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As the weather warms up, we tend to see our salon guest counts dwindle as they trade their time in our tanning equipment for more time outside in the sun. Last month, we discussed ways to avoid this decrease in traffic; this month, I want to dive a little deeper into some other ideas to help ease the slowdown phase.
I’ve seen this all too often. Salons will run crazy promotions during their slower months just to make sales. Instead of slashing your pricing, how about adding value to the packages and products you are currently offering? Instead of deeply discounting a lotion, what about offering a tan extender with it for $5? Or, with certain select packages, offer extra upgrade credits. When you dramatically decrease a price on your products or services, you devalue them. Instead, offer extra incentives for guests to purchase them at regular pricing.
Direct marketing, email marketing, text marketing, sponsored posts, etc. are all extremely effective ways to communicate with your customers. Just because it’s summer and your salon is slower doesn’t mean you should stop these efforts – if anything, you want to make them more appealing. Invite people in for a free session, offer a one-day-only promo, any “call to action” that catches someone’s attention and drives traffic will also drive sales … The extra effort is always worth it.
Creative sales promotions and a positive outlook can go a long way toward surviving the summer slowdown!
Why not promote a free tan weekend or a customer appreciation event? Getting people through the door during slow times is the ultimate goal. More Guests = More Sales! Host a cookout and offer free tanning, combined with great promotions on your products and services. Make it exciting and something everyone will want to be a part of. People are much more likely to commit to a tanning package if they have already tried the service, so let everyone coming to your salon try any bed they would like, including upgrades. You will notice a big difference as to how many people opt to purchase a membership for your higher equipment levels.
I have always been a fan of cross-promotion! Not only are you supporting the other businesses in your community, but you are targeting potential customers who may have never heard of your brand. One thing I think is great is a “weekly drawing.” Each week, you partner with a different local business and you both have customers enter in a contest to win a gift card from the other business. So for example, if you partner with a nail salon, all the nail salon customers can enter to win a gift card for tanning at your salon, and your tanners can enter to win a nail salon gift card. I would suggest after the drawing is done, email each person who entered and offer them a free tan – that way, you get more new people through the door.
They say positivity radiates, so if you are not positive about making it through the slow season, not only will your staff feel it, but so will your guests. A positive outlook can go a long way toward keeping your entire team motivated. As we all know, motivated and happy staff always outperform our expectations.
As Director of Brand Development for Devoted Creations’ family of brands, Lisa brings 17 years of industry experience, knowledge and enthusiasm to all aspects of the business, including social media, product development, training, customer relations, public speaking and marketing strategies. Lisa worked at the salon level managing a large chain of salons, which infuses her sales training and brand concepts with real world experience. Lisa has been chosen IST Magazine’s “Person of the Year” four times.
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