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Are Pet Sitting Orgs Like PSI and NAPPS Worth The Money? [poll]

psi-nappsPet Sitters International (PSI) and National Association of Professional Pet Sitters (NAPPS) are the two big players in the professional pet sitter association circle.

PSI alone boasts more than 8000 members (that’s a lot of pet sitters) and the Internet is littered with articles claiming anyone can make money pet sitting.

But how much good are they really providing us with?

PSI and NAPPS both claim similar goals and benefits:

  • To educate the pet sitter
  • To promote pet sitting to pet owners
  • To give exposure to pet sitters across the country
  • To provide networking opportunities
  • Annual conferences
  • Quarterly magazines
  • Bonding and Insurance (through partners)
  • Searchable pet sitting directory
  • Pet sitting certification
  • Health care benefits

When my wife and I launched our pet sitting business, we chose to hop on the PSI bandwagon.  The first thing we did was slap their logo on our website and submit ourselves to the pet sitter business locator so pet owners could potentially find us.

I’ve heard varying degrees of success from other pet sitters regarding the locator (directory).  Some get a good portion of new clients that way, while others get zero.

I do flip through PSI’s quarterly mag when I have some free time and find it mildly educational.

For $140 per year (PSI) or $160 per year (NAPPS), you can join either of these organizations and call yourself a member.

So, Is It Worth The Money? Take Our Poll.

I’ve been reading a lot lately about pet sitters choosing not to join PSI or NAPPS because they don’t feel like it’s worth it.  And that the only true benefit may be to post the organizations’ badge on their website.

But the bigger questions are:

  • Is membership worth it?
  • Do they succeed in their claims?
  • Do your potential clients care, or know the difference, whether you are a member or not?

What has your experience been? Take our poll, and leave your thoughts below with the answers to the Qs above…

[polldaddy poll=2420139]

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. . .

Josh Cary is a respected and well sought-after speaker and business consultant within the professional pet care industry. Since 2009, having grown his own pet sitting business, Josh provides his industry with the tools, support, and resources to build and maintain a thriving and respected pet business.

With a strong focus on digital marketing, search engine optimization (SEO), and website development, Josh’s one mission is to help you Get Found First through a professional and effective website.

This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. I will reserve my comments for PSI, because I have never belonged to NAPPS. I belonged to PSI when I was a new pet sitter. I averaged about 2 referrals a year from their zip code locator. Since switching to PetsitUSA's zip code locator, I've gotten ten times that many referrals per year. PSI's insurance and bonding partners charge more than an independent pet sitting insurance provider but for the most part do not provide anything extra for the excess charge. I too found the magazine mildly interesting, but rarely educational. I have found PSI very poor at promoting pet sitting in general nationwide. They have partnerd with a franchise and promote that limited group of pet sitters. I have never seen any effective networking opportunities through PSI except the conferences, which can be attended without becoming a PSI member. The best nationwide networking occurs on the independent Yahoo Groups. PSI's health care insurance is not available in all states. And last, in more than 8 years of pet sitting, I have never had a single client ask if I belonged to a professional organization, so PSI has no marketing value for me whatsoever.

  2. I have had an extremely successful pet sitting for almost 12 years and have never belonged to either organization. I get my insurance privately and keep it minimal because I have never needed to use it. Accreditation from these organizations mean nothing. Anyone can offer accreditation.

  3. I joined PSI a few years ago and found it a complete cash grab. They will gladly take your money, but they have no way of checking whether or not you’re a good petsitter. petsitters slap their logo on their website and consumers are fooled into thinking they are getting a reliable and trustworthy petsitter. which may or may not be the case. As far as the educational component, I had already found every article I read on PSI for FREE on other websites. I withdrew my membership and have been running a successful business for over 8 years. You can’t beat word of mouth.

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