Keeping a healthy balance between work and personal life can be quite hard, especially if you have a job that requires you to be on call. It doesn’t matter what you are doing at the moment – if your bosses call you, and say they need you, you have to go there.
However, every person reaches a point in their life when they want something more than just having a regular, boring job – they want to enjoy their lives and earn money while doing so.
What if we told you that there is a way of achieving that? Because there surely is.
Have you ever heard the term ‘virtual assistant’? If you haven’t, you’re in the right place, as we are going to explain what it means exactly to be a VA, as well as what you need to do in order to become one, even if you have zero experience. Let’s get started.
What Is a Virtual Assistant?
As experts from https://www.ivyanswer.com/ explain, a virtual assistant is someone who performed all the basic tasks a regular assistant would, but they do it from the comfort of their own homes. Oftentimes, virtual assistants don’t live in the same country or even on the same continent as the company they are working for.
Some people confuse the term ‘virtual assistant’ with ‘virtual receptionist,’ and while we understand where the confusion might be coming from, it doesn’t change the fact that those are two completely different job positions. A virtual assistant interacts with the business owner or CEO, while a virtual receptionist interacts directly with the clients.
Some of the responsibilities that virtual assistants have include:
- Writing blog posts
- Keeping the Excel spreadsheets updated
- Database entries
- Creating and posting schedules
- Data presentations
- Social tasks, such as sending ‘thank you’ emails
- Keeping tabs on industry trends and updates
Also, if you want to, you can always specialize in one type of service, and offer it to your clients. Focusing on only one service type allows you to expand your knowledge, gain expertise, and offer your clients the best quality. For example, you can specialize in social media, blogging, or e-commerce. When making that decision, choose a service that you have some interest in – this will make the learning process much easier. Its also great because you will have some down time from commuting to enjoy playing poker online, reading and more.
How to Start a Virtual Assistant Business From Your Home
Starting a virtual assistant business is honestly not that hard – especially since you don’t need to have any specific college degree or license to become one. The only things you will really need are a laptop and a fast internet connection. The challenging part, however, will be finding your first clients – unless you already know someone who needs a VA.
Either way, we want to make the process of setting up a virtual assistant business as easy to understand as possible, which is why we prepared this step by step guide.
Step 1: Focus on what you have to offer
As we already mentioned, there is a wide spectrum of things that you can offer your clients as their virtual assistant. Writing, sending emails, calendar management – the list could go on and on.
Focus on the skills you have, and what you enjoy doing. If you force yourself to do everything at once, you might find yourself constantly being tired, and in the end, your job as a VA might become an unpleasant chore that you just have to complete – and that’s probably not what you want.
Step 2: Set up your business the right way
One of the first decisions you will have to make is choosing how you will run your business. Generally speaking, you have two options.
One, you can set it up as a sole proprietor – it’s a fast and easy way of doing so, and it doesn’t require any special setup. The only downside is that if anything happens to your business, your personal assets will be at risk.
The second option is setting up an affordable LLC, which stands for limited liability company. This is a safer option, as in case something goes wrong and you end up getting sued, your personal assets, such as your house, will be protected.
Before making any decision, you should talk with a professional, preferably a lawyer, so that you can be sure you are setting up your business the right way.
Step 3: Create a website and social media presence
As a person wishing to work remotely, you have to show your possible clients that you have no problem with online communication – and one of the best ways of doing so is by creating a website that will show your offer, as well as your skills.
Another important factor is your social media presence. Don’t worry – you don’t need to have a profile and be active on all platforms, as it can be quite exhausting. Instead, focus on one or two on which you will have the highest chance of meeting potential clients. LinkedIn is a great one when it comes to connecting with businesses and establishing a network of contacts from within your field.
Step 4: Find friends within your niche
Working remotely can become pretty lonely – especially if you live alone. Everyone needs someone who they can ask for advice, or just simply rant and let go of all the bottled up emotions every once in a while. That’s why you should try to become friends with people within your niche – they probably have the same problems as you do, which means that they will be more capable of helping than someone ‘from the outside.’
There are many ways in which you can find them, with some of the most popular ones being finding and joining Facebook groups or getting in touch with bloggers within your niche.
Step 5: Make your clients happy and ask them for feedback
As we already mentioned – the hard part of owning a VA business is finding your first client. Once you do that, make sure that the services you deliver are of the highest quality. A client who is happy with your work is more willing to recommend you to their business friends, and with just a few clients you can become a full-time VA.
Another thing is that you shouldn’t be afraid of asking for feedback – it will help you understand what you are good at, and what still needs some improvement. Use positive opinions as testimonials – you can post them on your website (after asking for permission, of course).
When a potential client is browsing through your website and sees the positive things your previous clients have said about you, they will be more willing to get in touch with you and hire you as their VA.
The Bottom Line
Starting your own virtual assistant business is a great way of enjoying your life and earning money at the same time. As your own boss, you can decide which clients you are going to take up, and what will be your working hours.
One of the advantages of becoming a VA is that you don’t really need any specific license or degree, which is often the case for office jobs – all you really need is a laptop and a good internet connection.
In the beginning, it might be hard to learn everything there is to know about being a VA, but once you get the hang of it, you will be cudgeling your brain why you haven’t gone for it sooner. Good luck!