The VA Circle of Life

One of the hardest things that I found when starting up as a Virtual Assistant was identifying my niche and my target market. I know there are many others out there that feel the same and find the whole process a little confusing and sometimes off putting to actually get started in the VA world, or indeed in any business. All I can say is persevere and it will come to you.

VA for VAs

My initial thoughts when I started up was that I wanted to appeal to small businesses and individuals. All I knew was that I wanted to help people that were on the same journey as me with a small enterprise that they wanted to grow. I wanted to be the one to help them progress and my thought process was, and still is… ‘your success is my success!’ I can only develop and grow my business from my clients. Therefore my interest in their business is not only to see them flourish, but to also help in the growth of mine. Therefore I was and still am, willing to invest my time and effort to start small with my clients and to create a long lasting business relationship that is mutually rewarding. The VA circle of life

I took out my notebook and started to write down the tasks that I actually enjoyed doing and realised that the majority of what I had written down involved content in either one way or another. Whether it was creating/writing content, formatting it, presenting it, scheduling, uploading it… you name it, it was all to do with content. The word rang true to me and it had a double meaning, it also means being in a state of peaceful happiness.

One word, two meanings describes what I do and how I strive to feel each day! How amazing is that?

I then started thinking about what type of business or individual that I wanted to work with. Who would I ‘fit’ well with? Personality matches are really important when it comes to building strong business relationships and looking to work with someone on a long term basis. Initially, I couldn’t get my head around the fact that choosing one particular target market would help me gain focus. I saw it that if I just focused on the one particular client, then I would be severing myself from a whole load of potential business. But that simply is not the case.

My ideal client smacked me in the face (not literally, but it felt like it because it sure was an awakening experience). Other Virtual Assistants! I would be a VA for VAs, everything in my mind slotted into place. I could work for people that already know the benefits of having a VA, that understand how the industry works, and that I could also learn from, invest my time in and help them to grow their own business! After all, we VAs are businesses too!

I still work with clients outside of the VA Circle too! Not just through sub contracting but also directly and I share the same passion and enthusiasm with them as I do my VA clients. However, what this discovery did for me was to help me firm up my direction. It gave me a sense of opportunity and helped me focus and channel how to take it. It made me identifiable as a VA for VAs. I knew in myself what I wanted to achieve from my business and since then I’ve not looked back.

In fact, it’s now starting to go full (VA) circle as I’m looking at working with my very own VA to support me in my business.

If you would like to find out more about how I can contribute to your content(ment), then I would love to hear from you. You can get in touch with me here, or alternatively visit my Facebook page to find out more.

– Michelle

Note: This article has been revisited from 2014

17 comments on “The VA Circle of Life

  1. i also had a problem deciding what my niche is. Choosing one meant i couldn’t write for certain markets, i thought. once I staretd to specialise though, I realised that it was easier for me to do my job because I had insight into the client’s business and topic, I could ask questions that trully helped illuminate the topic, I could work faster and generally, I was better able to deliver more than a generalist. I also found that I didn’t have to have one niche. Once I was sailing on one niche, I could add to my repertoire. So i was not stuck once the decision was made.

  2. What a great topic. I think I have my target market pinned down but then when I take a class or read a blog like this I start doubting that I have it targeted down enough. I guess its a work in progress.

  3. Michelle, have you been reading my mind?!

    I have been giving very serious thought to this lately and realize now that I have just hit my one year anniversary of being a VA (WHOOO HOOOO!), I really want to narrow my focus and stop being a general VA. My dream is to work with nonprofits but the problem with them is that they don’t always have money to pay. In order to do this I will have to have other clients to supplement and so I need to figure out who I want to work with and them focus on them.

    You are so right in that once you figure out your target market everything you want and need to do comes into laser focus and Damaria said, you don’t just have to have one niche, you can always add to it.

    The thought of figuring out who I want to work with is a little daunting but I plan to tackle it in the next couple months because something BIG is waiting for me, I can feel it, and I just have to figure out the best way to get to it. The fastest way would be to narrow my niche!

    1. We do tend to have this connection don’t we Nadine haha!

      CONGRATULATIONS on your first VA anniversary. I hope you did something awesome to celebrate the occasion?

      I think that is the key question to ask yourself WHO do YOU want to work with? That is so important, after all it’s your business, and if you are anything like me then you started this to be in control of your own destiny :)

      If you fancy a brainstorming session via Skype sometime we could throw some ideas around?

  4. I struggled with this too Michelle, then finally one day I was struck in the melon (it was a mighy whack too I might add!) with my very passion and the pathway began to clear. I’m still a distance from having it all together but at least now everything I do is pointed in the direction I’m going. It all makes so much more sense now. Great and timely post Michelle, thanks!

    1. haha! “struck in the melon” love that Donna, that made me chuckle! Hope it didn’t hurt too much!

      Thanks for reading, it’s such a relief when you can feel your pathway forming in front of you. It takes a while to get there, but just choosing a way forward rather than looking at all the different pathways is a massive achievement to your business.

  5. A great idea and HELP for me, Michelle! I’ve just recently began setting myself up for the VA World and am researching how to get started, connecting with LinkedIn professionals in the VA industry and reading. . . reading. . . reading . . . and did I mention, reading?! (smile). It’s a different approach that I’m accustomed to; however, I want to be my own boss and grow my own business, as I have worked so diligently in doing so for others over the many years. Patience is key, I’ve learned, and after reading your post, I have a clear direction! Thanks again.

    1. Hi Valarie

      Thanks so much for taking the time to read my post and to leave a comment. I’m so pleased that you found it helpful.

      When you start up you do get your head into thinking you have to read EVERYTHING and it can be overwhelming, so just take a step back and read what is applicable at the time. I thought I needed to read everything that was being shared, just in the event I missed something and it sent me into panic mode.

      Reach out to all of us VA’s, we are here to help :)

      Michelle

  6. Hi Michelle,

    Great article and perfect timing! I am in the process of opening my own VA business and am having a hard time picking my niche. I’ve narrowed it down to the type of person I would like to work with. My ideal client would be helping others, friendly, and approachable so I was thinking of my interests that would tie into that; I thought of my interests in being healthy, fit, spiritual, and holistic. So I am in the process now of finding out what type of group, market that would fit as my target. Again, great article and it is helping me understand which direction I should go in. Thanks!

    1. Hi Lisa

      Thanks for stopping by my blog and taking the time to leave a comment. So pleased that it has given you a little food for thought with your niche. If you need any further help then be sure to reach out to all of us. We are here to help :)

      Michelle

  7. wow! it surprises me that there’s a real help in here. Thanks michelle. Just in time I am fighting with this kind of battle, now I’m sure I’ve won with this weapon you handed me.

    1. Hi Cherry

      Thanks for stopping by and reading my post. So glad that it was of help. Please do shout out if you need some help with anything.

  8. Hi Michelle,

    Great article! I have been wrestling with my niche too. My passion is organization and managing time. They go hand i hand. You’re right, once you can narrow down your market, the ball starts rolling.

    Thank you for your post and your offer of team support. God Bless!

    1. Hey Eileen, you are more than welcome, I’m so glad you enjoyed my post. It’s great to know where your passion lies, fantastic way to start off your direction. Good luck with it all :)

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