While there are plenty of human and virtual influencers out there, pet influencers are the next big thing.
Take Rhea, the Siberian cat, for example – the fluffy cat has over 16,000 followers on Instagram and has worked with big brands like Shopee and Sudio.
In fact, Jane Peh, co-founder of The Woof Agency, said pet spending exceeded S $ 100 billion in 2019 and COVID-19 pushed pet ownership to new highs.
Whether you darkly spend a lot of time watching animal videos online or following your favorite pet influencer religiously, there is no denying that animals have a huge presence in our lives.
Jane herself "kept track of a ton of dog accounts on Instagram" and calls it a way of "escaping reality."
She also spends a lot of time watching animal videos, and one day she realized that animal influencers really appeal to people.
She then wondered if there was a way for her to marry her love of animals with her background in advertising, which led to the creation of The Woof Agency.
A social media agency for pet influencers
Photo credit: The Woof Agency
Founded in 2018 by Jane and her husband Tay Sijun, The Woof Agency is a social media agency specializing in marketing pet influencers.
Business was just a "sideline" for the first six months, and Jane only got into it full time last year after she "got some traction".
Jane told Vulcan Post that the company started out as a marketing agency for animal influencers, but soon realized that brands need more than just marketing for animal influencers.
At this point, they started working as a social media agency, expanding their offering to include product market research and more.
Now it takes on the end-to-end management of entire influencer marketing campaigns, from talent allocation to reporting after the campaign.
Woof Agency's clients are mostly pet brands – from global retailers to online pet stores looking to increase their presence.
Photo credit: The Woof Agency via Facebook
The team also has a high level of expertise in the pet industry and can add value to customers by providing suggestions on pet trends and insights.
Since its inception, The Woof Agency has more than 2,000 registered animal influencers from more than 45 countries in its network.
Jane also announced that the agency's total reach has exceeded 20 million. So far, Nestle has Purina, Crayola USA, Skechers and Aon Insurance among their customers.
"Some memorable campaigns include Dyson, Skechers (and) Crayola as they are non-petfood. So these brands' collaboration with animal influencers shows how attractive pets are to consumers," said Jane.
The startup also works with many nonprofits to raise awareness about pet adoption.
From pet owners, for pet owners
Photo credit: The Woof Agency via Facebook
The passion for animals is very important to Jane, so she has overcome all the obstacles the startup faced in its early days.
"We lived on our savings and ramped up business with whatever free resources we could find in the early days," she told TechNode in a separate interview.
It wasn't until they reached profitability and had enough cash to start hiring that they hired their first CTO, Navaneeth Sreekandan.
According to Jane, 80 percent of the Woof Agency team are pet owners, which "is very helpful in deciding whether a campaign idea will appeal to pet owners."
In addition to their core business, Jane and Sijun also founded Pawjourr, a platform on which pet owners can redeem free samples and compare and book grooming services.
(Some of our greatest achievements are) when pet owners tag us on social media with pictures of their happy pets.
See recent photos and videos of the company that impact pet owners – be it to create bond times between pet owners and pets during content creation, the magic of trying new products, and knowing what your pets love or to see pet owners pamper and pamper themselves Pampering your pets with gifts made from the campaign fees they get from brands – that makes us smile.
Jane Peh, Co-Founder and CMO of The Woof Agency
The founders are currently working on expanding overseas for The Woof Agency as well as building Pawjourr.
Jane said that they are currently in talks with some companies overseas and are trying to partner up for easy access to international markets.
The couple are also starting to raise funds for the Woof Agency's seed funding round.
"The ultimate goal really is to be the only website anyone would ever need when it comes to pet ownership," said Jane.
Selected image source: The Woof Agency