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Sit, Stay, Share: How to Run Your Pet’s Social Media Account
August 28, 2019
You may wake up one day (if you haven’t already) to find that your social media accounts have become a record of your pet’s best moments. When that day arrives, you may wonder if it’s time to create a separate account to capture your cat or dog’s unlimited cuteness.
Most pet accounts on social media won’t garner national attention, but maintaining a separate account may be a fun pursuit. If you’re strategic, you may even get enough traction locally to get sponsored by a pet food brand or a pet insurance company.
The safest approach is to enter the pet influencer game with fun in mind. If your pet’s five minutes of fame takes your further, all the better! Here’s a six-step guide to creating and running your pet’s social media to help your harness your fluffluencer’s pawsitive vibes.
Decide whether you want to start incorporating your pet into your own social media in a formal way or if you’re ready to set up a separate account just for your pet.
If you’re at the point where you find yourself posting more photos of the animal in your life than the people, you may be ready to start a pet account. Decide what you want to get out of this experience: Is your goal just to triage your pet posts to concentrate your pet content, or are you hoping to connect with other pet parents?
You know your pet better than anyone else. Think about how you interact with them, how they behave around other pets (and people), and how they respond to your camera / smartphone:
-Does you pet like a lot of attention?
-How do they react to cameras, especially near their face?
-Are they comfortable in front of a crowd?
-Do they take direction?
-Costumes: yea or nay?
You may be eager to cultivate a pet influencer, but your pet may not be so interested in your schemes. While the perks of being a pupfluencer can sound grand, you have options when it comes to affordable pet insurance that don’t require followers or sponsorship. Don’t feel pressured to jump onboard the pet influencer train – a low-key account that features your pet that’s popular with friends and family may be enough on exposure for both you and your furry friend.
Engaging content is more than just a great looking dog or cat. Candid moments often translate well online, but so does humor and sincerity in the face of hardship. As you approach documenting your pet’s life, you’ll inevitably capture some of your own.
Think about your pet’s personality and assess it from a distance. How social is your favorite furball? Are they goofy, serious, or sweet? What are the things they do that will play well to the camera and a broader audience?
Knowing the answers to these questions will help you position your pet for success – whatever that term means for you in this context.
The next step is to choose a platform that will allow you to reach your goals for your pet’s social media account. Depending on what you’re hoping to achieve and who you want to connect with, you have options:
-Facebook: Great for connecting to friends and family. Also good for making new friends.
-Snapchat: Pets for the youth! Users are typically a bit younger, but they thrive on hilarious pet videos.
-Twitter: Does your pet’s face lend itself to memes? If so, Twitter may be the way to go.
-Instagram: This is the most popular platform for petfluencers! You can’t go wrong here.
Whatever platform you choose, you’ll want to follow relevant local pet accounts and brands. Bivvy pet insurance has an Instagram account and we’re always excited to see passionate pet owners following our account.
While a lot of the advice in this post applies across platforms, we’ll focus on Instagram, as that’s the main platform for pet photo sharing today.
Once you launch your account, you’ll need to have a plan, which includes how often you plan on posting.
Decide how often you can reasonably post to your pet’s account. If your plan is to post whenever the spirit moves you, that’s just fine! But it won’t help you get and retain followers. It’s a good idea to establish a regular cadence of posts so that followers know when they can expect to see new content.
That said, you don’t want to overwhelm your audience. Daily posts are a big commitment; posting more frequently may not help you retain your audience’s attention.
Whether you’re looking to become an international pet influencer whose main income is earned through paid pet influencer appearances, or you’re looking to connect to local canine meetup groups, there are a couple of easy things you can do to make your pet content more easily searchable to like-minded pet owners (and potential sponsors):
-Use geotags on your photos and posts to push them into geographic spheres of influence online.
-Use hashtags, including breed- and region-specific hashtags.
These two easy steps will make it possible (pawsible) for other pet parents to meet you at the dog park or find other pets to connect with. But the biggest thing you’ll need to do? Be social. Whatever platform you choose, you’ll need to communicate with other folks who have similar interests.
It takes time and work to build a following, but having an audience is key if you’re interested in partnering with local brands: many pet insurance companies and pet food brands are interested in finding local brand ambassadors to support their marketing efforts.
But you can also find new friends by partnering with local rescues, animal shelters, and pet trainers. The pet industry is booming, and you can benefit from the growing online community of pets (and their owners).
Building a healthy sphere of influence for your pet will take time, however serious your pursuit of pet fame online. But the internet is a powerful tool for making new friends, whether you’re looking for more human connections or pals for your pup.
This list of steps to starting up your pet’s social media account is just a rough outline. Ultimately, you should pick the path that best suits your lifestyle and goals. At the end of the day, posting images and videos of your fur baby is about sharing experiences.
Social media can be a powerful tool for making new friends and learning about local pet culture. It’s more than okay if your desire to ramp up your pet’s presence online is just an excuse to spend more time grooming and snuggling with your pet.
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