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Making the Popcorn Sale A Part of Your Program

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  • Making the Popcorn Sale A Part of Your Program

    For those units that participate in the Scout popcorn sale, what methods do you use to manage your sale and make it a meaningful part of your program?

    I say MEANINGFUL, since I think it should be a positive Scouting experience for Scouts and families, not something they are flogged into doing. (This message has been edited by a staff member.)

  • #2
    Show and Sell in front of stores is a great opportunity for Scouts to practice social skills. Unfortunately for us, Popcorn season coincides with Breast Awareness Month at the major supermarket in our small town, so that's a complication. The store manager is a great guy, really supports scouting, and loves to have us there, but can't do it during his national chain's major philanthropy effort.

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    • #3
      There is no way to make it a meaningful part of the program.....

      Some folks will always ride on the backs of those who will let them.


      We charge a program fee....the scout can earn it thru selling popcorn....$250 covers it.

      or mom or dad can pull out the check book and pay for it.

      Everyone pays it.....So there is no free ride.

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      • #4
        Hello Basement,


        >


        I disagree. We're doing a pack hike Saturday. One hour will be taking part in the popcorn sale, one hour doing the hike and a half hour doing a hot dog roast.

        During the hour spent on the popcorn sale, my hope is that each Cub Scout sells one bag of popcorn. Making that sale will be a good Scouting experience, in my opinion.


        >


        Wow! That's a lot of money! I presume that's for your Scout Troop.

        We do the same thing. Families that sell $200 in popcorn avoid paying the pack $60 membership fee for 2013. Take your pick.

        But selling at least some popcorn is a good Scout experience, I suggest.

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        • #5
          I think only 10% of the troop sells it...it's just not well received. Over priced and under quality.

          I probably have two boxes of the stuff in the pantry from the last time we sold it 3-4 years ago.

          Comment


          • #6
            Only an hour why even bother......

            We have three full weekends Saturday and sunday in front of storefronts........


            So it is very easy for a scout to sell $250 worth of popcorn.......

            The troop is selling at the same time out of our turf in the golden suburb......I am prepared for some flack from the Rich suburban scouters....

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            • #7
              Hello Basement,

              >


              As I said, the aim is to make selling popcorn part of a quality Cub Scout program. To that end, we encourage all Cub Scouts to sell some popcorn --- even a single sale help promote those purposes.

              Those who want to sell more are welcome to do so. But selling at least some is recommended but not required.

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              • #8
                Totally social skills door to door.
                I see a huge leap of confidence in dealing with adults after I walk my son through an effective door to door sales pitch.

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                • #9
                  The greatest popcorn seller I've ever seen was a Cub Scout who was invited to Cub Scout Roundtable with his father to talk about his sales methods.

                  He routinely persisted through three levels of rejection by customers 1) selling for the customers desires 2) selling the idea of using popcorn as gifts for others 3) military sales.

                  He sold over $13,000 in popcorn last year, and won 2nd place in the council. The year before he sold $9500 in popcorn, edging out the Scout who beat him last year by $30 or so.

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                  • #10
                    It isn't safe for Scouts and parents to go door to door in our neighborhoods.....

                    We do visit the few reasonably safe neighborhoods........But it is bad form to go selling popcorn door to door with a glock on your belt.

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                    • #11
                      That's what concealment holsters are for.
                      I'd never go door to door unarmed. Go Texas.
                      Though we do have safe neighborhoods and if I feel iffy, we skip it.

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                      • #12
                        We have had some pretty amazing results with our show and sells. And by results I mean the boys, not necessarily their sales. I had convinced one mother that her son could do the show and sell, she was unsure since he was so shy, always looking down, hands in pocket. I put her son in the group run by my husband and when her son got there the first thing my husband did was hand him the money bag and say ok now you are in charge of this (the boy is a webelos). His mom looked shocked. But towards the end of the show and sell this kid had his hands out of his pocket, was assisting the tigers and wolves with their sales and speaking to people on his own. His mom freely signed him up for our next round of show and sells in October/Nov.

                        It is beneficial in the self confidence, public speaking, self esteem type of way if the program is done properly. If you just shove kids out next to a store with popcorn and say sell this without any sort of plan, then no, not all of them would gain from winging it.

                        But having a planned presentation for the boys to give to the customer (the standard: Hi my name is Bob. I am with Pack 999. I am here selling popcorn to raise money for my Pack. You can help us by trying some of our delicious popcorn. You will help us won't you?"
                        Really does wonders. And that speech is the proper format for almost any presentation. You have the "who are you, where are you from, what are you doing here, how can I help and close" sections.

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                        • #13
                          Our troop wasn't selling popcorn, because of some payment issue way back when. Old news, as far as I'm concerned. Virtually all principal players are now different.

                          In the past couple of years, we've had some parents asking for more "direct support" for camp fees, and at the same time the troop has been growing, with the possibility of more future requests. And -- at the same time, we've had a few outstanding popcorn sellers entering the troop (one, an average of $2.5k per year). So the logical thing to do was to reintroduce popcorn, and introduce Scout accounts. Only those that want to sell, and no proceeds go directly to the troop. All will be applied directly to a Scout's future camp fees.

                          I've since talked to a few parents who were benefiting from the "direct support", explaining that with our troop growth we really can't sustain that model, and they happily agreed to sell popcorn. I have just one more family to talk to -- I don't think they are the selling types, but I may be wrong.

                          From my end, I am the "kernel" which is a new experience for me. So far, it hasn't been too bad. I see it as no problem to repeat for next year. Pickup is on Saturday. We'll see how it goes after that. :-)

                          Guy

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                          • #14
                            Meaningful happens in the pre-sale planning when you explain, in detail, what the raised funds will be used for -- to the dollar. It may help to have pictures, posters, a guest speaker or two, and the loan rock from the Tooth on display.

                            I guess you could incorporate the popcorn into a troop merit badge program (gag!) for salesmanship, public speaking

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Meaningful happens in the pre-sale planning when you explain, in detail, what the raised funds will be used for -- to the dollar. It may help to have pictures, posters, a guest speaker or two, and the loan rock from the Tooth on display.

                              I guess you could incorporate the popcorn into a troop merit badge program (gag!) for salesmanship, public speaking

                              Comment

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