The first phase may be a struggle. Make sure you have some type of client or customer base established; whether that’s a potential home pet owner, a pet sitter, a person with a walking business who you love to work with, or a loved one’s friend who’s looking for a new friend.
Make sure you have some type of “bargain” product on the table – either a gift certificate, discounted product, or discount to a particular location. If you do not have a product on the table, then be prepared to do it yourself or get some help to develop one. Some companies specialize in giving out free gifts or discount coupons (they call them “gift cards”) and some do both. Most companies sell discount coupons or gift certificates and they are not necessarily given out on a “one for all” basis. (If you decide to work for someone else – say they give you a voucher or gift card – then you will still need to consider whether or not you want that particular business to continue.)
You should also be prepared to deal with all the challenges associated with the pet walking business: time management, scheduling, customer service, the need to provide adequate grooming, transportation, and dog upkeep/disability management. While there may be some aspects that may require additional help from a dog walking business consultant, the average person can generally help you get through the first couple of months or years in the business.
So, if you do have some type of “bargain” product with potential clients – either a gift card, discounted, special discount coupon, or special product – then make sure your company has some sort of “bargainable” product on the table for them. Remember, some companies will specialize in giving out free gifts or discount coupons, other companies do both (or both can become part of a contract), and most will give out either a voucher or gift card (if that makes sense to them). But make sure you have some sort of product on the table and work from there.
The next phase of a pet sitter’s life is planning, planning, planning – and many people fail at that because they focus too much on marketing themselves before they are ready. Planning begins the night before you even go out with the dog and the next morning (with little to no breakfast and with no plans to meet up with the dog), and you want to get everything in place, so if you have no idea where each step is going, you should probably
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