Hiring your first VA is exciting. It’s certainly an interesting learning curve for solopreneurs, and one that (in my opinion) most of us can’t truly ever be really, totally, completely and utterly prepared for. Don’t get me wrong, there’s peeps out there who are incredibly organised, like the likes of Laura Dick and Aerlie Wildy, that would have all the systems setup BEFORE they hire someone but for most of us – we set up the systems as we go, VA in tow. I don’t know about you, but I paid my first VA to teach me some lessons about systems, organisation and processes without realising I did it!
I’d like to share with you what I have learned, so that you are as prepared as you possibly can be for when you outsource your FB content.
Tip #1: Content Plans
Do you have a content plan? A content plan is something that maps out what you’re posting (generic) and when. If you don’t have a plan, how will your VA know WHAT to post and when? Map it out and then pop it into Asana and share with your VA.
Tip #2: They don’t know what they don’t know!
When a VA first starts out with you, it can be really easy to forget that they don’t know your business as well as you do. You need to work out how you will give them instructions on what to post, how you want things done and how they should communicate with you when they have questions.
Tip #3: Decisions
Do you want them to report back to you when posts for the week are done? If not, how will you manage it? Are you just going to give them one post type at a time, or are you going to dump it all on them and expect them to figure it out? How will you train them? Will you record videos on Zoom? What system will you use to get the information to them? Asana, Trello, Evernote or something else? How will you communicate with them? How will you deliver feedback? These are all decisions you need to make. Or in my case – learned by doing.
Tip #4: Responsibility & Accountability
What will YOU do and what will THEY do? If they’re doing content for your page, are you pre-writing it? How will you give them instructions? How far in advance is your content scheduled? How will you know when your tip posts have all been done and you need to write fresh ones? Do you have a system in place to ensure there’s not 3 weeks of gap before you get to it? If you expect them to do it and don’t tell them – that’s not gonna work. Also, if you want them to do something but don’t like to deliver feedback so you change almost EVERYTHING they do – that won’t work either.
Tip #5: Graphics
Remember that if you’d like to have them make graphics for you in Canva, you need to give them some guidelines. It doesn’t matter how good they are, if they don’t know what you WANT, they’ll never be able to get it right. I recommend that you give them 5 sample templates and ask them to create an additional 10 that you can give feedback on. Then once they’ve designed 10 that you’re happy with, you have 15 templates that they can use. Make sure you approve what they do before they start using them. This also means you need to be clear on your branding colours, fonts, logo (if you have one) and you need to have it all set up in Canva so that your VA can access it all.
So in summary – it’s almost impossible to get ALL of your shit together before you hire a VA, but if you start with this, it can save you lots of time, money and energy. My advice is that if it’s too hard to DIY – hire help set it up. They’ll take it from your brain and map it out FOR you. And if you’re paying for a VA, you can’t really afford NOT to have this stuff sorted because it will cost you more in the long run.