The Most Common Tasks you can Outsource to a Virtual Assistant
Whether your business operates from a physical location or online, you will find that hiring a Virtual Assistant, proves to be very helpful. Since the 1970’s, Virtual Assistants have evolved with changing times. The profession has outgrown the tag of just being a virtual secretary or virtual personal assistant. As early as the new millennium, virtual assistants have been adapted by every industry.
Here are a few of the most common tasks you can outsource to a Virtual Assistant.
1. General Administration
For entrepreneurs, the first order of the day should be to clean up or organize their “house”. The benefit of having a Virtual Assistant can immediately be felt when there is less time spent looking for files or attending to functions that inhibit the entrepreneur’s productivity. These include the following:
- E-mail Filtering. Even if we dedicate 30 minutes to one hour first thing in the morning for e-mail, most often, there may not be enough time to read and respond to pertinent communication and filter junk.
- Calendar Management. An entrepreneur should be kept abreast of important dates in the calendar year. The purpose is to improve the level of preparedness and not miss out on crucial opportunities.
- Appointment Setting. Not everyone has the skill set and disposition to fix appointments. Virtual Assistants have the ability to get past even the most difficult “gatekeepers”.
- Limited Correspondence. There are some communiqué that require immediate response. You can designate associates and the kind of communication, the Virtual Assistant can attend to.
- Phone Handling. Entrepreneurs may also be inundated by phone calls; some from key associates, clients but a good number may be considered junk. Delegating this responsibility to a Virtual Assistant will allow you to maintain focus on the task at hand.
One of the biggest reasons entrepreneurs fail in their venture is lack of proper money management practice. You do not have to hire a Certified Public Accountant or an accounting major to conduct accounting services for your business.
Anyone who has a good grasp of book-keeping and can prepare cash flow statements, income statements and a payment disbursement schedule can do the job. The entrepreneur must always keep track of the flow of money in and out of his business.
3. Social Media Marketing
For a business to succeed, you must constantly market and promote your products and services. With consumers and businesses that are dependent on the internet, a great strategy would be to enhance your presence online.
A proven way to enhance your online presence is through social media marketing. Every day, a close to one billion people, access the social media networks. Nearly 900 million of them are on Facebook. The rest are distributed between Twitter, Google Plus, LinkedIn and other social media networks.
But the key to maximizing the influence of social media is through frequent participation. You should make time to share and post content, engage with followers and build new contacts. Most entrepreneurs soon realize that having a Facebook account does not make you a social media marketer.
A Virtual Assistant with experience in social media marketing can conceptualize a campaign for you and schedule all articles for posting. You can also authorize her to do limited engagement with posts that have elicited opinions.
4. CRM Handling
If your business depends upon managing customer or client information, you need to hire a Virtual Assistant right away. In certain professions such as real estate and health care, it is highly important to accurately and consistently update customer records. For some businesses, it could mean the difference between success and failure.
CRM handling is time consuming and requires the competency to organize files accordingly. Most entrepreneurs do not have the patience to do this, as his time is valuable but limited. Managing customer records requires a meticulous and focused attitude. You simply cannot make mistakes in uploading data. In health care services, these could prove to be very costly.
There are entrepreneurs who are skilled in writing and often blogging. However, writing content for blogs and articles can be time-consuming. Blogging, for example, is not just a mere writing exercise. It requires a great deal of thought and strategy to create content that inspires engagement.
When done properly, blogging can successfully generate inbound traffic and leads. Studies have shown that businesses that have a blog, generate 55% more revenues than businesses that don’t have one. Blogging fresh, original and engaging content can significantly improve the search rankings of your website.
There are several virtual assistants who can compose great blogs that highlight your style and methods. If you do not have the time to blog at least three times a week and post articles on your website and social media networks every day, you should get a Virtual Assistant who can.
6. Transcription Services
If your business goes through several hours of audio, it would be best to hire a transcriber who can convert the files into text format.
Transcription is a skill you master through years of experience. Most entrepreneurs mislead themselves into thinking that they can become transcribers because they have a good command of the English language. While accuracy is a much sought after quality in transcription, it requires consistency and volume of work.
There are virtual assistants who have worked as medical, legal and business transcribers. You can surely hire a Virtual Assistant with a high level of accuracy and appreciable Turnaround Time or TAT.
7. Market Research
In every business regardless of industry, market research is very important. Without regular research, you will not be able to stay updated on changes in market demand, preferences, digital technology and industry performance.
But research is time-consuming and it requires a person who can stay focused on a single issue until the task is completed. Entrepreneurs cannot afford to micro-manage the business. At the same time, research cannot be disregarded.
A Virtual Assistant can undertake market research and present this in a highly professional format, by explaining the salient points of the study.
In certain respects, a Virtual Assistant is no longer just an “assistant”. With the manner in which a Virtual Assistant contributes to the success of your business, he could just well be your Virtual Partner.