Growing a design business on your own takes a lot of time and energy because you have to do everything yourself. Your business hours won’t just include doing the actual design work you love. In order to keep your business running smoothly, you’ll also be in charge of all those other tasks like staying up to date on your accounting, marketing your services, and creating content for your website. If you aren’t efficient at all those things, they can wind up wearing you out and making you second guess your decision to start your own design business.
One way to streamline tasks that you don’t enjoy (or that take a majority of your time), is to onboard a virtual assistant. You can utilize your VA regularly, or on an as-needed basis. This person can assist you with a variety of tasks, freeing up your time to focus on what you enjoy.
Here are eight common tasks a VA could take off your plate.
1. Content creation
In order to build your brand and authority online, you’ll want to create content for your website or blog. This content is essential to establishing your online presence, but it also takes a lot of time.
A virtual assistant can help. You can give them a list of topics and let them create a rough draft of each post for you. Then you can go in and add your flair and personality to each one and make it your own.
Once the post is ready, your VA can upload it to your WordPress blog and ensure everything’s ready to go. This could include adding images, filling out SEO tags, and scheduling the post based on your content calendar.
And keep in mind, blog posts aren’t the only kind of content you can outsource. You can enlist a virtual assistant’s help for ebooks, bonus freebies for your subscribers, basically any type of written content for your business needs.
2. Social media marketing
Social media is a great way to build your brand’s online presence. Your social media profiles and engagement can help bring in new clients and establish relationships with your audience.
You can have your VA create and schedule your business-related social media updates. They can work with you to develop a social media marketing plan to engage with influencers and your target audience. Your virtual assistant can share vital statistics about your progress, and help you learn more about which social profiles are getting the most engagement.
3. Batch photo processing
If you utilize automated processing for your photos with Lightroom Presets or with a different editing software, you can have your VA do the initial work on each photo. They can apply the correct presets, resize your photos, and make sure they’re ready for you to use.
Photos can be accessed using a shared cloud drive, and you can go back in to finalize all of the photos to ensure they have your special touch.
Research takes a lot of time, especially if you get lost on a virtual rabbit hole while looking for information. If you need some high-quality information and links to beef up a post, want to find a blog you can guest post on, or are looking for a top-rated company to do business with, your virtual assistant can do the searching for you.
5. Creating invoices
If you don’t invoice your clients, you aren’t going to get paid. However, invoicing is a task that many creative entrepreneurs aren’t fond of. Set your virtual assistant up with access to create your invoices and send them on your behalf after they’re approved.
You can even have your VA follow up with clients, ensuring you actually get paid. Bringing in income is an important part of running a business, and with a VA taking care of invoices, you can rest easy knowing it’s being taken care of.
6. Calendar management
Do you have trouble keeping your calendar up to date without double booking appointments or forgetting to write down webinars or conferences you wanted to attend? Outsourcing your calendar management to your VA can help keep you organized and make sure you’re always where you’re supposed to be.
If you use an online calendar, your assistant can enter events directly onto your calendar for you and ensure that reminders are set up to your preferences. Your virtual assistant can also help with scheduling appointments for you to speak with clients, vendors, or other meetings you might need to attend.
7. Sourcing images
In today’s marketplace, your content needs images to break up the text. The visual elements play an essential role in drawing in an audience. In order to keep your images fresh, you have to take time to source Creative Commons or other images you can use without violating any copyright laws.
You can have a virtual assistant tackle image sourcing for you. Once downloaded, these images can be organized in files and saved to a cloud service so you have access to them whenever you’re ready.
8. Cloud organization
Online storage space can easily get cluttered if it’s not organized well. If you have a mess to sift through on Google Drive, Dropbox, or any other service, let your virtual assistant help you begin organizing your files. You won’t waste any more time searching for the file you actually need.
Do you have a virtual assistant for your design business? What other tasks do you delegate so you can focus your time on the parts of your business that you love?