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We Are Sunshine

A Big Deal on a Small Budget

Monday, November 26th, 2018

By Tara Sanders, Touchable Tans

Last year, I was lucky enough to celebrate my salon’s five-year anniversary. They say that it takes five years to “make it or break it,” so I’m on the better end of those odds! I really wanted to play this year’s anniversary up big! I always host a free tanning weekend each year on this date, but I wanted to do more this time and really stand out. The problem…limited funds! Like always, the budget was tight. But I was determined!

I really wanted it to be a party. I printed out 50 exclusive coupons for $50 in free sample lotions just for turning in that coupon the day of the event. These were mailed out to all high-dollar clients who had not been to the salon within the past six months. Then my girls printed hundreds of fliers to pass out all over town. Finally, the biggest advertisement is our Facebook and Instagram posts. And just like that, the guests were invited!

I set up a 20×20 area in front of my shop with some pop-up tents. I chose a few of my clients who have direct sales businesses and invited them to set up tables outside for the day. It was a great eye catcher and helped to draw people our way. They would talk and draw people over, and once they were done chatting them up about whatever they had to offer, they would then walk them inside to me! It worked great! I got free promoters in front of my store, and I was able to help other entrepreneurs show off their businesses.

Touchable Tan also had our own table of free games to play outside. I did a drawing for one year of free services. The winner gets to utilize any UV and/or Sunless service that I have to offer with no limitations. I printed out brightly colored slips for everyone to fill out and put in the drawing bucket. There was a spot on the slips labeled “Guess” for a separate prize. We had a bag filled with 112 sample lotions. Each person could write down the number of samples that they thought was in the bag. Whoever guessed the correct number (or was closest) won the whole bag of samples! For the most part, these samples didn’t cost me a penny. You can reach out to almost any vendor and request an “Event Kit” for your big day, and they will be more than happy to assist you. Your clients love the idea of getting freebies and the manufacturer gets their product in the hands of potential new clients who have never tried their lotions before. Everyone wins!

Now, keep in mind that no one is likely to send you that many samples at once. I did get a majority of the samples from closeout lists. Most of the samples from the event kits I passed out to each person that tanned that day. They usually send you more of the higher-end samples in these kits. This lets your clients try a higher quality lotion that they may not have been open to before, and now you have them hooked and the opportunity to up-sell to a higher line of lotions. So never be afraid to ask for something free. The worst that will happen is they will tell you “no.”

I will follow up with everyone who participated in the drawing and email them a coupon for buy five get five free Level 1 sessions to draw them back into the salon.

With so many different activities going on all at once, it was very important that I organize my staff as much as possible for the event. Each girl had a clipboard with a list of all the discounts and specials offered that day. If there were any questions about a product or service, then they had the answer in their hands. I also assigned each one with a designated station. There was a fully informed staff member outside and inside at all times. The first girl was located outside working the prize table and drawings. Once a guest entered the salon, they were greeted by girl number two who handled final sales and check-ins. As for myself, I mostly stayed in the back doing hand-held spray tans and coming up front between to make small talk and show face. There wasn’t much more that the girls needed from me. It was all simple and easy, which equaled out to a success with several new EFT clients and tons of new members.


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