The Dog Journal

Customer Care:

Relational Practices

I work with many Amish breeders helping them sell their puppies and being the communication liaison with their puppy customers. I am convinced that the process, at times, is very clunky. But I understand. Breeders have a difficult job. For many, they are just selling puppies. But for the puppy customer, they are buying a family member. The more relational the process is, the greater the chance for the puppy customer to

 a) purchase a puppy from you, 

b) tell their friends all about you, and 

c) purchase from you again in the future. 

As a Breeder, how do you make the process less transactional and more relational. Here are a few simple strategies to get your started. Voicemail – A transactional 

voicemail A transactional voicemail is sterile and uninviting – “If you are calling about the puppies, leave a message”. A relational voicemail is inviting – “We are so excited you are interested in one of our puppies and ww cannot wait to talk to you…” 

Correspondence – A transactional approach utilizes phone calls only and often it is playing phone tag with voicemail. A relational approach includes using text messaging and email. If you do not have text messaging, partner with someone who does. There are also various texting apps you can use so that you are not giving out your personal cell number. 

Use of Media – A transactional approach only offers the photos that you put on your listing site when you set up an account to sell your puppies. A relational approach would be sending updated photos and videos as the customer expresses interest and even after they paid and are waiting for pick up. 

Packets – A transactional approach only includes documents for the transaction (contract, health guarantee, etc.). A relational approach should include other documents like “What you need to know about your puppy” handout, registration information, pet insurance info, Information on accessories you might recommend, etc. 

As one puppy customer texted me recently, “Thanks. I just needed to be more comfortable with this process. You helped me do that.” These are just a few ideas to think about on how to make your puppy buying process for your customers more relational, and therefore, more comfortable.

If you would like for us to consult with you on your puppy selling process, contact Chuck Holt at 610-223-2008 or email chuck@


Looking For More To Read?

SWOT Weaknesses

New Now Services: Assessing Weaknesses

This is Part 3 of a continued series of articles revolving around explaining what a SWOT Analysis is, and how it can help you grow your business. In this issue, Chuck Holt continues his workshop style article by focusing on the second letter of the acronym, W is for Weaknesses. Use the blank paper to actually write down your Weaknesses, and then keep this copy of The Dog Journal handy for the next parts of this.

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