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A Memorable Brand is Key for Pet Business Growth in 2023: Marketing Goals for the Year Ahead

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Goal setting is essential for business growth, but knowing what to focus on can be a challenge, especially when you have an expansive vision for the future of your pet business.

Your goal-setting strategy should be informed by the current state of the pet industry, potential challenges you anticipate in the year ahead, what has worked well (and what hasn’t) in the past, and where you want your business to go both short- and long-term.

As you begin to outline your 2023 goals, envision where you want your business to be in one year, fives years, and beyond. Then, consider what strategies and systems you need to have in place to accomplish those goals. Will you need to bring on new team members to manage new initiatives? Is it advantageous to outsource specific tasks to experts to ensure results while allowing your in-house team to focus on other projects?

These are all critical questions to address.

To give you a leg up on your 2023 goals, we’ve compiled a list of the top business goals your pet business should focus on this year.

For additional inspiration, check out our podcast episode on the top pet industry trends we expect to see in 2023.

Increasing customer retention
It’s no secret that warm leads convert at much higher rates than cold leads (14.6% versus 1.7%), so retaining your existing customers is always a worthwhile strategy. And with a recession looming, it’s even more crucial.

Your customers will inevitably become more mindful of where they put their dollars, but by making them feel valued and supported, they’ll keep coming back to you rather than pursuing other options.

Suggested action steps:
Evaluate your customer service experience and consider ways to enhance and optimize it. Can you make the sales process more seamless? Can you make it feel more personalized for the buyer? Providing an exceptional customer experience is a sure way to have your customers come back repeatedly. Plus, it will turn them into natural ambassadors for your brand resulting in word-of-mouth referrals, aka new leads!
Develop resources to support your customers with their struggles. Whether you sell pet apparel, pet food, or something else, your buyers will have questions and pain points around the problem your product or service solves. Beyond selling them something, creating resources such as informational videos, educational newsletters, or actionable blog and social media content will ensure you continue supporting customers even after they make a purchase. This will keep your brand top of mind and increase their probability of returning!

Refine your brand positioning
Strong positioning is always essential, and with new businesses continuing to enter the marketplace and mergers and acquisitions taking place at high rates, reviewing and refining your pet brand’s positioning will strengthen your presence in the market.

The more specific you can be about the problem your products and services solve, the easier it will be to convert prospective customers. Your marketing content should feel as though it is speaking directly to their pain points, using the language they use to describe them.

Suggested action steps:
Review customer feedback on your top-selling products and services. What types of phrases do they use to describe them? Do they reference any specific issues your products helped them solve? If the experiences and language your existing customers share don’t match your current branding, there’s an opportunity to ensure your positioning is more aligned. This will help you refine your target audience and how you position your products as the answer to their struggles.

Enhance your digital presence
A strong digital presence is non-negotiable these days. Though pandemic restrictions have subsided, many consumers still prefer shopping online. Maintaining a consistent online presence is the best way to ensure you capture and engage with prospective and existing customers.

Whether you already have an excellent website and a growing social media presence, there is always room for improvement. You could build a presence on channels you haven’t had the chance to invest much time in, or you could ramp up existing channels to increase engagement rates or welcome more prospects to the top of your marketing funnel.

Suggested action steps:
Determine which online channels your customers prefer using to interact with your brand (and your competitors). How can you increase your presence in these areas to better engage and serve your prospective buyers? Ask yourself which marketing channels seem poised to yield the most significant ROI.
Analyze your digital marketing funnel and look for opportunities for improvement. Map out each phase of the funnel and ask yourself how you can improve touch points to support your audience through each stage. How can you bring more prospective customers into the top of the funnel?

Efficiency in your systems
Efficient systems reduce costs and help you run a lean team. They also make it easier to pivot your strategy to capitalize on trends and other opportunities that arise throughout the year.

Developing thoughtful systems and documenting your processes and workflows facilitates team expansion by reducing onboarding time. These systems also ensure your business has the agility to pivot between strategies when needed.

By auditing your existing systems and workflows, you can spot inefficiencies and identify opportunities to increase your business’s overall productivity. In some cases, you may incorporate automation; in others, you could find that hiring a new team member may help distribute responsibilities more effectively throughout your organization.

Suggested action steps:
Have your teams analyze their workflows and identify areas for improvement. Where do they encounter bottlenecks? Are they willing to introduce tools, software, or automation to improve workflow efficiency? Do team members feel their workloads are manageable? How could you redistribute responsibilities to ensure everyone is working to their strengths?

The Bottom Line
Despite the challenges of the past few years, the pet industry continues to grow and is expected to grow at a rate of over 5% annually and reach a $350B + market size by 2027. But, as the industry expands, it will only become increasingly competitive, which is why thoughtful goals are essential. We hope these suggestions will inspire you to reach for the stars in 2023.

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