Finding clients on LinkedIn is a great approach and it does work for many types of businesses. However, there is a right and a wrong way to go about it. In the case of a VA, if someone is looking for admin support, and they post about the role on LinkedIn, it's very tempting to leap in without properly considering the role and whether it's a good fit for your skill set. You are new to the business. Shiny business cards at the ready. The new website is all set up. Just raring to go. But you need a client. So you comb LinkedIn and see a person looking for a VA.... and you pounce. We've all been there. However, replying to this type of opportunity requires care. I have seen a lot of posts on LinkedIn where someone has posted a request for a VA and a number of VAs have responded in a way that is unlikely to show them in the best light.
These are real-life examples of posts asking for VA support.
The post said “please watch the video and then apply in the way described in the video if you feel you have the qualifications” The responses included: “call me, I’m exactly what you need” and "look at my bio because I can do this for you".
The video asked for applications via email.
Had I been looking for a VA I would have discounted everyone who failed to email me because they
cannot follow simple instructions. Additionally, by asking potential clients to call or check
their bio, they are asking them to work harder than necessary to find the information they need.
The potential client is looking for someone to save them time, not create more work.
2. "Looking for a VA. Must be based in London". I'm sure they had a reason for specifying a London-
based VA. Don't apply if you live in Aberdeen, Abu Dhabi or Arkansas.
VA’s are there to help BUSY people so when you are looking at advertised VA roles, it pays to remember the following:
1. The client wants what they want. If you can give it to them, follow the application instructions
carefully and apply in the way they have asked you to. If you cannot carry out the required tasks
then look for a better match for your skillset.
2. Don't apply if you don't meet the working pattern or location criteria.
3. Don't like something about the post? Scroll on by. The role is not for you.
What you can do to ensure you stand out from the crowd when applying for a VA role
1. Send a polite note asking if you can set up a call with them to discuss the role in more detail at a time
that suits them, and then be on time for that call.
2. Check out their website, learn a little about them, and be ready to explain how you can help them to
increase their business.
3. Ensure all your written communications are impeccably presented with excellent grammar. If you
are messaging the potential client, keep it formal. No abbreviations or emojis.
4. Keep your initial communications brief and to the point so that the potential client gets the
details they need without having to wade through lots of information. They are busy. That's
why they need you. Be aware of that at every stage of the process.
5. When you get onto the call with the potential client, be prepared to confidently explain how you can
help them, what the benefits of working with you will be, how you work, how things can be shared
between you (often clients don't know how this will work so you may have to advise them), what you
charge and when you invoice including what your payment terms are.
To find out more about how to land those first few clients, as well as how to choose what to offer as a service, and what you actually need when you first set up as a VA, book one of my Power Hours for VA's who are just starting out.