Ana Luisa González Zamora, an industry expert, worked several years at one of the leading global pet food producers in Mexico, witnessing rampant growth and the expansion of one of the most popular pet food brands in the country.
In her role, González led several marketing activities that positioned her brands at the top of the market nationwide. That is not a small thing, as such performance reshaped the entire competitive environment of the Mexican market back in 2015.
González provided her insights on the future of the Mexican market. She believes there is still room for continued growth, especially for smaller players who may take advantage of latent regional opportunities.
3 conditions for success in pet food
Regarding the relationship between shoppers and consumers, González says that for a brand to be successful, pet food manufacturers must accomplish the following:
- A first condition is having a deep knowledge of local shoppers, their product requirements and purchasing drivers. Furthermore, companies must understand the reasons that explain the shopper’s choice among two or more pet food brands.
- Dynamism is a second condition for a successful pet food brand. A dynamic brand implies continuing innovation and close communication with its clients.
- Product quality is also key to achieving success. Pet food producers who use several marketing claims need to comply with all. Clear labeling and the right product attributes help enhance the connection between the brand and the end consumer.
In this context, modern and traditional retail channels have different requirements. For example, an owner of a mom-and-pop pet store may be driven only by profit. In such cases, brands are advised to remain flexible, listening to the shopper’s ongoing needs and dynamic market trends.
Moreover, marketing investment is a tool that should be used in the context of tight competition. It includes seasonal promotions, giveaways, bonus packs and special product gift packages – for example, a dog collar attached to the pet food packaging.
Bright future with small, emerging pet food brands
In terms of consumers, the so-called DINK (dual income, no kids) trend is accelerating pet ownership among younger consumers in Mexico. That will, in turn, benefit the industry.
González foresees a bright future for the local pet food market. Smaller and emerging pet food brands are increasingly engaging in above-the-line (for broader audiences) and below-the-line (for specific segments of consumers) marketing activities, which would stimulate growth.
Finally, premium and economy pet food products together will continue to nourish the market. Premium will benefit from the aspirational nature of local consumers, whereas economy products will remain the key to entry into the traditional channel.