Networking, New Business, Virtual Assistant

How Do I Get New Business?

NottmVA New BusinessHow Do I Get New Business? – It’s something I’m often asked as a Virtual Assistant.

As a small business or sole trader, it’s hard to make yourself heard isn’t it, or to get your face seen above the heads bobbing up and down in that sea that is competing for business that is out there.

But there is a way to be heard, there is a way to be seen, you just have to work at it. You have to be determined. You have to have that fire in your belly! You have to have that passion and that desire. You have to want to succeed. Well, you have to pay the bills, don’t you?

How do you do it?

What you do NOT want to do, is offer free trials.  Why?  Well, it lowers your business-worth.  You may offer a free initial 1-hour telephone consultation to obtain the brief from your client to obtain information to enable you to do the job in the first place – this is good practice.  You are a business, a freelancer and are offering a good service/product that is in demand.  If a trial is required, then it should be a paid trial with a contract and terms of business provided.

You need to show your presence.  Have you got yourself a logo or brand to identify yourself? Has this been replicated in business cards to leave with people at networking meetings? When you network with others, you will want to leave them with something to remember you by.

Whether this is a business card, a pack of mints or some other form of promotional material, or you simply develop a document detailing your services whilst you get yourself up and running, it is a start.

Ensure that you have a website.  This is the first place your clients are going to look once you have given out your business card and the place they will go and check you out!  You need to have some credibility.  Even if you at least have a simple landing page with your contact details on – it is somewhere for someone to go and look at what you say you can offer them to reinforce your message.  Do not make your website homepage all about you, make sure you tell the reader what you can offer them.  The reader needs to know how you can make things easier for them and how you can help them.

Are you Networking?

Another way of showing your presence is to network to meet your peers, colleagues and guess, what? Potential new clients.  It’s something that we all ‘gulp’ at the first time around – but it DOES WORK.  There are different options such as the BNI and 4N Networking.  These are only a couple of options on offer, there are many, many networking groups on offer and you will need to find what works for you.  They will offer different styles of meetings and payment plans too giving variations of a formal referring-style option and relaxed friendly alternatives.

Are you Good At What You Do?

When online or offline, can you show others that you speak authoritatively?  Do you write about your endeavours such as blogs, articles, newsletters or written in groups or comment on other’s posts or articles on websites for example?  Are you known in your industry for your product or service or have you created something that is renowned for what you do, are you certificated for it, these are all things that you need to be talking to people about or getting known for?

Have you undertaken any industry training that makes you a specialist at what you do? This is something that again, can make you an authoritative speaker in groups or blogs and you can make an impact on this through communication with others and helping beginners in your field.

What’s next?

The next thing is to get yourself across all of the social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram for example. Your clients will be on some of these, not all but they will be browsing some of them and you will not know which ones, so it is a good idea to be on them at some point.  If you can post on them at some point, preferably consistently, then you will reach them at some point or other.  If you would like to know the best times to post then you can read about it on this blog.

 

Should I respond to advertised job postings on Social Media?

There are, occasionally, job adverts posted on social media groups that can prove quite lucrative, but you need to know how to choose them and where to find them and how to source them.  This comes from knowing your niche and your target audience.  If you do not know how to start to help a potential client, you can read about that here.

If a position has been advertised publicly on a Facebook group, for example, you can believe that the ‘world and his wife’ (or husband), will have seen it and there will be hundreds of applications for it with plenty of skills and expertise going.

Not to say, that you don’t have the skill and expertise to fly to the moon.  So, apply for it anyway!  So, if you feel you have Nasa experience then go for it, by all means but, it is better for you to develop your own way of ‘job-sourcing’ by searching for your ideal client by either looking in your Twitter lists, your LinkedIn Client groups or by your own targeted sales network links from your own networking. Or, contact your colleagues, tell everyone you are looking for new clients, contact your own list, your ex-employees.  Be proactive!

So, having undertaken the tasks of finding your niche and your target market or audience, you should be in a better position of knowing where to locate your search for who is your ideal client. Yes – your IDEAL CLIENT. What a fab position to now be in!

If you need a Virtual Assistant for your New Business to undertake your administration now that you have too many clients,

email NottmVA.

NottmVA
Be Structured, Not Stressed
Blogging, Email Marketing, Facebook Marketing, Mobile, Networking, VA, Virtual Assistant

The Need To Be Mobile

The need to be mobile comes in many forms these days.

 

Flexibility

As a Virtual Assistant, there is a requirement to be flexible: there are many clients, different industry sectors, all with differing requirements too, so it’s quite a  skill to get the balance right.

Having numerous years of experience with event management companies, the NHS, brand agencies, blue-chip companies, the legal sector etc, I have a broad knowledge to draw upon.

 

Versatile

You’re also needed to catch up with clients via the mobile telephone, meetings, networking of course – to maintain those all important connections and then you have to knuckle up and actually get your work done!  Oh, it’s a hard life huh?

 

Who is it For?

A Virtual Assistant is for businesses that probably cannot afford or do not need a full-time employee at the moment and a self-employed VA can offer a flexible alternative.  A Virtual Assistant can be hired for your administration duties, sales calls or social media management when needed but not necessarily when business is slow.

NottmVA Mobile Office

 

Workspace

I do have a desk for my ‘work stuff’, I do like to sit and work quietly, as I can concentrate on what I’m doing: but I can just as easily work in a coffee shop, a co-working office space, by the pool, on a train, well, anywhere really – that’s the beauty and flexibility of being a VA.

 

Technology

The technology is available to allow you to work in a mobile arena these days now and its great that I can encrypt my hardware and software that I know I am safe and secure with mine and my clients’ data, to be able to work in such a way that work can be undertaken around both the client’s and my commitments – a win/win!

If you would like to know more about the need to be mobile and would like us to manage your admin and social media by hiring a Virtual Assistant, or want to work with me as an Associate VA then contact me or by using the contact form on the website.

If if you would like to keep in touch regularly then please sign up for my Virtual Weekly E-Magazine.

 

 


 

Blogging, VA

10 Steps to a Perfect VA

What do 10 Steps to a Perfect VA Involve? Well, 10 Steps of course!

STEPS TO A PERFECT VA!

The first one is self-explanatory, you need to introduce yourself to the big wide web or rather, market yourself. This means marketing yourself across all social media platforms, creating yourself a web presence, fully filling out your Facebook page, LinkedIn profile, Insta, Twitter, Pinterest and so on.

The next step is then the Team.  Team? I hear you ask, there is no I in Team! Haha, well, of course, being a lone worker is no fun, is it? In my journey in becoming a VA, it was important to me to earn my stripes so to speak, so I undertook some Approved training, and this allowed me to join a fabulous group of VAs and an ongoing group afterwards which provides support, mentoring and social events too!  There is, of course, the ultimate requirement for ‘getting yourself out there’, – Networking!  You need to ‘be seen’.  It is imperative to network with the appropriate groups for your niche, and I’ll come to that later.

Moving to 10 Steps to a VA – Point 3, we have a ‘Problem’. What is the problem that you are trying to solve for your client? Is it really a problem, or is it just ongoing work that needs doing?  You need to discuss with your client what their requirements are and what you can do for them.

On to Step 4, we have the Advantages.  This is where you can make a difference.  How are you special?  What makes your service a ‘cut above the rest’?  What can you do that is that little bit extra, what do you do that goes the extra mile? There are many Virtual Assistants nationwide and we all work remotely, so our client base can and do choose VAs from any location, so you need to have something that comes from your advantage-base.

Step 5 of the 10 Steps to a VA gives us the Solution.  A solution already?  Well, you need to let your client know how you are going to solve their problem, or at least come up with some proposals in the discussion.  This will be the format of the proposal prior to your booking form, terms of business and if necessary your data processing form.

Your product in Step 6, goes on to you showing how your product or service actually comes into play. How do you undertake your services?  Are you on-site?  Are you remote? Is it both?  What services do you offer, what don’t you offer and so on.

Your market – Step 7 – You need to know your market or your audience.  This seems to be a bug-bear for many new VAs.  It is important to try to find a niche or target-market for yourself.  You need to look at your skill-set, previous employment sectors, interests etc and hone this down as to who you would LIKE to work with and it will come eventually.  You need to create your niche then marketing to your target market becomes easier as the ‘big wide web’ is too big to market to everyone!

In a way, Step 8, Competition is a little like Step 4 looking at how you are different to others, but here you need to look at your competition with more focus.  Once you have established your difference from step 4 then you can see how your competition applies it, and become competitive in your own arena and marketplace and now you have created your niche, (you have got your niche, now haven’t you?) you are in the perfect place to hold your own.

Step 9 – The Business Model.  This is where you look at how you are planning to make money.  You will have looked at your rates, broken down the value of your hourly rate, what percentage is going to pay for your taxes, holiday pay, insurances, training, registrations and so on and so on.  You then need to create a schedule for when you expect your revenues to come in – your business plan.

Finally, Step 10 – Investing.  What are you planning for? What are your budgets? What finances are your looking for? You need to have planned for all of this. If you had planned well, and like myself, had taken some training, this was all covered in your VA training modules, so you will be fully prepared to be set on your way by now.

Hopefully, you have enjoyed reading through my 10 Steps to a VA and it has prepared you to venture out to make the appropriate moves in your ongoing journey to becoming a great Virtual Assistant.

If you need any help in anything Virtual Assistant, please comment or email me for further information.

 

Blogging, Email Marketing, Facebook Marketing, Networking, Social Media, VA, Virtual Assistant

Too Busy for Social Media?

Too Busy for Social Media – Then let me do it for you…

Sometimes the constraints of your job are just too much.  The meetings, the business reports, the presentations, the surgery, the consultations, discussions then the dictations that have to be done – when do you have the time to post your social media?  The relevant stuff as well.  It can all get a bit much, can’t it.

It can be quite time-consuming, you have to put in the effort to get it right, you have to be consistent, know when Twitter is the right time to reach its audience, is it the same time for Facebook? Maybe not, Instagram isn’t the same either it can get tricky to schedule it all when you have more important things to do.

social media image

That’s where a Virtual Assistant comes in, well me – in fact!  Social Media scheduling is one of the services I can take off your hands.  With some careful briefing about your industry, product and just a weekly or monthly update I can organise your media to be posted on to 1, 2 or more platforms daily, weekly or twice weekly to keep you or your business in the forefront.

With a simple outsourcing of your social media, you can concentrate on what you do best.  Let me know your thoughts and comments below.

If you wish to receive the Virtual Weekly E-Mag which will give you biz tips, information, quick fixes and Smart tips on how to help you through your week – what more could you ask for! Get this here.