Frequently Asked Questions
There are many questions that new
Virtual Assistants have as they start setting up their home business. It can be a big
transition, going from corporate employee to work from home employee, or from stay at home mom.
BUT, with the right support, and the right information, you can have your successful
home business up and running in no time! Here, we will share some answers to the most frequently
aksed questions from those looking to work from home as a virtual assistant.
kinds of virtual assistant services can I offer?
Some people go into their new business
knowing exactly what they want to do, and some do not. Some people just know that they want to work
from home, and stumble upon the virtual assistance industry in their quest for a legitimate work from home
business. So, what kind of virtual asssistant services can you offer? There are literally hundreds of
virtual support services that you can offer as a virtual assistant. It is likely that you already possess
specialized skills that you can offer in your new business. Think back to your last job, and your life
experiences. What are you good at, and most importantly, what do you enjoy? Have you worked in Real Estate?
You can become a real estate virtual assistant, specifically helping to support realtors. Did you work in
a law firm? You can specialize in supporting lawyers. If you didn't previously work in any of those jobs,
but you previously worked as an administrative assistant, you can translate that to becoming a virtual
administrative assistant or a virtual personal assistant. A virtual admininstrative assistant is also
called a generalist and will handle general office administration tasks. Many of the people in the
virtual assistance industry have a natural knack for and truly enjoy helping and supporting people.
Use this to your advantage and market, market, market the skills that you already have! For more
specific information on finding your niche, and for a list of specific types of virtual assistant services,
check out our start-up kit!
How do I
find clients for my virtual assistant business?
Now that you are a business owner, you
also get to become a professional marketing expert. Marketing yourself is very important, because this is how
you will acquire new clients for your virtual assistance business. There are many ways to market a business,
but there are specific marketing techniques that generally work better for a virtual assistance business
than say, a big corporate conglomerate. Networking is very important! Face-to-face and online networking
is a great opportunity to spread the word about your virtual assistance business and meet potential clients.
The idea of "networking" scares some people, but it's not really that bad once you have a good idea of how to
approach potential clients with a uniquely crafted "elevator speech." (We discuss this in our start-up kit!)
should I market my virtual assistance business?
Sure, we know that we *need* to market our virtual assistance business, but *how* do we
do this? There are many ways that you can market your virtual assistant services. Since most virtual
assistants work from home, finding face-to-face marketing opportunities is very important. When you are
doing home based work, you are not going to run into someone in the cafeteria that you can just
casually start discussing business with (unless, of course, you are a work at home mom, but then
the people you meet in "the cafeteria" are more interested in a crust-less peanut butter sandwich
than anything else!) The first important thing about face-to-face marketing is that you have to find
places to meet people! A good place to start is your local Chamber of Commerce. Call them up and find out
if they have open networking events. You may want to join your local Chamber, or it might not be right
for you (we talk about the pros and cons in our start-up kit.) There are many other networking organizations
that you can join in addition to the Chamber that are a good way for your to market your virtual assistant
services. We also discuss these additional organzations in more detail in our guide. Don't forget
about the new rage that is social networking. You can use Linkedin, MySpace, Twitter, and Facebook
to market your business as well.
much should I charge for my virtual assistant services?
Many new virtual assistants want to know how much they should charge. This is an extremely important
thing to figure out. After all, most of us work because we need to make money! While we can't tell you
*exactly* how much to charge, we can give you some pointers and things to think about. When you are
calculating your rate, you need to take into consideration many things - what the market will bear, how much
your competition charges, and how much you need to make to stay in business and make a profit. The bottom
line is this: determining your rates is best done be careful consideration of multiple circumstances. Using
the pricing worksheet included in the bonus templates in our start-up kit will help you take all of the
above points into consideration and is a great way to get started on determining what your hourly rate
I start a virtual assistant business part-time?
The short answer is - you can do whatever you want when you are the boss!
Your business is totally what you make of it. As your own boss, you make the rules
and you set your office hours! If you are a stay at home mom and your kids have soccer
on Tuesdays, then flex-Tuesdays it is! If you have a part-time job on Tuesdays and
Thursdays, then you can make your regular office hours on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and
work at night on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Whatever works for you, works! The important
thing is that you have enough time to network and let people know about your business.
Like we mentioned above, when you work at home, clients just don't walk by your storefront
or happen across your business. You can actually use this fact to your advantage, especially
if you want to run your business part-time. When you run a home business, you can set it up
however you like. If you are starting out part-time, you can check out the market and set up
shop in your living room before investing in a complete office set-up in order to make sure it
works for you. Since you are providing virtual support services, nobody needs to know you
aren't sitting at a mahogany desk in an expensive swivel chair. There are many things involved
with running a successful virutal assitance business. You can find out everything you need
to know to get started and be successful in our guide: Steps to Success - The Ultimate Guide
To Becoming A Virtual Assistant.
Do you have a question? Ask us!