Why prepared students can sell snow to an Eskimo
Are you better off using a great fundraiser brochure with an unprepared sales force, or equipping your students to sell out of a brochure that may not be as good? What if you couldn't have the best of both?
Most people are familiar with a slight variation to an old saying that says, "Well prepared sales people can sell snow to an Eskimo". But wouldn’t people who lived in cold weather rather have a coat if you could offer it to them?
Hopefully you'd want both, but what if you had to choose between having strong sellers and using a great brochure? Here are some additional things to consider.
Having the Right Fundraiser Brochure
Most groups go to great lengths to find the best possible brochure to sell. Once they find something good they usually contact the company right away. Choices are often made based on the success that they or other groups have experienced with the brochure. On the other hand, many groups are looking for something new that hasn't been sold yet. Most organizations assume that a desirable brochure will get people's attention, and this will automatically translate into sales.
In addition, many sponsors look for brochures that their students will be more likely to show to friends and family. For this reason some sponsors allow their students to select the brochure. After all, they are going to have to do the selling. Yet, some argue that this is a sign of a lack of leadership. They feel sponsors need to choose the brochure.
Working with an Effective Sales Strategy
Contrary to what some may think, even the best brochure won’t sell itself. Yet many organizations would rather have a stronger sales brochure than an effective sales strategy. Developing an effective selling approach takes work. Furthermore, many sponsors don’t know how to develop a good plan, nor do they have the time. Yet, how do you know your students are going to actually sell? And if they do, what how effective will they be?
A successful sales strategy involves good planning and implementation. To develop an effective approach, ask yourself the following questions:
- Does our fundraiser have a purpose?
- How much do we need?
- How many students do I have?
- How much does each student need to sell to reach our goal?
- How do I generate enthusiasm for our fundraiser?
- How do I sustain the momentum?
Once you’ve answered the first 3 questions you can answer the rest by utilizing the following sales tools:
- Goal Setting Guide (Establishes seller’s goal)
- Kickoff Meeting (Creates enthusiasm for your sale)
- Tracking Tool (Monitors sales progress)
- Selling Method (An easy way for students to introduce themselves)
To answer the initial question, if given the choice, we’d rather work with sponsors who effectively prepare their students to sell. On the other hand, having a great brochure can’t hurt either. In the end, wouldn’t you rather have both?