Late last year I found myself needing extra help with my blog as I was working full time and couldn’t create the content I wanted after working all week. This is a common factor amongst bloggers who also work full time, there just aren’t enough hours in the day to get everything done!
This is where hiring a Virtual Assistant comes in. Having someone access your blog virtually and upload content for you, schedule posts, create tweets alongside the new content on your blog as well as a whole host of other services depending on what you need.
I found I needed help with posting and scheduling content, scheduling the accompanying tweets and creating content. I felt that my blog was being neglected since my work hours picked up and also I didn’t necessarily have the energy or motivation to actually ensure there was fresh content on my blog.
So this was when I realised I could do with some help...
Choosing A Virtual Assistant
Before Twitter I’m not sure I would have known where to start, but thankfully there are always self-employed people looking for work so it didn’t take long for me to find a freelancer offering VA services.
I noticed Eleanor (notsomoderngirl) was offering her VA services for bloggers and was looking for new clients. I was in the market for someone to take the reins on my blog as I was working a lot of hours and didn’t have the time to dedicate to it.
After enquiring with Eleanor about the services she was offering, I hired her and I haven’t looked back since!
We work together really well and I trust her completely with my blog – it can be difficult to hand over the reins to someone you don’t really know, after all I’ve had my blog since 2012 so effectively handing it over to another person to control could be quite daunting.
But I needn’t have worried as Eleanor has been nothing but professional and friendly in all the interactions I’ve had with her over email.
She understands how I want my blog to look as well as the tone in which I would like my blog posts to be written.
What Does A Virtual Assistant Do?
Well basically anything you want them to do to be honest!
For me, Eleanor takes over the day to day running of my blog which can consist of anything from scheduling tweets for any upcoming or recent blog posts, drafting up blog post ideas in Wix, creating content for my social media channels (mainly Twitter and Facebook), writing blog posts, scheduling up guest posts and more.
A Virtual Assistant can be a blessing if you find you’re too busy to create content for your blog or social media channels. It still gives your readers and followers the illusion that you’re still online and creating content, when in fact you’re not!
There’s nothing worse than going onto a website/blog and seeing that the last post was created over a month ago! You begin to wonder if that blogger has given up blogging as it’s incredibly frustrating not to have any fresh content to read.
So this is where a virtual assistant comes in – they can keep the content fresh and ensure that there’s always a new post or two going up on your blog which will keep your readers on your site longer.
If you’re struggling to come up with content ideas , then having a virtual assistant can help massively. They may have different ideas that you hadn’t thought of previously, for example there are always a lot of events happening over the Summer so you (or your virtual assistant) could write a post or two with these in mind.
We all know how much we hate scheduling tweets so to have someone else do this frees us up to do other fun things such as responding to emails or drafting up a blog post or two! Or of course, working and living life- whichever fits best.
Personally, I find that having a virtual assistant means I can get on with life or be at work and not worry about having to promote my new blog post or come up with new content ideas!
My mind is freer and there isn’t a big weight on my shoulders – there’s someone else taking charge of it.
How Much Does A Virtual Assistant Charge?
This differs with each VA as their services may be different, the amount of time they spend on your blog/website etc. may differ every week or month and they may have a set price for a certain number of tasks undertaken.
So this is where your research will come in handy. You may have to email or message them to ask for their rates and perhaps ask other bloggers/content creators/freelancers if they know of anyone offering these kind of services.
In general, the blogging community is a friendly one and other bloggers will be only too happy to send work to someone whom they know. I personally love doing this and I think it’s my one blogging superpower – knowing exactly who to tag on twitter whenever someone is asking a particular question!
The best part of hiring a virtual assistant is that you can hire someone from anywhere in the world, although it’s probably best to find someone in your timezone to avoid late night/early morning crossovers!
Unfortunately, like with blogging, freelancing and many other self-employed jobs, there doesn’t seem to be a baseline amount that they should be charging. Apart from of course, the National Living Wage – which in the UK as of April 2022 – is £9.50 an hour.
So even as a basic place to start, you should definitely be paying your virtual assistant the National Living Wage, otherwise it’s not a fair wage for them to be earning for the amount of work involved!
Each Virtual Assistant will be different in how they set out their pricing but there are generally three different structures: hourly, task based or on a retainer. Of course these all have their pros and cons and will depend entirely on the kind of packages or services they’re offering.
It may well be worth emailing or messaging a few to enquire about pricing as well as their services. Perhaps there’s a package they could tailor to you personally, depending on the types of service/s you are looking for.
Again, this is where Twitter comes into its own as there are always other blogger/freelancers on there who are only too happy to point you in the right direction!
Advantages of Hiring A Virtual Assistant
Of course, the main advantage of hiring a VA is definitely time. All those hours you used to spend scheduling up tweets, thinking of, planning, researching and creating content, not to mention getting all the relevant photos for the posts!
Here are just a few of the other advantages to hiring a VA:
- They maximise your productivity by allowing you to concentrate more on the side of blogging/content creation that you actually enjoy without getting caught up in the nitty gritty aspects of running a blog.
- More cost effective than hiring another member of staff, you simply pay a monthly amount (for instance) without all the hassle that comes with a full time staff member.
- Monthly or weekly updates about how they’re getting on and the tasks they’ve been able to achieve within that set time period. From this you can see if they’re successfully coping with the work load or are in fact getting through their tasks quicker than expected – in which case this would allow you to alter it quickly and easily….
- ...Which leads nicely into this point about being able to scale their package offering/workload up or down. With weekly emails you’ll soon be aware of any problems in this area which allows you both time to set more achievable/realistic deadlines in terms of workload.
- Only paying for productive time spent actually working on your blog/website creating content, doing admin, scheduling tweets etc. You only pay for the times they’re actually working which of course means you’re only paying for productive time which saves money in the long run!
So you can see there are plenty of advantages to be had when hiring a Virtual Assistant – you just need to do some research and find the best fit for you and your business/blog/website!
If you ARE looking for a Virtual Assistant, I can’t recommend Eleanor from notsomoderngirl enough! She’s really amazing and has been an absolute dream to work with so do give her an email if you’re in the market!