6 Business Lessons from Girl Scout Cookies
Every year, Girl Scout cookies flood the market, and they always sell out. The girls running the sales become experts in marketing, sales, and business during those few months, and their techniques are worth noting. As someone who buys into the hype and happily purchases boxes every year, I’ve learned quite a bit about business from these young, evil geniuses.
1. Sell the Idea – The Sizzle
“When it comes to sales, sell the sizzle not the steak.” This is a common phrase that emphasizes the importance of selling the story and image surrounding a product, rather than the product itself. Girl Scout cookies are a perfect example of this. The cookies themselves are not unique or special, but the organization behind them is. By buying their cookies, we’re supporting an organization that helps people in our community succeed.
2. Back Up the Product – The Steak
Selling the sizzle won’t work if the product doesn’t live up to its hype. Quality is key, as it backs up the image and story. In the case of Girl Scout cookies, they are good quality and have a unique taste, making them stand out from other cookies. Our products need to back up the brand that comes with them, and we need to take pride in what we produce.
3. Motivate Your Sales Force
Girl Scout troop leaders are experts at motivating their young sales force. They teach the girls how to sell and provide incentives for reaching certain sales levels. Similarly, businesses need to motivate their employees to sell their products, providing them with training and incentives.
4. Order in Advance
Girl Scouts start taking orders for their cookies in advance, allowing them to plan for how much product they need to make. Businesses can benefit from this method as well, by taking advanced orders to get a better idea of how much product they need to manufacture.
5. Keep Product on Hand
Even with advanced orders, Girl Scout troops usually purchase extra cookies to sell outside of businesses. They know there will always be last-minute purchases and people who want more than they originally ordered. Knowing how much product to have on hand is crucial, as it allows businesses to fulfill orders quickly.
6. Timing Is Everything
Girl Scout cookies come out around 20-30 days after the holidays when people start craving sweets. The timing is perfect, as people will have a desire for sweets at that time. This creates exclusivity, and the “buy it now, or lose it” mentality, making people more likely to purchase the product. Timing is crucial for any business looking to sell their product successfully.
The girls selling Girl Scout cookies are masterminds when it comes to business, and their techniques are worth noting. Whether you’re selling cookies or something else, the lessons learned from their business practices can help anyone succeed. So the next time you buy your Girl Scout cookie “fix,” take note of the seller’s genius and appreciate the lessons they offer.