Don’t get SPOOKED by the holiday rush this year! Halloween is creeping up on us and then the countdown clock begins. Plan on being proactive and get some virtual help to delegate tasks to. Wouldn’t it be a nice treat to really enjoy the holidays, instead of being rushed and stressed out about them?
Here are 5 ways to utilize a virtual assistant right now:
Get current with your book-keeping. End the year with your accounting in order. Make it a goal to enter the tax season organized and confident.
Prepare you holiday cards. A virtual assistant can order custom cards, setup client address lists, print labels or even set-up e-cards to be sent on your behalf.
Do an end of the year marketing/sales push. Give your ideas to a marketing virtual assistant and let them create an email marketing campaign, setup 1ShoppingCart, prepare creative graphics, etc…
Attend Holiday networking events. This is a great time of year to mingle and spread good cheer while reminding people who you are and what you can do for them Have your virtual assistant research local networking events and put them on your calendar.
Prepare a sale if your product/services are especially useful at the end of the year. A virtual assistant can promote your products or sale through your social media accounts, prepare marketing materials and help you write and send out email blasts.
Be sure to plan early for some holiday help, because it will be here in a blink of an eye.
No matter who you are, there are only 24 hours in a day to get things accomplished. For a small business owner, most of those hours are spent working to keep their business running, growing, and staying competitive. It is not an easy thing to do, and a smart business owner will usually realize that they can not (and should not) try to do everything by themselves.
When the time comes to find help and delegate some of the daily job duties to an assistant, the first thing a business owner should consider is “what are my expectations and are they realistic”.
Here are 4 things to consider about job duty expectations when delegating work to a new virtual assistant.
It is important that you have an idea of how long it would take you to do the same task, so you can have a reasonable expectation for the VA.
If the delegated task would take you an hour to do, you should expect it to take longer for a VA to do the same task (until they understand your business and processes).
An unreasonable expectation on a new VA will frustrate them (and you) and cause the initial relationship to go south even before it has a chance to develop.
With some patience, time and reasonable expectations a virtual assistant can become a great asset to you and your company.
It’s not always a good feeling to know that your business needs help with digital marketing. It can cause a lot of different emotions — hopefulness, excitement, dread, or even anxiety, but you know that doing nothing is no longer an option.
A website is not just a business card anymore. Everything you put on your website, along with your social media channels and digital activity, educates your visitors and contributes to your public image. So making sure this part of your business is managed is important.
Unfortunately, writing and publishing takes time and not everyone is a born writer or social media enthusiast.
Here are a few suggestion to help you.
Outsource the Work:
There are many virtual marketing assistants that can do an excellent job either ghost writing for you, or taking content already created and repurposing it for online use. They are also usually skilled in researching topics, or your competitors. A lot of these virtual assistants have held traditional marketing positions, but have branched out into the digital marketing profession, so they often offer a broad range of marketing skills that can be utilized.
Invite Client Contributions:
Why not ask your clients to write for you occasionally? Ask clients for marketing tips, advice on how they built their company, leadership tips, etc. They’ll get a plug on your website and social channels, and you’ll get expert resources for your website.
If you plan to write your own website content, good for you! But you can’t forget that web content needs to be linked on social media and then social engagement, commenting and moderation are vital in keeping your digital presence attractive to the search engines. The content writing is just the first step to having success with your digital marketing.
Business events are designed and implemented in many different formats. There are online events (webinars, & video training) and events that require a physical location, like a hotel banquet room, conference room, or restaurant space. Executing any of these takes time, preparation and planning.
A virtual assistant is the perfect solution to helping you with the following tasks when it comes to event planning.
Researching possible event locations or online tools, including catering needs room setup or technical requirements.
Creating the marketing and publicity through social media, email marketing or affiliate links.
Managing the registration process either through your website with 1ShoppingCart or through an online event registration page link through Eventbrite.
Preparing any and all training materials, including Powerpoint presentations, marketing sheets, and take away items.
Keeping you on target by creating or managing a checklist for facilities, attendee information, speaker needs, etc…
There are plenty of other details and prep work required when doing an event, but these are just a few to get you thinking about delegating some of the work to your virtual assistant,
As the event approaches it’s a fact that you can expect last-minute alterations and possible drama. You really don’t want to be dealing with those especially if you are the main speaker at the event or training. You equally don’t want to be bogged down in trying to find a solution in terms of any event you’re planning. Most Virtual Assistants have far more dexterity and problem solving ability than you do in these situations, if you’re honest with yourself.
Virtual assistants skilled in event planning have experience in negotiations, online tools, and much more .Executing a successful event should be your goal, and working with a qualified virtual assistant can make that goal a painless reality.
“I have a small budget – how can I decide what to have a VA do for me?” I hear that question all the time. My answer is “whatever will be the biggest bang for the buck”.
For some people it could be having the VA help with things that will bring revenue into the company.
That could include:
Helping with marketing.
Finalizing an informational product that you will sell.
Doing customer service tasks.
Adding items to an online shopping cart so customers can purchase more from you.
For others it’s freeing up time so THEY can make more money for the company.
Those tasks are usually admin related and include:
Whatever it is that you decide to delegate to a VA be sure and let us know if we can help you find the right VA that will give you the best bang for your buck.
While I completely agree with the premise of this article about how using a virtual assistant can shave hours from your work week, I think there are a lot more than 10 tasks that can be outsourced to a virtual assistant. The outsourcing options are almost limitless. A professional virtual assistant can perform general to advanced administrative tasks but there are many professional virtual assistants with expertise in a more specialized field. The skill level of today’s virtual assistants is extremely impressive.
I am going to add to the list published on Entreprenuer.com with 10 MORE options for outsourcing work to a virtual assistant. And honestly, there are even more options than this, but these are the areas that many clients are seeking help with on a growing basis.
Social Media Management
Newsletter maintenance or management
SalesForce or E-commerce updates
Every business owner knows that decisions affecting your business have to be made pretty much every day. There are easy decisions, and then there are those harder decisions that show up and create sleepless nights, stressful days and self doubt. These are usually the decisions that are necessary to keep your business moving in the right direction.
For many business owners, the biggest challenge isn’t making the right decision, it is doing or implementing it. I love the quote by Tony Robbins, “ A real decision is measured by the fact that you have taken a new action. If there in no action then you haven’t truly decided”.
Think about how much time is wasted or lost making decisions that don’t ever come to fruition.
So, what are the main causes of decisions not being implemented?
Lack of Time?
Lack of Resources?
Lack of Motivation?
Lack of Finances?
Every business is different and every person handles decision-making differently. If you’re finding that more decisions are being made than are getting done, it’s time to pause, reflect, reorganize, and re-evaluate your processes your resources and your time-management skills.
Let me know if you struggle with getting your business decisions moving from an idea to an action.
“Before Assistant Match, I kept jumping from one assistant to the next, and now I'm enjoying working with the same assistant for more than a year.”
--Misti Burmeister, Inspirion