Starting Your Own Business as a Virtual Assistant (VA)
Have you decided you’re tired of working for other people, and you want to start your own business as a VA? This is a great decision, as it’s a wide field and you can use a variety of skills, from editing and writing to administration. You might even decide to work as a medical VA.
What Services Should You Provide?
Being a VA is just a matter of seeing how you can use the skills you already have to provide a service to a business. You can always learn new skills as your business grows. You can use your computer skills, writing skills, or customer service experience to create a flourishing business. The idea is to start somewhere, offer your services, and expand your offering as you build your business.
Popular services provided by virtual assistants include the following:
- Medical VA administrative services
- Reception and administrative services
- Project management
- Social media management
- Content creation
- Email management
- Content management
- Website and graphic design
- Data entry.
5 Steps to Starting Your VA Business
Before you jump in and start your business, you first need to get some planning out of the way.
1. The Basics
You need to start on your business structure based on criteria, such as what types of clients you will work with, what type of VA work you can do with the skills you have, and your personal situation. If you’re working while you have children at home, you need to decide when you will be able to work and how responsive you can be. Also, consider how your income will change if you quit your full-time job and start working for yourself.
2. Decide on Your Services
Get started with two to three services as you can always increase your service offering as your business grows. VA services are typically regarded as being administrative, but you can also add services based on your specialist skills, such as writing or editing.
3. Determine Pricing
When you set your rates, you need to figure out what is going to be worth your time. Think about the overheads you will have to pay, as well as tax, and the fact that you will have to pay for your own benefits such as health insurance.
Charge an amount that is slightly higher than the one that first comes to your mind. While you want to secure clients, you also don’t want to be stuck with many low-paying ones.
4. Advertise Yourself Online
When you start your business, you’ll want to attract new clients. You don’t need a website when you’re just starting out, but it will be a good idea to create one as your business grows. You can also establish your presence online by creating social media profiles, especially on sites like LinkedIn. Once you create a website, it also needs to have a ‘Work With Me’ page.
5. Pitching and Networking
You’ll need to consistently work towards getting new clients. Client growth will happen over time, as you get more exposure and you become more confident. Once the momentum builds and your name gets out there, the growth process will get easier.
It can be extremely rewarding to be a VA, as you can help small business owners run and grow their businesses. You can help them achieve their goals, while also building your own business. You’ll experience the satisfaction of being your own boss, and you’ll gradually become more confident. Eventually, you’ll become a different person as you won’t be the full-time employee you used to be, who had to follow other people’s orders. Your lifestyle will change for the better, and you will finally feel that you have achieved something.