Christmas Is Almost Here

The holidays are upon us; for most of us, things are beginning to slow down, so this is a great time to think about some specialty marketing. As professional dog trainers, we know the potential hazards awaiting the family pets during these times:

  • Christmas trees
  • Ornaments
  • Icicles
  • Lights
  • Presents
  • Visitors
  • And so on and so forth . . . .

In other words, a lot of new stuff, a lot of excitement, and very little supervision! Holidays can be a dangerous time for dogs and cats.

Trainers, on the other hand, can take advantage of these hazards and use the opportunity for some much needed education and marketing. Here are a couple of ideas to think about (there are plenty of other ideas out there, as well – just put your thinking cap on!).

Newsletter – Create a newsletter addressing holiday safety for pets. In addition to sending this e-mail to your clients, have a bunch printed professionally and leave stacks in vet and groomer reception areas, pet stores, etc. Not only does this put your name in front of a whole bunch of potential clients, it provides much needed information to the clients of non-competing professionals – and hopefully, they’ll remember when it comes time to refer!

Live presentation – Offer to do a short, informative presentation on holiday safety for local businesses and/or organizations. You could do one for vets, local pet stores, your community shelter, the Better Business Bureau, the Elks, schools, churches, department stores . . .   There are too many possibilities to list!

Free clinic – Get together with some of your training buddies and have a “Holiday Pet Safety” clinic, where you present information and brainstorm with pet owners. It could be an all-day event at the local shelter. Have a basic 30 minute presentation then 30 minutes of brainstorming, and just keep repeating that format throughout the day. Participants will come and go, and they can make donations of food or money to the shelter.

Santa Paws – Team up with a professional photographer to offer pictures of dogs with Santa Clause; the photographer can take the photos and you can provide help and guidance to customers while they’re awaiting their turn.

These are just a few ideas, but there are many creative ways to take this extra time and put it to good use. Have a happy and safe holiday!

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