Cookie Season is here, and it definitely looks different than it has in years past!
We love how different troops have been sharing creative ways that they are selling cookies this year, so we decided to reach out to one of our volunteers, Laura Polis, and ask her about some of the cookie-selling tips that her troop is doing this year. Whether it’s your first or fifth year of selling cookies, we hope you enjoy this insight from Laura and get some good ideas for the rest of the season! Read on below for Laura’s answers and some tips and tricks for this year’s Cookie Season.
Tell us a little bit about your troop, and how you got involved in Girl Scouts.
I’m a volunteer with Troop 2039 in Rutherford County! I started volunteering two years ago, but our troop has been selling cookies for a few years now. We have a Junior troop, and some of the girls have been together since they were Brownies. We have such a great group of girls, and they participate regularly!
What are your troop’s goals for cookie season this year?
The girls love camping! In the past, they’ve saved their money for camping trips, and they would love to take a trip to Savannah once they’re a little bit older.
Why is Cookie Season important to you, and what motivates you to volunteer?
I grew up as a Girl Scout, both in Chattanooga and Middle Tennessee, and I even worked as a camp counselor at Camp Sycamore Hills for a few years and for a Girl Scout Camp in East Massachusetts. I love Girl Scouts, and Cookie Season has some special memories for me as well! When I was a girl, my troop had already done our paper orders and wasn’t planning on doing booth sales. So, my mother, a single parent at the time, did booth sales with us every weekend so we could have that experience with the joys of booth sales. That’s how we got to go to summer camp! We learned how to sell cookies, and summer camp was the best reward for all of the hard work. That’s why I want to instill these skills in our current troop and help them reach their goals – it’s so rewarding!
What is a tactic for door-to-door orders that has worked well for you?
For door-to-door orders this year, one of the best things that we did was create a Google Form for the girls to use! Everyone is seeing fewer people in person now, so we thought this would be a great solution for that. We created a Google Form for every girl, as well as a QR code, to help them sell cookies this year.
When I gave the girls their forms, a few of them even went in and typed out what their “why” for selling cookies was and added a personal touch to it! Their parents posted the forms on social media, as well as many grandparents, and the forms were shared. They generated good sales, and when it came time to put in our final orders, we realized there were quite a few on the forms!
For booth sales, how are you preparing some creative ways to sell cookies?
Whenever a girl asks me to buy cookies, I always buy cookies! So over the years at booths, I’ve noticed that many people have the expectation that they can just pick up the different cookie boxes on the table themselves. So for this year to help with social distancing, I tried to think of some different ways to keep the cookies on the table from being touched by multiple people. I ended up coming up with the idea to make a display out of the cookie boxes to keep on the table! To do this, I printed out some large copies of the fronts of the cookie boxes and taped them to the bottom of the cookie case to use as a display. This allows people to look at the cookie options without picking up different boxes, and the girls just hand the boxes that are ordered to the individual. I also printed off nutritional and allergen information for each kind of cookie, because that is usually the reason why someone would pick up a box!
Another thing that I did to prepare for booth sales was making all of the girls matching masks to wear, and I picked up some cute aprons with pockets that we may do something creative with.
What is the most rewarding part of Cookie Season for you?
I love being able to teach the girls some of the skills that I wish I had known when I was their age! And seeing them reach their goals is always so rewarding. It’s so fun getting to see how excited they get about making their goals and then reaching them! I like being able to play a role in helping them do that.
What advice would you give to our cookie rookies?
Be patient with yourself, and organization is key! Last year was my first year as an adult helping with cookie sales, and there was a lot to learn. I hadn’t sold cookies since high school! So my advice is to be patient, have fun, and find different ways to help you stay organized with everything. One thing that has helped us out a lot is using a cookie sales tracker that I made in Google Forms! That makes everything so much easier!
Thank you to Laura for sharing her experience with volunteering and helping her troop with cookie sales! Do you have some tips and insight that you would like to share with other leaders? Email firstname.lastname@example.org and share your troop’s story!