Popcorn Sales are an excellent way for the youth to earn their own way and pay for summer programs locally, out of state, and for high adventure. In addition, operating this sales campaign is an excellent way for the youth to learn skills in goal setting, project management, sales communications, and self confidence.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What does SNS mean?
SNS is the Show and Sell campaign. This is where the unit set up at a store front and sell the products they have on hand. Locations are secured by the unit volunteers who approach businesses and get permission to sell.
What does TO mean?
TO is the Take Order campaign. This is where the scouts sell using an order form and deliver the product at the end of the campaign. This works for door to door sales, workplace sales and family and friend’s sales.
When do I order the product?
There are two times when units order product. The first orders are due late July or early August (see our current calendar on the website.) Units should order enough products to meet their sales goals. If the unit sells all their product ordered for SNS and need more, they can place a replenishment order directly with the Popcorn Specialist by Monday no later than 5pm. The replenishment product will be available for pickup on the Friday of the same week. The second order is placed at the middle of the campaign (see our current calendar on the website.) This order is the final order, it should include all the product needed to complete the TO requests for the unit. At this time the unit can enter the specific quantities of product, to fill the TO sales with little to no product left over.
Can I return product?
SNS Product can be returned, only in full unopened cases, and at the date set on our calendar. Product may not be returned otherwise. It is important that the unit orders according to their sales target for SNS and TO. The unit can also fill part of their TO sales with left over SNS inventory.
When can my unit sell?
SNS sales start the day the product is delivered to the units, usually in mid-August (see our calendar for this years’ dates) and end before the product return date. TO sales can begin when TO forms are distributed. TO Sales must be completed before the final orders are due. The unit sets the date of when the TO are to be turned in to the Unit Popcorn Kernel. This is to ensure there is enough product ordered to complete delivery of TO sales.
Where can my unit sell?
SNS can take place anywhere the unit volunteers get permission to sell. We request that the sales locations are establishments whose values align with BSA values. We also prefer units avoid selling Popcorn in locations that were used for Camp Cards sales. It can hurt the relationship with these businesses. Units can use the sample letter to ask for permission to sell or you can use their own. Find the sample letter in the resources page.
How can customers pay with Credit Cards?
Units can use the app of their choosing to charge for product on a credit card. We encourage units to have this option available to customers as many experienced sellers have noted sales growth when the option is available. We suggest units do not charge an extra fee to the customer for the use of their card as this might hurt the sale.
How do I order popcorn?
The SNS order for full cases is emailed to Kathy McLean at Kathy.McLean@scouting.org, or through the order system on the Scoutfund.net. TO orders are submitted using the Trails End system. Units need to be registered with Trail End to submit the order. We recommend the unit has two designated people registered with the Trails End before the campaign begins. One person designated (the Popcorn Kernel) to submit orders and one person as back up. It is important that the orders are submitted on time to ensure the availability of product.
How will the product be distributed?
The SNS product will be distributed from one main warehouse. The units that place orders will be sent an email with the location and times for pick. This information can also be found on the website. Replenishment and TO products will also be picked up from this location.
How is commission calculated?
Commissions are calculated on the actual sales. Commissions for SNS are calculated once the product is returned. The unit should be prepared to pay for the product at the time of return, we encourage units to bring a blank check and write the amount due when their left over inventory is received and accounted for. Commissions for TO are calculated at the time the unit submits the final product order. The unit is allowed extra time between orders, product delivery and payment for collections, although we strongly encourage units to charge the customer at the time of purchase so delivery is easier. Commissions for Online sales are calculated once the product has been shipped to the customer.
How much does my unit earn?
The Commission structure is explained in detail in our Leader’s Guide, but the base commission is 30% of sales and it can be increased by the amount sold.
What resources do I have for marketing?
Units can use their networks, social media outlets and relationships they have with local businesses to promote Popcorn sales. Units can use collateral and images from the internet, the BSA Marketing toolbox or the LHC popcorn campaign. Units are free to promote sales as they see fit but are not allowed to change the sales price. We ask units to remember the Scout Law and Oath when advertising and promoting sales.