APA! Dog Marketing

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Creating an emotional connection between potential adopters and the dog that will drive them to act by sharing, advocating, adopting or fostering!

As the spokesperson for your dog, you have access to a number of marketing tools--APA! Dog Profile, Instagram, Facebook--to help ensure everyone knows who your dog is and what will make them happy and healthy in their new home.


Marketing Timeline

To help you manage your APA! dog's profile and ensure potential adopters see them as quickly as possible, we'd like to recommend adding these to your calendar:

1-3 Days:

Share Photos & Videos

3-5 Days:

Share a Bio & Behavior

4-5 Days:

Review Details

5+ Days:

Promote on Social Media


Dog Profile

An APA! Dog Profile is your opportunity to highlight your dog on the Austin Pets Alive! website. Potential adopters are able to filter searches to find dogs that best fit their homes and lifestyles. To draw attention to your dog, you can share photos and videos, an engaging bio, and provide information about your dog’s behaviors so we can determine if we can add behavioral scores to the profile.

Dm1 Photos & Videos
Dm2 Bio
Dm3 Details
Dm4 Scores

Photos

Share Photos. Submit via the APA! Dog Photo & Video Upload Form

Send 5 well-lit and high-quality photos to get their profile started. As their personalities show themselves or you go on adventures, please feel free to share more! Remember: Natural light is your best friend!

  • Headshot: Smiley close up of their face looking at the camera.
  • Full Body: Overall body size and coat color and pattern.
  • Personality: Goofy or stoic expression.
  • Simple Pleasures: Playtime, snuggle time, hiking, swimming, and other endearing moments.
  • Compatibility: Moments with dogs, cats, and people (as appropriate for the dog).

Tips for Taking Great Photos:

  • Use Natural Light: Get outside to take advantage of the sun. When inside, get near a window or turn on lights to ensure they are brightly lit.
  • Say Something with Your Photo: Capture the simple pleasures your foster loves--snuggling, playing, napping, walking, snacking, etc.
  • Focus on the Eyes: Show off the most expressive part of the face. Use lures (toys, treats, sounds) to get them to look at you.
  • Choose Contrasting Background to Dog Fur: Make them stand out with contrasting color backgrounds. Lighter for dark dogs and darker for light dogs.
  • Get Rid of Clutter: Remove distractions to keep the focus on the dog.
  • Shoot in Their World: Take photos at their level and from a distance, if they are comfortable.
  • Take Some as Landscape (Horizontal): Provide more photo options for marketing promotion on social platforms.

Questions: Contact [email protected]


Videos

Share Videos. Submit via the APA! Dog Photo & Video Upload Form

Videos are a great way to share your foster's personality. When you shoot, remember:

  • Light: Get outside to take advantage of the sun. When inside, get near a window or turn on lights to ensure they are brightly lit.
  • Orientation: Shoot horizontally, if possible.
  • Time: Capture at least 10 seconds. Max of about 40 seconds.
  • Personality: Show playing with toys or other dogs, doing tricks, going for car rides, or anything else that will catch an adopter's attention.
  • Multiple Clips: Share multiple videos as the team can stitch together as needed.
  • Language: Be aware of appropriate human language.

Should the file size be too large, please use wetransfer.com to send your videos.

Questions: Contact [email protected]


Bio

Share a Bio. Email a written bio to [email protected].

You know your dog better than anyone and can help to highlight what they are looking for in a new home. Be sure to include: Affection and energy level, if the dog is good with kids, dogs, or cats, if they’re house and crate-trained, what commands they know, and all cute and endearing behaviors! If you need some examples, visit the APA! Available Dogs page.

Here's the ideal bio structure:

  • Open with a fun, attention-grabbing introductory statement (“Hunky Brock is ready to romp into your life!”)
  • Follow with positive, funny descriptions or a quick story to help adopters feel a connection to the pet. This is where you want to really bring out something unique to the dog. Are they playful or a couch potato? Do they have a favorite toy or a funny habit? How do they show affection, what makes them excited, what makes you smile about them? (“Brock is a gentle giant. You wouldn’t think it, but he loves stuffed plushies and carries them around wherever he goes like they’re his babies!”)
  • In a second paragraph, share an overview of their training (housetraining, commands) and if they do well with dogs/cats/kids. Do they know sit and stay? Are they house-trained and crate-trained? Do they live happily with other dogs, cats, or kids (and if you don’t know, just don’t include that part). If the dog isn’t really trained or is hyper, just say something like “he’d love to continue working on his training with you!” and leave it at that. Do treats or toys motivate them? (“Brock has great leash-walking skills and can be left home alone successfully! He also loves kitty cats and would do fine with a feline friend.”)
  • Next, if needed, offer a brief description of special behavior, medical needs, or ideal home set-up. Ideal set-up could include a fenced-in yard or people who are home a good amount of time or being your one and only. (“Brock would prefer to live in an adult-only home because his size can be a little too much for small kiddos.”)
  • End with a positive closing statement and a call-to-action (“Brock would make a loving companion and wonderful Netflix buddy. Come meet Brock today!”)

In the end, the bio should really be around 3-4 paragraphs long, with some wiggle room on length. For more writing tips, visit the PAW's Pet Bio page.

Need help writing a bio? Please share as much detail as you can through the Dog Bio Info Form and we will write one for you. If you complete the form, you should not submit a written bio.

Questions: Contact [email protected]


Scores

Share Behavior Details to Inform Scores. Complete the Dog Behavior Form

PLEASE NOTE: A number of APA! teams work to accurately assess and assign scores for each dog based on their bio, shelter and foster notes, and other background information. Though, should you feel that a dog's scores should be reviewed by a team based on new interactions or changes, please provide additional information via the behavior form.

Questions: Contact [email protected]


Details

The details below are completed by the APA! Medical, Adoption, and Dog Foster Program Teams but some may be adjusted by the appropriate teams.

  • Name: Names must remain as given unless there is a spelling error. You may call the dog by a nickname at home if preferred. For spelling errors, email [email protected].
  • Breed: Breed must remain as assigned in system once rabies vaccination is given by APA!. For specific questions, email [email protected].
  • Sex: If there is discrepancy, email a photo of the dog's genital area to [email protected].
  • Weight: Weights can be changed. Email proof of new weight to [email protected].
  • Age: Age must remain as assigned in our system once the rabies vaccination has been administered.
  • Fee: Fees vary with age, breed and medical treatment. Parvo is higher given the intensive medical care they receive. For specific questions, email [email protected].


Social

Social sites give us the chance to share priceless moments, laughable stories, or just a dog doing doggie things in real time, which gives us a chance to build a community around them. That means more people will care about the dogs, talk about the dogs, and, consequently, more dogs will find homes.

Social Sites

  • Facebook: Share photos, videos, and memes. Use captions to share details and stories. Use hashtags.
  • Instagram: Share photos and videos (will be squared when posted). Keep copy short. Use hashtags.
  • Twitter: Share photos and videos. Use captions to share details and stories.
  • Other Non Social Sites: Nextdoor - Austin, Reddit, and Craigslist- Austin

Hashtags

  • General APA!: #apasaveslives, #austinpetsalive, #livesworthsaving, #rescue, #rescuedog, #rescuedogs, #rescuedogsofinstagram, #shelterdog, #shelterdogs, #rescuedismyfavoritebreed,, #adoptdontshop, #apasaveslives, #atxadoptables, #austin, #dogsofinstagram, #dogstagram, #austin, #austintexas, #austintx
  • Pitbulls: #pitbull, #pitbullsofinstagram
  • Seniors: #apaseniorclass, #seniordog, #seniordogs, #seniordogsofinstagram, #seniordogsrock, #seniordogsrule, #seniorsweetheart, #seniorsweethearts, #teamsenior
  • Long Stays: #apalongstaydogs


FAQs

I've been told my dog is "available" or my puppy will be "available" when 7 weeks old but I don't see them listed. When will the dog's profile show on APA! site?: Email [email protected].

I've received numerous adoption inquiries and need time to review applicants. How do I request my dog to be made temporarily "unavailable"? Email [email protected].

Will APA! Marketing promote my dog on social media? The Available Dogs page receives a lot of traffic and a majority of the people who adopt a dog from APA! first see that dog on that page.