Finding your niche as a Virtual Assistant (VA) is easier than you may think. Although this may sound like an over-simplification, finding your niche essentially boils down to this:
- Assess your personal skill sets and experience, and
- Search the web for people who are looking for VAs with those skills.
In the beginning of your virtual assistant career you may have to take on as much business as possible just to generate revenues. However, as your work load increases you’ll find it necessary to narrow your client base to a specific niche market.
By targeting a specific niche are you better able to anticipate the needs of your clients. For instance, if your VA business specifically targets real estate brokers, you’ll be in much better position to succeed than if you were a “generic” VA who just happened to have a real estate broker client.
You want to be a VA who specializes in specific fields and not a generalist or “One size fits all”. Reasons for being a specialist include:
- Specializing allows you to charge more
- Specializing allows you to be more efficient
- Specializing brings more value to your clients
- Specializing spreads your good reputation faster, and
- Specializing helps you saturate a specific niche
Did I mention specializing allows you to charge more? 😉
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Finding Your Niche as a Virtual Assistant
What Skills Do You Posses or Want to Learn?
Start by taking an inventory of special skills you have currently or those that you wish to learn. For instance, if you’re very proficient in Photoshop and web design then you would do well to search out execs in ad agencies and design firms.
On the other hand, if you have experience in law then you would want to approach legal firms or private lawyers.
Again, if you do not already posses a specific skill then choose based on skills you want to learn. This can add a real sense of challenge and growth (income) to your new VA business.
Choose a Clearly Defined Group
The best way to select a niche market is to select a clearly defined group of people. Examples include:
- Event planners, and
- Chief Financial Officers (CFOs)
The possibilities are limitless, and there is always someone looking to hire a professional VA.
Whatever group you choose, whittle it down even to a specific kind of person within that group. This makes your work that much easier and is more profitable than having a general idea.
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Reaching Out to Your Niche Market
“Ideally”, you would not target a niche until you’ve actually had some experience working in that field. This will increase your chances for quick success, since you may already have contacts and a decent understanding of what is required to succeed there.
Increase your exposure by attending networking events in your chosen field. For instance, if you’re working in the design field go to design events so you can meet designers and ad execs. If you want to target bloggers, attend WordPress Camp and other blogging related events.
Contact people you know in the industry and ask for referrals. Explain your new project to them and show them how you can help them achieve their goals or solve problems.
Finding your niche as a virtual assistant is a great way to increase your fees, develop new skills, and get more relevant contacts quickly. It’s even easier than you may think.
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