My son is into his second year of cub scouts and his second year of selling popcorn. I noticed that the boy scouts were also selling in the neighborhood; so we were competing against eachother.

If only someone at national would coordinate the sales, both groups could sell throughout the year and they would get more sales. Some neighbors are nice and buy from both, but during these economic times many won’t. Now, if they made a mandate for one group to sell in the fall and the other in the spring, you get more sales. Now some groups do other things such as a car wash, haunted house, or barbeque. I’d just coordinate the switch. While one group is selling the popcorn the other could have a car wash. With a little simple coordination at the national level, the local scout troops would perform better. The next trick is to get customers’ contact information in a national database. In the following year, Boy Scouts could email or mail the customer list to the boy scout that sold the customers and tell them to contact them for a repurchase. It’s easier to sell to an existing customer than a new one.

These kids and scout masters are not marketing and sales people. A national office of any type needs to make it easy for their clubs, distributors, franchisees to make the job of earning funds easier. A central organization needs to provide process and management to ensure improved success from year to year. With a little better organization and process, the Boy Scouts could do a lot better.

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