Member Spotlight: Melissa Haddad

Member Spotlight: Melissa Haddad

Melissa Haddad | MH Virtual Assistant Services

Melissa Haddad

CAVA: How long have you been a CAVA member?

MELISSA: 8 months

CAVA: What was the experience or motivating factor that compelled you to join CAVA? Was there someone who influenced you to join?

When I decided to become a Virtual Assistant I searched the internet for some sort of Canadian something.  I didn't know what was out there, all I was finding was American or European information, until I found CAVA!  I continued my search, but there was nothing else out there for Canadian companies, so I decided to research more about CAVA and found that it was a fountain of resources and knowledge and there was no need for anything more!

CAVA: How does CAVA support you and your business?

MELISSA: CAVA has provided me with my forms, RFP's and contact with other Virtual Assistant's within Canada.  The forms I use, for example, my Service Agreement is from CAVA, I have tweaked it to suit my company, but the form is from CAVA.  The Confidentiality Agreement and Needs Assessment form are both from CAVA.  All of these resources are so valuable to me because it's where I begin my relationship with my clients.  It has become part of my process and without these forms the assignments would be misunderstood.  The first RFP I answered, I gained my first client from answering it!  The contacts I have made with other VA's has allowed me to think bigger with regards to my business and what future I can make for it.

CAVA: Please explain your services and specialty(ies) offered.

MELISSA: I am a Generalist Virtual Assistant, so I do whatever is needed for my clients, however I am a Customer Care Specialist.  This means I have built my business around taking care of my client's customers.  I offer my clients an all inclusive service for their clients, meaning, I offer the beginning to the end of their customer's experience.  I start with presales and quotations to scheduling appointments, taking calls and confirmation of scheduled appointments and follow up to invoicing and accounts receivables.  I  As my company is starting to grow into a Multi-VA company, my plan is to offer more in-depth services to what I already offer as well as more services that compliment and fill the gaps

CAVA: Please describe your ideal client.

MELISSA: My ideal client is a Mompreneur who is trying to juggle her business and family commitments.  She knows she can't continue to do it all, she knows she needs help and is willing to trust someone to do it.  She understands that taking care of her family is more important, but her clients need to be taken care of as well and needs someone who she can rely on to do that.  She also is a bit scattered and needs to be reminded of things and needs help getting processes together with strategies to assist her to stay on top of things.

CAVA: How many clients do you currently work with? Can you describe them and their businesses?

MELISSA: I am currently working with 12 clients.  I have 3 interior designers, 1 accountant, 1 photographer, 1 landscaper (male), 1 professional window cleaner (male), 1 grant writer (male), 1 mediator, 1 professional cleaner, 1 insurance broker and I just recently signed a woman who is a Point of Sale Consultant.  As you can see there many different industries represented.

CAVA: What is the biggest challenge you have faced in business and how did you overcome it?

MELISSA: Getting my niche and target market pin pointed.  I was in the OSEB program and they explained niching and target market, but it wasn't until I started working with my clients when I truly discovered my niche.  I fell into it, but really it was always there.  I have 20 years of Administrative Assistant experience with the focus being on Customer Service, so I have learned what it takes to be Customer Services oriented.  It wasn't until I joined the Top 6 Mastermind group and I truly realized it though.  I did a 45 minute video on how to pick my niche and after speaking with my business coach I was able to understand the message I want to portray to my prospects.  It wasn't easy, but it truly aligns with my Core Values and that is very important to me...I have to represent who I am at all times.

CAVA: What 3 business tips can you share with others?

MELISSA: Pick your Niche and Target Market first because it allows you to market yourself and your business offerings better to prospects. 
Market yourself, set up a Facebook business page, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, website, business cards and ensure your brand (your image, message, logo) is consistent throughout each platform and get out there and promote yourself...toot your own horn! 

Network.  You must get out and meet people, don't think of them as potential clients, think of them as referrals for potential clients.

CAVA: What is your favorite app or social media outlet and why?

MELISSA: Facebook is my favorite social media.  I belong to tons of local Facebook groups and try to go to the networking events.  I have promoted myself on one particular group and have gained half my clients from there.  I don't just sell, I interact and get people to notice me and understand I truly am the same person online as I am in person.  My next step is to get away from local and get into bigger geographic markets.

CAVA: What are you passionate about? (personal or business)

MELISSA: I want to give my family financial stability.  My family is the reason I started my business.  My husband works downtown Toronto and he commutes almost 4 hours a day.  If I worked downtown, I could make up to $50,000 to $55,000, but at what cost.  My children would be in daycare and we would barely be able to see them during the week.  Plus, between the daycare and travel costs, I'd take home much less then if I took a position locally, which there are none anyways.  I also want to show my children you can truly be whatever you want to be, you just have to work hard for it. 

With regards to business, I believe failure is not an option and I believe I need to go big or go home.  I want to grow my business, so I am able to take a day off or not have to work evenings or if my children have a school trip I'm able to go with them and still feel like my clients are still being taken care of.  I can only do this for myself by making a Multi-VA company.

CAVA: What is your dream vacation spot? Why?

MELISSA: My dream vacation spot is Egypt.  I have always had a fascination with the pyramids and Pharos and Cleo Petra, really anything to do with Ancient times.

CAVA: What is your guilty pleasure (TV show, sweet treat, etc.)?

MELISSA: I have a few guilty pleasures, I have a huge sweet tooth and really don't know when to stop.  I also love to binge watch TV shows, I have watched many series in the span of a week.

CAVA: If someone wrote a biography about you, what do you think the Title should be? (Please explain)

MELISSA: Wow, this is a really great question.  I know the biography would be slightly different for everyone, but the title itself would be... 

Genuine and Giving Woman Who Made us Laugh...A LOT! 

Would you like to be featured in our CAVA Member Spotlight? It's easy! Just go to http://www.jotform.ca/pamivey/CAVASpotlight to complete and submit your interview. ***NOTE: Only Full and Premium CAVA Members are eligible for this CAVA Member Spotlight perk.***

Breaks Increase Productivity

take a break

Are you working and working but just can't seem to focus and get stuff done?  You might even be considering seeing a doctor, but the solution may be much more simple than that - just take a break.  Taking short ten minute breaks throughout the day can help you refocus and re-energize so you're more productive once you get back to work.

Scientists and psychologists have actually done many studies that show how effective breaks can be.  In fact, many large businesses have now started adopting break times into the course of the regular day.  Employees are actually paid to sit at their desk and read, research topics they enjoy on the Internet, and do other things that interest them.  It's been shown that allowing these breaks actually increases productivity and employee satisfaction enough to compensate for the lost time plus some.

To get the most good out of your breaks, try making your activities something that will help increase production when you return to work, rather than something that simply distracts you.  Some great options include aerobic activity or relaxation exercises.  They'll clear your mind, while producing chemicals in your body that will boost concentration when you get back to work.

If physical exercise isn't your thing, or you just don't have the chance to do it at work, there are other things you can do to relax and clear your mind so you can get back to work.  Meditation or other breathing exercises only take a few minutes, but can help you feel better mentally and physically.  Not only does it help you focus, it can also lower your blood pressure and help reduce the physical signs of stress.

The biggest danger in taking breaks is not getting back to work when the break is done.  A lot of people will try to skip breaks because they're afraid they won't get back to work and the work won't get done.  But when you skip breaks, you can significantly decrease productivity and actually end up getting less work done.  The key is setting a time limit to your breaks and sticking to them.  If you have trouble, try setting a timer when you take a break, or having someone back you up by making sure you get back to work.

If you've been pushing too hard and have reached burnout, a ten minute break just isn't going to be enough.  If you are finding yourself feeling sick, tired, and only ever in a negative mood, especially about work, you are probably burnt out by work.  In this case, you not only need to incorporate short breaks into your day, you also need to alter your how and when you work and may even need an extended vacation.

Breaks are an easy and effective way to increase your results and become more successful with very little effort.

Do You Need Special Certification Or Training To Become A VA?

Virtual Assistants or VAs are in high demand. They provide administrative help to people around the world. It’s a growing field and a great opportunity. If you’re considering becoming a virtual assistant, congratulations. Being self employed offers a number of benefits.

Before you get started there are a few things you’ll want to have. One of those things may be a certification or specialized training. While you don’t have to have any formal training to succeed as a VA, it can certainly help.

The Benefits of Certification and/or Training

While VA certification and training isn’t required to start your own successful business it can help. Certification can:

Help set you apart from your competition. Some potential clients may choose you over your competition because you’re certified. You can use your certification as a marketing tool.

Help you establish a profitable business. Many virtual assistant training programs walk their students through the entire process of starting your own business. You’ll cover the skills and trainings clients want you to know. You’ll also learn how to market and grow your VA business. Your certification and training can help justify higher hourly rates.

Broaden your skills and knowledge. You may already have a few marketable skills. You can, of course use these to build your VA business. A certification or training program can help you add more skills and knowledge to your portfolio of services. Many training programs offer technical skills and training. You’ll be able to offer more.

Specialized knowledge means higher fees. Some VA training programs offer very specialized knowledge. This knowledge can mean you are able to demand a higher hourly rate.

Confidence booster. There’s just something helpful about going through a training program. When you pass your certification test you may feel more prepared to start your business. Confidence does matter when dealing with clients. If you’re confident in your skills, your clients will be too.

Networking. Some training programs offer you the ability to connect with other VAs. This can be extremely helpful. It’s nice to be able to connect with others who are going through the same challenges.

Choosing a Training Program

Because VAs are in such high demand, there are a number of programs to choose from. Make sure the program you choose:

* Fits your budget.
* Offers the training and information you want or need to learn.
* Is well-reviewed by other virtual assistants.

Do you need to be certified to own a successful VA business? No, absolutely not. VAs around the globe are making a good living without certification. Can certification help you achieve success? Yes. VA certification and training offers a number of business-building benefits.

How to Find Legitimate VA Opportunities

So you’ve just started a VA business and you need clients. Not to worry. You’re in a high demand business. The clients are there. You just have to know where to look. True, there are some scams out there. However, the legitimate opportunities far outweigh the scams. Here are three great ways to find legitimate VA opportunities.

Ask

In the beginning, there are a few key places to find legitimate VA opportunities. The first and often best resource is your connections. Ask your friends. Ask your family. And ask your business associates for referrals. Often, the best clients come from known sources.

Consider creating an email and sending it to the connections in your rolodex. Introduce your services. Stress the benefits you offer. And ask for referrals. You might even offer a referral bonus. For example, for each new client you receive the person earns a credit toward your services. You could really motivate people by offering cash. Just make sure that you can afford it!

Network

Another way to build your business and find legitimate VA opportunities is through networking. If you have a social networking profile, consider connecting with a few people you’d like to work with. Send them an email or a message introducing yourself. The worst thing that can happen is nothing. The best…you get a new client.

Don’t forget to promote yourself on social networking sites too. Offer promotions. Link to your blog and online content. Become a valuable contributor and help others as well. They’ll remember you and turn to you for assistance in the future.
Networking offline is great too. Join your local business organizations. Attend networking events. Bring a business card, confidence and a smile. You’re sure to meet a few new clients.

Job Sites

Finally, there are the freelance job sites and the job boards. These are full of legitimate opportunities. They’re also full of scams. Use them wisely. Make sure you research each potential opportunity thoroughly. Speak to a live person if you can.

And sites like Elance that control the payment, communication and delivery process are good. They can help you if there’s ever a dispute. And they require providers and employers to leave feedback. If the employer doesn’t have good feedback, don’t work with them.

There are legitimate VA opportunities everywhere. Market your services. Get out and meet people. And don’t be afraid to use the job boards. They do provide excellent experience, connections and profit potential. To your success!

How to Find Legitimate VA Opportunities

So you’ve just started a VA business and you need clients. Not to worry. You’re in a high demand business. The clients are there. You just have to know where to look. True, there are some scams out there. However, the legitimate opportunities far outweigh the scams. Here are three great ways to find legitimate VA opportunities.

Why Every VA Needs an Online Presence

Building a VA business? Great! Congratulations! Being self-employed is a fulfilling and rewarding lifestyle. Before you get too far into that business plan, are you planning on having a website? If you’re going to be a virtual assistant, you need one. Here’s why:

Your Clients are Online

You’re a virtual assistant. Emphasis on virtual. That means your business operates online. Via the internet, email and perhaps instant messaging and conferencing. If you’re without an online presence, you’re missing out on clients. The majority of your clients will be online business owners. That means they’re very Internet focused. They’ll turn to the internet first to search for a provider.

Now that’s not to say that you won’t have local clients. You might. However, they’ll still likely search for you online. It’s how our society buys products and services.

Your Website Establishes Your Credibility

Many VA tasks are focused on the Internet. You might be managing a blog or forum. You might be proofreading and uploading articles into article directories. You might be managing affiliates for a business. All of those tasks require a good degree of comfort using online technology. Your website helps demonstrate your ability to use the internet. It demonstrates that you’re comfortable online and skilled with using technology.

If you don’t have a website, many of your clients may wonder why not. They may simply disregard you because you’re not online.

Your Website Markets Your Services

Your website accomplishes a number of marketing tactics. It communicates your services and fees. It answers any questions a prospect might have about your services, practices and policies. It also showcases your personality. You’ll likely have an “About Me” page. This is useful for telling your story. However, the word choice, design and feel of your site also helps communicate your personality and brand your business.

Your website can also broadcast your successes. You can list your testimonials. You can cite awards you’ve earned. You can communicate organizations you’re a part of. You can also list the companies you’ve worked with. All of this helps establish you as a credible service provider. Your website can be used to build trust with your prospects.

Finally, you can use your website to facilitate many of your business functions. Communications, payments and even inquiries can be managed through your website. You can also use your website to generate more income by affiliating with products or services and by selling advertisement space.

In short, if you’re going to be a Virtual Assistant, do it the right way. Create a website that helps you build and grow your dream business.

How to Choose a Specialty/Focus/Niche and Why It Matters

Are you going to specialize? As a virtual assistant, will you offer specialty services? Or will you offer anything and everything? Experts strongly recommend specializing. Here’s why:

Specializing makes you competitive.

When you specialize in a service or an industry it helps set you apart from your competition. When a potential customer is looking for a virtual administrator chances are they have a very specific task in mind. If you provide that service or specialize in their industry then you’re going to make it to the top of their list.

Not specializing can make you crazy.

Choosing a specialty means you don’t have to juggle too many tasks and responsibilities. It’s challenging enough to own and grow your own business. The last thing you want to do is add more challenges to your day. If you specialize in a task or an industry then you can focus on being the best provider possible.
Specializing helps you raise your rates.

The truth is, specialists make more money. It’s not limited to the VA industry either. It’s everywhere. If you specialize, there’s a presumption that you have specialized knowledge and skills too. People pay more for that knowledge.

Specializing helps you market.

It’s tough to market your business to a target audience if you offer everything. However, if you offer forum moderation and blog management for the parenting and child care industry then it’s much easier to market your services. You know exactly who you’re marketing to and the benefit you can provide them.

So How Do You Choose a Specialty?

There are a few considerations when choosing a specialty. First, it should be noted that you can specialize in:

An industry. For example, parenting and childcare.

A task. For example, blog management and creation.

An industry and a task. For example, blog management for the parenting and child care industry.

You might think that this degree of specialization limits you. However, consider this. If there are 500 blogs on parenting and child care and you gain five of them as clients. You probably have a full schedule. There’s plenty of work to go around. Specialization simply makes your business easier to manage and grow.

Back to choosing your specialty…

Specialize in what you know. If you are skilled at transcription then specialize in transcription. If you’re an expert blogger or bookkeeper then specialize in those tasks. If you know the ins and outs of coaching then specialize in virtual administration for coaches.

Specialize in what you like and enjoy. If you love social networking then specialize in managing and creating social networking profiles. You’ll be much happier and productive if you’re doing something you enjoy.
Specialize in something that’s in demand. Take a look at the job boards. What jobs are commonly posted for virtual assistants? Chances are, that’s an in demand niche. If it’s also something you enjoy and are skilled in then you have a winner.

Remember, you can grow and change.

You might be worried about limiting yourself if you specialize. However, you can always add more services to your portfolio. Your needs, tastes, and business will grow and change. It’s perfectly acceptable to change your services as you grow. Specializing simply helps you attain the success you desire.

How to Get That First Client

Congratulations! You’ve set up your VA business and are ready for your first client. It’s a big step and one that deserves celebrating. So now that you’re ready to work, how do you get that first client? Consider these options:

Job Board

Job boards are a wonderful tool. They can help you launch your business. They can provide a consistent income while you’re building your business. And when you have the eventual dips in your schedule or slow season you can use them to provide additional income.

As a virtual assistant, you may want to focus your attention solely on job boards for virtual assistants. There are all encompassing freelance job boards. These generally require a membership. The freelance job board can serve its purpose. However, you may find better clients via a VA job board. Check out both options and choose the opportunities that are right for you.

Always research your potential client. Make sure they’re legitimate and that they follow through on their commitments. Some job boards simply work like classified ads. You apply for the position and communicate directly with the client. Others work as a go-between. All agreements, payments and work are managed through the job site. Both situations have their pros and cons. Again, make sure you’re working with a legitimate company and job site. Check references. Read reviews. Most opportunities are legitimate. However, it always pays to be safe.

Use Your Resources

When you’re ready for that first client, tell your friends and family. Send an email to your associates. Let everyone know what you’re able to provide. Your Rolodex of contacts is a great place to get started. With a few simple email messages and phone calls you’ll likely land a few great clients. There’s no shame in using your resources. And there really are no better clients than those who are referred to you from friends, family and associates.

Network

If you’re not already active on a social networking site, get a profile and start connecting. Networking online is a wonderful way to market your services. It’s also a great way to meet new people.

Network offline too. Join your local SBA. Become a member of your Chamber of Commerce. Participate in local meet-ups and networking events. Make sure you have a business card and a positive attitude when you’re networking. (A website is a must too.)

Also consider:

  • Making sure your business is listed on your local online business directory
  • Advertising
  • Article marketing
  • Blogging/guest blogging
  • Posting flyers around town

There are many ways to market your VA business. Knock on doors. Connect with people online and in your community. Use your resources and explore your opportunities. You’ll have a full schedule in no time.

What you Need to Get Started as a Virtual Assistant

One of the great things about a VA business is that it’s easy to start. You really don’t need much to launch a successful business. That being said, there are some steps you’ll want to take before you hang up your “open for business” sign.

Office Equipment

You’re a virtual assistant which means you’ll need equipment to help you work virtually. This means a:

* Computer
* Backup storage or system – you can backup files online so an external drive isn’t necessary.
* Copier/scanner/fax
* Internet connection
* Desk and chair
* File cabinet/file system
* Transcription software and equipment if you’re offering transcription
* Telephone and related equipment like a headset so you can talk hands free

You likely already have much of that equipment. If not, you don’t have to spend a fortune. Take a look at flea markets and resale stores for some of the furniture. If you don’t have a computer, most experts recommend buying the best you can afford. Your business will be based on your computer so a good one helps.

Business Equipment

You’re going to want a few basics to help you market and manage your business. These include but are not limited to:

* Business Plan – this is most important! It should include your budget, goals, marketing strategy, operations, policies and procedures and so on. Create a plan so you succeed!
* Website and/or blog
* Social networking profile
* Email account for business
* Telephone number for business
* Invoicing system
* Bookkeeping software
* Content management system or delivery system. How will you deliver client work to them?
* Services agreement/Work for hire agreement
* Personal insurance: health, dental, life etc. When you’re self-employed insurance is your responsibility.
* Bank account for business
* Organization tools: calendar, notebooks, whatever helps you get and stay organized
* Business services software. What software do you need to provide your services? For example, if you offer transcription you’ll need transcription software.

Again, you may have much of this already. And most of these basics don’t cost much. You can spend a lot on software so be careful. Only buy what you really need.

Personal Equipment

Okay, so your home office is set and you have a solid business plan. What else do you need to get started?

* Enthusiasm
* Motivation
* Positive Mindset
* Administrative skills
* Marketing knowledge (Read a few good books on marketing your business, you’ll be set.)

Not bad, right? If you already have a computer you can likely start your VA business for just a few hundred dollars. Many have started with nothing at all and made a huge success of their VA skills. Create a checklist. Create a plan. Create the success you desire.

How to Find Great Clients

Being self-employed can be extremely rewarding. It can also be a challenge. Often the difference is the type of client you have. The better your clients, the more rewarding your business feels and the happier you are. So, it makes sense to create a strategy to find great clients. Here are a few tactics to consider.

Referrals

When you find clients that you enjoy working with, ask them for referrals. People tend to be attracted to likeminded individuals and clients referred from existing clients tend to be of the same caliber. In short, good clients refer good clients.

Consider offering a referral program for your business. Reward customers for their referrals by giving them a credit towards your virtual administrative services or a discount.

Network

One of the best ways to find people you enjoy working with is to meet them via networking. Sometimes you click with another business owner. A simple, “I’d love to see how we can work together” may end up producing profitable results for years to come.

Networking both online and off is a fantastic way to find great clients. In fact, you may find that networking is the best source of ideal clients for your VA business.

Partnerships

Consider forging partnerships with other business owners that you enjoy working with. For example, if you’re a virtual assistant who provides social networking management you might partner with someone who creates social networking graphics. Together you could offer a complete social networking package.

Ask

Put the word out there. Let your friends, family and associates know that you’re looking to add two or three quality clients to your schedule. You might be surprised at what you find. You may end up with more quality clients than you have time for.

Before You Begin Searching For More Great Clients

There are a few steps to take before you begin searching for more VA clients. Taking these steps will ensure you’re attracting the type of client you want. It’ll also make sure you can accommodate their needs.

#1 Make sure you have room in your schedule for them. If not, consider eliminating some of clients or tasks from your calendar. You want to make sure you can meet the needs of your new clients.

#2 Identify exactly what you want in a client. What makes a client great to work with? What are you looking for? Are they easy to communicate with? Do they provide minimum instruction? Do they pay well? Define what makes a good client.

#3 Take steps to make sure that your existing clients and any new clients know how much you appreciate them. Create a customer appreciation strategy. Finding those great clients is only the first step. You want to make sure to keep them too.

Finding great clients isn’t difficult. Know what you’re looking for. Don’t hesitate to ask for new clients. Pay attention to the service you provide. A good VA client can stick with you for years. It’s worth the time and effort to show your appreciation.

How To Build A Virtual Assistant Business

by Janice Byer and Elayne Whitfield-Parr, Founders, CVAC

elayne-bookAlthough the term “Virtual Assistant” is still very new to the business community, there are thousands of home-based administrative workers around the world who now refer to themselves as VAs.  The opportunities for the professional services offered by these VAs are endless.

So, how exactly do you start and build a Virtual Assistant practice, let alone expand it to a level where other VAs are working with you? The first thing you need to do is determine if you have those necessary skills. Having a computer does not make you a VA. You really need to have some real-life experience doing the tasks that are generally expected of VAs. If you have a background in the administrative field or a history of providing other VA-related services, you are well on your way to having what it takes to build a successful Virtual Assistant practice.

You also need to ensure that you have the passion and commitment to make your business successful. “If you build it, they will come,” does not work in the real world of building a small business. You also need to learn how to actually run a small business so the following are just some ideas for starting your Virtual Assistant business.

One of the first steps you will take will be deciding on a name for your business. Many VAs have ‘Virtual Assistant or Assistance’ in their business names. This definitely helps others to determine what you do (well… if they know what a VA is and does) much more than if you pull some name out of a hat and use it just because you like it. Make your business name meaningful, easy to pronounce and understand, and easily adaptable should you decide to change the focus of your business.

Once you have decided on your business name, it is time to register it. Every province and state in every country has different procedures that they require you to follow so your best bet is to contact your local small business enterprise centre or local government office and they will help you with everything that needs to be done.

Next step… your business plan. You don’t necessarily need to write out a formal business plan, although you do need to plan your business.  Planning your business is 100% thinking, analyzing, investigating, choosing and decision-making.

Some benefits of producing a business plan include:

  • the process of preparing a business plan will force you to think about your business, research some options, recognize opportunities and risks, and test some of your assumptions;
  • a business plan will help you identify the cash needs of your business;
  • a business plan can be used to raise funds from banks and investors;
  • a business plan provides a benchmark against which to compare the progress and performance of your business.

It is a good idea for all businesses to prepare and regularly update their business plans.   Once you have made the decision to start your Virtual Assistant business and have made a plan of action, it is time to set up your office. Your office equipment is extremely important to the success of your business. You need to have the most current software to provide the best services as well as an up-to-date and reliable computer system. Other peripherals that you will need could include a multi-line phone system with an answering machine and a printer that allows you to scan and perhaps even fax. You may also need to get other dedicated equipment depending on the services that you will offer.

Once your office is set up and you have determined what services you will be offering, it is time to think about how you will market your business and who you will target your marketing to. Your first step will be to develop your business cards and other marketing pieces. You may want to have a brochure ready to hand out at networking events and possibly provide in a direct email campaign. Other means of getting the word out about your business should include a website and you can also write articles for distribution both online and in print publications as well as offer an online newsletter which can help you have a form of keeping in touch with your clients and contacts.

Owning and operating your own Virtual Assistant business can be very rewarding but does require a lot of work. However, if you are passionate about making your business a success, the entire journey will be a labour of love.

This article is just a taste of How to Build a Successful Virtual Assistant Business. You may also need help with determining your rates; getting clients; training and certifications; moving your business; and even expanding your business. The new book of the same name as this article, written by Janice Byer & Elayne Whitfield-Parr, has over 200 pages of information to help you with these and other challenges that you may face during all aspects of running your business. Visit http://www.howtobuildavirtualassistantbusiness.com for more information and to order your copy.