More than ever, instant gratification is the way of the world. While the merits of that mindset might be debatable in some contexts, the “I want it and I want it now” mentality is a great thing for tanning business owners who offer their clients instant spray tans, high-end equipment that provides faster results, and products with dark bronzers.
Meanwhile, salon owners’ needs have shifted as well, and your industry product manufacturers have also adapted their salon training resources to keep up with modern expectations. These brands have always excelled with educating their salon clients, even back when that meant continuously traveling around the country to work hands-on with all their customers on a regular basis. Over the years, that approach was increasingly supplemented by online educational efforts. Now, online educational events and content have become more prevalent than in-person efforts, and that’s proven to be a beneficial shift for both parties.
“We are definitely doing more online just because we’ve seen such a positive impact and reach,” says New Sunshine Marketing Manager Audrey Brown. “By doing less in-person salon training, we’re able to give more training overall.”
Virtual education doesn’t just mean you’re getting it faster. You’re also getting substantially more. The convenience of webinars and digital training resources allows these manufacturers to pump out far more content, touching on virtually every aspect of salon operation. With so much information out there, it’s easier than ever to actively educate your staff as well as yourself.
“Everything is digital and at your fingertips. These days, people are used to, if you want to know about something, you immediately look it up, so we have to be evolving as an industry, and this is the way we have to do it,” says Devoted Creations Director of Brand Development Lisa Saavedra.
“With old-school training, we would go out to a store, talk about products, tell them how to sell, and go over sales points. This was effective at one point, but with staff turnover the way it’s been and the travel aspect and Covid, it became less practical. We still offer in-person training, but it’s not the most in-demand option. Most salons are very familiar with products. They don’t generally need ingredient training because we do a good job explaining it and how to sell. They need more personalized training to be a more well-rounded salon.”
Today, many of the available resources have little to do with product sales in particular. These companies recognize that tanning businesses are “machines” with various moving parts. When one part moves, other parts with it, and the more parts move in conjunction, the more of a well-oiled machine a business can become. When you know how to give a great salon tour, you’ll sell more memberships. When you’re successful with membership sales and retention, your product sales are naturally going to benefit. It all works together, and the product manufacturers know that they will only benefit from a stronger, better educated industry.
“At the end of the day, we need as many salons to prosper as possible, because it just helps our industry as a whole. Once you create a relationship with these amazing professionals, it just opens the door to build trust and rapport to where they want to carry our products. They have trust in me, they’re going to love my products and want to educate and share them with their customers. I’m helping them to help their customers to help me. It’s a beautiful circle. At the end of the day, if the salon isn’t making money neither are we,” says Sun Evolutions Business Development Manager Gina Jaeger-Morris.
After years of these brands consistently producing a variety of educational content, the supply of information is virtually endless. Beyond simply knowing that it’s there and making continual education a focal point, you’ll want to make a plan of how to use all these resources to your maximum advantage.