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Evolve Your Virtual Sales Strategy to Thrive

Quartz Editorial Team

Quartz Editorial Team

COVID-19 Sales Pivot - Evolving Your Selling Strategy

COVID has permanently changed the way we work. 

The sudden shift to remote work in 2020 sent shock waves through many industries. For outside sales teams dependent on in-person outreach, the sudden pivot made selling much more difficult.

Provide Tools and Tactics for Success

Joanne Hewat, Sr. Director Sales Strategy at McGraw Hill, views these changes as opportunities. 

In a recent Quartz Network presentation, she discusses ways to support sellers with tools and tactics to reach buyers in this new, complex world. 

“When you’ve hired people for a very specific skill set, and now you’re asking them to do something totally different, it is a bit of a leap,” Hewat said. “It was either going to make or break them.”

Find Creative Ways to Capture Sales

When the pandemic halted face-to-face interactions, Hewat focused on helping her sales team build skills and use technology to be effective behind a screen. They had to get creative to capture attention and find new ways to reach remote people instead of knocking on doors.

For the sales team at this educational publishing company, the solution involved adding value and building trust with their customers. The marketing department created webinars and peer-to-peer learning sessions for their customers to help them become better online instructors. 

“We were offering value outside of the value we normally would give,” Hewat said.

Get Creative with a Virtual Sales Strategy

Since emails went unanswered and office phones were unattended, the sales team created visual aids to help them reach customers. They used a video tool called Vidyard that allowed them to personalize their outreach.

“Our open rate skyrocketed and we had amazing feedback from those instructors to say, ‘Hey, this was awesome,’“  Hewat explained. 


Watch the presentation for more creative ways to evolve selling strategies.