A+ FOR CONSUMER EDUCATION
In the flea and tick treatment category, consumer education is vital for sales as well as
for the safety of pets and people. Several manufacturers and retailers touted the importance of teaching pet owners about the lifecycle of these pests.
“Consumer education is important when it comes to flea and tick products for the
home and yard because an infestation on a pet rarely happens without affecting both the
home and yard,” said Neal Wilmore, vice president of commercial operations for Perrigo
Animal Health in Omaha, Neb.
And customers need to understand how fleas and ticks live and breed in order to
properly eliminate them, said Stephanie Boone, CEO of Wondercide Natural Products
in Austin, Texas.
Retailers agreed that pet owners often are unaware that their pest problems often
begin outside, and many get confused when trying to decide what to purchase because
there are so many options.
Darci Petercheff, owner of All American Dog in Somerset, Ky., prides herself on education and emphasized that face-to-face conversation is the best way to teach pet owners.
“People come in my door and will get educated,” she said. “They desperately want
to do better and know how to do better for their pets. In my area, people come in and
trust us; we are the walking testimony for everything in our stores.”
Kim Boyle, owner of Barkstown Road LLC, which has two stores in Louisville, Ky., also
informs customers while talking with them in the store.
“That way you can show them all of the available options and discuss the benefits of
each,” she said, adding that email blasts and posts on social media are great ways to get
snippets of information to customers.
Because customers are researching and learning about products online before heading
to the shelf, Stacy Kisla, senior director of marketing at The Hartz Mountain Corp. in Secaucus, N.J., recommends providing product information on the web about how the products
work and how to use them to help inform consumers’ purchase decisions.
In addition to web materials, Boone said including print materials such as brochures
and handouts in orders and displaying them in retail stores will teach customers about
the products that will work best for the specific issues they’re facing.
agreed that the best way to
flea and tick infestation is
for pet owners to treat their
yard and home, in addition
to treating their pets. To
meet this need, Advantage
from Bayer is launching
two flea infestation bundles
this month: one for cat
owners and the other for
dog owners, said Jeriel
Chua, senior brand manager
for Advantage at Bayer Animal Health in Shawnee, Kan. Both
bundles include Advantage Yard & Premise Spray.
“Based on our research, we found that shoppers often get
confused with the assortment and options at the shelf, espe-
cially when managing a flea infestation,” Chua said. “Bayer
recognized the need for a comprehensive portfolio of parasite
prevention products for home and yard. Our kits provide an as-
sortment of products that can help control an infestation from
several fronts, including on the pet, in the pet’s environment
and the surrounding yard or patio.”
To meet customer demand for natural products that are easy
to use, in April, Wondercide Natural Products debuted Ready to
Use Natural Flea & Tick
Control for Yard + Garden,
a ready-to-use version
of the company’s yard
Flea & Tick Control for Yard
+ Garden concentrate requires an external applicator and mixing before use,”
said CEO Stephanie Boone.
“As customers continue to
seek out simpler solutions,
Wondercide modified the
product to meet market demand. With our new ready-to-use
version, you simply attach a hose and spray your lawn. Yard +
Garden kills the entire lifecycle of fleas, ticks, mosquitoes and
Also in April, Promika LLC released Shield Tec Yard &
Premise Spray to round out its portfolio and to enable owners
to protect pets while outdoors. Efficacy and easy use were key
focuses for the new offering, said Mike Tweedy, president and
COO of the Cary, N.C., company.
“We’ve tried to pick the most effective active ingredient and
most widely used one in market that is effective outdoor paired
with easy-to-use application for the consumer,” Tweedy said.
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