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Boost Adoption at Your Animal Shelter or Rescue through Social Media Marketing

There is nothing more transfixing than a Facebook, Instagram or TikTok post involving a cute cat or adorable puppy. People love their furry friends so much that they will do almost anything for them. And animal lovers are perhaps the most prolific social media posters in the world. Your Animal Shelter or Animal Rescue can turn this infatuation into an effective and efficient means of adoption. Animal shelters and rescues who want to see boosts in their adoption rates, quicker turnaround times for adoptions, and communicate the best ways to help animal shelters, Social Media marketing presents solutions.

Social Media Marketing for Animal Shelters 

One of the cutting edge areas of marketing is to harness the growth of social media, 60% of small and medium businesses report gaining new customers through the use of social media. The explosion of social media has created wide ranging opportunities for getting your business message spread far and wide.  This growing medium provides lots of benefits including:

Brand Exposure 

Growing your brand familiarity with your potential customers is essential. Animal lovers very often choose an animal shelter for adoption based on their familiarity with it. They have encountered your brand before. Growing this kind of familiarity with your brand through social media is effective, has the potential to reach a global audience and does not have to cost a lot of money.  

Fish where they Bite

It seems crazy but the average person today spends 2.5 hours on social media daily. And it may be even more for animal lovers. Social media is where people are interacting with others and increasingly where they are getting information and receiving advertisements. Staying relevant means going to where people are engaged and active. By building a pet social media campaign, answering questions and building relationships you will be fishing where people are biting.

Become the Go-To Expert 

By providing excellent content, advice, answers to questions, relevant sources and friendly service you can create a following on social media in which you are the go-to expert in your field.  If customers return to your page for quality content and even for fun FB posts, and then pass that information on to their “friends” your list of clients will grow and their trust in your business will increase.  More trusting contacts will lead to higher adoption rates.

Essential Social Media Platforms


Facebook is the king of social media reaching 60.6% of internet users.  Did you know that more than 1.84 billion people log in to their FB accounts daily and 2.8 billion monthly?  In addition, 80 million small businesses around the world use Facebook pages and 42% of marketers report that Facebook is critical to their business. That translates to a lot of reasons to have a business page and to join business groups on FB.  

As a social media platform, FB is built to encourage interaction with customers and friends through the sharing of information, pictures, videos, etc,. Your business page should daily share a post with inspirational stories, adoption news, cutest cat and cutest dog video contests, blog posts, links to newsletters, or special events.

Facebook also allows you to buy ads that appear in the borders of people’s FB pages and ask for donations or show pictures of animals you are wanting to find homes for.


Instagram is a photo and video sharing social networking service that offers a great platform for disseminating pictures and videos of all the furry friends you have available to be adopted. A presence on Instagram will also help you build trust with a whole network of friends.


This platform has been growing exponentially and offers a video platform for showing all the cute, cuddly, adorable and adoptable animals at your rescue. 


Due to the rapid rise in popularity of videos and the relative ease of creating video content and linking this content to your website through social media, YouTube is a great marketing tool.  


Twitter has 187 million daily active users, and 353 million users, it’s largest age demographic is 25-34 years old (29% of users), it is the #1 social network in Japan, it was used by 82% of B2B content marketers in the last year, it had a 62% increase in video views from 2019-2020, and it’s user base is projected to grow 2.4% in 2021. That is a huge marketing platform opportunity!


LinkedIn is a worldwide professional social networking site that also has business pages and groups. It boasts 740 million professional members and is particularly excellent at generating inbound business to business (B2B) contacts and leads.


Email continues to be an important marketing tool for creating new leads and cultivating leads from existing clients.  In fact for many companies email remains their most effective channel based on ROI.  According to a McKinsey & Company study, email is 40 times better at acquiring  new customers than Facebook and Twitter, with conversions being 17% higher value than on social media. 

Email Newsletters 

A number of excellent companies will get you started with a newsletter campaign for a low monthly cost go to: MailChimp (http://, Aweber ( and Campaign Monitor ( Their tools and analytics will help you create newsletters, optimize subject lines and track any response traffic to your newsletter. 

Interesting, relevant and helpful information on the best way to help animal shelters, pet care, training, health, etc., works great to draw interested readers and often gets shared through social media.  Summaries of your blog posts, links to third party articles, special offers, and event announcements are great for e-newsletters. MailChimp has a gallery of sample newsletters on their site which offers lots of inspiring ideas.

Setting a regular posting schedule for newsletters is most effective; monthly or quarterly postings are a good place to begin.  E-mail blasts can also be created to announce a “new pet social media campaign”.  It is vital for you to make it really easy to sign up for your newsletter. This is best done with simple newsletter sign up forms throughout your website and blog.  Your email newsletter provider can also track click ins and sign ups as well as who clicks into specific articles.  These analytics can be used to refine the content and layout of your newsletters to best engage your audience.  

Automate your Email!

Once you find value in Email marketing the next step is Email automation.  These services will automatically send welcome emails to new subscribers, ecards on clients birthdays, or targeted newsletter/blog content based on a subscribers history of click ins. The nice thing about this is it should be part of a suite of automation software that will take you to the next level.


You probably have a pretty good idea about how social media marketing for animal shelters can help you do your job, raise adoption rates, raise awareness and raise money. You can probably see how a pet social media campaign can increase community awareness and involvement and build trust in your shelter and warm feelings for your work.  

The next step for you will be integrating all or some of these social media platforms into the nuts and bolts of running your animal shelter/rescue.  There will be a lot of new tasks and responsibilities to complete in order to integrate these ideas into your overall marketing strategy.  

The good news is that you have options. You can take on the challenge yourself, you can hire a marketing guru for your business, or you can contract with a team of marketing experts who will walk your animal shelter through the strategic process. 

Or you can approach a full service marketing agency with your goals in mind, and work with them to hone your brand, design an overall marketing plan that is tailored to your needs, and let your marketing agency develop and grow your quality inbound leads for adoptions, fundraising and other services you offer.. 

Here at zo agency we work to build long term relationships with our clients. We call it Tribe! 

We will work diligently to discover your vision, your passion, your needs, your hope and dreams for your business and then will create an overall marketing plan that meets your needs and fits your budget.  Visit us today at

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