim your listings on local business sites like Yelp right away. In your bio, concisely explain your major services, and include at least one main piece of contact info.
Now you’re ready to expand your online presence! Find local bloggers who would be willing to host a guest piece from your business. Consistently update your own blog with topics like everyday pet care, pet product reviews, home safety tips for traveling pet owners, or anything relevant to your field. This establishes you as a go-to information source for pet owners, and grows your name recognition with each website that hosts you.
To see what others are saying, use a tracking service like SocialMention to find posts about your business. This helps you monitor your online image and shortens your response time whenever someone asks you a question or leaves a review. One foolproof way to get others to speak well of you is simply to speak well of them. Feature happy clients on your home page every week or two, and be generous in praising other local businesses where you have received good service.
Methods to Retain Customer Loyalty Offline
The aim of all your offline advertising is to drive people to one of two places: to your website or you. To bring people online, display your site name and social profiles prominently on all of your printed promotions. Business cards and car magnets are excellent for this, and there are so many ways to make creative cards and magnets! Flyers are also cheap and efficient to leave at related businesses (vet offices and pet stores) and on community bulletin boards. To raise more awareness of your business, consider doing a contest or giveaway that requires customers to engage with you online.
Once you’ve got a client hooked, make sure your service exceeds their expectations. Run new customer perks or discounts, and rewards and referral programs for loyal clients. Keep track of each customer’s likes and dislikes, so that you are able to continually improve their experience. Customers appreciate it when you remember details like their work schedules or their pets’ eating habits.
How This Will Grow Your Pet Care Business
When you combine memorable, quality brand design with impeccable customer service, most clients are more than willing to review you well if you tastefully remind them to do so. Meanwhile, make pleasing your customers and their pets your main focus, and people will come out of the woodwork to see what they’ve been missing!
Katherine Halek is the lead advertising and print strategy advisor at Signazon, a leading online printer that provides marketing collateral for thousands of pet care businesses around the United States. Katherine enjoys writing about entrepreneur pet sitters, small pet care businesses, and the ins and outs of advertising. Connect with her on Twitter and Google+.