Virtual Assistant: What Specific Tasks Can I Do for You?

If the concept of working with a VA is new to you, it may be hard to imagine what tasks you can turn over. I mean, what does a virtual assistant even do, right? You might hear “social media” or “WordPress” but what does that mean, specifically?

femenine-17
Image courtesy of Feminine Stock

Here’s a list of some of the things I do for clients, to see if it triggers any ideas for you:

Note: A few of the links below are affiliate links; I may receive a small commission if you click on them and end up making a purchase from the site

  • Research: Blog post ideas, podcasts to appear on, guest posting opportunities, etc.
  • WordPress: Create blog editorial calendar (CoSchedule); draft blog posts with your text and images (or I can find/make images for you); add Categories and Tags; schedule posts to publish in future; create blog graphics to include in post then share across social media
  • Proofreading/copyediting: Anything written – emails, blog posts, e-books, brochures
  • Social media: Find like-minded people to follow/share; create graphics/memes in Canva; use a scheduler like Edgar or Buffer to pre-schedule social media posts; maximize your presence on social accounts (e.g., add hashtags to social media posts, improve your Pinterest boards, etc)
  • Transcribing: Transcribe podcasts or videos to provide transcripts to your audience or repurpose into a lead magnet; transcribe your voice notes to create blog posts, newsletters, or an e-book
  • Organization: Research/set up task management (Trello, Asana), appointment setting (Calendly, Acuity), and/or client management system (Dubsado*, 17 Hats)
  • Affiliate marketing: Find and sign you up for affiliate programs that align with your brand to generate passive income

*For 20% off your first month of Dubsado, use code ERIKAFRIDAY (all caps)

There are lots of other tasks I can do as well. I can’t possibly be experienced at ALL THE THINGS! However, I’m willing to learn new software, etc. (on my own time) and help you apply it to your business.

So don’t be afraid to ask if you have other areas you’d like assistance with. If I can’t do it, I usually have someone I can refer you to.

Weekly Round-Up by VA Creatively.com 11-02-14

Here’s a round-up of some finds from around the web this week. Just some things for creative entrepreneurs / solopreneurs about social media, working at home, living a creative life, and other things you might find helpful or interesting.

How about 5 free creative business card templates RIGHT HERE? And check out the cool “X” WordPress theme while your there.

Do creatives make their own luck?

Have you MET EDGAR? Seems like a nice, helpful guy. {This is something a virtual assistant could set up for you . . . hint, hint}

I want THIS BOOK so badly! Every business needs a blog, especially creative ones. I’d love to take my blog design skills to the next level.

Hope you enjoy your week!

A Day in the Life of a Virtual Assistant (VA)

The concept of a “virtual assistant” or “VA” is pretty new to most people. I thought I’d give an example of a day in my life to give a better idea of exactly what we do :)

6:00am
Wake up, get myself and kids ready, start some laundry, etc.

7:30am
The kids are off to school, I’ve had a cup of coffee, and it’s time for my commute – from the kitchen to my office. I get settled at my desk, open about a jillion computer windows, and start my work day.

IMG_4835

As you can see, I kinda’ like Starbucks :) And candles and crafts and pretty colors and twinkle lights. Hey, I’m at this desk around the clock – may as well make it comfortable, right? I do pretty much everything on the computer but I can’t seem to let go of a hard copy day planner and I *live* for sticky notes.

7:30am to noon
I check my e-mail and put out any fires that I or my clients might be having, i.e. deal with anything that’s time-sensitive. Another cup of coffee, say “hi” to the dog through my office window, and it’s time to get into the meat of the day. That might entail any of the following:

– Transcribe medical/psychological notes, podcasts, videos, etc. for clients
– Do tech-y stuff on WordPress sites for myself or clients
– Perform bookkeeping for my VA business
– Network with potential clients and with other VAs via phone or social media
– Write, edit, and schedule posts to my own 6 blogs (yes, 6!) or clients’ blogs
– Make travel plans for a client’s book tour

Noon to 12:30pm
I take a break, eat something, take a quick walk, put some laundry in the dryer . . . Oh, the benefits of working at home! Wait, is doing laundry 24/7 a benefit?

12:30 to 2:30
I continue working as above, especially transcribing as it’s usually due in the afternoon. Other duties might be:
– Make business calls via phone, Skype, etc.
– Research various topics for clients; today it’s graphic designers, pet-related podcasts, and time-tracking software
– Learn new skills with software to serve client needs (e.g., Asana, Hootsuite, Harvest)
– Post to social media (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.) for clients and for my own business

Screen Shot 2014-08-31 at 10.09.49 PM

2:30 to 4:00
Pick up kids from school, run errands while I’m in town, pick up the mail, etc. Any time I’m waiting, my iPhone is in hand and I’m doing social media, responding to e-mails, texting clients, etc.

4:00 to 6:30
Hang with the kids and maybe work some more on the laptop until dinner time.

6:30 to 9:30
Eat dinner, family time, get ready for the day ahead.

9:30 to midnight
Finish my work for the day after everyone else is in bed. I like to have work-related videos or podcasts playing in a window on my computer while I work, to learn new things I can apply to my virtual assistant business, blogging, affiliate marketing, etc. I check e-mail one last time before shutting down the computer.

Okay, truth is . . . I’m a night owl so I often work or blog until 2am (or later, whoops). Midnight is the bedtime goal but it rarely happens. I can’t sleep if I’m thinking about work to be done, things I want to blog about, e-mails to write, etc. It’s a “bad habit” to most but I think it makes me a good VA :) I sleep in on the weekends to make up for it.

So there’s a day in the life of this VA. I hope it’s shed some light on what exactly virtual assistants do.

As you can see, I need to be very organized with my time. I have a wide skill set and enjoy the variety that this line of work provides. I’m deadline-driven while being proactive when time allows. I’m great at communicating and keeping my clients updated on my progress. I spend a lot of my own time and money maintaining a client base, time-tracking / accounting / invoicing, along with buying new programs and learning how to use them. When something goes wrong with my computer or internet, I don’t just call tech support, I AM tech support ;)

I absolutely love my job and feel very blessed to do it. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask. I’m very “social” and love to chat – online or otherwise!

Do You Want to Build WordPress Sites for Yourself or Clients?

.

Yeah, me too!

So I wanted to share the information about this new course I just signed up for. It’s called “WordPress Builder Bootcamp” and it starts 04-08-14.

There are 6 weekly sessions, all on Tuesdays at noon PST.

This timing works out great for me because I’m in PST so I’ll grab a green smoothie and attend on my lunch hour. That said, if I ever can’t make the live sessions, everything is recorded so I can watch later as time allows. Even if I catch the live sessions, I’ll probably rewatch them more than once to absorb and cement everything :)

The weekly classes are 90 minutes long and there’s a bonus Q&A 60-minute session. There is homework so you can put into practice what you’ve learned; also, reference materials, e-mail support, and even an emblem of course completion I can display on my VA website :)

The greatest thing about this class is that it’s geared toward virtual assistants like me who want to:

1. Build and work on my own WordPress site

2. Build and work on WordPress sites for clients

I’ve used WordPress for 7 years but mostly for fun. I don’t have any formal training in WP; I just look things up online or try until I figure something out.

This course – “WordPress Builder Bootcamp” – will change all of that. Here’s what I’ll learn to do, according to the sales page for the course:

Install WordPress on any Hosting Service
Create a development site to build WordPress websites
Work with different themes
Add and configure widgets & plugins
Work in the theme editor
Understand basic HTML & CSS
Work with your client to select a theme
Manage the whole process!

I already know how to do some of these tasks but a refresher and official instruction surely won’t hurt. I’m most excited to learn NEW things like creating a development site, editing themes, and doing some basic HTML & CSS. I’ll also learn how to structure packages, set up templates, manage the project, set up a development website, train the client, and close out the project.

The class is put on by Susan Mershon aka The Techie Mentor. I just love her website, free classes, and everything she offers. Techie Mentor is WordPress and social media knowledge geared specifically toward Virtual Assistants. She also offers classes and resources for things like: 1ShoppingCart, Google Apps, Mailchimp, Constant Contact, Aweber, and Project Management. I’ll definitely be back to take more Techie Mentor classes!

As a virtual assistant and blog helper who supports businesses, entrepreneurs, and bloggers, it’s important for me to be super comfortable with WordPress. I believe it’s THE best platform out there and will always highly recommend a self-hosted WordPress site to anyone who asks, including clients.

I’m so excited to take this class! I feel it will set me apart from other VAs out there because I’ll be able to offer a service – building WordPress websites – that others can’t. I love the mindset of working to get paid by the project instead of by the hour, especially knowing what people are charging to build WordPress websites!

When I book my first WordPress website client, this course will have paid for itself.

Anyway, I just wanted to share my excitement about taking this cool class. If you’re a VA or blogger or business owner who thinks this course could be helpful to you, I sincerely hope you’ll join me. Just click on THIS LINK to sign up lickety split (or take your time looking it over, your choice, LOL).