Being a service provider can be an extremely rewarding career. You get to work with people you like. Additionally, you get to make a living on your own terms. However, being self-employed can also be challenging, particularly if you are short on customers. There are many ways you can increase your customer base as a virtual assistant. Let’s explore some of the tried and true customer base boosters.
Memberships offer a win-win for both you and your client. With most memberships, members receive a benefit that others do not receive. The most common example is a discount on services. For example, a membership might offer a 20% discount on ten hours of virtual administrative services. Your client receives a sizeable discount on services and you receive a promise of repeated income and predictable cash flow.
You can set up recurring automatic payments through PayPal and other invoicing systems so you don’t have to lift a finger. The cash goes into your account and you get predictable monthly work. Consider creating a tiered system so you can appeal to various budgets and needs. For example, a five, ten and fifteen hour membership program.
Create a Referral Program
Word of mouth is one of the best ways to gain a client base that is just full of ideal clients — people you want to work with. A referral program is a nice way to reward your existing clients for sending new business your way. Referral rewards can be in the form of free or discounted services or cash. Spend some time calculating the value of a customer. You may find that a $100 referral payment is just a drop in the bucket compared to what a client is worth.
Embrace the Power of the Opt-In
Service providers around the globe have found great success by creating an email newsletter and sending it on a regular basis to their clients and prospects. Why does this work so well? Regular email messages connect you to your prospect on a consistent basis. Quite often you’ll remind them that they’ve been meaning to hire a VA. It’s about being in the right place at the right time.
Additionally, you can provide information in your newsletter that offers value to your prospect and clients. They will begin to turn to you for information, insight, and advice and of course…service.
Motivating website visitors to sign up for your newsletter is as easy as offering a compelling giveaway. For example, you might write a report about how to hire a technically savvy virtual assistant. Or a step-by-step “how to” report on how to create a social networking campaign that sells. You might then offer a discount on your personal social networking campaign management skills and services at the end of the report. So the report then serves two goals — it builds your email list and it helps sell your services.
Growing your virtual assistant customer base doesn’t have to be a matter of knocking on doors and visiting freelance websites. Take a strategic and proactive approach. Motivate the customers to come to you. You’ll have a full schedule and an ideal client base in no time.