Many of you broke into a sweat after reading the title, didn’t you?  Most Virtual Assistants I work with don’t have a plan because they believe it’s too hard, too time consuming, or they just don’t know where to start.

Creating a good marketing plan doesn’t have to be overwhelming, or costly, but it will save you time and help you achieve your goals.

Start by identifying:

  • Who is your ideal client?
  • What do I have to spend?
  • Where can I reach my ideal client?

Establish your ideal client profile by looking at your current clients and who can afford to buy your product or service?  Then identify the best ways to reach them.

Your marketing budget should minimally be 10-15% of your yearly sales.  Start simple, and make changes monthly or quarterly as you begin to see results.  Be realistic and flexible.  Having a budget will allow you to visualize and expand upon your program throughout the year.

The plan itself will have a number of options to consider.  Here is a list of some marketing aspects to consider in your plan.

  • Print advertising (including Yellow Pages)
  • Direct Mail
  • Email (include eZines and Blogs)
  • Networking (Chamber participation/membership)
  • Sponsorship
  • Trade Shows
  • Article Writing
  • Speaking
  • Referrals
  • Social Media

While some of these items will have little to no cost, including them in your marketing plan will help you stay on track and implement each segment as needed.

When putting together the actual marketing piece, remember to include a ‘call to action’.  It could be a coupon in a direct mail piece, or a ‘free’ offer at the end of a speaking engagement.  Just make sure you have different calls to action in each piece so that tracking success will be a breeze.

Check in quarterly to see how each segment is performing and make adjustments as necessary throughout the year to make sure you are getting the biggest bang for your marketing buck!

Jeannine Grich, owner of Accurate Business Services, a VA practice, is an author, writer, speaker and VA Business Coach, specializing in providing professional business coaching to established and start-up virtual assistants (VA’s).  Visit:  http://www.VAbizcoach.com; or contact her at: http://vabizcoach.com/contact-us/.