New Sponsor Information

Thank you for your interest in the Zoo and Aquarium Buyers Group (ZAG)! ZAG is a non-profit, volunteer run organization for merchandise buyers from zoos, aquariums, nature centers, butterfly houses and other wildlife facilities. ZAG’s mission is to increase communication and networking opportunities between buyers in the zoo and aquarium industry, and to help them share information and find unique and profitable wildlife-related merchandise. Through our web site, newsletter, contact list, and meetings, ZAG acts as a forum for buyers to ask questions and share thoughts on trends, good ideas and special projects. ZAG does not make purchases or negotiate deals for its members.

ZAG can help your company tap into this unique market by getting your products before the decision-makers in the zoo and aquarium retail industry.  We would like to extend an invitation to your company to become a ZAG sponsor. A ZAG sponsorship is for one calendar year, from January 1 to December 31. (Sorry, we do not discount the sponsorship fee for vendors that join late in the year, and we stop accepting new sponsors on August 31 of each year.) As a sponsor, you will receive:

  • The ZAG members’ contact list, with information on over 340 ZAG members from more than 290 zoos, aquariums and wildlife parks, including names, job titles, mailing and e-mail  addresses, fax and phone numbers.  Updated lists are sent at least four times a year.  This is an excellent resource to establish direct contact with the buyers.
  • Our quarterly newsletter.  A sample is available upon request.
  • Extensive exposure on ZAG’s web site.
  • ZAG will create a link from ZAG’s web site to yours.
  • Your company will receive one hyperlink, with a corresponding picture that you provide, to be used as a tool for potential buyers to find your web site.
  • You may also choose to point the hyperlink at any address on your web site that you wish to.  This may be useful if your company has several lines that would be of interest to zoo and aquarium merchandise buyers.
  • ZAG sponsors exhibiting at the November Smoky Mountain Gift Show in Gatlinburg, Tennessee or the International Gift Exposition in the Smokies, Sevierville, TN receive increased exposure of their products to the buyers:
    *The newsletter prior to the show features a special insert listing all the ZAG sponsors at the shows, with their booth numbers, product lines, show specials, etc. This insert is also provided as a handy pocket map to the sponsors’ booths that fits in the buyers’ lanyard badge holder.
    *ZAG sponsors are invited to a reception held as a “thank-you” for their sponsorship, to which buyers are also invited. It’s a great way to personally meet customers you may deal with only via fax, phone or mail.
    *ZAG sponsors have the opportunity to feature some of their best or newest merchandise on special display tables at the buyers’ annual dinner.

Even if you don’t exhibit at the Gatlinburg and Sevierville gift shows, the membership listing you will receive as a sponsor is an extremely useful tool in targeting your products to this unique retail segment.

ZAG is a growing organization.  With membership increasing by 300% since 2002, we have created the quarterly newsletter and web site and hold several yearly regional meetings, often in conjunction with a regional gift show.

To become a ZAG sponsor, simply select the sponsor option here and fill out the application sheet. Then mail your application and check, made payable to “ZAG, Inc.”, to:

ZAG Inc.
Attn: Melinda Greene
6800 Zoo Drive
Kansas City, MO  64132

Thank you again for your interest!  Please don’t hesitate to contact me or Melinda if you have any further questions!

Judy Rancour
Saint Louis Zoo

New Buyer Information

Thank you for your interest in joining ZAG (Zoo & Aquarium Buyers Group)!  ZAG is a non-profit, volunteer-run professional organization whose purpose is to increase communication and networking opportunities between zoo and aquarium merchandise buyers, and to share information on sales trends, product sources, good ideas and success stories.

ZAG membership provides:

  • Access to the ZAG members’ contact list.  This list has contact information on over 300 merchandise buyers and decision makers just like you from over 260 different zoos, aquariums, nature centers, butterfly houses, safari parks and more.  Each member is a great potential source of information and advice when you have questions about a new product, new idea or operating policy.
  • Access to the ZAG sponsor list.  ZAG is funded by sponsors, vendors who pay an annual sponsorship fee which gives them access to the members contact list and increased exposure to the members through the newsletter and web site.  Check out our sponsors, and be sure to ask if they offer ZAG members any special deals.  (Please remember that ZAG members are under no obligation to buy from a ZAG sponsor, ever.)
  • An electronic copy of the quarterly ZAG newsletter, which has articles on sales trends, upcoming gift shows, and interviews with fellow ZAG members.
  • Our web site at has back issues of the newsletter, photos of merchandise displays from ZAG member gift shops, quick links to ZAG sponsors and more.
  • ZAG members get free subscriptions to three magazines devoted to merchandising in the zoo/aquarium/museum/tourism markets.
    • Edplay magazine
    • Museums and More magazine:
    • Souvenirs, Gifts and Novelties magazine

Please contact any of the ZAG Board members if you have any questions about ZAG.

If you wish to join just fill out the application here and join the fun! Be sure to select the Buyer level.