The American Kennel Club: A Case of Monetizing Fun

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May 02, 2014


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Article ImageCompany: Woofipediaby the American Kennel Club

Founded in the fall of 1884, the American Kennel Club (AKC) is one of the most well-known canine clubs and registries of canine purebred pedigrees. The organization is famous for its top-tier purebred dog shows and competitions, education, activities, and publications. The AKC recently launched a new site for dog owners and lovers, WOOFipedia, which includes activities and information packaged in a fun, socially interactive website and mobile app. Its aim is to celebrate dogs and dog lovers, as well as provide education and community.

akc.org; woofipedia.com

Business Chellenge

The American Kennel Club (AKC) wanted to build a unique site celebrating and serving all dog owners and dog lovers, sharing information and stories in an engaging and social fashion. This was the impetus for creating WOOFipedia, the AKC's new site for canine enthusiasts. It includes interactive snippets of information, videos, breed profiles, photo contests, games to earn "woof points," and quizzes. All of these components come together in a youthful, fresh design that's focused on the user and dog. The AKC wanted a fun, interactive addition to the site and the WOOFipedia brand that would also allow the organization to monetize this otherwise free site and service.

Vendor of Choice: Cleverbug

Headquartered in Dublin, with offices in the United States, Cleverbug launched Cleverbug cards in January 2012. It offers a birthday card application on an iOS platform providing e-cards and paper cards with birthday notifications. In October 2013, Cleverbug rebranded its product as CleverCards. This built on and expanded the company's original birthday app, growing to include U.S. holidays, available on iOS, Android, and desktop computers via Facebook. These cards are available electronically for free or can be sent via mail for a fee. In its first year, Cleverbug has shipped cards to more than 150 countries and has added 50 million users.

cleverbug.com; clevercards.com


THE PROBLEM IN-DEPTH

While the AKC was not facing a problem that needed solving to ensure the day-to-day functioning of the organization or a complex efficiency issue, it faced challenges that so many of us do: to improve and enhance its product and to also generate revenue. The solution could have taken any number of forms, which often can prove more complicated to remedy.

The organization wanted to maximize the ability for dog-loving users to interact and personalize their experience on WOOFipedia, with the added benefit of providing earned revenue from the site and the WOOFipedia brand. The AKC knew that building a strong, engaged audience was the best foundation for a successful, continuous, repeat revenue stream.

The content on the site is focused on canines and the people who love them, with quizzes such as "What's Your Dog-Show Name?" and a dog age calculator ("How Old Is Your Dog?"), as well as the ability to create profiles for both owners and canines. In addition, the content uses some of the most popular and mainstream social media applications such as Vine, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

The AKC needed to make sure that all of its content and extensions of the WOOFipedia brand-even revenue-generating additions-were as fun, social, engaging, and interactive as the entirety of its new site aimed to be.

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