31 September 2017 Pet Product News International
What is Mutts & Co. best
Mark Vitt: Beyond giving back
to the community, we may
be best known for having the
finest self-serve dog wash
facilities in all of Central Ohio.
The greatest challenge for
pet retailers today?
MV: Competing with the
online space and showing the
value derived from working
with a small company that
cares about its customers.
The independent retailer
offers so much—things like
education and, more important, that personal touch.
In the pet industry overall?
MV: I think the biggest challenge is enticing consumers
to purchase all their services,
food and supplies from one
location. Too many customers
travel store to store, shopping
for various products. The goal
is to have them purchase
everything in one stop.
Are you watching any interesting trends right now?
MV: Consumers feeding their
pets a healthy diet are now
going one step beyond. We’re
seeing an overall awareness of
supplements and health-relat-ed materials that previously
would have been assumed
Goals going forward?
MV: We would like to expand
our personal touch service
into new markets.
up at Mutts & Co., where adoption days are a regular
“We want to provide a channel to raise awareness,
and not just for adoptable animals, but for the organizations as a whole,” Vitt said.
A popular self-serve offering, Discounted Dog Wash
Days often take place during holidays or evening hours,
during which “100 percent of the proceeds are donat-
ed to the rescue group manning the stations,” Vitt said.
“The discount brings more people in, particularly when
they realize their fee is a donation to a great cause.”
Further, holiday photo fundraisers take place several
times throughout the year.
“A selected rescue orga-
nizes the event, we provide
the physical location and
marketing efforts, and every
single dollar goes back to the
rescue,” he said.
In addition, Mutts & Co. is involved in supporting
free microchipping clinics, mega adoption events, and
spay and neuter clinics in cooperation with Save Ohio
Pets, a 501c3 nonprofit organization that Deborah was
instrumental in founding.
Support for the community is at the heart of the Mutts &
Co. credo, and for this reason, Mutts Marketplace, sited
in every store, presents a boutiquelike venue for local
artisans to display their wares.
“It’s an Ohio-based approach,” Vitt said.
T-shirts with themes promoting local rescue and
adoption awareness are in the mix, designed by The Pet
Foundry, a Mutts & Co. branded apparel line.
GETTING THE WORD OUT
The goings-on are myriad, and customers stay apprised
through social media channels such as Facebook. Further, a Mutts & Co. newsletter is emailed to customers
on a regular basis.
“Maintaining a constant communication channel is
vital,” Vitt said. “It doesn’t just build our business, but
provides assistance to those in need and raises awareness within our community.”
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