Virtual Assistants for Hire? Would You?


#1

Hi All!

I’m at the point where I’m considering a VA for my blog - someone to help manage my social media, to find me some PR gigs, and to book speaking events in my area.

Has anyone out there done this? Is it worth it? Do you have a person you’d recommend? And what’s the going rate?

So many questions… :wink:

Derek


#2

It really is dependent on what you are looking to get done and at what quality.

For example, on a different project, I was paying someone $1 an hour in South Africa to do data entry… but you had to spell out everything and if there was any creativity required, it might not have worked out.

I’ve used Upwork for finding new assistants, but also just googling as well. For example, I’m considering a pinterest VA now, and I was able to find her from a Google search.

Like I said, pricing is dependent on skill level, experience, and country of residence.

Erik


#3

I am too currently looking for a VA. Funny thing is, I am a Pinterest VA/consultant (side hustle) but I need help with some blog stuff like website maintenance and more. So I guess the VA needs a VA. Hahaha. Thanks for the Upwork recommendation!


#4

Ooh, maybe we can exchange services, Nicole.


#5

Ooooo, I love a good barter!


#6

I’ve been reading (mostly from Tim Ferriss) that if you want to get your blog to the next level, you really need to stop doing everything. And beyond that, you need to help fill the gaps that you just don’t have knowledge in. That’s why I’m mostly hoping for an assistant that can do PR work and get me speaking gigs.

I was hoping for a recommendation here, but Upwork sounds like it might be promising too. Thanks for the feedback!


#7

Send me a message about what you need and let’s see if we can work something out.


#8

Definitely - focus on what you do best, and outsource/automate the rest. I’m looking to do that in the 1st quarter of 2018…

Best of luck Derek


#9

Are you part of the FinCon group on Facebook? They might have some good recommendations. There was a thread on VA’s just the other day.


#10

I’m not…but probably should be!! Thanks! I’ll check it out!


#11

Do you have enough time to delegate the job effectively? Time must be available for adequate training, for questions and answers, for opportunities to check progress, and for rework if that is necessary and trust me, you will have to do heavy editing of their work.

I’ve done this many times. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.

The trick is to hire multiple people, test quickly with a short 1-2 hour project, then fire the people that don’t work out.

Rate: $3-$6 an hour.

Key tip: Hire slow, fire fast.


#12

Interesting conversation. Thanks for all the input. It is educational. Tom


#13

Only $3-$6 an hour?? Seriously? I figured I’d have to shell out $10 an hour minimum. Where are you getting your help from? Upwork? Fiverr?


#14

Sure. I’ll let you know what I learn!


#15

Upwork. Usually from Bangladesh, Philipines etc. They tend to just do what they are told, so don’t expect any initiative from their side. That said, give them specific directions whenever possible.

Currently I have a VA for Pinterest account. Does it worth it? 393 hits from Pinterest in last 30 days for $160…not at all.

I have to be honest and say, with any kind of blogging or social media stuff I always had to go behind them and sort of clean up the errors.


#16

I use Upwork VAs quite a bit for random administrative tasks. I’ve owned a few niche sites in the past (sold now) that had content written by VAs. The hourly prices can be low, but you definitely get what you pay for. For quality writing, you are going to pay much more than $3/hour, but if you need someone to run google searches and create a spreadsheet then under $10 is common. The hiring process takes some practice. Be detailed in the deliverables and timeline.


#17

Wow, I would have to say that some of these comments are very discouraging from a business perspective. I’d rather pay for someone from the states a fair wage than find someone overseas who doesn’t really finish the job. There are tons of great VAs for specific areas, and the benefit of finding them & having them on retainer is that they’ll eventually learn your brand and be able to produce great work in a very short turnaround time. Social media management is a huge task and if you’re having someone run it for you - from creating content, replying to comments, engagement, tracking, ads, etc… you can expect to pay a few hundred to a thousand or more per month. I’ve personally been contacted to do this on a subcontractor basis and wouldn’t charge less than $1,000/mo for a full suite of management. If you want PR management, expect to pay even more than that. Someone experienced will be able to great things for your business, but needs to be compensated for their time. You do get what you pay for.


#18

Thanks Modern Suzy! Yeah, it sounds like I’d be better off asking people in my network who they might recommend, and then paying $15 an hour (or maybe more) for quality work that will actually help me in the long run…


#19

I have tried a couple of different projects, here is what worked and not for me.

VA managing social media
I tried working with a US agency to manage social media, it didn´t work out very well and was quite expensive. They did post things on social media but I had to spend a lot of time managing and correcting things. I didn´t feel they were taking responsibility for what they were posting, just using automation tools and guess work.
$200-$300 / m for a few tweets/fb posts per week of which many needed correction, I only run it for a few months when I got started.

SEO checkup on site
This worked very well with a resource from Pakistan, I don´t remember the total cost but a few hours at $5-$10 / h for a few h. I got a full cleanup of the site, no visual changes, just fix things behind the scenes in the html, a follow up call explaining what they have done and what´s left to do which may incur visual changes. Just backup before you let them in and you are safe to go.

AdWords campaign optimization
I wanted to learn about AdWords and try out running campaigns. I setup a campaign and quite soon found myself spending far too many hours watching videos and reading up on how to optimize a campaign on general level.
I hired a resource from Bangladesh at $8 / h, he spent 3h changing all the settings and wrote a 3 page report with screenshots and all explaining all the changes. I got the campaign fixed and I learned a lot from the report as well.

So in my experience it´s been successful with very specific tasks, VA didn´t work out at all.


#20

Problem is that work quality will be the same. $10 guy from states will deliver the same quality as $3 overseas guy.