We Are Sunshine

Make a Positive Impression: Promotional themes and strategies that resonate with young adults

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2024

As the tanning industry continues to adapt to modern consumer preferences, so too must our approach to attracting new customers.

In last month’s Smart Tan Magazine, we detailed the notion that today’s young adult consumers represent the future of all tanning businesses. While their patronage may not be critical to our businesses financially today, it will become increasingly essential as the current primary customer segments age out of the market over the next few decades. The concern for our industry is that this demographic is viewed as being largely uninterested in UV tanning. But there are encouraging signs, as indicated by a recent bevy of mainstream media reports on “the renewed popularity of tanning.” Undoubtedly, there’s plenty of untapped potential in the older Generation Z and younger millennial age segments.

Raised with technology at their fingertips and immersed in social media, this generation’s perceptions and behaviors are more distinctive than the differences between older generations. To attract this segment, it’s essential to understand their specific concerns and desires. This demographic values healthy lifestyles, appearance, and authenticity. They seek experiences that align with their values and aesthetics. Therefore, tanning businesses must adapt their services and marketing strategies to meet these expectations. And, most notably from a tanning perspective, they have grown up amid a barrage of negative messaging about tanning, making it imperative for the industry to show them that we are not the same old tanning salons that have been vilified by tanning critics.

Because so many salons are already doing the right things to appeal to younger adult consumers – embracing state-of-the-art tanning technology, diversification, skin care, and more modern, attractive aesthetics – much of the additional effort revolves around effective marketing. If you’ve already done the hard part, why wouldn’t you want to show as many people as possible what you’ve accomplished? And, on a broader scale, every positive impression made by any salon contributes to changing the overall perception of tanning businesses.

Fortunately, technology and the habits of these young adult consumers make them easy to find. By leveraging modern digital marketing techniques and platforms, tanning businesses can reach these young adult consumers where they spend most of their time – online. And we have another significant advantage to embrace: Thousands of vibrant, talented young women working in salons around the country who know what their peers like and can function as ambassadors for our industry.

 Click here to read the entire article in the latest issue of Smart Tan Magazine online.