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Pitching Popcorn

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For some strange reason, I never had any problem selling things when I was a Cub or a Scout. In fact, I was so practiced at it that by the time I hit HS band, and saw some of the crap they expected me to sell, I refused. Step 1 is to have a good product.


I guess I knew instinctively about the "sales pitch" idea, but if I hadn't, a Jr HS band director coached us. He explained that you just don't knock on doors and say, "you don't want to buy one of these things, do you?".


So when my oldest was a Cub, we talked about what a sales pitch is, and he practiced one. I'd agree that short and simple is the way to go. It was no problem for him to walk up to a door, knock, and give his 5-second pitch (with me standing out at the sidewalk, a respectable distance away). Not everyone buys, so it's important to have realistic expectations.


It's funny -- as much as I dislike GSUSA cookies, they are one product that practically sell themselves. I just wish the popcorn had a similar cost/value feel.


By the way, easiest thing I ever had to sell? For HS band, circa 1977. We had these fudgy chocolate candy bars that were $0.75 each. They were excellent. Kids from school would look to see who was carrying a box in order to snag one. Each kid in the band sold bunches of them. These days, you probably couldn't sell them in school, because they probably weren't made in a peanut-free facility. :-)



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The reason the longer pitch is effective is because you don't mention the B-word (buy).

You also don't give the person a question to mentally answer in their mind until that last line of asking them to help you.

Its psychology. Its harder to say no when someone is asking you to help them out, than if someone is asking you to buy something. In your pitch, the yes or no answer comes to "buy some popcorn". In the longer pitch , the person must say no they dont want to help the scout out.


We did give some of our cubs who were not so good at memorizing an index card with the script on it that they could use to help them. It gave them a bit more confidence with the script and by the end of the sale they didn't need it anymore.

(This message has been edited by jc2008)

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Our pitch is 1) would you like to help support Boy Scouts

The cost supports our council district and unit bla bla bla three bags full...


2) would you consider a donation to our troops,

3) if you can't do either of those, can you make a contribution to our unit.



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