As a new business in Canada, there are a million things that need to get done. Like the range of support that consultants, employees and contractors can provide, there are specialists that focus on fractional professional help so you can focus on your business in your new market.
It’s amazing how many business owners, especially startups, haven’t heard about or explored the benefits of hiring a Virtual Assistant. For those of you who have never heard of these productivity boosting individuals, Virtual Assistants are based out in cyberspace, live all over the globe, work remotely, and are either self-employed or contracted through an agency that caters to finding the right fit for your business.
These limitless gurus help with the administrative and clerical ends of your business. By taking over many of your day-to-day and time-eating mundane tasks, they free up your calendar so that you can focus on things such as business growth or enjoying more family time.
While the hiring of any such service is a massive decision, not meant to be minimized by any means, the advantages of hiring a Virtual Assistant are exponential. It’s extremely important that you search for someone that matches with your temperament and character as well as boasts the skill set you need to utilize. Do that and the value you receive will exceed your expectations.
Like with any new hire, you can expect a period where you get to know one another, and your new VA will be getting to know your business. Once that happens, and they gain traction, you’re in for an experience like no other. Things that once took you an hour to complete will wind up taking them mere minutes. Things you knew you wanted but had no idea how to follow through with obtaining suddenly become a reality - email funnels, anyone? Editing and drafting communications? Website updates? Graphic design? Lead generation? Cold calls? Scheduling? Document creation? Research? SEO? All that and more is suddenly at your fingertips, often at value-based package pricing.
In short… You get more done and save an amazing amount of money at the same time simply by choosing to hire someone remotely, who often has more flexible hours, than choosing to hire an in-office Executive Assistant.
Still not sure on the idea that you may need a Virtual Assistant? Let’s go over the top 5 reasons you should really consider one.
A Virtual Assistant’s number one priority is efficiency and they will introduce that priority to your business life quickly. This is because they can, and will, produce the same scope of work as a traditional Executive Assistant for between 30% and 60% of the cost. Best part? They don’t require a section of your office to call their own as their office is virtual and anywhere they have connectivity to the internet.
They know the ins and outs of business processes, software and if selected locally, the Canadian business norms and expectations. Setting them onto your mundane tasks such as calendar management, phone handling, eMail filtering, market research, graphic design, website and social media management, transcription, document creation, and even accounting. All important tasks, yes, but easily delegated to someone other than yourself, giving you the chance to focus on more important aspects such as client acquisition and retention.
2.) Cost Effective Labour
Piggy backing off reason number one, hiring a Virtual Assistant is extremely cost effective. The marginally increased cost to your budget is going to be downright minor because you only pay your VA when they work. Virtual Assistants work on a per productive hour basis often in value-based package pricing. Because VA’s are independent contractors, you’re not required to offer them benefits, supplies, space… Just set them on a task and expect an eMail with it completed.
In short, if they aren’t actively working for you, you’re not paying them - unlike a fixed rate employee who is being paid by the hour, or salaried, who is being paid whether they’re cruising Facebook because there’s no work to be done, or actively creating progress for your business.
3.) Lead Generation
Tired of constantly hunting for new clients? Virtual Assistants can not only help you track leads, but also set up campaigns designed around drawing people in. Regardless of whether you use custom applications or something as low tech as an excel spreadsheet, your VA can easily track your leads, their source and status, and the next steps with them.
Furthermore, your VA can create and maintain long term campaigns, such as eMail funnel systems, that help keep your name in front of those leads. Want them to reach out by phone? Have them come up with a script that you approve, some fodder for Q&A, a little market research, calling list and you have the perfect recipe for an efficient way to get people on the phone talking about your company.
All of this is invaluable when it comes to seeing which of your marketing investments and efforts are actually producing hot leads that will eventually drive your business towards reaping the reward of high returns. Another great nod to reasons number 1 and 2 as this is both efficient and cost effective.
It’s estimated that 60% of all virtual traffic is conducted using mobile phones. This means that most businesses are less brick and mortar and more likely to be on the move than ever before. It only makes sense that you would choose not to be tethered to an employee expecting to work only during the traditional 9-5 Monday - Friday work week, but to hire someone who is ready, willing, and able to get the job done when you need it done. Hiring a Virtual Assistant, perhaps from another region (or is a fan of burning the midnight oil) gives you the chance to have your business covered 24/7/365.
In these trying times of extreme economic upheaval, it only makes sense that you have the ability to make changes and decisions completely on the fly. Not only that, you need to be able to turn those changes and decisions into process quickly. This means that the flexibility and mobility a Virtual Assistant offers is both paramount and parallel to none.
Have a voice? Don’t know how to use it? Tired of learning the difference between Twitter and Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn? Good news. Social Media is just one of those important facets of business life that your Virtual Assistant can handle. Your online voice is an important aspect of your branding, and who hasn’t gotten a kick out of the quick-witted voice of their favourite social media accounts? It’s memorable moments in cyber time that make people remember you and reminds all of us that social media is not ‘set it and leave it’ unlike many other aspects of branding and marketing. There’s no “one and done” approach.
Time consuming as it may seem, your VA will learn you well enough to make life far more entertaining and easier when it comes to interacting with your social media based audience. They’ll know how to schedule updates to be released up to a month in advance so that you constantly have material out but aren’t spending countless hours trying to figure out what to say. Your brand is safe with your VA.
There are countless reasons both generic and specific to your business how a Virtual Assistant can enhance and grow your business, the reasons listed here are only a few of those.
BrightGo Solutions uses a virtual assistance service ourselves. And along with personal assistance, is a common first outsourcing a new business does. Got a question about using a VA or consultant to help run your business in Canada? Contact us for more info.