You’re looking to set up your own business as a Virtual Assistant? Congratulations!
And you’ve been crawling the internet feeling overwhelmed with all the steps you need to take to get started? Not to worry, that’s not actually the case at all. In fact, you can have everything ready in less than a week, and you don’t even need a fancy website to get started.
Here are quick steps you can take to get your business up and running and start taking on PAID clients!
Firstly, decide on the services you wish to provide. There is an abundance of services you can offer as a VA. Whether you want to be generalized as you’re starting out with customer service tasks, and admin, or if you want to be specialised with high end services such as web development, graphic design, or content management. Here is a list of over 100 ideas to get you started https://desiretodone.com/list-of-virtual-assistant-services/.
Next, you should visualise your ideal client. What industry are they in? What do they need help with? Specifically, what can you help them with? Try to break this down as much as you can. This will help with your messaging in your marketing.
A lot of people fear if they narrow down on their dream client too much, they’re going to lose business. I promise you that’s not the case. This technique will actually attract more higher-paying clients, and make you an expert in your field. So niche down as much as you can here.
Your Business Name
Remember the name of your business is most likely going to be the first thing your potential clients are going to see, so make sure to take your time with this step until you’ve found the perfect fit.
A lot of people will just go with their own name for the name of their business, which is absolutely fine, and I’ve seen work very well time and time again.
If your own name is not the route you wish to go, that is also a great option too. By now you should know exactly which services you’re looking to provide, as well as your ideal client. You can use this to help you brainstorm buzzwords related to your market and services, and eventually come to the perfect name that describes exactly what you offer.
This is quite a tricky part for brand new Virtual Assistants, as when first starting out most people will undervalue themselves. As tempting as it is, don’t. You are worth the figure you’ve got in mind.
A good way to break this down is to think about what the monthly figure is that you need to be earning. You should factor in taxes, and other business expenses, and as well as how much time you’re able to invest in your business.
Working backward like this helps to come up with your bare minimum rate. See how that feels to you, do some market research, and work out if the figure is realistic, or if actually you’re undercutting yourself and you can charge more.
You will also need to think about packages. Here are a few options to consider;
Hourly Rate Pricing:
This is where you set a particular hourly price for your services, keep track of your time, and bill your client after the work has been completed.
A Project-Based Package can be used when a client has a one-time project to complete, and you will charge them a flat rate fee for the project. This is best done by approximating how much time it will take you to complete the project and charging at least your decided hourly rate, multiplied by that projected amount of time.
A retainer is a monthly package for those who need reoccurring help in their business. For example, a client will pre-pay for 20 hours of services rendered per month on a recurring basis. As a VA, you will still need to provide details of how your time was spent each month.
Usable Hours Packages:
With this type of pricing method, your client will pay for a certain amount of hours, to be used at their discretion. You will keep a record of the hours you have used and, once all hours have been used up, the client can choose to purchase another package of hours or not.
You may be thinking that this post is missing multiple stages at this point, but you are actually ready to start marketing your brand new Virtual Assistant business.
As mentioned earlier, you don’t need a website just yet. You can get great exposure from just having a Facebook page. Also, LinkedIn is another platform that’s great for finding clients.
It’s scary, but put a post on your Facebook page to tell all your friends and family that you’ve set up a Virtual Assistant business. You may be thinking that your friends and family don’t need a Virtual Assistant, but they might know someone that does. Be specific in your post, and ask people to share on your behalf, you never know, you may just book your first client that easily.
Facebook groups are another great way to get exposure. Research groups that are relevant to your niche, and make sure to show up at least 3 times a week in these groups providing useful information. You’ll attract people’s attention quicker than you think.
Having a LinkedIn profile is perfect for networking. You can either send a great intro message about having a ‘virtual coffee’ to your contacts or create posts weekly showing off your expertise.
Sites like Upwork and Fiverr are quite competitive, which sometimes means you won’t get the rate you’re looking for, but these are perfect for pitching directly to potential clients posts.
So there you have it, that’s 5 easy steps to take to start your own Virtual Assistant business.