Scrolling mindlessly through Facebook, I see another post from a business group. “Help! I need to make money fast from home! What should I do? No MLMs please.”
I usually see at least one a day and they usually go the same way. People post MLMs (multi-level marketing opportunities) and then there’s a debate about why people don’t want MLM opportunities. It’s easy to go down that spiral.
The truth is, there’s not much that you can do with no money upfront (a usual rule to these posts) and there’s no secret “get rich quick” answer.
If someone is honestly looking for a work at home job however, becoming a virtual assistant is a great way to make some money from home doing highly skilled work. There is an upfront cost, but it’s minimal compared to most businesses.
Why become a Virtual Assistant?
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that there’s a need for more flexibility in the workplace.
Companies are downsizing and childcare costs are rising. From this mess comes the need for finding an alternative way to make a good income with built in flexibility and the ability to work remotely.
Now more than ever, families are seeing the need for two incomes. Many families simply cannot afford to live on one income, and it puts parents between a rock and a hard place.
One Industry that is increasing in popularly today, being rated one of the top 5 home-based businesses by Entrepreneur Magazine, is virtual assisting.
Becoming a virtual assistant, or VA, allows you to work from anywhere in the world and requires little in the way of start-up costs or fees. This alone makes it an attractive opportunity for moms wanting to stay at home.
What do you need to become a virtual assistant?
The main requirement is the ability to type well and a good understanding of the Internet. There are a variety of skills that come in handy as you niche down to further define your business, but if you can work a web browser and type, then you’re on your way! High speed Internet doesn’t hurt either.
By definition, a Virtual Assistant (VA), is a highly skilled professional who provides administrative support and other specialized services to businesses, entrepreneurs, authors, online businesses, executives, sales professionals and others who have more work to do than time to do it.
This makes them the ideal solution for other online business owners who have too much on their plate and cannot do it alone.
Many VA’s also provide web design and maintenance, publicity and marketing, desktop publishing, word processing, and business start-up consultations. The services are endless depending upon the VA’s knowledge, skills and creativity.
While you technically just need the ability to jump online and help your clients, there are a few other tools out there that may increase your success rate.
First, you’ll want your own website and social media accounts (with branding). This makes you more professional and helps show you are legitimate. Most business owners rightfully won’t fork over their hard earned money to someone they don’t trust.
Having a self-hosted website costs about $10 for your domain (sometimes you can get one for $0.99) and about $3 per month the first year. All together it’s less than $50 for the year. Not too shabby!
You can use Canva (for free) to make graphics, social media accounts for free for marketing, and WordPress blogging for content marketing. There are free SEO tools you can use like KeywordsEverywhere or Ubersuggest.
Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides can help you create documents without spending extra money as well.
Altogether, it’s not as expensive as many people think to do VA work.
What does a VA do?
VAs handle a number of different tasks. Often you will chose to specialize in a skill. Some choose to handle administrative work like scheduling and email management, others focus on graphics, and still others focus on another business task.
Virtual assistant services can help with travel arrangement, social media management or customer service for a small business.
Virtual assistants are instrumental in helping businesses with their marketing, capability to run their offices getting more work accomplished, and also they have a solid understanding of the latest tools to make a business succeed.
You can learn these skills and more for free on the Internet. I like to use Feedly to find great resources and to keep up to date with trends. There are blog posts, podcasts, and YouTube channels that will allow you to learn new skills every day for free!
One example is blogging. We all know that it is essential for a business to have a blog today to succeed, yet many businesses don’t have the time to create and maintain a blog. A good virtual assistant will handle that for you and more.
Another example is course creation. When I created my course, I quickly realized that I needed help. I hired a VA to create my workbooks and graphics so I could focus on the content as opposed to making it all look pretty.
Where to find jobs
There are a number of places out there you can find virtual assistant jobs . First, you can start by joining Facebook groups. There are a number out there that can both help you learn how to better serve clients, and others that can help you pitch your services to those in need of a VA.
Next, you can create your own profiles on social media to attract your ideal client. By posting helpful and thought provoking content to social media, you have the ability to attract a following.
Finally, there are job boards. This is most likely the fastest way to find a job offering your service. There are many job boards but it’s worth it to start with Fiverr and Upwork, two popular services for remote work. The best place to sell your VA services is where people are already looking to hire virtual assistants.
Over time, it gets easier as you collect testimonials and have results you can show potential clients. Because trust is such a huge part of the buying experience, the more you can show off your skills and results for past clients, the easier it is to land new ones.
To Wrap It Up…
More and more clients are realizing the need to outsource their work and let a professional virtual assistant do it, so they can focus on that they do best, running their business.
Now is the time to jump in and start building a fantastic work at home business with flexibility and the potential for a full time income.
Start today in the successful career you’ve been longing for – a home-based virtual assistant business.
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