We are happy to feature Kelly Lawrence and have been watching her growth since she started. Both Susan and I had the pleasure of doing a hands on training with her and happy to see her grow and be successful adding on spray tanning to her business model. Thank you Kelly for sharing your story and for sharing some great information and advice for other spray tan artists.
Name of salon: KL Custom Tan
Years in Business: 2 Years
Location: Hershey, PA
What was made you start a sunless tanning business? I am an auburn haired, fair skinned girl that has unsuccessfully chased after a flawless tan for as long as I can remember. I have tried every tan in a can, lotion and magical potion around. When I became an esthetician, I always recommended spray tanning to my clients as an alternative to the damaging effects of the sun and beds. After my own skin cancer experience in late 2015, I bought my first spray tanning system on a whim while at a trade show. I planned to use it on myself, coworkers and friends, but before I knew it word about my tans was spreading. I realized my ‘little side hobby’ had the potential to be a successful business and compliment my existing spa career.
What do you feel has been a big part of your success? Without a doubt my amazing clients and coworkers have led to my success. I built my business solely on referrals from this core group. Everyone I spray is a walking advertisement for me and I am so fortunate for the referrals and positive word of mouth that has built my business and keeps it growing.
What is your favorite part of being a spray tanner? Happy clients! A bit of color makes us feel better about ourselves. Whether it’s for vacation, a big meeting, special event or just because, spray tans make clients feel more confident. Offering this safely as an alternative to damaging UV rays is by far the best part.
What was an example of a challenge of being a business owner that you had to adapt to? In the beginning I was not good at setting boundaries. I would get so frustrated and overwhelmed trying to juggle my business, esthetics career and young family. I had to set regular business hours, take one day off a week for myself, learn to say no and streamline as many business processes as possible. Even something as simple as having Melissa create my website was a huge help. I can direct clients to one place instead of individually sending info to each and every client separately.
What is an example of a marketing tactic that you found successful to increase your business? My marketing strategy is very simple, I focus on client retention and referrals. I make sure to reward that with a loyalty program and client referral discounts. Clients love the loyalty program in which they get their 6th tan at a discount after receiving 5 tans at full price. I also offer a $5 discount for each friend they refer. Additionally, Social media has been a valuable resource to showcase my work and stay relevant to my client base.
What suggestions do you have for other techs in the industry that have worked well for you?
1. Invest in a superior solution (Perfect Glow Sunless of course)
2. Use top of the line equipment
3. Constantly educate yourself
4. Be patient and confident!
Where do you see your business a year from now? Are you looking to expand your business? I’m always looking to expand and grow! I absolutely love what I do and I hope to still be doing it 20 years from now. I grew over 50% from year 1 to 2 and I hope to experience that same growth into year 3. I’d also like to break into the education side of out industry.
What is your favorite Perfect Glow Product? I LOVE the Rapid formulas! I was never a fan of Rapids until I switched to Perfect Glow. Now I can’t imagine anything else! It applies flawlessly, develops into a beautiful tan that lasts and fades perfectly evenly.
What do you like to do in your free time? I have two young boys (4 and 6), so every bit of free time I have is spent with them. We live in the sweet little town of Hershey, PA where there is always something fun and kid friendly to do. In the warmer months, I spend every chance I get escaping to my hometown in coastal Delaware, where I enjoy relaxing on the beach while sporting my own Perfect Glow. (Under an umbrella of course)
Here are some beautiful client photos. Great job Kelly! For more information bout Kelly visit her at https://www.klcustomtan.com/