Last year, nearly 160,000 Girl Scouts experienced a revolutionary update to the iconic Girl Scout Cookie Program: the Digital Cookie platform. With Girl Scouts’ first-ever national digital platform, Digital Cookie 1.0 gave girls the opportunity to sell cookies via website or mobile app. Bringing twenty-first-century technology to the classic piece of Americana that is the Girl Scout Cookie Program, this initiative was a first step in preparing girls to be leaders in the high-tech, fast-paced, e-commerce world of today.
This is Girl Scouts of Western Ohio’s first year participating in Digital Cookie, and as the 2015–2016 Girl Scout Cookie season gets underway, local girls are excited to participate in Digital Cookie 2.0, which will provide a more robust, hands-on, and entertaining learning experience, including an enhanced cookie website, as well as new mobile sales technology to complement the national platform website. The mobile technology puts control of the sale, from customer contact to completion of the order, squarely in the hands of girls.
Digital Cookie 2.0’s game-changing addition of a mobile sales app will expands girls’ ability to take their sale on the go. Using handheld devices like phones or tablets, girls will approach customers, take orders, and complete sales using digital order forms that allow for direct shipping to customers. The new app replicates the transactional elements of the girl’s personal website, and ensures all Girl Scouts have an opportunity to learn about and engage in a seamlessly integrated multichannel digital sales program that will teach important m-commerce lessons for our increasingly mobile-based economy.
Upgrades to the girl-facing website include a goal-setting calculator to help girls track the number of boxes they need to sell to reach their goal—instilling the importance of setting both short- and long-term financial goals—and new ways to organize orders. Girls will be able to further personalize their pages during setup and access improved cookie sales data, with colorful charts showing sales by cookie type and delivery method, as well as week-by-week trends.
Designed with input from girls, these fun new enhancements use the “science of play” to expand girls’ understanding of the business cycle. Girls will be introduced to important new skills about running an e-commerce business, including digital marketing, online money management, revenue projection, and digital customer acquisition and management, all in a safe, hands-on environment. A fun new arcade game called Cookie Booth Bounce will help girls hone decision-making and budgeting skills, and the new “Learning to Run a Business” section of the website will include step-by-step guides and insights. Other upgrades that significantly strengthen the Digital Cookie experience include fun quizzes, games, videos, and other activities that offer girls opportunities to learn budgeting and resource allocation using a “spend, save, and give” model.
Girls will also be able to earn all age-appropriate Cookie Business badges through the platform, while exploring ways to help others by investing their earnings back into their communities and practicing Internet safety. With its enhanced multichannel retailing tools and fun new interfaces, Digital Cookie 2.0 puts girls in the driver’s seat of their own online sales experience like never before.
“Digital Cookie has forever changed the Girl Scout Cookie–selling experience, bringing our legendary cookie program into the twenty-first-century and providing our girls with a fun, engaging new way to learn the skills that will drive the future economy,” said Roni Luckenbill, chief executive officer for Girl Scouts of Western Ohio. “Now, with the ability to use the Digital Cookie platform on mobile devices, our girls will be able to reach more customers, make more sales, and learn more skills than ever before, all while learning vital twenty-first-century lessons in e-commerce they simply couldn’t learn anywhere else.”
Results show girls who diversified their sales methods by combining the Digital Cookie platform with traditional sales methods were more likely to increase their year-over-year sales.
“Digital Cookie 2.0 is about expanding and enhancing this one-of-a-kind digital sales learning experience for girls, allowing them to broaden their horizons and learn vital 21st century economic skills in an environment that is safe, fun, and girl friendly,” said Anna Maria Chávez, chief executive officer of Girl Scouts of the USA. “We look forward to continuing to work with the Girl Scouts of Western Ohio to broaden and strengthen Digital Cookie, ensuring Girl Scouts everywhere have the skills they need to lead our world in the century ahead.”
Digital Cookie 2.0 represents a continuing evolution toward one fully immersive online experience—made possible by Dell and Visa and available to all Girl Scout councils in 2017—that will ultimately give Girl Scouts everywhere an opportunity to engage in both web-based and mobile sales. Cookie customers from Fulton County should watch for a marketing email from a Girl Scout they know, or expect to bump into girls selling cookies on their mobile devices this year.
As with the traditional cookie program, the net revenue earned from the cookie sale will remain with the Girl Scout council sponsoring the sale. Girls decide how to spend their troop cookie money and reinvest it back into their neighborhoods through community service projects and learning experiences, like travel opportunities. Because 100 percent of the net revenue raised through the Girl Scout Cookie Program stays with the local council and troops, customers who purchase Girl Scout Cookies are not only getting a delightful treat—they are also making an important investment in their communities.
Girls from the Girl Scouts of Western Ohio council will begin using the platform at the start of its cookie-selling season on Jan. 8, 2016. For information about GSWO’s 2015–2016 cookie season, visit gswo.org.