PetsMart (PETM) has seen their stock take a huge beating-- down over 50%-- in the last two months. Looks like lots of debate over the menace of Walmart, the recession-proof consumer in pet supplies, and whether anything is a screaming buy in the market right now.
But, stock picks aside, UStream is serving up a great expansion idea (and simple application of digital media) that would be dynamite for the folks over at PetsMart. With their 24 X 7 live streaming puppy cam, UStream is garnering upwards of 30K simultaneous viewers eager to watch the minute to minute lives of 6 awfully cute Shiba Inu puppies. I would love to see the data uniques, time spent on the site and the numbers of return visitors. I bet they are awesome.
The streamcast is available on UStream and via embedded players all around the net, and folks appear to really like watching the pups. If I were on the marketing team over at PetsMart, I would move ASAP to get kittycams, puppycams, boacams, hamstercams, etc set up in my stores! Talk about great branded content! Imagine how many consumers would love to watch the animals, possibly find one to bring home, see the toys they play with and so on. At a minimum, viewers can satisfy their interest in cute furry animals at minimal (no) cost, and PetsMart builds their brand relationship to boot. In effect, PetsMart would become the host of the conversation that their consumers demand-- where can I see puppies and kittens in action, doing what they do? This is a simple yet powerful example of how PetsMart could capture sincere interest and convert it into an effective sponsorship opportunity.
Now if you will excuse me, I have to get back to the pups; they are stacked like cordwood in their bed for an afternoon nap.