Virtual Assistants are great at covering the nitty-gritty aspects of your business, such as web scraping, data entry, writing, editing, and formatting.
But you can also use your VA or virtual assistant to grow your mailing list or subscribers’ database. The phrase “the money is in the list” has become the mantra of many successful online marketers who learned to harness its power. They concluded, that it is not enough to drive only organic or social traffic to your site, especially if you are trying to sell poetry, books, products, or services. You need to engage with your readers to make their visits worthwhile and convert them into customers or loyal subscribers. And one of the best ways to do it is through email campaigns.
The Case For Email: Why it’s not enough to get traffic only through organic and social?
Social media can help make your brand visible or relevant, but often, you cannot monetize the number of views, likes, and comments. You don’t have full control over whether your target viewers will see your post. For instance, your new Facebook post may appear near the top of the page of your subscribers’ feed when it is newly posted. But it gradually decreases in relevance as more feed comes in. Like freshly baked bread, it tends to go stale with each passing minute, hour, and day. By the end of the 2nd or 3rd day, your post has already faded into oblivion.
The Power Of Email For Bloggers And Writers
Your email message can stay in your recipient’s inbox until he or she reads it or deletes it. Studies show that a huge percentage of people read or at least click-open most of the content of their inboxes (especially if you’re good at email marketing) If the email recipient finds even the smallest value or benefits from your message, like getting a price update or seeing your latest design, he or she will give it a click, thus increasing your chances of sales conversion. Finally, email is about building trust and a more personalized relationship with users. And trust leads to more open collaboration. So, how can we maximize the power of email with the help of a virtual assistant? Let’s find out.
10 Tips To Use Your Virtual Assistant (VA) to Help You Grow Your Mailing List:
1. Task your VA with web scraping of email contacts, leads, partners, affiliates, etc.
If you have a specific target market for your product or services, then you can tell your VA to build a database accordingly. If you are selling something or building a website that targets hospitals and clinics in a certain territory, you can instruct your VA to search for a list of all the medical facilities in the area. Then, he or she can visit their websites and scrape all the pertinent information you need for your email campaign, such as addresses, contact numbers, contact persons, their emails, LinkedIn accounts, etc. Your VA will then organize the gathered data in a worksheet, giving you a viable mailing list.
2. Delegate the preparation and sending of customized emails to your VA
Now that you have a working list, you can proceed with sending emails. You can compose the sales letter yourself, or opt to let your VA do it, provided that he or she is also adept in such tasks. Just make sure that you check the final draft and that the email heading is concise and something that your recipient would be very interested in. Once the sales letter is in order, your VA can do the painstaking job of personalizing it according to the individual recipient’s name, title, department (if there’s any), company name, and contact details. After all, you wouldn’t want to send out a generic email to people who have the authority to act on your proposal.
3. Assign your VA to create a periodic newsletter
If you are running a site that thrives on organic viewership instead of targeted lead generation, then a regular newsletter can help increase your opt-in rate. Some viewers would appreciate a fresh update from you now and then. It could be about new products, promotions, latest tips, industry news, community news, or anything that is of interest to them. You can ask them to opt-in to receive your regular newsletter by signing up to your email list. You can ask your VA to draft a newsletter every week, every other week, or once a month that you can approve to send out to your subscribers.
4. Challenge your VA to expand on some of your past posts and promote them through email
If your VA has a knack for writing and research work, you can ask him or her to update some of your past articles with fresh ideas. For example, if you have an article “4 Best Cameras for College Students”, you can ask your VA to come up with an article patterned on this one and entitled “4 Best Cameras for College Students”. But this time, the article can only be viewed exclusively by your subscribers. So, you can place a hook at the end of the old article that says something like: “Click here and sign up to get exclusive info about “4 Best Cameras for College Students” in printable PDF.”
5. If your VA has a knack for graphic design, take advantage of it in your email campaigns
If your VA can use Adobe Suite (Photoshop, Illustrator, etc.) or Canva, she can create attractive graphic designs that can be posted on photo-sharing sites like Pinterest and Instagram and used in your email campaigns. This post can then be linked back to your blog or website. Or better yet, if your VA can come up with a series of designs like a series of printable posters based on one of my previous articles, like “10 Useful Ideas And Quotes From Alain de Botton”. What I will do is post only five of those quotes and the rest can be accessed only by those who will sign up on my mailing list. By the way, if you do such a campaign, please make sure that the quotes or any other materials you will use will not make you liable for plagiarism or infringement. My advice is to use quotes (or other materials) that are free from any copyright issues or those that are considered public domain.
6. Ask your VA to help you conceptualize or run an email contest or promo
Running a contest on your site is one of the best ways to engage your visitors and solicit their email details. I mean, many people would sign up for a chance to win something where the only entry fee is their email address. The catch here, of course, is you must select a price that would appeal to your target market. So it should be something of great actual or perceived value to would-be contestants. So, if you don’t have a budget to raffle off a new iPhone or something more expensive, then you can think of something that your audience would find worthy of their attention. Let’s say I want to run a contest for writers and my budget is only $200. What I can do is offer the Dragon Home dictation app as the prize. I stayed within what I could afford, and I was able to offer something that my target audience would appreciate. You can mobilize your VA to help you write the contest mechanics and to manage the contest.
7. Let your VA co-manage your social media communications and capture email info
You can ask your VA to spend at least an hour a day to reply to those who comment or ask questions on your Facebook or other social media accounts. You can guide him or her on how to direct those people to one of your sign-up pages by discreetly providing the link with their answer. For example, “Hey, thanks, Linda for complimenting on our post. Sure hope you find it helpful! We can give you additional valuable tips if you click on this link (to your sign-up page).” There are many ways your VA can inject such invitations into their reply in a friendly and engaging manner and without being construed as pushy intrusive, or annoying.
8. Run a Google Ad and let your VA collect the responses
The main objective of your ad, which entails using a keyword that your target market commonly searches, is to bring them to your landing page. Once they are in, you can ask for their email in exchange for other information. You can use pop-ups or a call-to-action button for this purpose. If you don’t have automation software yet to data-mine the responses like OptinMonster, HelloBar, or SumoMe, your VA can gather the email addresses that were collected on your landing page and have them organized in a worksheet. Your VA then can do the next step of emailing back these people to thank them for signing up and providing them with more info.
9. Let your VA manage a referral program
Referral programs are another surefire way to at least double your email list when done right. You can offer some discount or other forms of reward to your subscribers, who will refer three new sign-ups to your site. You can then ask your VA to run a verification process to check if those new subscribers are legit and interested in what you are offering, whether it be products or services. Once they are verified, the VA can then proceed in sending them a welcome email and keeping them engaged.
10. Discover and capitalize on your VA’s other strengths, talents, skills, and experience
I know that most of us who are involved in some form of online business hire virtual assistants to do very specific tasks. Some for doing routine data entry, others for proofreading and editing, and then some for just graphic design. But if we will only take the time to know and establish rapport with them, we will discover that there are many other things they can do or quickly learn from us that can also help in other facets of our business. Perhaps your VA has a talent for photography? Or cartooning? Or creating trivia games? We might be surprised to discover what other things they can contribute to boosting our endeavors, particularly in growing our mailing list.
Bonus: What Are The Best Email Tools For Bloggers?
ConvertKit – This is the best tool for beginners who want a reliable tool and some easy-to-set-up automation (like creating an evergreen newsletter or creating a sales funnel). ActiveCampaign – This is a much more advanced tool that is still super affordable on the small plan. It has very advanced automation and a million other features, so it’s for more advanced users.
In conclusion, it’s up to us to unlock the other possibilities on how we can profit from our virtual assistant’s other skill sets, ideas, and education. For all we know, they may have the academic pedigree to produce white papers that we can use to lure readers into signing up on our mailing lists. Next up, you may want to explore a guide on how to harness the power of email marketing as a freelancer.
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Hey there, welcome to my blog! I'm a full-time blogger, educator, digital marketer, freelance writer, editor, and content manager with 10+ years of experience. I started RafalReyzer.com to provide you with great tools and strategies you can use to become a proficient writer and achieve freedom through online creativity. My site is a one-stop shop for freelance writers, bloggers, publishers, and content enthusiasts who want to be independent, earn more money, and create beautiful things. Dive into my journey here, and don't miss out on my free 60-minute AI writing online course.