The Complete Guide to Using VAs for SEO Agencies


Most company house owners have tried utilizing digital assistants, or VAs, not less than as soon as, and lots of of them have had a foul expertise.

Maybe that describes you.

Maybe you tried however couldn’t discover the proper individuals, couldn’t get them to do the work the best way you wished, or couldn’t successfully measure their efficiency.

Today, I would like to repair that for you as a result of I do know precisely how highly effective digital assistants may be.

And I consider that if you will get this half proper, you may make your company exponentially extra productive and worthwhile.

working with virtual assistants

But earlier than we get into that, I would like to dispel a number of myths.

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The first fable is that digital assistants are solely helpful for quite simple, menial duties.

The actuality is that you will discover VAs to do nearly any job so long as you correctly display screen, and, if mandatory, practice them.

I’ll discuss just a little extra about this in among the later sections, however they will recurrently deal with complicated duties similar to:

  • Accounting.
  • Replying to customer support emails.
  • Compiling and analyzing information.

The secret is to discover and practice the proper individuals.

Another fable is that digital assistants have poor communication expertise.

While it’s true that the overwhelming majority of VAs do stay in growing nations, a lot of them have wonderful communication expertise.

In reality, some actually have a higher command of the English language than quite a lot of the individuals who have been born right here in America.

And one significantly harmful fable is that each one digital assistants are the identical.

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I hear this on a regular basis … “Robert, I’ve tried VAs before and it went terribly. They don’t work for what I do.”

I’m keen to concede that you’ll have used a digital assistant earlier than, however I’m not keen to agree that they don’t work simply since you had a foul expertise.

Or even a number of unhealthy experiences.

Here’s a greater means to take a look at that – most of us can stroll, proper?

Of course.

And that’s as a result of whenever you have been a toddler attempting to determine how to stroll, you didn’t fall in your ass, then merely throw up your fingers and declare “Well, I tried to walk, but it doesn’t work for me!”

You stored attempting till you figured it out.

And your mother and father most likely helped coach and information you alongside the best way, too.

Working with digital assistants is identical.

You want the proper strategy.

And that’s precisely what we’re going to cowl on this article at present.

You can use the next seven steps to successfully use VAs in your company so you’ll be able to obtain larger productiveness and profitability.

This is identical framework we use in my 500+ individual digital assistant company – and it’s one thing you’ll be able to implement in your individual SEO company.

1. Identifying Your Needs

Start by determining what you want to do at a excessive degree.

Maybe you’re simply doing an audit.

Maybe you’re executing a complete content material and backlink marketing campaign.

Or possibly it’s one thing in between.

Once you already know what wants to be accomplished at a excessive degree, you’ll be able to then begin breaking out smaller, particular person elements of that purpose.

For instance, if we’re going to execute a hyperlink constructing marketing campaign, we’d want to:

  • Conduct a backlink audit for our consumer’s website.
  • Conduct a backlink audit of their rivals.
  • Conduct analysis to establish new hyperlink constructing alternatives.
  • Develop methods to purchase new hyperlinks.
  • Develop outreach scripts.
  • Review all preliminary information with the consumer.
  • Implement toolsets for outreach and monitoring.
  • Conduct outreach and observe up to purchase these hyperlinks.
  • Track and analyze the efficiency of our efforts.
  • Review efficiency information with the consumer.

It’s essential to keep in mind not to get too deep into the weeds right here.

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As a knowledge and course of man, I understand how simple it’s to go down that rabbit gap, nevertheless it’s unproductive at this level.

Once we’ve recognized our wants at a excessive degree, we are able to start scoping our venture, the place we begin getting extra granular.

2. Scoping Your Project

At this level, we’ll begin breaking issues down in additional element and figuring out who does what.

Scoping our venture requires us to establish particular person duties.

For instance: as a substitute of simply taking a look at hyperlink constructing as a broad idea, we’ll begin breaking that down into the upper degree subtasks.

Some subtasks would possibly embrace:

  • Compiling an inventory of web site house owners, contributors, and journalists to pitch.
  • Setting up and configuring your toolsets for outreach and observe up.
  • Setting up information/monitoring instruments, similar to SEMrush, Google Search Console, Google Tag Manager.
  • Setting up Google Alerts to catch unlinked references.
  • Writing your outreach scripts.
  • Conducting outreach.
  • Modifying your listing of web site house owners, contributors, and journalists as your marketing campaign progresses.
  • Building native citations.
  • Compiling information on hyperlinks earned.
  • Tracking the influence (from a rating and/or site visitors perspective) of your hyperlink constructing efforts.

We’ll additionally consider which duties right here may be handed off to a digital assistant versus which require specialised data that may’t be conveyed in a documented course of and should be dealt with by you or another person in your inner workforce.

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“Make a list of repetitive client tasks that you don’t want to be doing,” in accordance to Dennis Yu, founding father of BlitzMetrics, who has lengthy been a vocal proponent of utilizing VAs to scale an company. “Figure out what those tasks are worth per hour and look to outsource at 1/3rd that price.”

That’s an ideal place to begin, however with the proper screening and construction in place, you’ll be able to hand off much more to your workforce of digital assistants.

Keep in thoughts that at this stage, most company house owners falsely consider that almost all and even all of their duties are so complicated or specialised that solely they will deal with them.

They are flawed. That form of pondering hurts their progress. Don’t be like them.

At the identical time, watch out not to go too far within the different course by giving a digital assistant an excessive amount of without delay.

It’s essential to begin small and hand issues off to your digital assistants incrementally slightly than dumping every little thing of their lap without delay.

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This is the place a documented course of is available in.

three. Documenting Your Process

Having a clearly documented course of is, with out query, a very powerful a part of working with digital assistants.

In reality, it’s important for your individual inner workforce as effectively, as a result of it takes the method out of your head and places it right into a centralized useful resource that everybody can entry and observe.

This ensures constant outcomes as a result of your complete workforce is ready to observe the identical steps each single time, eliminating any guesswork or private interpretation.

And as a result of they don’t have to waste time overthinking what to do or how to do it, they’re extra productive and their thoughts is freed up to give attention to extra essential strategic ideas.

This is a very essential profit as a result of whenever you’re not slowed down with mundane particulars, you change into a more practical problem-solver.

Ideally, your course of needs to be documented in a location the place all relevant workforce members, each inner and digital assistants, have entry to.

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Cloud information are excellent for this since you don’t have to fear about any versioning points, and all updates are immediately mirrored for your entire workforce members.

There are a wide range of methods to do that.

In a venture administration system, you would possibly create templates for sure kinds of tasks, with the entire duties and related directions already in place and prepared to be assigned.

You would possibly merely doc your course of in a Google or Word doc.

Or you would possibly develop an in depth movement chart utilizing a instrument like Diagram.internet to clearly map out all attainable paths from begin to end.

Most companies will use a mixture of those approaches, and probably different instruments as effectively.

Ultimately, that each one comes down to your workflow.

four. Sourcing Your Virtual Assistants

This is a important part as a result of even in case you have every little thing else nailed down, getting it flawed right here can derail your efforts.

We’re going to break this into two elements – the place and the way.

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Where to Source Virtual Assistants

Your first step right here is to decide in order for you U.S.-based VAs, otherwise you’re comfy with abroad VAs.

Either may be equally efficient, however there are professionals and cons in every case.

U.S.-based VAs might be in the identical (or shut to the identical) timezone as you and your prospects, so communication will typically be simpler, however they will even be dearer.

On the opposite hand, as a result of abroad VAs are sometimes both a number of hours forward of or behind us, communication is usually tougher.

This can generally gradual tasks down if important data wants to be communicated backwards and forwards with a number of hours or extra in between messages.

But you’ll be able to obtain appreciable value financial savings by using abroad digital assistants.

You’ll want to rigorously consider your scenario and workflow to decide which is correct for you.

How to Source Virtual Assistants

There are quite a lot of methods you’ll be able to supply your VAs:

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  • Both common and VA-specific job boards.
  • Gig websites.
  • Through social media and different contacts.
  • Through digital assistant companies.

As with the earlier part, there are professionals and cons to every strategy.

I’ll typically lump job boards and gig websites into the identical common professionals and cons regardless of some small variations.

These platforms offer you entry to quite a lot of potential digital assistants in a single shot, however the draw back is that there might be quite a lot of profiles/candidates to type by means of.

Unfortunately, there may be typically no actual screening in place to make sure you’re getting certified candidates with the suitable expertise and .

So you’re left to interview all of them your self to discover the proper candidates.

That may be massively time-consuming, and if we’re being utterly trustworthy, irritating.

But on the upside, you could possibly discover a number of rockstars and save your self some cash within the course of.

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That normally requires a little bit of luck and quite a lot of effort and time although.

If you’re on a decent finances, this is likely to be a good selection for you.

Sourcing digital assistants by means of social media and different contacts may be efficient as a result of they’re already prescreened by different individuals you already know who’ve labored with them.

However, persons are typically unlikely to refer an ideal digital assistant to others as a result of they need to maintain them as a useful resource for their very own company.

One exception to that is when an company might now not want to or have the option to retain that VA.

And as a result of these digital assistants have a stable monitor file and are at present working for a number of companies already, they’ll typically value extra.

And the final choice is working with a digital assistant company.

This will at all times be the most costly choice on the entrance finish, nevertheless it additionally comes with a number of benefits.

The first is that each VA is already prescreened, so you already know precisely what sort of duties they’ll excel at and might place them accordingly.

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Another is that as a result of now we have a pool of individuals prepared to go you’re in a position to scale nearly instantaneously.

When it comes to sourcing your digital assistants, you could have to consider your wants (present and future), time, and finances, to make the proper resolution.

5. Communicating Throughout the Project

Modern enterprise is complicated and strikes quick, so efficient communication is crucial to the success of your tasks.

You want to clearly talk expectations together with your digital assistants at the beginning of a venture.

You even have to guarantee everyone seems to be on the identical web page all through the venture to maximize productiveness, effectivity, and efficiency all through the venture.

And lastly, you could have to talk the place efficiency and expectations didn’t line up, each all through and on the completion of the venture.

It’s essential that the communication traces up together with your workflow.

You already realize it’s simple to ship a textual content message or a DM on Skype, however how will we successfully monitor or observe up on that communication later?

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(You can’t!)

So you want to be certain that all communication takes place by means of a system that ensures nothing falls by means of the cracks and that you just’re in a position to evaluate it later for those who want to.

A venture administration system like Teamwork or Monday may be an efficient means to do that, along side conventional electronic mail.

For electronic mail communication, you could discover it useful to add third-party instruments like Boomerang that show you how to keep on prime of emails with out clogging up your inbox.

Constant communication all through the venture helps to maintain everybody on monitor and keep away from undesirable surprises.

6. Measuring Performance

Defining efficient KPIs, or Key Performance Indicators, is a crucial a part of maximizing efficiency.

KPIs are merely a means of measuring the end result of the work you and your workforce are doing.

And even for those who’ve by no means heard of KPIs, you cope with them daily from an SEO perspective.

For instance, DA and PA are KPIs you’re most likely very aware of.

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They are two metrics created by Moz to simulate Google’s PageRank by measuring the influence of the hyperlinks pointing to your web site.

The variety of each day guests is one other KPI that SEO professionals take a look at, as is rating place.

But not all KPIs are as apparent. And some are ineffective in sure contexts.

Word rely is an instance of a foul KPI once we’re speaking about measuring advertising and marketing efficiency.

Sure, we typically want to set a selected phrase rely if we assign the duty of writing an article, however does the variety of phrases somebody writes outline success or failure?

I say no, as would most skilled SEO professionals, as a result of phrase rely doesn’t equal site visitors, or extra importantly, prospects.

However, on the again finish (the place all of the work takes place), we regularly have to measure issues that don’t instantly outline success or failure from a advertising and marketing perspective however do from a productiveness perspective.

And phrase rely could possibly be an instance of a helpful KPI from that perspective.

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The difficult half is figuring out how greatest to measure work accomplished by your digital assistants so we are able to enhance the operations facet of our enterprise with out pushing our workforce to waste their time in ways in which meet the KPIs, however fail to transfer the needle for our purchasers.

What you want to do right here is determine precisely what you want to do so as for your purchasers to succeed, after which reverse engineer a set of KPIs all through your course of that may ship that final result.

7. Scaling Up

This is considered one of my favourite components of what we do, as a result of as soon as we get right here, the framework is in place and we are able to begin turning the dials up.

It’s important that earlier than you try to scale up, you first guarantee you could have the entire earlier components I outlined in place already.

Otherwise, you should have a catastrophic failure.

Once every little thing is in place, although, you can begin including new digital assistants barely forward of latest purchasers.

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That means, you could have an opportunity to get them built-in into your workflow and course of in order that they cant hit the bottom operating earlier than you hit capability.

At this stage, it’s important to be much more attentive to each the KPIs you’re measuring your VAs by and the efficiency of your efforts from a advertising and marketing/income perspective.

This is as a result of as you scale, a few of your processes will break and also you want to be prepared to adapt your course of to your new surroundings.

You’ll additionally want to retrain your inner workforce members and digital assistants, which can take a while.

Identifying points and adapting to them earlier within the course of helps to decrease their destructive influence.

It’s greatest to take a look at this all as a dwelling, respiratory creature as a result of that’s precisely what it’s.

As you scale your company, you’re attempting to maintain a steadiness between:

  • Numerous purchasers.
  • Their rivals.
  • Internal workforce members.
  • Virtual assistants.
  • Processes.
  • Tools.
  • Search engines.
  • Technology.
  • Your personal rivals.

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In different phrases, you’re juggling so much – and that’s precisely why you want a workforce to help you.

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