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The Evolution Of The Virtual Assistant

Written by: Hillary Weiss

“I’m on the hunt for a really good virtual assistant I can trust…”

It’s a phrase we hear over and over — not just at Boldly, but all across the online business world.

For years, “virtual assistant” was the catch-all term for professionals capable of juggling a range of administrative tasks on a virtual basis. But as the scope, reach, and potential of digital business has evolved and flourished, so has the virtual assistant’s role, and the calibre of the experts who work in the field.

VA’s are no longer just helpful hands who can do data entry, reply to customer inquiries, and keep an eye on your website.

Their job has expanded past tackling small and basic tasks, and into offering solutions that can help businesses grow, by staying up to date on the latest technology, relevant skills, industry challenges, trends, and more.

In fact, while you may think you’re in the market for a VA, nowadays you may actually be on the hunt for support in a more specific niche that has roots in the VA industry.

But what could that niche be exactly??

Behind the scenes here at Boldly, we chat with hundreds of business owners every month. With that volume of inquiries coming through our digital doors, we can’t help but spot patterns — especially when it comes to the areas our clients seek the most support in!

It turns out, most companies need help in 3 distinct categories: general business support, marketing support, and executive assistance.

So, if you think you might be looking for something similar (or have no idea where to start in your search), we’ve got your back! Read on.

Business Support Specialist

A Business Support Specialist is a role that is tied most closely to “traditional” virtual assistant responsibilities. A great Business Support Specialist will be a jack of all trades who can help with the general-day-to-day of your company, and the administrative tasks you need taken off your plate.

This role is ideal for small-but-growing companies who don’t need a full-time executive assistant, but need someone in their corner to help them manage the ever-increasing to-do’s of their business.

Business Support Specialist skills can include:

  • Executive assistance
  • Project Management
  • Event Planning
  • Budget Tracking
  • HR and Recruiting Assistance
  • Customer Service

Marketing Specialist

This type of support is perfect for businesses ready to scale up their visibility, grow their following, and take their place as influencers in their industry. Impactful marketing strategies often have many moving parts, so having support to juggle every component will help the whole process run much more smoothly — and much more successfully.

(This role is also ideal for any CEO or founder who doesn’t love marketing, and wants to get back to concentrating on what they do best.)

A Marketing Specialist can focus on every aspect of your digital presence; from where you’re sharing posts and why, to tracking analytics, perfecting the way your content looks, and helping to turn your customers, readers, and clients into brand ambassadors.

Marketing Specialist skills can include:

  • Helping businesses promote themselves
  • Social Media
  • Email Marketing
  • Content Management
  • WordPress Admin

Remote Executive Assistant

Executive Assistants are a cross between a virtual and personal assistant. They offer a more personalized type of help; perfect for the busy CEO who may need support balancing their schedule with day-to-day tasks.

The right kind of Executive Assistant can also be a huge asset to an organization beyond just being an on-call meetings-scheduler. With the right help, you and your team’s productivity can skyrocket, as you find your needs anticipated, and any weakness (like trouble staying organized) balanced out.

Not to mention: Having an Executive Assistant also adds a level of prestige and credibility to your organization.

Remote Executive Assistant skills can include:

  • Calendar management
  • Personal tasks
  • Research
  • Word Processing
  • Travel Arrangements
  • Appointment Setting
  • Bookkeeping

The role of virtual assistants will continue to evolve, but one thing will always remain consistent:

Great companies deserve great support — and having a skilled, perfect-fit team member behind you can be a game-changer your business and brand, as well as your stress levels.

But! Before the hunt begins, you have to know exactly what you’re looking for.

If you’re starting a search in the virtual assistant realm or planning to, ask yourself:

  • What do you really need?
  • What kind of support would benefit you the most?
  • What type of person would work best for you?
  • Are you on the hunt for a Business Support Specialist, a Marketing Specialist, an Executive Assistant, or something else entirely?

Just the way you would for an in-house assistant, make sure you’re specific in your job posting, ask for credentials and references, and do your due diligence. Chances are, you’ll be able to fill your position with exactly the high-caliber of professional you need in no time

Best of luck – and enjoy the journey!

Already know what type of support you need? Let us know!

Topic: Remote Executive Assistant

Updated on May 11th, 2022

About the author: Hillary Weiss is the chief copywriter and ghostwriter at hillaryweiss.com, and has had her work featured on Business Insider, The Next Web, The New York Observer, and more. Since 2011, she’s helped over 150 brands find their voice, and get seen & heard with content that truly speaks their language, and fits their phenomenal work. Because words that lift hearts, ignite minds, and get results can do more than just change your business – they can change the world too. Catch her riffs on creativity and the art of writing on her blog, or you say hi to her on Twitter @hcweiss.