Author: Victor Texcucano, Content Coordinator, RAB
Pets are loyal companions, protectors and even mood boosters, according to WebMD, which says pets can stave off depression, lower blood pressure and boost immunity.
During the past two years, many Americans decided to either invest in new furry friends or decided to spend more on the ones they already had. An April 2022 Forbes survey mentions that 78% of the pet owners acquired their pets during the pandemic. Additionally, stay-at-home orders during the COVID-19 pandemic led to a change in consumer behavior, and many Americans found themselves splurging to spoil their pets.
Before 2020, the percentage of pet owners in the U.S. was around 17%. That number has jumped to around 23% as of April 2022. Per Forbes, Gen Xers are mostly sticking to dogs and cats, while younger consumers (18-25) have been showing interest in more exotic pets. They are showing interest in pets like guinea pigs, hamsters, birds, rabbits, fish or turtles.
However, while recent exotic pet trend is more common among younger consumers, these are the percentage of pet owners, regardless of pet type, by generation in 2021, according to the American Pet Products Association (APPA): Gen Z, 14%; millennials, 32%; Gen X, 24%; baby boomer, 27%.
An APPA industry report also said $123.6 billion was spent on our pets in the U.S. in 2021. Of this spending, the top categories were pet food and treats ($50.0 billion), veterinary care and products ($34.3 billion), pet supplies and OTC medicine ($28.8 billion), boarding, grooming, insurance, training, pet sitting/kenneling and walking (considered ‘other services,’ $9.5 billion).
Radio is the perfect way to reach customers interested in taking care of their pets. Whether it is veterinarians, dog groomers or pet supply stores, radio reaches these consumers.
According to the 2022 MRI-Simmons Spring Doublebase, radio reaches 87% of consumers who consider it a hobby to take care of their pets, as well as 86% who agree that pets deserve to be pampered. Of those who want to pamper their pets, the age groups that agree the most are 25-34 (18%), 55-64 (17%) and 65+ (22%). Businesses that want to cater to these pet “parents” should include references in their messaging on how they understand the need to pamper their pets. Radio connects emotionally and using words or phrases that address “pampering” can help drive sales and, more importantly, reach new customers.
Radio also reaches 88% of consumers who spent over $100 on veterinary services in the last 12 months, and 87% who spent just as much on pet food. Eighty-nine percent of pet “parents” who have a pet insurance policy in place also regularly tune in to radio, as do 88% who have paid for other pet services, such as daycare, boarding/kennel, grooming or training.
Countless businesses cater to pet owners everywhere. Whether they’ve had their furry (or scaley) friends for years or they are new to pet ownership, radio is there to let consumers know of businesses who are ready to help their friends now.