No matter what the market’s doing, a certain breed of entrepreneur tends to come out on top — or should we say, breeds? Domestic short hair, Persian, Siamese — if you have the right breed of cat, or at least one with a certain look, you may be feeding kitty treats to a potential gold mine.
Luckily, there’s a road map to feline stardom — published Tuesday, it’s called How to Make Your Cat an Internet Celebrity: A Guide to Financial Freedom.
But not every cat has what it takes, and trying to claw your way to the top can leave a few scratches. Like, 19 or so — that’s how many my cat Bruiser inflicted during a trip to the groomer.
For years my husband and I have been taking photos of Bruiser wearing hats. And Chapter 1 of How to Make Your Cat an Internet Celebrity is titled “Grooming Your Star,” so our first stop was Bonnie’s Dog and Cat Grooming in Washington, D.C.’s Capitol Hill neighborhood. Turns out a lot of big-name pets go there.
“You know, we did Ben Bernanke’s dog for years, and now he’s retired, Tinker Bernanke,” says business owner Bonnie Peregoy. “It’s hard to break into the Internet cat business because there’s a lot of cats trying to do it now.”
One man who has found success — and considerable financial freedom — is Ben Huh, founder and CEO of the multimillion-dollar cat media company Cheezburger.
“I think what we see here is the rise of the Internet cat industrial complex,” he says. “I go to a meeting or a conference, and all of a sudden people are, you know, I’ve got iPhones in my face filled with cat photos and, you know, it’s not like I can make it happen.”
Click here to listen to the full story: http://bit.ly/CatClothingNPR
Renita Jablonski is an editor for NPR’s Morning Edition.
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