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April 2, 2014

While spring technically started last month, I consider April the true start of the season, especially here in the Northeast.

The weather starts to warm up, I can finally swap sneakers for flip flops, ditch the dog sweater on our daily walks and take my tortoise outside for some natural sunshine.

Spring is also the time for a fresh start.

By the time you read this, the Global Pet Expo will have been over for a few weeks. I don’t know about you, but whenever I leave a tradeshow or industry event like that, I get inspired again.

I remember the reasons why we log so many long hours, chase down people for stories and work tirelessly to put out a good product.

The reason is you.

If one of our stories, Facebook posts, newsletters, new product mentions or tweets can help you run your business more successfully, then it was all worth it.

Spring is also a time to reflect on all those New Year’s resolutions we all made four months ago. How are you progressing with them?

Whether it was to turn up your social media presence, attend more networking events or start holding more adoption events in your store, are you working toward those goals? If not, spring is the perfect time to jumpstart those plans.

Speaking of adoption events, we decided to focus this month’s cover story on how to help your customers select the proper pet. Pet ownership is a big deal, and if it doesn’t go well, both the pet and the owner can suffer. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve heard stories that go something like this:

“I got my kid XYZ pet and it was just a disaster. Never again will I let them have a pet.”

Or, someone comes to me determined they want to adopt a certain breed of dog or buy a certain size aquarium, and I think to myself, “This is going to be a disaster,” and try to talk them into something that better fits their lifestyle.

It’s a little easier when it’s someone you know, because you already have an idea of their background, but when a complete stranger walks into your store and asks for help picking out the perfect small animal for their kid, it is important that you and your staff be armed with the proper questions to ask them so a good match is made.

This month is also the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council’s Top2Top Conference, which gives you a chance to take a step back from your daily routine and immerse yourself in peer-to-peer conversations, forward-thinking sessions, and invaluable networking opportunities that will benefit your business as well as the industry as a whole.

It will be my first one, and I am very much looking forward to it because, like Global, it is an event that you walk away from with a renewed sense of optimism and ideas to not only make your business better, but the industry as a whole.

 

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