A few years ago, I started to feel the overwhelm creep in and I had no clue how I was going to get all of the to dos on my list completed. I was feeling burned out and like work was spiraling out of control. I knew I needed to either get some help or back out of some of the projects I had committed to, and as someone who hates to break my word, the latter was not going to be something I was going to do.
I put out a post on Instagram hoping to find a graphic designer who was looking for a little extra work, maybe someone a little younger than me who wanted to learn from my years of experience. I got those responses, but I also got a response from a virtual assistant who did graphic work here and there as well, and that’s when it clicked.
Instead of hiring someone who could only do design, I could hire someone to help me in various aspects of my business. I hired Nicole and she’s been helping me with my processes for over two years now, I don’t know how I’d run my business without her!
Here are 5 things you can hire out to a virtual assistant
– so you have more time for the creative stuff that got you into business in the first place.
No 001: Your Social Media
Do you get overwhelmed by all the things when it comes to social media – when to post, which hashtags to use, what you should be sharing and more? Do you end up wasting time scrolling on Instagram instead of posting something?
This is where a virtual assistant can help. A VA can help you come up with what to post and when to post and can even help you schedule things out so you don’t have to do it in the moment. Not only will this save you time, but it saves the mental energy it can take trying to come up with a topic, a photo to go with and a comment-worthy caption.
No 002: Your Inquiries, Contracts, Questionnaires + Invoicing
Another thing that can bog you down and take up brainspace: emails.
If you’re working with clients, your inbox is surely filling up with inquiries, questions, invoices and more. When you hand all of this off to a virtual assistant, you become more organized in your business.
Often, it helps to have a client management software system in place to help keep all of this organized (I use 17 hats) and this tracks my time, assigns it to the client and keeps all of our emails, questionnaires and contracts in one safe place. This makes it super easy when it comes time to invoice, because your VA can grab this information and invoice when the time is right. And the same thing can happen with any other materials that need to be sent out to clients. In this case a VA + a client management software work hand in hand to make your life easy.
No 003: Your Small Design Tasks
This was the big thing I needed help on in my business – I needed someone to be able to make small tweaks to files or save out logos in different files for me, and this is where Nicole has come in SO handy in the last few years.
After I design something for a client, if there are little changes I normally hand it off to Nicole, especially if it’s to a Photoshop file or a PDF that needs to be updated.
I also noticed that saving each logo in the different color variations and file types was taking up hours of my day, so I outsourced that to Nicole as well. Now I can focus on the main design of a branding project and use my creativity and brainspace there instead of using it to save files. I dreaded that task and taking it off of my plate has made all the difference!
No 004: Proofreading Your Emails and Blog Posts
If I ever get my life together, I will have my VA proofread all I post before I hit send or upload. I am a terrible proofer and also trigger happy, so once I create something, I just want it out into the world. Sometimes, that means it goes out with a spelling error, and I’m not proud of that.
In a perfect world, I would have my social posts, emails and blog posts written in advance and have Nicole proof them and schedule them for a certain date. Until I get there though, maybe you can learn from my mistake 😂
A VA is the perfect person to have schedule your stuff for you, so you can have another set of eyes on your content and make sure it’s polished and ready to go.
No 005: Your Website and Content Updates
Ahh, the dreaded content updates. When you just don’t feel like updating your website, your freebies or other content, there’s a VA for that. Put an update reminder on your calendar that repeats monthly or quarterly, and have your VA freshen up your photos, your portfolio or content on a regular schedule.
There are so many other tasks that a VA can take care of for you, it’s a no brainer to hire one when you feel like you need some help but don’t want to commit to the actually hiring someone (in a business, taxes + corporate sort of way). A VA can be an independent contractor that you pay monthly for their work – it’s as easy as that!
How to Find a Virtual Assistant
Have I convinced you to look into virtual assistance yet? If so, you may be wondering where to find one!
In any online community where creatives exist, there are people who have VAs that they love. A simple post in a Facebook group or a story on Instagram might help you find the perfect person.
Once the applications come in, check out their work, their current clients and their social media profiles to make sure you’ll be a good fit for each other. Then hop on a call to check out their areas of expertise and to see if they can help in the areas you find overwhelming, and hire the one who’s the best fit!
The types of things you send your VA might change over time as you get comfortable working with each other, which benefits you both. You’ll LOVE having someone else working in your business with you – you’ll feel like you have a teammate that’s rooting for you to succeed and helping you meet your goals.
Do you have a VA you love? Share in the comments! What types of things do you outsource to yours? I’d love to hear em.