Artwork for podcast Publicity for Pet Businesses
How Kim O'Donnell went from feeling 'invisible' to having a global pet business
Episode 1825th June 2020 • Publicity for Pet Businesses • Rachel Spencer
00:00:00 00:48:18

Share Episode


This time a year ago, Kim O’Donnell, founder of Leo, Charley and Me pet accessories, wanted to learn to get visible.

She had a business making pretty collars and products for pet owners inspired by her rescue Cocker Spaniel Charley.

But having spent her career working as a school nurse, when it came to standing out online and reaching new customers, she felt totally overwhelmed.

Now, a year on, Kim has a global business, her website traffic has increased by nearly 700 per cent and she's had to bring in her daughter to help cope with demand.

In this episode Kim shares how she did it and her tips on getting publicity for your pet business.

Here are the key timings and topics covered in this episode:

1.02 - Kim's background as a school nurse.

2.30 - How her Spaniel Charley being mistaken as a boy inspired her to create her products

3.24 - When Kim realised she needed to be visible online

4.02 - How Kim struggled to get people to her website

7.30 - Boris Johnson's dog Dilyn wearing her product on election day

9.01 - How Kim's website traffic grew

11.21 - Feeling scared about blowing her own trumpet

13.00 - Being part of a community and how that boosted Kim's confidence

16.46 - Pitching to local publications

17.46 - How this led to Kim being in the Daily Mail

20.19 - Pitching stories about her personal life including Leo going to a doggy boot camp which appeared in the Telegraph and Lifesaving Labradors in the Express

21.54 - How using Twitter has helped Kim's pet business

24.09 - Making masks to match her accessories in lockdown

24.56 - How her business has helped Kim cope with shielding in lockdown by making NHS scrubs and masks

29.30 - Making 250 masks and being on the first page of Google for hand made face masks!

32.22 - How her website visits went up from 210 in three months to 1000 a month

34.00 - Kim's increase in confidence

36.01 - How Kim is now concentrating on social media

38.02 - The Daily Mail comments section and Kim's advice on how to cope!

39.00 - Charley's background, how she was nearly put to sleep and why 15% of all sales go to Spaniel Aid

42.19 - Taking her craft fairs from real life to online

45.01 - Kim's advice for anyone starting out

Links and resources mentioned in this episode:

Leo, Charley and Me:

Kim in the Daily Mail: The Dilyn Effect

Kim on The Paw Post: How to dress your dog like Dilyn

Birmingham Mail: Meet the woman who dressed the Prime Minister's Dog!

Stoke Sentinel: The Dilyn Effect

Sunday Express: Lifesaving Ladbradors

Telegraph: We took our anxious dog to a boot camp

Blog on why Kim set up Leo, Charley and Me: Our Background

Membership programme: Publicity for Pet Businesses Membership.

Download the press release series: Press Release Template

This podcast uses the following third-party services for analysis:

Chartable -