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How to immediately recognize the pet owner’s profile (and to know what he wants for his pets)

How can you immediately recognize pet owners’ needs when you visit petshops you manage?

How can you train your collaborators to quickly meet the needs of dog or cat owners, in order to increase the average receipt amount and be able to quickly manage a transaction?

The research presented at Petfood Forum 2023

During one of the most awaited industry appointments of the year, the CEO of Trone (marketing company specializing in pet care)presented a research to understand the behavior of dog and cat owners and their beliefs on pet nutrition.

The sample included 467 pet owners in the United States and analyzed their pet nutrition management beliefs, their brand loyalty, level of trust in their pet nutrition management, and a focus on linking nutritional beliefs to different marketing strategies.

“We wanted to talk with pet owners and really understand, in a simple way, how they know about nutrition,” Barton said. “It turns out that they often feel overwhelmed by the differences in pet food categories, including dry food, wet food, snacks and supplements.

4 pet owners’ segments

The study revealed 4 different types of pet owners:

  • Healthy Advocates (32%),
  • Selective Loyalists (16%),
  • Hopeful Explorers (24%)
  • Disinterested (29%).

The first thing that catches the eye is the proportion of those who pay attention to nutritional aspects (71%), which is already an important and growing majority compared to the past. Another very important aspect is related to the choice and selection processes that can lead this type of customer to express their maximum potential.

Healthy supporters

This group is made up of people who support their beliefs, their nutritional values and their ideas about pet food nutrition. The study found that this segment of pet owners rely 82% on a recommendation from their veterinarian, 63% on product packaging/labels, 59% on products that claim to be “vet recommended”. and 59% on ratings and reviews for nutritional information. Their inclination to buy does not depend on the brand and is not considered an important aspect.

Selective Loyalists

Selective loyalists believe that a strict, selective diet will lead to fewer health problems and lower veterinary bills. Once they find a product that addresses these needs, they will only change if they find a product that can actually improve their pet's health. This segment of pet owners relies 71% on a recommendation from their veterinarian, 60% on product packaging/labeling, 55% on products that state “vet recommended” and 49% on information of the manufacturer.

Hopeful Explorers

This group of pet owners has a strong emotional bond with pets and this drives them to purchase. Unlike selective loyalists, when they choose a product for their pet, their first thought is not to spend less on veterinary expenses but to look for a product which, in their opinion, can give psychophysical well-being to their four-legged friend, even at a cost to try more products from different brands. This segment of pet owners relies 55% on recommendations from their veterinarian, 40% on product packaging/labeling, 39% on products that state “vet recommended” and 27% on product information. of the manufacturer.

How pet owners prefer to spend

Pet owners are interested in expanding their knowledge of nutrition and, according to the author of the research, are willing to pay 50 to 70 euros for nutritional advice. Their attention is growing on manufacturer information, such as the information listed on the back of their pet's food or treat packaging.

In addition to looking for more and more detailed information on the manufacturers' websites, the possibility online subscriptions is starting to take hold, especially in the group of Healthy Supporters and Selective Loyalists.

Recognizing the pet owner means knowing what drives him to buy

When trying to understand the “why” or what drives dog or cat owner choices, keep in mind the specifics of each segment, such as how Selective Loyalists are trying to keep prices low. healthcare costs, while Healthy Advocates take care of what is best for the animal in terms of nutrition. On them it may be useful to spend a few more minutes on the functionality of some products, especially those for which suppliers provide increasingly detailed information.


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