Do You Really Need to Be Online?

The Dream

Every time social media as a marketing tool for authors comes up, someone mentions that famous author who doesn't blog, the rich author who has no online presence whatsoever. The argument is that you don't need an online presence, blogging, social media, to become rich and famous, or succeed in whatever way you define success, as an author.

Back to Reality

Yes, it’s possible to become a best-seller, rich and famous, without ever going online.

It’s also possible to cross the ocean in a rowboat. I’ve read about it. It’s not fun.

If you truly deeply hate social media, find other ways. But if you just don’t want to do the work of blogging and interacting online, or if you’re just being contrary, you’re making it so very hard on yourself.

Speaking in absolutes is always counterproductive (oh, I see what I did there.) But as a general rule, it is best if an author has a blog and posts regularly. It is best if an author has a social media presence and engages there regularly. It is best to make use of the tools that will engage with your potential audience where they are: online.

How do you keep up with all the changes in social media algorithms?

Short answer: you don't.

For the long answer, watch this 1-minute video:

Join an Online Virtual Assistant Forum

forums for virtual assistantsJoin an online virtual assistant forum this year. Make it your goal to interact weekly at the forum. This is a wonderful resource for learning from other virtual assistants. You could also find other virtual assistants you want to collaborate with and even new clients.

Here are two active virtual assistant forums to check out:

Have you participated in any virtual assistant forums? How have they been of benefit to you and your business?

10 Goals for Your Virtual Assistant Business in 2014

10 goals for 2014

It's that time of year again. We're winding down this year and about to begin 2014. What are your goals for your virtual assistant business in 2014?

My husband and I take two weeks off at the end of every year and shut down our businesses so we can focus on our businesses instead of working in them. We evaluate what worked and what didn't work. Then we make a plan for the new year. I suggest you take some time in the next few weeks to sit down and write down ten goals for your virtual assistant business in 2014.

To get your creative juices flow with ideas for goals, here are 10 goals you might choose to have for your virtual assistant business in 2014:

  1. Add one new client each month of the year.
  2. Raise your rates by 10%.
  3. Offer an added-value feature for your existing clients.
  4. Commit to posting at your blog regularly.
  5. Start using Pinterest. If you already are using Pinterest, create a new board with tips for your clients.
  6. Add 5 new connections to each of your social media networks every week.
  7. Learn a new skill that you can offer to your clients.
  8. Join an online virtual assistant forum and interact weekly.
  9. Create a procedures manual for your repetitive tasks and ask another VA to review them. This will come in handy if you need to take some time off and hand your tasks off to someone else for a bit.
  10. Plan to take a week off at the end of 2014 to plan your business goals for 2015.

I'd love to hear what your goals will be in 2014. Please share them in the comments so other virtual assistants can get some ideas as well.

Don't forget to share this post on Google+, pin it to Pinterest, or write a similar blog post.

Let's make 2014 the best year yet!

VA Interview: Paula Hill, Virtual Assistant

When Joel and I first met Paula online we knew she was our kind of people. She's smart, fun and easy to talk to. I hope you enjoy her interview.

Paual Hill

1. When did you start your business?
January 2008

2. Why did you choose to become a Virtual Assistant?
In 2007 I realized I had hit a “brick wall” in my corporate career. I began looking for a new job but wasn’t excited about getting another j-o-b. Then one day I watched a TV news interview of a successful VA out in Montana and realized I could do that! I purchased a couple of books on how to be a VA and with a little prior planning I quit my corporate job and established my new business.

3. What advice would you give new and aspiring VAs?
I have two:
Polish your networking skills and force yourself to get out of the house and meet people.
Do not buy anything at the office supply store until you absolutely have to!

4. What resources have helped you in your business?
I recently read The Commonsense Virtual Assistant and recommend it to new VAs. My local business assistance center and my local chamber of commerce have been a huge help in getting me clients.

5. Share something about yourself.
Being self-employed I tend to work too much. I am not comfortable “just sitting around”. Realizing I need to relax more I recently took a knitting class. It’s the perfect hobby for fidgety people and it gives me the mental break I need.

6. Additional comments you'd like to share.
If you are considering a career change I highly recommend becoming a Virtual Assistant. There is plenty of work for all of us!

Paula's Contact Information:
Paula Hill - Virtual Assistant
Website:
http://paulahill.com
Blog: http://paulahill.com/paulas-blog/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/paula_hill
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/panther.city.paula
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/paulahill