Escaping the 9-5 can open up a lot of doors for you. Not only do you get the ability to work from home or travel, but you also have new opportunities. Opportunities like being with family or having more time to work on your own goals and dreams. Many people have started blogging as a stay at home source of income, but it isn’t for everyone. A virtual assistant may be the answer for you.
What is a Virtual Assistant?
A virtual assistant isn’t just someone that helped a client answer some emails and edited a few projects, however, there are many different types of virtual assistants. As a VA, you can manage their social media, help with website maintenance, research, typing, customer service, reporting, graphic design, etc. Whatever it is that your client needs help with, you fulfill. Think of it this way; if your client is a blogger (let’s say a big blogger), they’re going to be pretty busy. They don’t have time to answer all of the emails or comments that come in, read their posts over a couple times, or manage what’s happening on their Facebook page. They need someone to help them with that, and that’s exactly what you’ll do.
So What do You Do?
The best thing to do in this situation is take time to write down what you’re best at. If you love to proofread or you’ve taken a graphic design course, then take note. These are things that many bloggers or business owners in general and a variation of consultants need help with.
What You Should Invest
Now of course, many positions will require you to have some sort of experience in the field you want to work in. But don’t be put off by that! It doesn’t mean that you have to spend weeks or months just trying to find a VA position. It just means that you have to invest a little. Take a couple free projects from clients so you can add it to your resume.
Or if there’s a field you’d like to go after, take a small (budget friendly if needed) course so you’re more learned on the subject. So for instance, if you’re interested in graphic design or video editing but don’t have much if any experience in that field, then take a class online or at your local community college. A little bit of investment can reap big returns, there are also free courses in which your local city may have. In New York, you can check out
Remember, You Can do this as a Part-Time Gig First
So even if you have a full-time job, you can still be a virtual assistant as your side hustle. And once you start to get more clients (or even return/consistent clients) and make more money, you can make it your full-time hustle. There are plenty of people who do this and have achieved much success
Where to Look
Now there are two options in being a virtual assistant. You can be your own boss, or you can be an employee. Now if you’re just beginning, then I’d suggest starting out as an employee first. That way you can get the lay of the land as it were (I know, a pretty old fashioned saying). Now if you’re looking into places that are hiring VA’s, then sites such as Craigslist, FlexJobs, Indeed, and Career Builder have plenty of listings. It’s definitely a great way to get started. Just make sure to put in keywords such as, “work from home,” and others pertaining to being a VA.
Turning It Into a Business
Now don’t get intimidated! It’s not as difficult or scary as it sounds. Once you’ve built up enough references and experience from previous clients, you can create your own site on wix or other platforms, its very cheap and easy, the site can be a basic landing page for interested clients. They’ll be able to get a hold of you and see if you’d do work for them.
Next, consult a lawyer and accountant on turning it into a business and the tax benefits and obligations you might need to fulfill. It really isn’t a hard thing to do. The lawyer will be able to determine what type of business it should be. So for instance, if you’re an LLC (Limited Liability Company), you can be a sole proprietor (if needed) and can escape the company’s debt’s and liabilities. So if someone sues you (which I doubt will ever happen), they can sue the company for everything it’s worth, but not you (you’re protected). Again, this is just an example.
As for the accountant, they’ll let you know that you might be taxed quarterly or what tax deductions you can take out.
Network and Join Groups!
This is important if you want to have repeat clients. Checkout local gatherings listed online where you can network and meet new people. Strike up a conversation with them and let them know what you do. This is one of the best ways to get people interested and start getting hired.
As for joining groups, there are plenty of LinkedIn and Facebook groups that will show listings for VA’s and let you put your info and site out there for potential clients. Also, the sites mentioned earlier such as FlexJobs Upwork are still great ways to get clients.
Now this is huge! If a certain client(s) loves your work, be sure to ask them to refer you to other people who might be in need of your assistance. It’s a great way to get new one-time or repeat clients.
Remember! You can keep this as a side hustle until your start to make more than your retail or corporate job. Think of it this way; you’re using the time you’d usually spend in front of a TV or on Facebook to get ahead and gain more time freedom.
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