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Newsletter #1047: The “Lessons from Pets” Issue

[Welcome back to the Damn, I Wish I’d Thought of That! newsletter. This is text of the great issue all of our email subscribers just received. Sign yourself up using the handy form on the right.]

People have a lot of passion for the animals they consider family members. And that’s why whether you’re running a dog grooming business or your stuff has nothing to do with animals, you can still learn a lot from pets.

Here’s how three businesses have done it:

1. Embrace your quirks
2. Low tech is just fine
3. Make it more fun
4. Check it out: Color vision game

1. Embrace your quirks

Famous battle ground and Texas landmark, the Alamo, is a pretty solemn place. But that doesn’t mean the Alamo’s staff can’t have any fun. In fact, The Texas General Land Office recently announced the official cat of the Alamo: a calico named Miss Isabella Francisca Veramendi de Valero. She’s preceded by other Alamo cats that have roamed the grounds, greeted visitors, and hunted for rodents throughout the years.

The lesson: It’s one thing to have a cat that hangs out where you work, its another to have that cat named “The Official Cat” of where you work. By making a big deal of a small internal joke, the Alamo’s staff made the news and showed an approachable, fun side of the well known attraction.

Learn more: San Antonio Express-News

2. Low tech is just fine

You don’t need a lot to get started with making your customers feel special. Ruffners, a pet boarding and dog daycare facility near Chicago, does it with a simple whiteboard. Each month, they tape a photo of a boarding dog of the month and a daycare dog of the month and write a short description of why they love them on the whiteboard. It’s easy, affordable, and gives their customers something to brag about. To amplify it even more, they tweet a photo of the board from their Twitter handle.

The lesson: Don’t overthink it. Sharing your love for your customers can be this easy.

Learn more: Twitter

3. Make it more fun

A lot of Major League Baseball teams have caught on that dog owners love taking their pets wherever they can. So teams like the Royals, Mets, Rangers, and White Sox have opened up their stadiums for “Dog Days” where fans can bring their pets along to the game. This makes watching the game a completely different experience — one that more audiences are willing to leave behind their big screens for. Plus, since everyone loves taking pictures of their dogs (even players), it also creates a ton of cute photo opportunities.

The lesson: How are you making your customers’ experiences unique, fun, and photo-worthy? Sometimes it can be as simple as letting them bring their dog.

Learn more: Go Pet Friendly

4. Check it out: Color vision game

How well can you spot different colors? As well as a bat? A tiger? A hawk? Take this color vision test to see what animal’s eyesight your’s align with.

Check it out: iGame

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  1. Rural NY SBO for Friday, July 31, 2015 | Rural NY SBO - July 29, 2015

    […] marketing need not cost big bucks. Word of mouth marketer Andy Sernovitz tells how three businesses used pets to get customers to promote those businesses in stories and  […]

  2. Top 5 Must Sign up for Newsletters | Mojo Helpdesk Blog - August 5, 2015

    […] fun to serious tips and ideas. Let’s use an example from one of his recent articles titled The Lessons from Pets Issue in which he talks about things you can learn from your furry friends and turns them into […]

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