3 Ways to Plan for a Successful 2017

pet-photography-nicole-begleyIt’s here! It’s here! Turning the page on a new year is one of my most favorite times. No matter what type of year you had in 2016, I hope you are entering the new year with optimism and good intentions. If you had a great 2016, you should be motivated and carry the momentum that you are riding through an even better 2017. If 2016 wasn’t the best year for you, I hope you are looking at the new year as an opportunity to close the door on the past and open the door to new opportunities and happiness. (more…)

Celebrating a Year of Lifesaving!

Across 20 countries, HeARTs Speak artist members are collaborators in creativity with countless animal welfare organizations. They’re providing lifesaving exposure to homeless animals by way of unforgettable portraits, enticing bios, and marketing materials that put shelter pets front and center. United in their efforts, they’re not only helping pets find homes faster, they’re changing the overall perception of pet adoption as an avenue for welcoming new family members. (more…)

4 Successful Giving Tuesday Campaigns to Inspire

avatarEvery year since 2012, a day of dedicated support for the non-profit community has soothed the retail hysteria of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Giving Tuesday is a global day of giving and the non-profit answer to the post-Thanksgiving consumerism that has gained momentum over recent years. It’s a feel-good exclamation mark for the season and can be an important piece of the developmental equation for animal welfare organizations. (more…)

What We HeART: November



Kindness. It’s at the core of the HeARTs Speak mission. We bow down to it daily in our fight to create a world where all shelter animals have a chance at finding new life and love. We unite artists all across the globe who trust implicitly in its power. We extend it unconditionally and liberally to the animal welfare community and all of the people working within it. It’s our religion and our guiding light, and we know it’ll change the world.


We’re Thankful

102616_stlco_lisa_21It’s that time of year — pumpkin spice has taken control of our lives and we’re prepping to eat ourselves silly with family and friends. For so many of us, this holiday season is tinged with a bit of anxiety about what the future holds. And yet, in between slices of pie and our third helping of vegan stuffing, the staff of HeARTs Speak has some truly amazing things for which we’re thankful.


Shining a Light on Senior Pets

screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-4-28-41-pmGrey-faced and mature pets sometimes encounter a bit of a challenge when it comes to adoption. Perhaps it’s our very human reaction to try and protect our hearts from the impending loss of a pet. Maybe older pets force us to come to terms with our own mortality in a new way. Whatever the reason, with the right marketing approach it is possible to help our communities see the great value, varied personalities, and amazing companionship that senior pets can add to our lives. (more…)

Capturing Connection: Tips for Photographing Pets With People

ritaearl_mg_5990For most of us, the connection we share with our furry friends is a large part of why we are driven to help more animals find a life of love and happiness with their own human. And the promise of that connection can be a powerful tool in the promotion of shelter pets. Not only does it showcase the friendship potential of the pet in question, but it can offer the public an inside look at all the love, care, and magic that’s happening every single day at their local shelter!


Tips for Taking Better Cell Phone Photos

erica_cell-7g0a8815There’s a reason they say ‘the best camera is the one you have on you’. These days, smart phones are fixtures of our day-to-day lives and are the most widely used type of camera in history. They’re also rapidly improving with each update — so much so that Apple is showcasing the possibilities with their inspiring ‘Shot on iPhone’ project! (more…)

Creating Change: Taking Action Against BSL

14_082116_camdenpep_09rwThis past week, the passage of breed-specific legislation in Montreal, Canada has rocked the world of animal advocates. Breed-specific legislation, known as BSL, refers to laws that regulate pets solely on the basis of breed or look (not behavior or incident) and is widely accepted as unjust and ineffective. Montreal’s ordinance has the potential to affect thousands of families who would be separated from their pets and puts the lives of many dogs at risk. (more…)

What We HeART: September

Jill Flynn

Happy first day of Autumn! It’s that most magical time of year — time to drag your beloved scarves out of hiding, and dust off your favorite pair of boots for a romp in the leaves with your furry friends. Here’s what we’re excited about as we welcome this new season (aside from pumpkin spice everything!). (more…)

Photographing Shelter Cats: Tips from a Pro

greystrokeDespite the fact that there are an estimated 80 million pet cats living in homes in the U.S alone, it’s still widely understood that there is a higher percentage of cats than dogs entering our animal shelters. While there may be a variety of factors involved, it remains that lots of very deserving cats need homes and many shelters and rescues are looking for ways to boost their marketing appeal! Enter: HeARTs Speak member, professional photographer, and resident cat-vocate, Lindsi Jones! (more…)

What’s New With Facebook and Instagram

Did you wake up this morning and notice your Facebook business page looked a little different? Maybe even a bit swankier, dare we say?! Or perhaps your Instagram now has this funny little row of twirling circles at the top? It’s probably not the first time you’ve gotten the hang of a social platform and it’s done a 180 on you. But don’t panic! Change is good. (more…)

Celebrating Success and Setting Aside Fear

080113_HS_NYCACC_010-2In July, the animal sheltering community celebrated more than 47,000 pet adoptions in just one day when nearly 700 shelters across the United States participated in Clear the Shelters Day! This lifesaving day was sponsored by NBCUniversal and allowed community members, who may not have otherwise known that adoption was an option, to engage with shelters and participate in free or reduced-fee adoptions.


3 Tips for Choosing a Rescue Photoshoot Location

harley-9-avatar2Location, location, location. It’s not just the key to success for hopeful homeowners; it’s a worthwhile consideration when creatively marketing shelter pets, too.

Kim de Araujo, a professional photographer and HeARTs Speak member, could pass for a realtor given her talent for setting a scene. She recently happened upon One Eleven East, a new and dreamy event space in Hutto, TX. (more…)

Be Well, Do Good: 6 Simple Self-Care Ideas

Jill_Flynn_dog_3127JFIn our excitement to do as much good as we can for animals, many of us stop taking care of own needs. Lack of interest in our own self-care is both a symptom of and a result of compassion fatigue. But self-sacrifice isn’t sustainable.

Too often, taking care of ourselves gets regulated to the “optional” category: something to do if we have some free time, after our to-do list is all done, and when all the animals are safe, cared for, and don’t need anything else from us. Which is never. (more…)

Tips for Rocking Social Media on a Tight Schedule

blogscoialavatarHands up if your to-do list currently resembles the opening crawl from Return of the Jedi. Somewhere along our evolutionary journey from smoke signals to Snapchat, life got busy. Like, really busy. And let’s be real: sometimes social media can feel like both the cause of and solution to a hectic schedule. Thankfully, knowing where and how to use your time on social media can help make it feel less like a time warp, and more like the magical marketing force it has the potential to be!