Tag Archives: marketing mix

Puppy Love

Aww….. They are so cute!

We do love our pups and pets. And there are more pet-parents than ever before thanks to the pandemic. According to the American Society for Prevention to Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), more than 23 million U.S. families have adopted a pet during the pandemic. And while there is lots of love to go around, there is also a lot of money being spent on pampering and caring for our little animal buddies.

How much money? Well, according to Statista.com the U.S. pet industry accounts for $103.6 billion, including $44.1 billion for pet food. Doggy daycare centers and veterinarians are booked solid these days. Plus dog walkers such as Wag are certainly in high demand. Pets even get treated like one of the family – massages and acupuncture, along with dental care, are not uncommon.

The pet business is booming. Target Corp. has started its own line of pet-food, branded Kindfull. General Mills re-entered the pet food market in 2018 when it purchased Blue Buffalo Pet Products for $8 billion. The company also spent $1.2 billion for a line of pet treats from Tyson Foods last year. Nestle Purina holds the largest share in dry pet food sales at nearly $3.5 billion. In retail, PetSmart and PETCO account for 40% of the market. That’s a lot of puppy chow!

Ready for some puppy love?  

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students: Who has a pet? How much did they spend last year on the pet?
  2. Bring up pet care sites such as Rover (https://www.rover.com/) and Wag (https://wagwalking.com/).
  3. Also show retail sites including Target (https://www.target.com/b/kindfull/-/N-q643le71aup?lnk=snav_rd_kindfull), PetSmart (https://www.petsmart.com/), and PETCO (https://www.petco.com/shop/en/petcostore), and Chewy (https://www.chewy.com/).
  4. Have students do a search for pet health care and insurance rates.
  5. Compare rates at: https://quote.petinsurer.com/quote/ref=usnews?insurer=petsbest&subId1=other-products-in-table&subId2=https://www.usnews.com/insurance/pet-insurance&subId3=desktop&subID4=large
  6. Have students use their laptops to research different types of products and care for pets.
  7. Divide students into teams and have each team develop a profile of a target market for various types of pet owners.
  8. How should pet products be promoted to the target market?

Source:  Bogage, J. (Feb. 12, 2022). The high cost of puppy love. Washington Post.; Sitaramiah, G. (Feb. 10, 2022). Twin Cities businesses benefit as pet owners spend like parents. Minneapolis Star Tribune.

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Experiential Marketing Keeps Evolving

In today’s fast-paced Instagram world, experiencing a product and brand is more important than ever to consumers. While experiential marketing is not a new tactic for marketers, it has certainly increased in the past few years due to social media usage, and the rise of selfie photos showing consumers interacting with brands and products.

In the past year there were thousands of pop-up experiences and stores around the country. Some of the more well-known ones are the Museum of Ice Cream, 29Rooms, and products such as Peleton bikes. Other pop-up experiences have come from retailers such as Birch Box, Tiffany, Adidas, Samsung, Amazon, Dior, Payless Shoes, and even HBO show ‘Game of Thrones’. In the past, we might have called these ‘kiosks’ but that doesn’t do justice to the full experience offered by the new world of pop-ups. In their new iteration, the pop-ups may offer a brick-and-mortar experience (such as Museum of Ice Cream) or include another form that offers a fully immersive experience.

For today’s Millennial shoppers, content is key. These shoppers not only check their phones continually, they also generate their own content at a high rate!

What experiences do you want?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the different forms that experiential marketing can take.
  2. Show several examples: 29 Rooms: http://www.29rooms.com/
  3. Museum of ice cream: https://www.museumoficecream.com/
  4. Rose’ Mansion: https://www.rosewinemansion.com/
  5. Poll students: What has been their experience with pop-ups and immersive experiences?
  6. Divide students into teams. Assign each team a product, or let the teams select their own products.
  7. Have each team develop an experience for that product.

Source: Ramirez, D. (12 March 2019). Creating experiential that stands out in a crowded industry. Ad Week.

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Hi-Tech Fitness

Hate working out? It can be such a hassle – there is travel time, using equipment with other sweaty people, showering in messy locker rooms, and not getting enough personal training attention to make a difference. But still, fitness and health are important. What can be done differently to make workouts more enjoyable and fulfilling? Where’s the technology?

Enter Tonal: a San Francisco-based start-up company that aims to revolutionize how people workout by using high-tech to reinvent the workout system. The innovative product and service combines unique hardware, software, and an interactive LED screen to create a workout experience that doesn’t rely on old-school barbells and plates. Tonal can even sense when a workout is too easy, and add more weights for the next set to set the right level of difficulty.

Tonal is high-tech and effective, but not cheap. The machine itself is $2,995, plus custom smart accessories at $495, and a monthly subscription of $49 per month for 12-months minimum. The Tonal system mounts to a wall (similar to flat-screen TV). For the optimal experience, the system only needs access to a 7-foot by 7-foot space. Tonal measures reps, sets, range of motion, time under tension, power, and volume. The monthly subscription provides expert coaching via video with step-by-step instructions.

No pain, no gain.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students:Where do they work out? How much do they spend on gym memberships? On equipment?
  2. View Tonal’s Web site: https://www.tonal.com/
  3. Discuss the importance of clearly defining a target market.
  4. For Tonal, what is the target market?
  5. Divide students into teams and have each team develop a profile of a target market for Tonal. Include demographics, psychographics, behaviors, values, attitudes, etc.
  6. Based on the target market profile, what makes this product unique for these customers?
  7. Debrief the exercise.

Source:  New York Times

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