Why your Social Media Strategy should include More Dogs

Written by: Mary Kate Celini

You don’t have to walk an adorable french bulldog around Old City to know just how much people love dogs. 

Content including dogs is within the top ten most popular types of content shared on the internet. Odds are that you have liked, seen, or engaged with this type of content today! 

Pets are everywhere on social media today. Their human companions post photos of them regularly, with some of them creating separate accounts in order to curate an online, social persona for their pet. And some of these pets are certifiably insta-famous with sponsorships from large brands – for example,  Doug the Pug has over 3.8 million followers and Jiff Pom has 9.1 million followers.

After a string of brainstorm sessions where we discussed several dog-focused campaigns for clients, I had to ask myself, “Why do dogs (and pets in general) perform so well on social media?” 

Cute Factor

This is probably the most obvious answer, but it is the core of their success on social media. Their cuteness is something more than just pure visuals – humans actually have a physiological reaction to the adorable creature on the screen. By activating brain networks associated with emotion and pleasure and triggering empathy and compassion, the cuteness of dogs, puppies, babies, and other small adorable creatures helps facilitate well-being and complex social relationships. 

So by including man’s best friend in your social media strategy, even if it’s reposting a dog once every-so-often, you are creating a bond between your audience and your brand. 

Accessible

It’s safe to assume that most people in America have owned a dog or have come across one in their lives. Even if you don’t like dogs, you’ve seen videos of them doing something adorable, which is why so many people love their canine companions. Because of the common cultural knowledge we all share about the loyalty, companionship, and cuteness of dogs, they are a great asset to utilize for brand introduction, brand awareness, and engagement. 
Animals evoke a strong positive emotion when consumers see or interact with them. Brands should use this innately strong reaction to their benefit by partnering their name and brand with something happy. Consumers are more likely to remember your brand and have a positive feeling about your brand and remember you if they have a happy memory associated with your organization, like a cute social campaign with local dogs. That’s why Target frequently posts photos of men’s best friend posing with Target items and why large brands like Nike and Brooks Brothers partner with pet influencer, Bodhi the Menswear Dog.