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Pet Age
 

February 29, 2016

I’ve been thinking a lot about millennials lately.

I’m sure this is partly because Pet Age recently hired two assistant editors in that age group—between about 18 and 34 years old. But it’s also because millennials are in the news more and more these days. They are the biggest supporters of a certain underdog presidential candidate. They are the driving force behind most social media platforms. And they not only outnumber us Gen Xers—they now outnumber baby boomers, too.

As their purchasing power grows in the coming years, it’s crucial that pet retailers understand this cohort of pet owners. To help with that, this issue has two columns that discuss ways to appeal to this growing demographic of pet owners. Guest columnist Kerry Sutherland lays out three rules for engaging millennial customers. Regular columnist Andy Black discusses the ways in which millennial shopping habits and expectations differ from those of other generations.

One thing that everyone talks about when it comes to this generation is their love of social media and other forms of digital communication. As we’ve said in these pages before, retailers that are savvy about their social media use will have an edge in reaching millennials. Having a presence on social media is a good start, but you’ve got to actually use that presence to drive people – of all generations – into your store.

While on the subject of social media, I encourage you to follow and like Pet Age across the various platforms. You can find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and Pinterest. Our app is available for both Apple and Android systems. You won’t want to miss our Freebie Friday giveaways on Instagram. And if you want to see your pet featured in our social media, send a picture to upclosepet@gmail.com. Following us on social media also ensures you’ll receive all our coverage of the new products we see on the floor of Global Pet Expo.

Two more things about millennials: You may have seen our December news story about a study conducted by Nestle Purina that indicated that more millennials favor cats over dogs. Other surveys have shown that millennials are more likely to own reptiles than other generations.

Millennials love cats and reptiles? We might have more in common than I thought.

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