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Can Giving Free Consultation Build Your List – Doable 27

Doable 27

Here we are at doable 27 of the ‘Build Your List with 30 Daily Doables’ Blog Tour. Yesterday we learned how to use JV Giveaways as a list builder.  It is definitely worth a read if you haven’t set on up on your site yet. A full list of the blogs we have already visited can be found at the Blog Tour Information Page.

Thank you so much Stephanie Watson-Barry for hosting us on our blog tour.

Don’t forget that not only can you learn some neat tricks about list building but you can also win great prizes. You can find all the ways to enter at the bottom of this post.

It’s not just on the blog that you can pick up earn entries – share about the blog tour on social media and use the hashtag #30dailydoables for more chances to win!

This blog tour is to celebrate the launch of our latest book ‘Build Your List with 30 Daily Doables‘.  If you grab the book while the blog tour is on, you receive access to some great extra bonuses – make sure you visit the launch page to get yours!

Have an amazing day!

Stacey Myers

www.StaceyMyers.com

Build Your List Blog Tour

Can Giving Free Consultation Build Your List – Doable 27

Free consultations are fantastic for getting to know the people that are going onto your list.  You can book sessions for any length of time – anywhere from 15 minutes to 1 hour.  I personally wouldn’t give away an hour session for free.  I think 30 minutes is a reasonable amount of time.  When you have a session with your potential client it helps to find out what their immediate goals are and how you can help them to achieve their goals.

You don’t want to give away too many free sessions as it can take up a lot of your time. If you are giving away a free eBook, you create it once and then it will continue to build your list on-goingly, whereas you need to show up yourself every time for a free session.

I think the free sessions work really well as a list building tool for a particular product or service that you offer that is higher in price.  Where people might be a bit on the fence about whether they should do it – a conversation with you may be all they need to help them decide.

There are a few different systems you can use for people to be able to book sessions with you, and believe me, you want to make it as systemised as possible.  The last thing you want to do is keep going back and forth with people to get a time that works for both of you.

I really like TimeTrade. With that system you put in all the times you have available and how long you want each session to be and then you just give people the link in your follow up email.  They click on the link and go and book.  It easily sorts things out if times need to change or if they cancel, without you having to take time rescheduling them.

The form for a free consultation probably wouldn’t go on your homepage but at the bottom of the page that you are offering your coaching program or other service on.  In my publishing company I offer free consultations for people that are considering writing or publishing with us.  The only page that it is on is the one that refers to the packages that we offer.

Another time I do give away free consultations is when I want to do some market research. It gives me direct access to know what people are dealing with in their business. I give away 5 free, half hour consultations.

Do you think you would offer free consultations to build your list? Leave your comments below.

ENTER HERE!! Build Your List with 30 Daily Doable Blog Tour CONTEST

How to pick your services

Deciding upon services is your hardest step when you decide to become a virtual assistant. It’s best to pick a few set services to offer rather than saying you’ll do anything. Having a specific niche is important. That’s how you decide what services you’ll provide.

Who is Your Target Audience?

Some people think that the service comes first, but the truth is, knowing who you want to work with is the first step to choosing the services that you will offer. Do you want to work for direct marketers, speakers, work-at-home Internet gurus, a mommy blogger, authors? Who is your target audience?

Once you know who your target audience is, it’s time to decide your services. Write down everything that you believe someone in your target market needs to do each day to make their business successful. Go through a “day in the life” in your mind, writing down everything they do even if it’s not something you want to do for them. If you’re not sure, then you need to do some research into your target market.

Go Where Your Target Market Is

It’s easy to find your target market on the Internet. They’ll be hanging out on forums, social media, and likely they’re blogging a bit. Do searches and find them on LinkedIn.com, Facebook.com, Pinterest.com, Twitter.com and more. Then stalk them. Find out what they’re doing. Learn everything you can about your audience so that you know what type of questions they ask, what type of help they seem to need and more. The more you know about them, the better.

What’s more, if you also hang out where they are, and answer questions and be helpful that’s a good way to market your services when the time comes. It’s not a good idea to be pushy in forums, discussion groups, or when commenting on someone’s blog. Be helpful, show your knowledge, and they’ll seek you out. Imagine just showing your expertise and having your customers come knocking on your door (or, really — in your email inbox!).

Conduct a Survey

Once you’ve chosen a few service options based on your research you should go to where your audience is again and conduct a survey. You can use Google Docs, or you can use a more sophisticated method like Surveymonkey.com.   However you choose to do it, it’s important to find out how your audience feels about the offerings you’ve chosen. Give them room to add ideas about other services that they might wish for. The answers you get not only will help you custom design the services you want to offer, but it will make your audience aware of your existence.

As you see, many of these activities are also a way to market your services without running advertisements or harassing anyone. You simply do your research and that gives your audience the notion that you’re available and ready to serve them. Who would have thought that research can also be a way to market yourself?

Finalize Your Services

Finally, now that you know who your audience is, what they need, what their problems are, and everything you can learn about them, you can make a list of services that you want to offer with your audience in mind. By focusing on a specific audience you’ll be able to design your marketing copy better on your blog and web pages. You will write directly to your audience about your services and have them in mind for any marketing you do.

Putting the client’s needs first will help you pick your services better than any other method. You’ll be able to figure out services that they need, and the match your skill-set to what is needed, and then you’ll be able to market those services to the right people.

 

Finding Services You Can Add to Your VA Business

Become a Virtual Assistant in Just 30 Days! Virtual Assistant Startup System

Finding services that you can do for your clients in your VA business is an important factor in creating a thriving business. Coming up with new services and learning new things will help creating a long lasting business. It’s important that you don’t become complacent in the services you offer now, because technology changes and suddenly what you were doing becomes old news.

Keep Reading Industry News

It’s important to stay up-to-date in your industry. If you can join a VA group such as VAnetworking.com, then do so. You’ll get to speak with successful Virtual Assistants who know the business, as well as find jobs if you’re a paying member. They do a lot of seminars too which are always very interesting and informative. You can also set up a Google Alert to get news about your niche, so that you can stay in formed.

Keep Learning New Things

There are a variety of courses that you can take to help keep you up-to-date on learning the newest most popular and in demand skills that you need. It’s important that you don’t trade learning for doing, but it is also important that you spend some time learning new skills, like WordPress skills, so that your business will always be vibrant and full of clients. You have to remember that sometimes technology, as great as it is, will kill off some jobs. But, if you keep ahead of it and stay educated, you’ll be able to keep your business going for many years.

Network With Other Virtual Assistants

I have a small group on Facebook that I run, and I have other groups that I don’t run that I’m part of. I try very hard though to not spend too much time messing around on social media. However, my association with other Virtual Assistants is helpful because I can refer clients to someone else if I really can’t or don’t want to do certain tasks. I can also outsource a few things so that I can open up my business to more clients.

In addition, it’s nice to talk to other people who get it. Kind of like being around the water-cooler at work. (My group is by invitation only so if you want to join drop me a message with your Facebook email address here.) You can learn about a lot of new things by staying in contact with other VAs even if they’re your competition. Believe me, there is enough work to go around.

Consider Your Target Audience

I know that I tell you this all the time, but if you don’t understand your target audience it will be hard to come up with new services for them. Spend some time studying them. If you’ve built up an email list of clients past, present and future, why not ask them what types of services they need? You can send them a quick survey to get an idea of the type of tasks that they’d like to have completed for them. Knowing your audience can make all the difference to the type of training you choose.

Finally, the key to making any type of training, networking, and learning work for you is to implement what you learn. Don’t learn something new like how to run online events, and then decide to now learn how to make Facebook Business Pages. Instead, each time you learn something new, implement it. First, do it for yourself, and then do it for a client. Only then should you start seeking out more training. After all, the point is to find services that you can add to your virtual assistant business, not be in never ending training.

 

 

 

Be Your Own Best Client

I often tell new VAs to do this. But, what does it mean? Put simply, before you have a full client roster, you should be working for yourself as hard as you would any client that you have. If you have determined that you have five billable hours you can work in any given day, but you don’t have enough clients to make up those five hours yet, then you should be using that time for your business.

Create an Awesome Website

Your Website is your calling card online. This is especially true for a Virtual Assistant. Even if your tasks won’t involve helping someone with their website it’s imperative that you have a good website to show potential clients. Your website should include everything that you preach about to others. If you are telling clients they need regularly updated content, then your website needs regularly updated content. If you are telling your clients to use a particular product and you can find a way to use it yourself, you’ll have just that much more credibility.

Keep Your Social Media Accounts Updated & Active

Just opening a social media account isn’t enough. You have to also keep the profile updated, and the account active. Comment, share, like and retweet as much as you can when it’s relevant to your audience. Point your audience to new content you’ve created, brag about your job and clients. There is always something you can do on social media to make yourself stand out.

Develop Systems To Help You Work Smarter Not Harder

Take the time to create working solutions that make your daily tasks faster and easier. If you are promoting yourself as a social media expert, practice using the tools that you promote in a systematic way so that you truly become the expert on that tool or software. Systems always make everything work faster and better. While flying by the seat of your pants may seem to work better for you it really doesn’t. It’s just an illusion that will quickly break when you are truly full of clients and are lacking time.

Send Out Proposals Every Single Day

If you don’t have a full client roster, you should be using the time you have to answer request for proposals, and making contacts with people who might want to hire you. Even when you are full of clients,  it’s important to practice sending out proposals anyway, but it’s even more important when you don’t have a full client roster. Don’t wait for people to come to you, go after them.

If you work for yourself as hard as you work for any other client you’ll find that your business will improve dramatically. Before you know it, you’ll be full of clients, and finding ways to systematize everything so that you can take on even more clients. So, that is what I mean about be your own best client. Do for yourself what you want to do for others and you can’t help but succeed.

Why Staying Connected is Essential to Success

connectedYou may not realize it but your past clients, employers, and connections are very important to your future clients, employers and connections.

Even if a client has moved on, it doesn’t mean that the relationship was poor or that they don’t like you anymore. Keeping connected to them can be a source of references, testimonials, and referrals.

Send Them Cards

If you have a list of their special days a great and non-intrusive way to keep in touch is to send them cards on their special days. You can even automate the process through services such as Send Out Cards or other online services like the Cards Store. I’m not an affiliate of either of these, but I’ve used them both and it’s a great way to keep connected.

Share News With Them

If you read an article about their business, or industry, and you think they’ll find it interesting send it to them. You can cut it out and send in the mail, or if you’re connected to them on social media, or by email you can forward it to them that way. Either way, they’ll appreciate that you remember what they find important and interesting.

Send Them a Gift

If you can find a gift related to your products and services or give of your own products and services this is usually better. But, you can send them small gifts that will help them remember you such as a magnetized business card for their fridge, or a coffee mug with your logo. You never know when one of these small gestures will make the client remember you, give you a call and rehire you or refer someone new to you.

Reach Out Directly

By simply sending an email, or calling on a person that you’ve had a past relationship with, without any agenda than to stay connected you’ll improve the relationship. Tell them you’re just checking in with them and hope they’re doing well. You can do this via email or by voice mail if you know the person’s cell phone number. There are services that allow you to just send a voice mail without the person answering.

Ask Them to Join Your Newsletter or Mailing List

Many past clients may already be part of your mailing list, but if they’re not, send them an invite to join it. Tell them that you often update on the industry, offer sales, and more through your newsletter for past clients. They may join, which will give you another avenue to connect with you, or they may choose not to. But it’s a non intrusive way of staying connected.

By staying at the top of your past clients’ minds you’ll create a situation where the client will think of you when they want to recommend someone. Plus, if they need additional work done, they’ll be more likely to think of you first because you’ve done a good job of staying connected. Staying connected to your old friends, college buddies and others is also essential. You never know who will be of help to you in the future.

Today, it’s easier than ever to stay connected due to social media like LinkedIn.com that allows for professional connections online. Staying connected to past clients will  be a source of references, testimonials, and referrals that will last a long time.