One of the biggest misconceptions of working with virtual staff is that one employee can do everything for you. I call this the ‘Super VA Myth’, and I’ve busted it over and over again! It’s just not possible. Not in the real world, and not in the virtual world.
In order to effectively use virtual assistants to grow your business, you need to hire for the role, not the task. Something that I say all the time.
That means building a team. A team that will work together to achieve what you’re aiming for as a business owner.
It’s with this in mind that I decided to put together this list of tasks that you can outsource to virtual staff to grow your business more effectively. You’ll see that I’ve broken it down into the following roles:
- General Virtual Assistant (GVA)
- Audio / Video Editor
- Content Writer
- SEO / Web Marketer
- Graphic / Web Designer
- Web Developer
It’s important to acknowledge and appreciate that no one person can handle all of these different roles. It’s about using what you’ve got at your arsenal, to get what you want out of your team building and outsourcing.
So, let’s begin with a look at the one person that I feel every single entrepreneur on the face of the earth should have at their disposal – the General VA (GVA). This is that one person that you can lean on to help you, day to day, more so than any other employee.
They are true time savers – and therefore, as an entrepreneur, they’re your life savers, too! If you don’t have one on board in your business yet – get one now!
ROLE: GENERAL VIRTUAL ASSISTANT (GVA)
Email & Schedule Management Tasks
One of the biggest time-suckers in the land of entrepreneurship is email. Before I actively took it upon myself to remove myself from my business and become a Virtual CEO (listen to the full story in episode 16 of my podcast), I was trapped in Outlook for up to 7-hours a day. It was madness.
Working with a GVA to handle your email, as well as things like your calendar is essential to becoming more productive as a modern-age entrepreneur.
- 1. Filtering Emails / Managing Spam
- 2. Database Building / Updating Contacts or CRM
- 3. Answering Customer Service Emails /Tickets / Chat Support
- 4. Sending of Greetings eCards, Event Invitations, etc.
- 5. Calendar Management
- 6. Appointment Scheduling
- 7. Travel Arrangement and Planning
- 8. Reminder Services
File Storage & Organization Tasks
We live in a world of flashing lights, buttons and other things that distract us consistently throughout the course of our working day. Being organized is about as important as being productive. If not more. VA’s can help you systematize and put processes in place to help your business become more organized.
- 9. Dropbox / Google Drive Organization
- 10. Data Entry in Word, or Google Docs
- 11. Creating / Managing Spreadsheets
- 12. Preparing Powerpoint / keynote Presentations
- 13. PDF Conversion, Splitting and Merging
Administrative & Blogging Tasks
I’ve talked about how VA’s can manage your blog, as well as how VA’s can help with the marketing of your blog before – however, there is so, so much more your GVA can do for you when it comes to additional admin tasks, and generally helping you, day to day on the managing of projects, and your marketing efforts.
- 14. Transcription of Video and Audio Files
- 15. Simple eBook Layout / Formatting
- 16. Preparing Online Meeting Minutes
- 17. Report Creation
- 18. Forms Creation
- 19. Document Template Creation
- 20. Online Research
- 21. Data Mining & Development / Lead Generation
- 22. Blog Publishing Management
- 23. Moderating Blog Comments
- 24. Adding Tags & Images to Blog Posts
- 25. Receptionist Duties
- 26. Voicemail Checking
- 27. Sending Client Invoices
- 28. Basic Bookkeeping (MYOB, XERO & Quickbooks)
- 29. Personal Errands (Purchasing Gifts Online, etc.)
- 30. Project Management & Training Tasks
- 31. Project Management Between You and Team members
- 32. Preparation of Training Materials
- 33. Training of New Virtual Staff (Check out my VSF Academy, too!)
- 34. Deadline / Deliverables Tracking
- 35. Social Media Management Tasks
- 36. Creating Facebook Fan Pages / Groups (see example below)
- 37. Posting and Scheduling Facebook Insights
- 38. Promoting Facebook Pages
- 39. Collating and Interpreting Facebook Insights
- 40. Creating a Twitter Account
- 41. Managing and Increasing Your Twitter Following
- 42. Schedule Tweets and Track Mentions and Hashtags
- 43. Create and Manage LinkedIn Account / Profile
- 44. Create Pinnable Images on Pinterest
- 45. Scheduling and Tracking Pins
- 46. Create and Manage YouTube Account
- 47. Upload Videos on YouTube
- 48. Moderating YouTube Comments
- 49. Uploading Videos to other Video Sharing Sites / Social Media
- 50. Answer inquiries and Messages on All Channel & Profiles
- 51. Create Slideshare Presentations
All this work is pointless if you’re not a) growing your email marketing list, and b) engaging with that list on a regular basis. It’s been said that for every name on your list, you should be making an average of $1 a month. So, working with a VA to help grow and market to your list is a complete no-brainer in my book! This takes the concept of choosing tasks to outsource to virtual staff to the next level – a level that equals money!
- 52. Creating a New List in Email Marketing Software
- 53. Adding and Removing Subscribers from Lists
- 54. Creating and Scheduling Broadcast Emails to Promote Content
- 55. Editing Follow-up Emails and Auto-responders
- 56. Creating Email Newsletters
- 57. Editing / Proofreading Emails
ROLE: AUDIO / VIDEO EDITOR
The use of virtual staff in audio and video production is still a little new – it’s only just started to emerge over the last few years. However, I can tell you (from personal experience) it’s created a ton of additional time for me. Not having to edit my own videos (even in a basic way!) has enabled me to spend more time developing my content, instead of worrying about the details. The same can be said for my podcasting.
Plus, the end result is just way sexier to look at (see below!).
- 58. Basic Editing of Audio Files
- 59. Removing Background Noise from Audio and Video
- 60. Adding Intro’s and Outro’s to Videos
- 61. Basic Photoshop / Image Editing (Not Graphic Design)
- 62. Powerpress (Podcasting WP Plugin) Installation
- 63. Podcast Setup on iTunes
- 64. Podcast Insertion on Blogpost
ROLE: CONTENT WRITER
Outsourcing your content is not something I suggest you do often. Especially if your brand is attached to it. However, if you’re doing a lot of online marketing, especially if you’re involved with niche site creation and promotion, or even bigger, more authoritative sites, it pays to save time on creating all that written content, by teaming up with a good selection of virtual writers.
- 65. Content / Blog Post Creation 66. Guest Blogging / Ghost Blogging
- 67. SEO Writing
- 68. Press Release Writing
- 69. Newsletter Writing
- 70. Copywriting (Don’t Suggest Sales Copy)
- 71. Directory Submission
- 72. Article Spinning
- 73. Article Marketing
ROLE: SEO / WEB MARKETER
The SEO (Search Engine Optimization) world has changed drastically over the last couple of years. What used to work doesn’t anymore. And what works today might not work so well tomorrow. However, create solid content and you’ll be off to the races immediately. But, what happens after you’ve marketed and promoted your new blog post, or podcast episode via social media? The storm calms down, right?
Having a solid SEO / Web Marketing VA in place will enable your content to be positioned and marketed in a way that will bring in consistent, long-term traffic.
- 74. Site Analysis
- 75. Keyword Research for Blog Content
- 76. Competitor Analysis
- 77. Landing Page Set-up/Creation
- 78. Web Master Submission
- 79. Sitemap Submissions
- 80. On-page optimization for a post / page (see below example)
- 81. Off-page optimization for a post / page
- 82. Social Bookmarking (Digg, Stumble Upon, Reddit, Digg, Delicious)
- 83. Creating a Social Bookmarking Tracking Sheet
- 84. Blog Commenting – Off Page Optimization
- 85. Forum Participation / Moderation
- 86. Creating Backlinks / Link Buidling
- 87. Weekly / Monhtly Google Analytics & Traffic Reports
- 88. Monthly Keyword Ranking Reports
ROLE: GRAPHIC / WEB DESIGNER
Tinkering around in Photoshop is a massive waste of time for every entrepreneur that doesn’t know what he / she is doing. We do it though, right? We love the idea of letting our Superhero Syndrome take over and we believe that we can do everything – including graphic design.
Please – c’mon people… Pay those that truly DO know what they’re doing, to do it right the first time – not only will it look better, but you’ll be able to spend time on a marketing plan, or putting together your next info-product!
- 89. Designing Logos, Banners, Icons, eBook Covers and Headers
- 90. Designing Infographics Images (Content Provided)
- 91. Designing Websites, Creating Mock-Ups
- 92. Designing Landing / Sales / Opt-In Pages
- 93. Basic Video Editing (Splicing Intros & Outros with Raw Footage)
ROLE: WEB DEVELOPER
When I launched my first blog in 2009 it was a mess. And here’s the kicker – I had purchased a perfectly good looking premium theme, and then spent the best part of 3-days ‘customizing’ it (and I use that term as loosely as possible, trust me!). The result was what you could probably imagine from someone with no coding experience – a catastrophe!
While you’re putting together content plans and a publishing schedule for your site, get a super-skilled Web Developer VA to handle the coding and customizing side of things for you. It’s just plain smart!
- 94. Support and Develop WordPress (PHP) Websites
- 95. Install WordPress PlugIns and Themes
- 96. WordPress Theme Customization
- 97. WordPress Functionality and PlugIn Enhancement
- 98. Site Maintenance / Security and Troubleshooting
- 99. CRM Integration & Social Media Integration
- 100. Payment Gateway Integration
- 101. Install and Support an Email Ticketing System (eg. ZenDesk)
As you can see, the list of tasks that virtual workers can handle for you is about as diverse as the roles that are available at our disposal as business owners.
The fact is that working with VA’s has gone far further than most people ever thought possible. It’s more than just filtering email and managing your social media (although thats covered, too!). It’s about business growth. It’s about waking up and understanding that, as business owners, we shouldn’t be doing half the stuff that we are doing on a day to day basis!
I hope this list serves as a bit of a spring board for some of you yet to take the VA plunge, and perhaps a ‘go to’ source of additional potential, for those of you that are already utilizing the power of virtual staff in your business.
Was this list helpful? Would you like to see more posts like this? Got some tasks not listed here you’d like to share? Please comment below!