- The coronavirus epidemic has affected our daily routines. To alleviate our loneliness and boredom, we turned to our furry companions who have emerged as the brightest ray of light in our lives over the past couple of years.
- As a result, India has seen an increase in pet adoption during the pandemic, with demand for dogs, cats and other furry friends.
- We chat with the leading pet care brands in India to find out how this increase in adoption has translated into increased demand for pet food and care after the pandemic, how brands are increasing their marketing spend to capitalize on this demand, and a few trends that we can expect to see in the category as we go along.
Working from home has had an impact on our mental health. The increasing uncertainty, pressure at work, and the physical stress of sitting in the same position for hours on end has resulted in changes in our lifestyle and sleeping patterns, which have made stress worse. However, for the lucky few, our four-legged companions have been a shining, silvery ray of light in our lives. Pets have provided a great source of comfort during these times of testing and have saved us from the uncertainty that looms over us. They also helped foster a deeper connection between family members, pushed us to get outside for the fresh air, make us smile by dropping Zoom calls, and prepare for the big fight against COVID.
As a result, India has seen an increase in pet adoption during the pandemic, with demand for dogs, cats and other furry friends as citizens seek simple ways to ease loneliness. and boredom.
According to the latest data shared by Petex, India is the fastest growing pet care market in the world. After seeing a surge from the pandemic, it is expected to grow 14% per year to become a market of $ 490 million (₹ 33,000 million) by 2022 and the pet food market alone is expected to overtake $ 310 million ($ 20,000 million) by 2022.
Explaining how the market has changed in recent times, Ganesh Ramani, Managing Director of MARS Petcare India, said: “During the pandemic, the brand has seen an upsurge in the number of pet parents entering the category. Demand for pet products towards the end of the year was well above normal before COVID. The fact that parents of pets spent much more time with their pets during the lockdown and homework phases, led parents to indulge in many products. Additionally, many more people, especially those who live alone, have adopted pets in recent months. The brand has also encouraged the adoption of pets through various campaigns and activities under the Pedigree and Whiskas brands.
The Petcare Supertails brand, which caters to all pet care needs, has seen an increase in demand for its recently launched service, Pet Training. He does more than 2000 consultations per month.
Varun Sadana, co-founder of Supertails, said: “During the pandemic people faced anxiety, depression, mental health issues and this was the period when pets played a crucial role. in their life to overcome the struggle. The pet adoption rate is over 10%, with GenZ contributing to the new population of pet parents. Globally, the market has grown over 20% CAGR in the past 2 years of the pandemic. Some brands like Purina have been talking about growth of over 80% over the past year itself. Additionally, since a large number of new pet parents are GenZ, there is a lack of information and curiosity to be updated in pet parents. This is the first generation to look at parenthood rather than owning a pet. We expect the dog adoption rate to increase by over 15%.
Heads Up For Tails has seen an increase in demand for pet food and pet care products, such as grooming products, toys, and walking accessories. Egro, he focused on spreading a wider net to attract more consumers.
Rashi Sanon, Founder of Heads Up For Tails, said, “We have several new products planned to meet customer demand. That being said, we also hope to expand our customer base through new stores. Currently we have 41 stores across the country, we have 8 more ongoing so we can connect with more pets and their families. Additionally, we focus on creating relevant content and an engaged community of pets. We are also keen to continue product innovation alongside online growth and retail expansion.
To capitalize on this demand, pet care brands go out of their way to reach pet parents with engaging content. They have focused more on e-commerce channels to expand their digital “paw print” and are spending more on digital media and television to connect with parents who have paw.
According to exclusive data shared by TAM AdEx with Ad and Media Insider, the pet food category, which includes all kinds of pet food, has seen an increase in TV and digital spending. From July to September 2021, television dominated the feed category in terms of ad inserts, followed by digital and print.
TAM’s report further revealed that Pet Essentials, Mars International India and Hills Pet Nutrition were among the top three advertisers on digital media during the quarters of April through June 2020 and 2021. Mars International also held a share of 29 % in print ads and 10% on television. of the entire animal feed sector in 2021.
Pet Care Trends
Pet grooming brands told us that pet parents are now asking and googling the right feeding, nutrition, and parenting techniques and doing a lot for their pet’s overall wellbeing.
“Pet parents pay more attention to the type of products they use for their pets. They ask more questions and learn more about the specific products and lifestyles their pets need. They certainly opt for products with more organic ingredients, products that are produced in a sustainable way, etc. Sanon said.
According to Ramani, many subway pet parents have moved to their hometowns by taking their pets or adopting a pet in their hometown, which contributes to the faster growth of the rest of urban cities. and smaller. This has prompted pet care brands to focus more on strengthening their presence across the country through e-commerce channels.
“As part of the changing purchasing behavior observed during the pandemic, the brand has also started to distribute its products in grocery markets such as the online portals Amazon, Dunzo, Big Basket and Petshop. As e-commerce continues to be an essential channel for the brand to bridge the distribution gap, Whiskas is also slowly expanding to new cities and markets across the country, ”he said.
Listing a few other trends he expects to see in the pet care category in the near future, Ramani added, “1. Increase in cat owners, adoption of street cats and cat buying. breed, 2. Increased MPF spending and additional discretionary treat spending, 3. Significant increase in cat friendly spaces, spas and other grooming products, and 4. Increase in activists supporting stray cats in terms of food, vaccinations, care, etc.
Pet care brands have also changed their marketing strategy to connect with consumers. Some people have reservations about adopting cats because of negative associations or superstitions, especially when it comes to caring for and raising felines. Whiskas’ launched a new campaign that aimed to educate cat parents to reinforce how cute and curious cats are, without any of the vile, stereotypical and unfavorable qualities associated with them. Supertails, on the other hand, are now gearing up for a campaign for World Rabies Day, given that India is the biggest rabies affected country.
As these newly adopted baby pets during the pandemic grow older, their food needs will also increase. Experts therefore hope to see a prolonged demand for pet adoption, food, care and nutrition and are looking to use the right marketing tools to encourage more pet adoption and the right amount of pet adoption. care.