Do you see other pet businesses talking about awareness days and national days and feel like it’s something you’d like to start doing?
But you’re not sure how, or maybe you’re worried it might seem a bit random or cheesy or that it has to be your day?
Here are some common questions around awareness days and how best to use them in your pet business content.
Plus examples from pet business owners who’ve created their own days and how they’ve boosted their business.
Listen in on the player link below or carry on reading the key points as a blog post.
What are awareness days?
Awareness days, weeks and months are created by charities, organisations and individuals to shine a light on a cause or topic.
They can be fun and frivolous, like Twin With Your Dog Day (December 1st) or National Dog Photography Day (July 26th).
Or they can be more serious, for example Breast Cancer Awareness month in October.
When it comes to the pet world, they can be around educating people on a topic.
This week it’s Dog Separation Anxiety Day on September 30th, created by Jo Sellers from Pippin Pets to highlight that MILLIONS of dogs in the UK and worldwide experience this and many owners have no idea.
Another example is Dogs in Yellow day on March 20th. This was created by Sarah Jones from My Anxious Dog to educate people around why dogs wear yellow – to show they’re nervous and need space.
How you can use them in your pet business marketing?
If a topic relates to what you do, then use it!
Let’s use Separation Anxiety. If you’re a dog trainer, you can create educational content around the topic.
How to spot the signs, how to support your dog, steps to follow to help your dog overcome Separation Anxiety, tools you can use like pet cams.
With each post, you can add a call to action so if someone wants your help, they can book a call.
You could ask your clients to share their experiences of helping their own dogs – call on them to educate people too – no-one wants to see dogs suffer.
And Kerry Jordan’s National Dog Photography Day on July 26th saw thousands of people around the world join in, with the Queen tweeting about it in 2019 – check out this post to read Kerry sharing what it’s like to go viral!
Why use awareness days?
The dates help get rid of the blank page when you’re planning your content.
They give you a jumping off point.
Plus the opportunity to start a conversation on your area of expertise or any topic you want to chat about.
We know we need to stay visible, and when you’re stuck for ideas, the dates can help.
Plus you can use them to create products and packages too. Kim O’Donnell, creator of Twin With Your Dog Day (December 1st), has twinning products people can buy.
Niki French, creator of Don’t Walk Your Dog Day (April 2nd) has a book, Stop Walking Your Dog.
You can use ANY day to create a product though. Look at Black Friday and all the sale products you see then!
What if it sounds cheesy?
Awareness Days or National Days can sound a bit naff if you haven’t really put much thought into what you’re sharing.
For example, saying ‘It’s National Sandwich Day,’ doesn’t mean much.
Doing a poll asking if people put crisps in their sandwich gives people an opportunity to engage and have a bit of fun.
Last year I did a poll on this on LinkedIn and it had the highest reach of anything I’ve ever shared.
What kind of content can I share?
Social media posts, blogs, emails, newsletters, press pitches.
If you look at Guy Fawkes night on November 5th as an example, dog trainers create courses and programmes around the date.
As long as it’s something your community will be interested in or find helpful, you can use the days any way you like.
Jo Milnes has created a merchandise range around her Muddy Dog Day on October 29th, with clean up kits, t-shirts and hoodies, plus loads of website, email and social content.
Does it have to be my day?
No, if someone else has created a day that’s relevant to what you do, you can use it and they will be chuffed to bits if you do.
For example, this week it’s Dog Separation Anxiety Day on September 30th, created by Jo Sellers who specialises in supporting pet owners and their dogs.
She’s passionate about helping people and if you work with dogs on this issue or create a product that can help then getting behind the day means more people become aware of the signs and how to support their pets.
Next week it’s Kate Taylor’s Canine Companion Day on October 2nd. She created the day to celebrate our fabulous furry friends.
Like Jo she wants it to be a time to recognise the happiness they bring and to flood social media with tales of happiness.
How do I pick what days to use?
Choose ones that feel relevant to what you do or are linked to your business and use them as an opportunity to share your thoughts, experience and expertise.
For Separation Anxiety, you might share advice on how to support your dog, or how to spot the signs.
They don’t all have to be directly linked to your business.
You don’t have to be sharing expertise every time you share an awareness day themed post.
For example, it’s World TV Day on November 21st. If you’ve been on the telly as an expert, shout about it.
But it’s just as engaging, if not more, if you’ve a screen grab of you on Blue Peter when you were a kid, or you could simply ask people what their favourite TV show is.
Remember social media is about being social, so don’t feel like you have to link everything to your business.
How do I find out about the days?
There are directories you can use, and planners too.
This is one of this lists I use: https://www.daysoftheyear.com/
Have a look at the Ruffle Snuffle list of pet holidays here: https://www.rufflesnuffle.co.uk/the-best-list-of-pet-national-days-holidays-calendar/
Janet Murray creates a media diary with key dates and you can read about that here.
And if you’d like support around content planning, or you’re thinking of creating your own day like my clients Niki, Jo, Jo, Kate, Kim and Sarah, you can book a chat with me here.
Want support getting press coverage around awareness days?
If you enjoyed this post, you might like How to create an awareness day with Kerry Jordan, or How to use awareness days to get press coverage, or take a look at my podcasts for planning your Winter, Summer, Spring content.