Hunde Squad K9s Miscellaneous Rise of pandemic puppies & how dog trainers are digitalizing their services

Rise of pandemic puppies & how dog trainers are digitalizing their services

Puppies, who doesn’t like puppies?

According to Statista, the population of pet dogs in India amounted for around 19.5 million in the year 2018. The population was forecast to reach over 31 million by the end of year 2023.

The social isolation during pandemic and massive number of people engaged in WFH has led to need for comfort and companionship for many.

People engaged in spending time to spend with their families, many picked up hobbies, and a staggering thousands of people felt they could do with puppies!

Everyone you turned to , every news feed you checked on Instagram and Facebook was flooded with puppy smell, pictures and puppy love posts.

In Mumbai, Kolkata, Delhi and other major metros, this increased demand spiked the prices of pups up through the roof and in the process, created a massive demand for dog trainers and behavior experts.

You see, people were ready for dogs but most of them certainly were not ready to be a dog-owner.

In such a scenario, canine behavior experts and trainers have a major role to play. To educate the new pet owners about correct nutrition, training, socialization, preparing for the eventuality of moving back to workplaces while their dog stays at home and a lot that goes with it.

Yet, a quick search on the internet across metropolitan cities like Jaipur, Kolkata, New Delhi, Jamshedpur etc. shows a dismal presence of dog trainers and behavior experts on the internet.

Before pandemic, businesses for these professionals used to come mainly from offline sources and traditional marketing.

But once the pandemic set, most of them chose to stay back home and waited for lockdown to be lifted.

General perception was that – it is NOT possible to train dogs over internet.

But many of them chose to bypass that notion and took up providing services like – pre adoption counselling, post dog purchase counselling, creating content based on request of clients for a fee etc.

While it may sound easy since one can find many videos by professionals from abroad on YouTube, as a working dog training professional working in India, you would need to be familiar with a few things.

First and foremost and well, THE most important part – marketing.

I know, I know.

I can gauge that squirm on your face while you just finished reading that line.

Like many other business and service providers, even I used to despise marketing whenever the mention of it popped up.

Come on!

Which dog-loving creature with pure soul and intentions would resort to “marketing” to reach out to clients ? I mean, all it takes is for you to be technically skilled in dog behavior and training and serving customers , right?

There is no doubt those play an important role.

Since you have read so far, I am pretty sure you have overcome that giddiness and still look forward.

Let me share with you a couple of things, before you make up your mind.

As a society, marketing carries a negative connotation in the minds of many — that of sleazy talking and making fancy claims to get you to buy a product .

At the same time, marketing is something that happens all the time without most people knowing about it.

As I learnt deeper into it, I found the missing pieces that helped me put together my dog training business into fast track and reach its true peak.

If you have read so far, follow me as I share what all I have learnt. And also, some insights into marketing. Keep your phone in silent mode for 10 minutes (if you have to!) .

If you have ever asked your friend, your sibling or any person you personally know, chances are high that you have heard them that it’s about creativity — it’s about coming up with creative advertising slogans or very creative products.

It’s Not.

It’s based on science.

It’s about sending the right message, to the right person , at the right time.

Like you probably reached this column right now.

Because at this point of time in your life, you probably felt the need to learn more about marketing.

Marketing doesn’t end or stop once the sale has happened.

On the contrary, it is communicating with an existing customer regularly . It breeds and deepens the trust. In you. In the product. Or the service. You get the gist. That’s how you get a loyal customer base.

Otherwise, what’s the difference between a brand and a smooth talker ? Isn’t it?

Talking about Trust — it is a scarce resource, nowadays. Just like attention.

And the topmost goal for any marketer is , to create the trust among the mass (target audience) and maintain it.

Just like, you water your plants. If you stop, it withers away and is lost.

Marketing is a means to an end. The purpose of marketing is to build a brand and capture a position in the minds of the consumers.

The gist is, marketing and branding will work in your favor if you choose a segment and stick to it.

The secret to further boost and market your niche and create wealth, apply the CATT Marketing Funnel. This is a secret sauce. if you are looking to create a niche for yourself in the digital segment and well, spread out your wings in training field through

Wealth =n ^ CATT

Where ^ denotes power.

N- Niche: the niche segment/domain you want to be the market leader in

C- Content: Create useful content in the form of blogs, emails, videos, podcasts, webinars etc.

A- Attention: pulling traffic to your content through SEO, Paid Ads, Referrals etc.

T- Trust: stands for Trust. Personalize your communication through trip wires, marketing automation and retargeting.

T- Transaction: stands for Transaction. Convert leads into customers.

The above print shows the framework that you can use to develop your presence on the digital medium, as a dog trainer .

And if you have understood that, you already are on the path of creating the same for yourself.

And you know why?

Because you have already started the journey.

If you’d like to learn more and get an in-depth understanding of the same, you can refer to this blogpost that I did sometime back. It’s a pretty quick read.

I would really like to know what you think of marketing now and what you intend to do with your business? Do you like putting it in acceleration mode? Or do you like being in – Incognito Mode (like many in the dog training community) ? 😉

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