Ultimate Checklist to Starting Your Own VA Business

Have you been wondering how to kick your 9 to 5 and be your own boss? Love the nomad life but don’t know how to move forward and run your own business? Planning to become a virtual assistant, but don’t know what to do?

Look no further!

Being your own boss may perhaps not be as easy as everyone makes it, but let us give you a checklist that you can use as a guide to running your own virtual assistant business! Use this as a running guide to mark all that you’ve done, and by the end of it, you will have a newly launched virtual assistant business.

Before You Start Anything

  1. Understand your reasons why: Why do you want to start this business? This will become your END GAME when you lose motivation, when you are down or when things are not working out.  
  2. Identify the skills and expertise that you have: This will become the core of your business, the services you offer and the work that you do. If you have expertise or experiences that you don’t particularly like, for example, excel formulas or bookkeeping, strike them off the list.
  3. Evaluate your niche and target audience: Sit down and note the kind of people you want to work with, what do these people do (You want to work with only mompreneurs or lifestyle bloggers/influencers?), industries and businesses that you’re attracted to.

This is the core passion, skill set and the reason WHY you will be starting your virtual assistant business. Let’s now figure out the tasks which will help you plan and organize yourself to become a virtual assistant:

Organizational and Planning Tasks for Your VA Biz Launch

  1. Choose a fitting business name: This gives an identity to your business. It also gives you that feel of ownership about your business idea and puts a name to it! Trust us, it starts feeling real then.
  2. Formulate a list of services: Earlier when you identified your skills you were basically identifying your service offers. Now is the time to re-word them into specific services. For example, managing and organizing emails can be packaged to email management, social media management skills can be packaged to community management, post creation, campaign management, etc.
  3. Determine the pricing for your services:  This is going to be a little more complicated. It’s a three step process, where you should do some preliminary research on how others are packaging their services and their pricing, package your services according to how you feel they are appropriate, and then price these packaged services. This could mean monthly plans, hourly rates, weekly tasks, etc.
  4. Setup your office and determine your address: This could be your home office, a coworking space or a separate office itself that you can setup. Of course, this is a whole project in itself and will involve figuring out all that you need to run your business successfully.
  5. Research legal requirements and formulate contracts: Do you want to establish an LLC or a Sole proprietorship? Do you not want to register your company right now? What are the legal implications of serving your target audience? What are tax implications based on whichever type of business you’re setting up? Get your contracts in order for the services you will offer.
  6. Setup a project and work management workflow/system: This will be a lifesaver once you start working on things. Setup a preliminary workflow system, how you will approach clients, how you will welcome them, what project management and contract signing tools you will use, and how you will execute your tasks.
  7. Get your bookkeeping, finances and invoicing in order: Establish a separate bank account if you need, setup your accounting and invoicing, and hire a bookkeeping helping hand if needed at this stage. Start tracking your expenses, the money that you’re spending on your business.

Marketing and Social Media Tasks for Your VA Biz Launch 

  1. Get a logo designed: Or design it yourself. Since you’ve established your business name, now is the time to figure out the logo you want. It represents what your business stands for, and the work that you want to do. Better still, establish a mood board yourself or with your designer. It will give you the feel you want from your design.
  2. Get your website and social media profiles in order: Buy a domain name and a hosting package, build a website (or hire an expert), and create your social media profiles. Choose only those profiles that you know will get you the traction you need (meaning the ones where your audience seems to be hanging out on!)
  3. Get your business cards and email address ready: An official email address sounds and looks legit. Get your email address in order. Then get your business cards printed.
  4. Get into as many online and offline networking forums as are necessary: Register and join all those forums, say Facebook groups, or offline groups like Rotary, that CAN contribute towards your business. These are forums or groups that are your potential audience, or are help related forums, to give you a quick boost
  5. Establish a content calendar: While advertising on social media and search engines is a way to find work, ranking on search engines through your content, is a quicker and easier route to establishing your presence and legitimacy. Plan your calendar as to what content you will share and when. Follow that calendar.
  6. Establish a social media marketing calendar: Similar to the above, create a social media sharing calendar; what content would you be sharing with the world and when. Use local holidays and international days as a rough guide around which you can play with your content sharing.

And, Final Tasks:  

  1. Market, Market, Market.
  2. Collaborate with others who are working in similar niches.
  3. Get hired as a subcontractor or barter services to build the brand.
  4. Breathe.
  5. Enjoy the Ride!