Running Your Popcorn Sale Like A Business


Remember, with any business the desired result is to make money.  To make money you either sell a product(s) or provide a service(s).  You have to sell your products or services at a high enough price (revenue) so you will cover your expenses and make a profit.  Revenue – expenses=profit.  You must be careful to not sell your products or services at so high a price people will not pay for them.

For our Boy Scout Troop we run it like a not for profit business.  We try to generate enough revenue to pay for our expenses. We hope to have a little money in the bank at the end of the year to help us get started for next year.  No one makes any money for themselves from the Troop.

Each Scout in our Troop does have the opportunity to earn a profit!  You will do this in the form of incentives – scouts bucks which are a 15% commission on all your sales (see rules of scout bucks to learn what they can and cannot be used for); Troop Incentive Prizes which are the t-shirt, sweatshirt, and jacket; sales team incentives; and Council incentives.  Your sales business will have the expense of you and your parents time and travel costs. Usually your parents donate their time and travel costs to your business. Remember to thank them!!!

1. Set Your Goal for Sales.  How much popcorn do you think you can sell this year?  How much did you sell last year?  Be realistic.  If you sold $500 in popcorn last year, can you sell $2,500?  Maybe $1,000 is a more realistic goal.

2. Plan Your Work. If you set your sales goal at $1,000, how will you sell that much? How much time do you have to sell? How many houses do you have to stop at to sell enough popcorn?

3. You Have 4 Ways to Sell.

Take Order/Take and sell – Going door to door and asking everyone you see and know is the way to sell the most popcorn. Get out there fast before everyone else does and before show and sell begins.  Find places with a lot of houses close to each other.  Your average sale will be about $15 to $20.  If you are good at selling you will probably sell at 3 out of 5 houses you visit if you sell before show and sell starts. In a village or city setting, you should be able to stop at 30 - 40 houses in an hour. Remember the sales techniques we have taught you. Go online to if you want to review good sales techniques. They have excellent videos. Remember to start out by saying, “Hi, my name is ____, I’m in boy scout troop 586, would you like to help support my boy scout troop?” Smile! Always be polite! Say thank you whether they buy something or not!  Sometimes you start to walk away and the person who just said no suddenly yells down the street, Hey can you take a donation?

Take and Sell- You can pre-order popcorn to carry with you as you go door to door.  YOU and YOUR Parents are responsible for either paying the troop for the popcorn or returning the popcorn on OCTOBER 19!  NO EXCEPTIONS!  When you go to a door, don’t carry the cheapest bag of popcorn with you, carry a $20 bag of popcorn. Have the smaller bags in your backpack or whatever your carrying popcorn around in.  Remember to be very accurate with what you sell. YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE!

Show and Sell – This is the fun way to sell popcorn because you’re with a buddy and you’re not knocking on doors.  BUT, the amount of profit you earn is limited.  You also have to depend upon everyone else to do a good job selling at show and sell and hope that we find good locations and good times to sell. Our plan this year is to sell about $9,500 worth of popcorn through show and sell. If we do and you have signed up for 12 hours to work, you’ll make about $800.  If we don’t sell $9500, you will make less.

Online Sales – You can sell popcorn online to friends and family. Go to Click on the “scouts” button in the top right corner. Create an account for you to sell through.  Remember, you are in Longhouse Council, Tri-Rivers District, Troop 586.  Then send this link,, to everyone you know! Put the link on facebook too! Tell everyone they can help you pay for camp if they give you credit for the sale.  Tell them you are in Longhouse Council, Tri-Rivers District, Troop 586.  Every time someone buys popcorn online, it is credited to you!  Our experience is that you may not sell a lot of popcorn online but depending upon how many people you know, you could sell $200 to $300. Every little bit helps.


4. Wear Your Uniform!  Scout must be in uniform when selling popcorn.  Who wants to buy something from a kid who says he’s a scout but isn’t wearing a uniform.


5. Always Be Safe! Never sell alone. Never go in the house with someone unless your parent is with you. Don’t sell after dark without a parent. Watch for traffic. Never argue with anyone.


6. Be Prepared! Order form? Two pens? Money for Change? Envelope for money? Clipboard for customer to write on? UNIFORM ON? SMILE ON?  Told Someone where Im going and when I’ll be back?  Plan for where I’m going, how many visits I’ll make, and how many sales I want to make?


7. Questions – Call your scout sales executive!  Kaedon Rowland for Sparta and Andrew Thomas for Nuclear Llamas. 




My Business Plan

My Sales Goal is:__________________


Take Order Sales Plan

1. How much I plan to sell through Take Order Sales: $(A)____________


2. Average sale per customer is $15. My Take order sales goal in “A” is ______ ÷ $15/sale = (B)___________ number of sales on take order I need.


3. I sell to ____ out of every (C)____ people I ask. (3 out of 5 if you do a good job selling). In order to achieve (B)_________ number of sales, I have to ask (BxC)= (D)______  people in order to hit my sales goal.


4. I need to  ask (D)______ people if they want to support my Boy Scout Troop and buy popcorn from me. I will achieve (B)_____ number of sales, which should result in (A)$_______ in sales through take order.


5. I can ask (E)____number of people in an hour going door to door (in a village setting a good number to use is 15 – 20). In order to ask (D)____ people, I have to spend(D÷E)  ___ number of hours going door to door.


6. Mom says she can ask ____ number of friends at her work. Dad says he can ask ___ number of friends at work.  When I subtract those numbers from “D” above, I only need to ask ____people!


7. Places to go: (in order to ask _____number of people, I need to work the following schedule)

I plan to go to _________street on _____date from _____(time) to _______time and ask ____people.


I plan to go to _________street on _____date from _____(time) to _______time and ask ____people.


I plan to go to _________street on _____date from _____(time) to _______time and ask ____people.


I plan to go to _________street on _____date from _____(time) to _______time and ask ____people.


I plan to go to _________street on _____date from _____(time) to _______time and ask ____people.


I plan to go to _________street on _____date from _____(time) to _______time and ask ____people.


I plan to go to _________street on _____date from _____(time) to _______time and ask ____people.


I plan to go to _________street on _____date from _____(time) to _______time and ask ____people.


Show and Sell Plan:

1. I have asked to work ____hours of show and sell with my troop. If my troop is successful and sells $9,500 worth of popcorn through show and sell, I can earn about $60 for every hour worked.  If I work ___ hours and earn $____ per hour, I should earn (number of hours X $/hr) $________ from show and sell.  I understand that this amount could be different depending upon how much popcorn the Troop sells at show and sell.


Online Sales:

1. I have gone to and set up my online sales account. Yes/No. I entered that I am in Longhouse Council, Tri-Rivers District, Troop 586 when setting my account up.

2. I plan to email _____ people asking them to support my boy scout troop and buy popcorn. My mom and dad say they will ask their friends on facebook to support our boy scout troop as well. If  1person out of every 10 I email or ask on facebook buys popcorn from me, and the average sale is $20, I should earn $_______ from online sales.


If I earn $______ from take order sales, $________ from show and sell sales and $_________from online sales will I hit my total sales goal?  If not, how do I adjust my sales plan so I do?