Big things – such as increased sales of high-end lotions and combatting product diversion on the Internet – can come in small packages.
Mike Blore, CEO of the California Sun salon chain, has devised an ingenious way to sell more lotions. He created a sticker that offers a $10 discount on any lotion purchase, and it’s placed on every tanning product bottle in his stores. “This appeals to a very basic element of human nature because most of us spend beyond our means,” he said, “and we’re more likely to make bigger purchases when there’s a discount involved. This has done wonders for our lotion sales, and most of our tanners use the discount to purchase higher-quality products.”
These stickers are California Sun’s way of fighting Internet diversion of tanning products. “Most people who sell lotions on the Internet are salon owners,” Mike commented. “Although we can’t control it, we can educate our customers about why it’s not good to buy lotions from these sources.” The stickers include the phrase, “Do not purchase from Internet. This product is NOT tamper resistant” in red ribbons, which opens the door for staff to educate tanners about the dangers of purchasing lotion from unknown sources.
Mike is happy to share this concept with salon owners to inspire them to do something similar. “Our Media Director, Jeremy McCain, and I came up with the idea,” he said, “and it didn’t take long to design it nor does it cost much to print.” Mike added that the stickers have helped brand his California Sun salon chain.
After researching the tan biz for two years, Mike Blore opened his first California Sun salon in 1993 in Rocklin, CA. Between 1993 and 1997, the chain grew at a steady rate of one to two stores per year until in 1997, he decided to sell his advertising agency to spend more time with his family and the salons. Today, California Sun has 30 stores in and around Sacramento, with five more on the way.
A 14-year industry veteran, John "Ribby" Ribner has written hundreds of
articles for IST Magazine and, as Director of Editorial Content, has also
helped guide the publication's evolution. Ribby is a graduate of Central
Michigan University's journalism program and has brought many years of newspaper reporting experience to his position of Head Writer. He is also the author of three novels, "Legacy of the Bear," "Prophecy of the Bear" and "World So Dark."
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