Hiring out simple blogging tasks to a virtual assistant frees up your time and your energy, and can even help you get caught up on your to do list!
I asked my VIPs which tasks they would (or do) hire out to a virtual assistant and here are their answers, with a little bit of my 2 cents expanding on the ideas. 😉
This article is gonna be a little different. While the target audience here is bloggers and online business owners, this is also perfect for virtual assistants to see which services we are wanting to hire out for and hone in on their skills!
Remember, when hiring a VA or becoming a VA, there should always be a value exchange. So even if you don't think you can hire an assistant yet, read my post about hiring out before you can afford to. Doing it BEFORE you are ready will move your business forward in ways you could never imagine!
Why you should hire an assistant
You probably already know why you want to hire a virtual assistant, if you're reading this post. But just in case you need to be 100% sold on the idea, hiring a VA can help free up your time and energy, and help you make more money.
Once you hire and train your VA, you can spend more time working on the tasks you love (like content creation) or spending time away from the computer!
What can you hire out to a virtual assistant?
This question is sooooo easy to answer that it almost makes it difficult!
The answer is: you can hire out for ALL THE THINGS.
But, your budget may not allow that yet – so be sure to read the post I linked above here so you can learn how to hire out before you can afford it.
Knowing what to hire out, how much to pay, and who to hire are all things you'll learn along the way. Don't feel like you “don't know enough” to hire someone yet – just be transparent and let them know this is all on a trial basis to make sure it is a valuable experience for both of you.
Make a list of tasks you'd like to hire out for:
- tasks you don't enjoy
- tasks that take you too long but someone else could do faster/more efficiently
- tasks that cause a backlog (adding images to posts, for example)
Then, create SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures) for each of those tasks.
I use Tango (free Chrome extension) to record my processes for interns and VAs. See my ultimate list of Chrome extensions for bloggers if you want a fun rabbit hole to jump down.
Last but not least, create a budget and value exchange. If you can't afford to pay a living wage outright, what other type of value can you offer to make up for it?
My team gets a living wage plus:
- access to premium tools
- templates, graphics, all kinds of assets they can use for their own businesses
- mentoring, coaching, guidance for their own business
- bonuses and commissions
- and more!
The important part is that both parties feel valued, appreciated, and heard. Keep the lines of communication open whether you're hiring an intern (paid or unpaid) or a virtual assistant.
Digital Product Listings
One of the things I hire out for that has had the best ROI so far is my digital product listings. Having someone list your items on Etsy and Teachers Pay Teachers is affordable but frees up so much of your own time and energy!
Your VA can batch upload, optimize, etc once a week and even leave things in draft so you can publish them daily (or she can publish for you).
If you write books and sell them via Amazon KDP, or you have a POD (Print on Demand) store, a VA who can list your works on a consistent basis is a must!! Otherwise, you're working with a backlog and leaving money on the table.
There is such a wide range of tasks that can fit under the “data entry” umbrella, but a lot of creatives hate how tedious and mundane data entry type tasks are, so it's one of the first things we hire out for.
Real life example: One of my interns collects emails from my Facebook group, loads them into MailerLite into the proper segment, and then those people will get my emails automatically when they go out.
This is a task that takes less than 30 minutes each day, but it's an ongoing thing and I was going in and checking farrrrr too often, so it was taking me more time than it should.
Hiring this task out was a big win for me. Seeing my email list grow without having to do any work has been awesome.
Newsletter/Email Set Up
The set up process for sending emails to your potential customers is really annoying! If it's something that you don't enjoy, it can be hired out one time and you won't have to worry about it anymore!
Part of email set up is linking a freebie and tripwire. If you hire someone out for this process, ask them to create an SOP for you so if you need to go in and edit it in a hurry, you can.
Quick note to VAs: If you're reading this and going “but I don't know how to set up an email list” – go freaking learn! The #1 skill a virtual assistant has is their resourcefulness. You can learn literally anything on YouTube for free. USE IT!!
Do you loathe writing and sending emails each week? Do you need some help setting up a simple funnel for your email system?
Before Liz's templates, emails rarely got sent. With the templates, they got sent but not as often as I needed them to.
With my VA using the templates, it takes maybe 5 minutes of my time each week and emails are being sent consistently. Emails make money so this is definitely one of the first tasks I would hire out for.
Hiring out this task frees up at least an hour of my time each week. But more importantly, it actually gets done. No matter how long it takes you, if the email isn't getting sent out each week, you are leaving a shit ton of money on the table.
Real life example: One of my interns puts Liz's templates into a Google Doc and rewrites them, while including personal details about my life and business that I've shared in the past.
Then, I go in and read over them, add my own personal touches, and mark the doc as “approved” on my to do list.
Next, the emails are loaded into MailerLite and I do a final glance over before hitting “send” on the emails each week.
Now the thing is, I'm a huge control freak. This could all be way more automated but I insist on having the final say/last glance at everything.
My brand is my name, and my name is my word, so I have to be more careful than some folks do online – but I highly recommend being the last point of contact for these types of things.
Mistakes can be made and it all blows back on you, so just keep that in mind before letting anyone else send your emails. 🙂
Digital Product Creation
Hiring someone to create digital product templates – or someone who designs the entire product – can help you scale your business faster than ever.
Creating new freebies, tripwires, and paid digital products like courses takes a lot of time and energy.
If you hire an assistant to help you with the graphic design and sales page mock-up images, it will free up a lot of time and energy so you can focus on content creation.
While this is something many content creators hire as a one-off type gig, I love having one person who designs all of my digital products.
Well, I have two people for this: one who designs for my blogs, and one who designs for my Teachers Pay Teachers shop.
90% of the items listed in my TpT shop were purchased from a designer who sells educational printables.
With my blog, any of the pin-style images you see have been designed by my assistant. She works 5 hours a week and methodically works through the to do list I've created for her (that may or may not be caught up by 2025).
Bookkeeping and Financial Management
When we hired our financial coach, she taught us a lot about where our money was going and how we could make it work for us.
Having an assistant that can help you with keeping your financial records on the up and up can save you time and lots of money.
A small subtopic of financial management is affiliate management. Hiring someone to keep track of my affiliate payments, when they're coming, how much they are, etc would be extremely helpful!
I have income sources coming in from a dozen or more places so sometimes I get confused. We have a bookkeeper, an accountant and tax person, etc but having it in my face in a dashboard would be cool.
Adding that to my “to hire out” list! 🙂
Making things pretty
This isn't a typical job description, but many of us love to focus on the creation of content (the text or video) and loathe making things into workbooks, PDFs, printables, etc. But our people want these things!
You can definitely hire an assistant to turn your content into prettier offers. They can dress them up a bit, and even help you write out sales pages.
I really enjoy doing keyword research, but sometimes I get lost in the weeds or have a million things on my to do list, so I hire Petra from Simply SEO It to give me a list of keywords to post about.
Do I follow the amazing plan she gives me? No.
Do I blog about the things on my list instead of random shit that pops in my head like this post? Also no, but here we are. Do as I say, not as I do. 😉
Writing blog posts
This is a task where you can't just hire anyone – they need to be trained. If you're hiring someone to write blog posts, I highly recommend you have them take my Lightning Fast Content Creation Course so they can learn the basics of writing a good blog post.
The rest will come with practice. Set up an SOP showing (via text and video) exactly how you like your blog posts written. Including an outline/framework will be extra helpful.
I have a VIP client who has 300+ recipes with photos sitting in her Dropbox! She needs to hire a VA to plow through all of them. That investment will pay off in spades. Can you imagine, 300 new recipes on a blog?! So. Much. Money. And it's all just sitting there waiting to be made until you hire it out and get it done.
Finishing blog posts
A little different than writing a blog post from scratch, I would love to have someone finish my blog posts. I write all the content, they interlink, add images, etc and hit publish.
I have a backlog of 100+ drafts that need to be finished like this, but I've been too much of a control freak to hire out for it yet. 😉
Just like with everything else, create a detailed SOP of how to finish your blog posts, and someone can quickly learn how to tie a nice little bow on your writing.
Much like wrapping up blog posts, image optimization is a tedious task we all have to do but most of us hate doing LOL. That's why when I saw this comment in my group:
“I have a VA who resizes, renames, and compresses photos, and adds them to my Google drive. She also updates my internal links, and adds alt text to photos.”
I knew I had to include it in my “tasks you can hire out” post – because… YES! I loathe imagine optimization.
Blog post syndication
An amazing source of traffic is blog syndication (on sites like medium, Microsoft, NewsBreak, etc). A virtual assistant can easily copy and paste your posts (and format them) to get them published on these sites.
Syndication can help improve your backlink profile and send thousands (even tens of thousands) of pageviews to your site each month. If your blog posts are set up right, you can even see a huge increase in subscribers!
Google Web Stories
Another awesome source of traffic, Google Web Stories are trying to become a “thing” – kind of like how they did the +1 thing back in the day? Yeah, that. But they're holding on – and web stories are actually getting lots of my VIPs thousands of pageviews!
Hire a VA to create and schedule your Google Web Stories. Even if they just do a few a week, it's a task that's off your plate and hopefully delivering massive ROI.
WordPress Maintenance (Back-end upkeep)
Installing plug-ins, updating to the newest version of WordPress, oh my! Lots of back-end work goes into maintaining your blog. And if you're anything like me, you loathe the tedious tasks!
This is a task your VA can take over. It will take them less than an hour a month but will free up a lot of the mental stress of logging in and seeing you need to update 11 things.
Social Media Management
There are entire agencies built on this one skill: social media management. This may include having your assistant use AI and your past content to come up with fresh social content, schedule out your posts, and even interact on your behalf.
I'm a bit of a control freak so any time I have hired a social media manager it just didn't work. But I hate social media, except my Facebook group, so I decided to stay off social instead of having someone post for me.
When hiring out, we have to let go of a little bit of control. Create those SOPs and trust that the person we hired understands our brand, our voice, and has our best interest at heart.
Don't give away the farm right away. Give small bits of access here and there until you know you can trust your new VA. I hired an intern and she quit a few weeks later, under really weird circumstances – I had to change ALL of the passwords I had given her access to, which is a huge pain in the ass.
Use LastPass or just give one password at a time until you know for sure that your person can be trusted.
There are many tasks you can hire out for in regards to Pinterest, including but not limited to:
- initial account/board set up
- daily pinning/repinning
- pin image creation (they can also upload them to your blog)
I have a VA who designs all of my pin images and then once a month, updates my blog posts with them. While it's ideal to have the images ready when the post goes live, I usually just write whatever strikes a chord so nobody on my team knows ahead of time… it's just me, winging it, and my team trying to catch up. 😉
Social Media Interaction
A small part of social media management, you can hire out just for social media interaction. I saw an ad the other day where a blogger was looking to hire someone to interact with their IG and TikTok fans for 2 hours a day.
One thing I recently started doing was systemizing and templatizing everything I can in my business. Hiring someone to create ONE sales page template instead of hiring a copywriter every time is something that saves me time and headache.
I had someone create a simple template, then I made my own little changes to it, and now my team uses those templates to create sales pages, landing pages, etc.
Calculating calories or points
When I had a Weight Watchers blog, I hired someone to calculate the points for me because OHMYGOD it was the biggest pain in the ass ever. The VA I hired loved doing it, though! It was tedious, mindless, simple work for her and she enjoyed every second of it.
Even though it only took a few minutes for each recipe, because I didn't enjoy doing it, I put it off – causing a huge backlog and preventing me from getting posts published! Hiring this task out was one of the best things I did for that blog (then I sold it for as much as my house was worth!).
Without hiring that task out to a VA, my blog never would've grown like it did – because I wasn't going to be calculating the calories and points, or publishing!
I knew it was what was needed to move the needle forward in my business, so I hired it out before I could afford it. Then, I got to work and sold recipes to other bloggers so I could afford to hire VAs to do other tasks I didn't enjoy doing.
How can I afford to hire a VA for my blog?
This is a question I get asked a lot, and it comes down to two things:
- value transfer
- skills exchange
When I knew I needed a VA to calculate my calories and points on recipes, I didn't make enough to afford someone at $15USD per hour, which was the going rate at the time.
Instead of just doing it myself, because like I said, I freaking hated calculating points… I figured out how *I* could make more than $15 per hour to afford it.
I could sell one recipe for $25-$50, I could sell blog post ideas for $1 a piece, etc. So I got to work and made sure I made double the $15 an hour, so I could afford it without stress.
Not only did each hired-out hour free up MULTIPLE hours of my own time, I was able to batch work and make $50+ per hour! This helped me level up my business in a simple way, without breaking the bank.
Another thing I do, which I talk about in my other post, is transfer skills and/or value to my assistants. Even if I am starting a new business and can't afford to pay an excellent wage, I can ensure the people working for me will have access to the best tools as well as unlimited mentoring so they can grow their own businesses.
This is something I let them know up front, so we can make sure we are a good fit! Only some people value time, some value money, but almost everyone values knowledge.
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