In this blog post, I’ve interviewed Lisa Wells. Lisa is a Virtual Assistant trainer whose mission is to help those who want to become Virtual Assistants. If you are already a Virtual Assistant, she can help you find and attract clients, build your business, and keep up to date in industry happenings.
Read on and find out her answers to the following questions:
- When and how did you get started as a Virtual Assistant and Virtual Assistant trainer?
- If someone is struggling in trying to scale their virtual assistant career/business, what are the 5 things that you think they are doing wrong?
- How important is finding a niche as a VA? What are its advantages?
- What steps should a VA take to identify her niche?
- What are your current projects? Where can Virtual Assistants find you?
When and how did you get started as a Virtual Assistant and Virtual Assistant trainer?
I began my VA career in 2005. My husband got orders to move from SoCal to a mid-size city in North Carolina. I did a quick check of jobs in the area and nothing was really suited to my skills. I had been researching “remote secretary” and “telecommuting” jobs and came upon an entire industry for people like me! I first started out as a generalist because I didn’t really know anything about running the business. But I signed up for free teleseminars, read articles, signed up for Yahoo training groups to learn as much as I could. (Back then I had WAY more time than money.) I eventually transitioned to a tech / marketing VA, which I did for 8 years. I now mostly do Infusionsoft consulting. VirtualAssistantTrainer.com came about because I have a passion to help other VAs on how to build their business, work with clients, and package up services
If someone is struggling in trying to scale their Virtual Assistant career/business, what are the 5 things that you think they are doing wrong?
First, I would say if they are having trouble scaling their business, it’s because they are working ‘in’ their business not ‘on’ it. They need to learn to outsource.
Second, get clarity on core services and products you want to offer. Otherwise, it’s like herding cats – you will try a lot of things that don’t work.
Third, in order to get clear, you have to LISTEN to your audience and give them what they want.
Fourth, if you don’t know what your audience wants, ASK them. Be curious!
Fifth, marketing is pretty much everything in your business. If the marketing message isn’t clear or not conveyed correctly, it just won’t work.
How important is finding a niche as a VA? What are its advantages?
I’m always in favor of training VAs to find a niche but so many are really hesitant! I know that it may seem counter-intuitive to turn away people, but I think it’s better for the VA in the long run because 1) you are only working with those ideally suited to what you offer, and 2) you can charge a lot more money when you specialize.
What steps should a VA take to identify her niche?
To me, “niche” can also translate to be a “specialty”. For example, my niche is women business owners who do online marketing. But where I set myself apart is that I specialize in systems, automation, and operations. So I don’t want VAs to get too hung up on the word ‘niche’ but instead think of how you can set yourself apart.
What are your current projects? Where can Virtual Assistants find you?
I have been working really hard this year in rolling out new training programs and products for VAs! I currently offer VA Business Essentials, a 6-module training course, and Profitable Packages, which I will be re-launching again in the fall. Visit VirtualAssistantTrainer.com and sign up for a free VA Business Startup Resource Bundle as well as free on-demand training presentations, lots of forms and templates, and loads of information just for VAs.
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