Take a look at graphs on pet ownership over time, and you will see massive increases over the past 25 years. And not only is pet ownership rising, but people's connections with their pets has gotten even stronger. Pets are no longer just animals, they are their "kids", whose "parents" dote on them just as much as they do on those less furry, human kids. This also gives opportunities to apartment communities to take "pet friendly" well beyond simply accepting pets, creating an entire suite of services and activities that actively welcome pets.
A pet costume party is one of those quirky events that seem so incredibly awkward to some, but still drive a ton of interest from those who love their pets! The idea is simple: Set up a day for residents to bring in their pets to the community clubhouse, dressed up in their best costume, ready for a photo shoot! Take pictures of the pets individually, and then with their owners, as well! Give prizes out for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place, announcing the winners through your Facebook Page, Instagram, community newsletter, and any other outlet to get the word out.
Ideas to Go Above and Beyond:
1) Print out large copies of the winners, frame them, and then proudly display them in the community office! It will be a fun and unique decoration that will be a great conversation starter for prospects new to the community!
2) Go ahead and print out pictures of ALL the contestants and give them a copy! You can print an 8x10 copy for just$3.99 in some places, so the cost is not insane, and now your residents will have a keepsake of their pet contest adventure, tied directly to your community.
3) Rather than simply announcing a winner, you can narrow it down to three and let residents and prospects vote! Since you are going to print up the pictures of the top 3 anyway, go ahead and frame them and display them on a table, allowing prospects to vote while they wait in the office.
4) If you get some really inventive costumes, share them to other media outlets! Local news stories always enjoy a "feel good" segment, so this might be right up their alley, or at least something they can share through their social media profiles.
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