Dogs know more about social media marketing than you might suspect.

In fact, they exhibit seven behavioural traits that you would be wise to adopt as part of your marketing strategy.

1. Always be hungry

Hungry dog

If you’ve ever owned or looked after a dog, you’ll know one thing about them – they’re always looking for food!

When it comes to marketing yourself or your business via social media, you should take the same approach. You need to be hungry for success, and always seeking out new challenges to get your teeth into.

2. Be social

Social dogs

Dogs are naturally social animals. And in the wild, they live in close-knit packs.

On social media, you should strive to live this way too.

Be social through liking and sharing other people’s content. And follow people or accounts that have similar interests or passions to yourself.

3. Learn some tricks

Dog tricks

Dogs who’ve been taught clever tricks are often seen on popular television shows like Britain’s Got Talent. The audience is hugely entertained by the dogs’ tricks, and I’m sure many of the viewers quickly fall in love with the dogs too.

Imagine if your social media marketing efforts had the same results?

Well, while I can’t promise people will fall in love with you (sorry!), by adding some magic to your posts you can certainly reach a wider audience. Here are a few tricks to try: polls on Twitter, videos on LinkedIn, and blogging on Facebook.

4. Love your family

Mother and puppy

Have you ever visited a mother and her puppies? If you have, you’ll have seen the deep, loving bond that they naturally demonstrate.

Now picture your social media accounts. Do people gravitate towards them?

If not, it’s likely that you’re too busy trying to sell your products or services, rather than building a community that people want to be a part of.

5. Know when to take a break

Mother and puppy

Even the most hyperactive dog runs out of energy eventually. And it’s at that time that you’ll see it lay down, close its eyes, and then possibly start snoring!

While I don’t recommend the snoring part, I definitely encourage you to take breaks from social media.

It’s way too easy to get sucked into a never-ending cycle of posting content and checking for likes and shares. (And that’s before you even start looking at other people’s posts!)

6. Be alert for opportunities

Alert dog

We own a six-year-old Border Collie, and one thing we’ve noticed about her, is that she’s ready within seconds if she thinks we’re going to take her out for a walk. In fact, she’s so keenly attuned to this, that sometimes she’ll be waiting at our front door before we’ve even got off the sofa!

In the digital world, you should aim to do the same.

For instance, be alert for opportunities to align your posts with global campaigns (e.g., International Coffee Day) or seasonal promotions (e.g., Christmas and New Year).

And possibly one of the best opportunities on social media is when negative comments come your way. These offer a great chance for you to turn a disappointed or angry customer into someone who will rave about the way their complaint was dealt with.

7. Have fun!

Dog having fun

It’s fair to say that dogs are inherently playful. Whether it’s running after balls or jumping and catching squeaky toys – dogs love to have fun!

Your social media marketing should adopt this approach too. Sure, there will be times when you need to post serious content – but there should also be times when you post lighthearted and fun content.

Amusing stories, images and videos can all be great ways of engaging your audience and keeping them coming back for more.

Clearly, dogs understood social media marketing before the term was even a thing! But now you know their secrets to success, I hope that you’ll start putting them into practical use straightaway.

Oh, and one more thing, will you ever look at your dog the same way again?