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How to bring your team out of sales hibernation

If you team is in hibernation due to low sales and a disappointing market, wake them up with these incentives and tactics

The automotive industry is no stranger to the concept of sales hibernation. As a result, it is common for dealerships to experience a dip in sales during certain periods, particularly during the off-season.

The reasons for hibernation can vary, from economic downturns, seasonal changes, or, let’s be honest, OEM product mix. But, regardless of the cause, a dip in sales can be a challenge for any dealership, particularly for the sales team. In addition, it can be demotivating for sales professionals who are used to making sales consistently.

However, it is possible to bring your sales team out of hibernation and get them back on track. So, let’s discuss some tips to help revive your automotive dealership sales team and boost sales.

Reevaluate Your Sales Strategy

If your sales team has been hibernating for a while, no one has to tell you that your sales strategy needs some tweaking. However, since things are slow, you have an excellent opportunity to evaluate your current sales strategy and identify areas for improvement. Look at your marketing campaigns, sales processes, and customer service to determine what is working.  

Next, consider conducting surveys or focus groups with your customers to get feedback on their experience with your dealership. And remember to ask your sales team their opinions on what can work. This information will be invaluable in helping you refine your sales strategy and improve your team’s performance. 

Provide Training and Development Opportunities 

Training and development are critical to the success of any sales team. If your sales team has been in hibernation, it may be time to provide them with new skills and knowledge to help them succeed. Consider offering training programs focusing on new sales techniques, customer service, and product knowledge. These programs can help your sales team feel more confident and empowered to make sales. 

A2Z Sync, hibernation hibernatingMore: Why managers need complete visibility of each step in the sales process — Natalia Giner, A2Z Sync

Offer Incentives and Rewards

Incentives and rewards can be a great way to motivate your sales team. McKinsey suggests offering various incentives to encourage your sales team to make more sales. You can also provide non-financial incentives, such as recognition or special privileges, to acknowledge outstanding performance. These incentives help create a competitive and rewarding environment that motivates your team to perform at their best. 

Emphasize Teamwork and Collaboration 

Sales can be highly competitive, but it is essential to emphasize the value of teamwork and collaboration. Encourage your sales team to work together and support each other and other departments. Create a culture of cooperation by listening to what your team has to say, promoting team-building activities, and encouraging your team to share their successes and challenges. When your sales team feels connected and supported, they will be more motivated to perform at their best. 

Utilize Technology 

Technology continues to revolutionize the automotive industry and can also be a valuable tool for your sales team. If you’re late to the party, consider investing in customer relationship management (CRM) software or other tools to help your sales team manage their leads and contacts more efficiently. It may cost some money, but it will dramatically improve your business. 

 These tools can also help your team track their performance and identify areas for improvement. Additionally, consider using social media and other digital marketing tools to reach a wider audience and generate more leads. 

If you Fail, Keep Going 

As we say with EPA fuel ratings, your mileage may vary when using these tips. But if one thing fails, it’s okay. Failure is good for success. Just keep evaluating, adapting, and pivoting until you find something that works for your team. And keep sight of the goal.  

Spring is Coming, and the Hibernation is Over

Sales hibernation is a common challenge for automotive dealerships, but it is possible to bring your sales team out of it. By reconsidering your sales strategy, providing training and development opportunities, offering incentives and rewards, emphasizing teamwork and collaboration, and utilizing technology, you can help your sales team boost sales and improve their performance.  

With the right approach and support, your sales team can come out of hibernation and succeed in any season. 

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Steve Mitchell
Steve Mitchell
Steve Mitchell is a contributing writer and reporter for CBT News. He earned bachelor's degrees in Marketing and Television from the University of Texas in Austin and a Masters of Theology study from Dallas Theological Seminary in Dallas. His passion for automobiles lead him to become a creative director for automotive marketing ad agency. Most recently, he was the manager of interactive marketing for Mitsubishi Motors, NA.

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