Who is a virtual assistant?
A virtual assistant is an independent professional who is self-employed and provides administrative assistance for remote tasks from a remote location.
What does a virtual assistant do?
Virtual assistants offer a variety of remote tasks, such as:
• Audio transcribing
• Blog commenting
• Blog post editing
• Calendar management
• Content editing and proofreading
• Customer support & service
• Data entry
• Email scoping & management
• Employee recruitment
• Hotel and flights booking
• Keyword research
• Language translation
• Lead generation
• Online project management
• Online stores product addition
• Sales webpage creation
• Social Media Marketing
• Video Editing
• Website content publishing
• Website Design & Maintenance
The ultimate big question for every career – why this one? Well for starters, this is one of the fastest-growing careers and secondly, it pays well! Average salaries of a virtual assistant range from $26,428 – $72,202 (as per PayScale)
Now if you are interested in becoming a virtual assistant, here is the guide on how to become one:
1. Decide wisely on your business structure
In order to establish yourself as a reliable virtual assistant you need to invest your time in quick and effective promotion of your services. For this, you should choose your business structure wisely. This involves several criteria for you to ponder on, such as the physical location of your business, type of services you will provide, types of clientele you will be dealing with, risks and legal issues you could face, etc. As with any other business, this field also does require a lot of self-analysis before initiating. Make sure to take legal advice from a well-acquainted lawyer for all the needed information.
2. Finalize on your services as a virtual assistant
As a virtual assistant, your services can be limitless. This also confirms whether you are good at multi-tasking since starting as a virtual assistant enable your resume to be open to multiple job responsibilities. Scroll up and check on the services given above. If you feel confident about most of them then go ahead and include them in your offered services list. However, it is natural to get overwhelmed with abundant work if not sorted properly in the first place. The best mode of action is to concentrate on your skillset along with your strong areas and then finalise on the services you will be offering as a virtual assistant. After a while, when you feel like you can handle more, then add on more services. Adapting with experience is a major pointer in this career.
3. Create your pricing structure
Working remotely most likely means that you will have the freedom to set your service charges as per your pricing structure. Of course, it is directly proportional to your level of experience and skill set but also depends upon the current market standards. Keep your eyes peeled for the latest pricing structure and choose one that seems befitting.
Also, you should know that you will be your own boss, which among other perks also means that you will have to pay for taxes, job-related expenses, overhead charges all by yourself. Hence, create a pricing structure that should neither be more nor less, simply enough for you to go further.
In the market, there are different business models such as hourly, contract-based, in-advance, monthly retainers, etc. Go ahead with the one you are most comfortable with. Little advice, agree on a specific amount as per market standards and increase it by 25%. As a virtual assistant, you have more ascendancy over a regular employee and thus your pricing structure can be gleefully accepted by businesses, provided that you match well with their expectations.
4. Mark your online presence
To put this in simple words; if you’re working virtually, you have to become established virtually! This means you should have a well recognised presence over social media as well as a well-defined website for marking an individual online presence that makes you stand out from others.
It is very healthy from a business perspective to have a website that professionally describes your services to your clients. While working virtually, your website is your business card.
It is also very important to connect with your clients via social media since it gives your business a much broader range. Everyone is on social media these days, hence needless to say having a social media account like in Facebook or Linkedin, is requisite for the success of your career as a virtual assistant.
Start with a well-made website and then slowly transition into a social media account. Limit yourself from having too many online channels. Make an original channel where your clients can easily find you.
5. Spread your network and win clients
When you’re done with all the aforementioned steps, now the final (and sort of, the main) step comes in: to get projects and get hired.
• Find your ideal businesses and clients
• Make your pitchings regular and worthy for potential clients
• For initial projects, you can offer trial services to gain trust. But do this for a short span and only with reliable clients. Trust in business works both ways.
• Remain consistent with the quality of your work and productivity.
To Sum Up
For many, being able to stay at home and work at the same time is a dream career. If you fall into the same category, then you should definitely try out as a virtual assistant. If you’re pro-active, determined and well-versed with computer skills then in no time you can get the hang of this job.
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