It is that time of year again.
You’re frantic looking for some help because business is soaring up.
Well, Christmas came early this year;
You can now hire a virtual assistant and make your life easier!
Not only that but you can hire them for a specific task.
Are you struggling with your accounting?
Hire a VA specifically for your accounting.
Struggling with your social media?
Your VA is here!
Not keen on doing market research?
Your Virtual Assistant Research can help you!
You don’t have to struggle on your own anymore.
I’m here for you...
Your VA is here for you…
All you have to do is hire one,
Assign detailed tasks
( ADVICE: make sure that you tell them exactly what you want),
And then pay for the time they worked for you!
You must have loads of questions though…
Why not hire a normal assistant?
What is the difference to a virtual one?
Why are there so many types of assistants?
Keep on reading to find out!
I’m sure you’ve heard about Virtual Assistants!
Well, it is pretty much self-explanatory but a VA
- or a Virtual Assistant -
Is an assistant to you that works from a different place.
These assistants are often abroad, living in a different country.
But you can still hire one from your country.
Because this assistant of yours works remotely,
You two communicate through emails , phone calls or even video calls .
So convenient, isn’t it?!
Also, virtual assistants can work anywhere they want , it’s their choice!
They can also work whatever time they please!
As long as they meet the assigned deadlines of course.
Yes, their schedule is really flexible.
This job is ideal for mums, people who want to avoid commuting, people who’d like to work just a few hours per day etc.
Generally people who are looking for flexibility in their work life.
But what is the difference between a normal VA and a Virtual Assistant Research?
These are definitely not the same people!
I’ll tell you why…
You hire a (General) Virtual Assistant for general tasks.
Like admin, answering phone calls, booking appointments…
You hire them to help you out with anything you need.
But you hire a Virtual Assistant Research specifically for research.
In the business world, if you don’t want to be eaten by the bigger fish,
You have to know where you’re swimming and which are the other fish swimming with you.
A VA hired specifically for this job is the best investment for your business and your time.
Research can be time-consuming and actually quite dreadful,
especially when you have other more important tasks to complete.
Which is why you should look into a Research VA!
One of my clients, who owns a start-up marketing agency, was struggling for quite some time with competition.
He wasn’t aware of his brand positioning in the market and who his competitors were.
He didn’t know where he was swimming.
After helping him find a virtual assistant specifically for this type of research,
he finally understood what brand message he was projecting to his customers.
After several improvements on his brand positioning and image,
His business profit increased by 28% in just five months!
Apart from a Virtual Assistant Research, there are several other types of assistants.
Just like a VA for research, they specialise in certain fields as well.
Here are a few examples:
|TYPES OF VIRTUAL ASSISTANTS|
Responsible for accounting, bookkeeping, paying bills, payroll processing etc.
Marketing support, keyword search, competition analysis, company promotion on social media channels etc.
Responsible for content writing, blog posting, proofreading, title/topics brainstorming etc.
Managing diary, scheduling appointments, taking calls, booking flights & hotel etc
‘All good till now but there’s a problem, Joanna.'
'How do I know that I’ve hired the right one?’
Don’t fret, I have the answer!
The most basic skill a Virtual Assistant Research should have is analytical skills.
Research is not about finding information and just piling it in a report just because it is relevant.
In the business industry, we don’t do ‘relevant’ information.
We do accurate information.
And the best way to get accurate data is to filter through all the information and find exactly what you are looking for.
Being able to analyse what is appropriate for the report and what is not is essential for a VA.
A VA should also be a logical person.
I am adding this skill here, specifically for a Research VA, for a reason.
And that’s because when a VA is researching, they go through endless amounts of information.
Which means that they have formed an opinion on the matter,
after analysing what’s accurate and what’s not using their logic and common sense.
As the business owner, you informed your VA of what to look for;
you gave them a bit of context on why you want this data.
By logically analysing the data,
they not only clear irrelevant data,
But also form an opinion on the issue and actually help out.
The VA can provide a logical solution to your issue, after all this research.
A solution that is based on logical research facts, not just a general opinion on the matter.
They should also be good communicators ;
They should always be on the same page as you.
It is crucial that you two communicate effectively about everything to avoid mistakes and misunderstandings.
They should be able to communicate effectively their findings to you.
Explain what is going wrong, what is going right,
what competitors do better and succeed, who else poses as competition.
Information that is not clear and straightforward enough
might be ignored and later cause problems to your business.
To survive in a job like this one, I think a VA should have a can-do attitude too.
It’s really important to be enthusiastic and eager to accomplish tasks.
With this kind of motivation, anyone can conquer the world!
Now imagine what a VA Research can find if they have this motivation.
And the right attitude - resourcefulness.
Information and data is vast and endless on the internet;
But with a can-do attitude and great analytical skills, your VA can find exactly what you need.
Research can also become a bit monotonous which is why a VA needs a bit of extra self-motivation!
A VA should be able to manage their time well, too.
Time management skills in a research job like this are not only required for deadlines, but for work as well.
Deadlines are deadlines and need to be met.
VAs know that and they make sure to be professional.
But it is different when you have to discipline yourself to actually work.
Being anywhere but in an office environment,
Doesn’t actually inspire anyone to sit and work.
Which is why a VA that works remotely needs more self-discipline;
Discipline and time management skills to actually work when they should
instead of procrastinate.
Read More: Virtual Assistant – 6 Must Have Skills
The list of skills a Virtual Assistant Research should have is endless.
I could go on and on but let’s keep it simple.
I have other interesting facts I want to talk about below too!
Yes, a Virtual Assistant Research -as the title suggests- conducts research.
But that is a vague answer, isn’t it?
First things first, do you remember what I said about research before?
Market research is crucial to not get eaten by the bigger fish.
Businesses conduct research for information on the market and their competitors, on products and services.
So a VA can actually do market research for you and gather primary and secondary data.
Data is collected specifically by the VA and used by the VA.
Data has been collected by someone else and now is used by the VA.
VAs conduct surveys, focus groups and interviews, and generally gather the data themselves.
Someone else has done the research themselves, and the data is now published and available to the public.
A highly qualified virtual assistant for research should be able to use both data.
They should also be able to find both types of data as well.
Because by relying on secondary data only, findings may not be current;
While relying on primary data only, findings may not be valid.
A client, who once had a deteriorating marketing consultant company,
seeked our help urgently last year.
We managed to help him hire a Virtual Assistant Research;
This Assistant was excellent in acquiring primary data from clients and customers,
Conducting surveys to get the data the company needed for improvement.
After thorough evaluation of the data,
The owner managed to adjust his company according to his clients’ and customers’ requests and needs.
Because of this, his business profit soared up by 47%!
The research helped him listen to his clients’ and customers’ needs,
And eventually save his company!
Read More: What Does a Virtual Assistant Do
A virtual assistant should also be able to use various methods for the analysis of the data.
Gathering the data and piling into a report, is not it.
More work needs to be done!
Remember when I mentioned analytical skills before?
Now you know why I mentioned it!
After collecting the data, a virtual assistant research should be methodical and analytical.
They gathered all this information but not everything on their database is accurate and relevant.
A professional VA should thoroughly analyse and gather the most accurate to your issue data and present it to you.
So, by gathering primary and secondary data,
the VA Research is now able to present you with findings on products, services and the market.
Virtual Assistants Research can also conduct other types of research.
It doesn’t always have to be this meticulous.
VAs in Research can do a simple informational research, where they look for answers to simple requests.
A few other examples of research they can do are:
So having a virtual assistant for your research is not that bad , right?
That’s why I’m here, to convince you to make the best decisions!
So go ahead and have a look at a few quotes!
Yes, you do!
You’re still not convinced that this is the best choice of your life?
It is, trust me!
Have a look at the benefits of hiring a VA Research too then!
1. Cheaper to hire.
Hiring a VA for your research - or generally a VA - to help you out
Will cost you wayyyy less than a full-time assistant.
Because virtual assistants work the hours you assign them to work.
Is it three hours? Four?
They will work as many hours as you’d like.
You have full control over this.
Also, their working hours depend on the workload you assign to them.
If you assign a lot of work, they will work a lot.
If it’s not that much, then they will work way less.
They only thing you have to do,
apart from assigning tasks to them obviously,
Is to pay for their time!
Yep, you have to pay just like every other employer haha!
But you don’t pay them to work everyday 9am-5pm
Only for the hours they’ve worked.
You also don’t pay for their sick days, or maternity leave, or holiday pay.
No, none of that!
No hidden costs with a VA, just costs for their work.
Do you see why a Virtual Assistant is a god-given gift to hard-working people?
2. Increased productivity.
Who doesn’t love hearing this word?
Being able to cross out as many things from your to-do list as possible, is an amazing feeling!
But you can’t do that by yourself if you’re knee-deep into work and deadlines.
Your to-do list will be pushed to the side because you have more important tasks to do.
Unless you get someone to help you!
*Insert virtual assistant*
But this time, you’ll hire a virtual assistant to do your research for you.
Not a general assistant for general admin tasks.
Well, you could hire one for those tasks too, but let’s face it;
Research takes more time and it is more important.
And seeing you don’t have time for that, your assistant can take charge of it.
And what happens next, you ask?
Research is out of your mind for now, and you start focusing on other tasks.
More important ones.
You start being productive and producing quality work.
Simply because you focus on one thing at a time.
You’re now a productive person.
3. Get a second pair of eyes on your work.
What is another perk of hiring a Virtual Assistant for your research?
You can definitely get a second opinion on your work.
A virtual assistant can be the most eye-opening person in your business.
They can point you to issues you don’t see.
That’s because they do research for you.
They come back and show you what they found.
You review the results and fix the problems.
But are the new fixes good enough?
The VA that helped you with the research can really shed some light on this!
Because they researched a lot, they have a well-rounded view on the issue.
They can speak from different perspectives and offer an honest and thoughtful opinion on your improvements.
On whether they’re good enough and whether they will be effective in the future.
Have you forgotten about networking?
It is really essential to build connections with other businesses.
You never know when you might need advice or some help!
But how can you do that when you don’t have the time to do it?
You guessed right!
Your Virtual Assistant can do that for you!
They are not only extremely competent in keeping tabs on your clients;
But also in researching potential clients for you to extend your contact list.
Researching potential clients and reaching out to them is a great way of making new business connections!
It is especially beneficial to a small company trying to grow.
Take as an example the owner of a small food business at a market;
She no longer had the time to interact with her clients herself as the company was growing rapidly;
That’s why she hired a virtual assistant!
The assistant was responsible for interacting both with their regular clients as well as potential ones.
By networking this way, they were able to collaborate with other companies,
And have a friendly connection with other food businesses.
It generally helped the business gradually increase their brand awareness and equity.
First things first, the cost of a VA depends on several factors:
1. On their experience
2. The type of work you need done from them
3. And their location.
It depends on their expertise because a VA with 5+ years of experience will not accept the same rate as a newbie VA of course.
An experienced virtual assistant will definitely be a bit more expensive,
but the quality of work will be excellent which is a major perk if you ask me!
It also depends on the type of work you need done from them;
Rates vary as assistants charge less for administrative tasks
and way more for more complicated tasks such as social media management or marketing support.
Location is really important to be taken into account too.
Rates vary depending on whether your VA is in your city or in a different country;
Currency exchange rates are different from country to country.
But generally a VA costs ||$||18||$|| to ||$||35||$|| per hour.
And as it was mentioned before, they are assistants that can do many tasks.
However, many business owners hire VAs for specific tasks.
That’s why there are various types of VAs, all charging different rates depending on their work.
A research one though costs around ||$||12||$|| to ||$||20||$|| and above per hour.
Which is a reasonable price to pay for a professional service like that.
Imagine , all your research nightmares are finally over for an average of ||$||15||$|| per hour!
You won’t ever have to waste your precious time again googling ‘when is the right time to invest more money in your company’.
Your assistant can do that for you now!
And for a reasonable price!!!
Do you see now why virtual assistants for research are valuable?
You have to hire one, I promise they will change your life!
And they are easy to hire too!
Just a few clicks and you have a helper at your fingertips.
Research can be extremely time-consuming,
And it’s not good for your business if you have to waste time on that.
More important tasks should go first.
And definitely not research when you have a virtual assistant research.
Give it a go , why won’t you.
You won’t regret it!