How can you use virtual assistants to grow your real estate investing business?
Where can you find high-quality virtual assistants that understand the real estate industry? What should the hiring process look like? And what tasks can virtual assistants take off your plate?
That’s what we’re talking about here!
But first, for those of you who are unfamiliar with the term “virtual assistants”, here’s a quick definition…
What are virtual assistants (VAs)?
Virtual assistants are assistants who work virtually (surprise, surprise) — they could be in another city, state, or even in another country.
Virtual assistants can do most tedious tasks… like managing your email, executing marketing plans, answering the phone, and/or coordinating with other team members.
Let’s look at some more specific examples of how virtual assistants are useful for real estate investors.
Why do real estate investors use virtual assistants?
We’ve spent a lot of time talking about how important it is for your real estate investors to work on their businesses rather than in their businesses — that’s where real growth occurs.
Just consider a few of our past blog titles…
- How to Scale your Real Estate Business by Working Less
- Can’t Seem to Delegate Effectively? Here’s Why
- The Real Reason You’re Burnt Out (And How to Rekindle Your Flame)
- How to Grow Your Real Estate Business and Work 20 Hours Per Week
- Why you Shouldn’t Feel Guilty About Taking Time Off From your Business
- Why “the Hustle” is Killing Your Joy
You get the point.
We really like to talk about the importance of working smarter, not harder — that’s just as important for CEOs and founders of large companies as it is for little REI startups.
You’ve GOT to learn to delegate if you’re going to succeed.
Hiring a virtual assistant is one of the best ways to step outside of your micro-managing box of anxiety — we get it, we’ve been there — and learn to delegate, lead, and build a scalable company.
But what tasks exactly can virtual assistants do for real estate investors?
Here are some of the big ones…
- Website design
- Mailer design
- Mailer campaign creation
- Ad management
- Video editing
- Data cleaning
- Meeting scheduling
- Phone answering
- Email management
- Data entry
However, keep in mind that what your virtual assistant is capable of is limited by their specific expertise — if they’ve never worked in the real estate industry before, then they’ll require quite a bit of training.
Otherwise, they might be able to hit the ground running.
At Call Porter, for instance, all of our reps are U.S.-based and trained to speak specifically with motivated sellers, so there’s virtually no training required.
That’s not necessarily going to be the case with other VAs, though.
So with that in mind, let’s discuss a few tips for the hiring process.
5 Tips When Hiring a Virtual Assistant For Your Real Estate Business
We’ve hired a lot of awesome reps at Call Porter…
But it was a process.
It required us to learn and grow and change our hiring process to ensure that we were always putting the right people in the right positions.
And we made more than one mistake along the way…
But we came out the other end and we’ve built a company that we’re really proud of!
Here are some tips for hiring your own VAs based on our experience…
1. Create a Job Description
If you’re running a small operation, then creating a job description might seem over the top.
But it’s not — creating a job description will help clarify expectations between you and your VA. They’ll know what their job duties are, how much they’re going to get paid, when they’re supposed to work, and what they’re not supposed to do.
Putting that information on the table out of the gate gives everyone the best chance of success.
Your job description doesn’t need to be anything super complicated. Just include the following…
- Important Policies
2. Require a Cover Letter
The online VA ecosystem is about as cluttered as any industry can get — people from every country list their services on these websites and try to make themselves look like a million bucks.
Some of them are awesome.
Some of them aren’t.
Requiring a cover letter is a great way to separate the wheat from the chaff. People who take the time to write a cover letter for their application are probably more serious about trying to get the job and it’ll also provide you with more information about their strengths and weaknesses.
3. Interview Multiple People
You might be tempted — as I was in the past — to hire the first person that you interview.
At least, not on the spot.
I recommend interviewing at least 3 people before you make a decision — you might be surprised to find that the last person you interview is actually the best.
4. Start With a Test Project
Once you’ve chosen someone to work with, try a test project with them.
This is a great opportunity for them to prove that they’re the right person for the job and for you to see what they can do.
And make sure you mention that it’s a test project — you can say something like this…
“I’d really like to work with you but before we dive head-first, I’d like to do a test project with you to see how we work together. Then if everything goes well, we can keep working together. How does that sound?”
Then give them the details and information they need to be successful <– (that’s a super important step) — and give them some responsibility and autonomy.
Better yet, you can do this with multiple people to see who performs the best.
5. Gather Training Materials
Finally, my last tip is to NOT neglect the training process.
If you find an awesome VA, then you might end up thinking that they’re more prepared than they actually are — because they exude confidence in their abilities.
But if they’ve never worked in the real estate industry before — heck… even if they have — there’s still probably a lot of training to be done.
More than likely, they don’t yet understand your brand, or your business model, or your way of doing things…
So spend some time training them.
The last thing you want is for them to fail because you didn’t prepare them well enough.
Here are our top 10 picks for real estate investors looking to hire virtual assistants!
1. Call Porter
Before we share some other virtual assistant companies that deserve their dues, we’ve got to give a shout-out to the awesome reps here at Call Porter. Each of our reps is trained specifically to speak with motivated sellers, they’re all based in the U.S., and they can schedule follow-up calls or meetings with you or your acquisitions manager — no in-depth training required. In fact, we can start answering the phone for you within just 48 hours. And then your success really is our success. We’re already answering the phone for hundreds of investors around the nation. If you want to learn more, schedule a free demo over here.
Bress is a virtual assistant company that is built specifically for real estate investors. Their VAs can cold call, help with lead-gen tasks, run comps, and assist with marketing campaigns. Here are some more details from Bress’ about page…
BRESS is the fusion of a highly successful real estate investing team and an industry-leading virtual assistant company. We both believed that the system was the solution and by developing proven real estate investing processes to be executed by virtual assistants we could create a system that would be highly efficient and cost-effective while delivering actual purchasing opportunities.
We knew that the greatest salespeople are the worst at doing the mundane tasks associated with getting leads and closing deals. For this reason, we created BRESS to be the team that will handle the administrative paperwork and transactional processes associated with qualifying leads and closing deals. Our clients focus on negotiating the deals, while we do everything else.”
UpWork is a massive marketplace where you can hire freelancers for just about everything (and for just about any price). But you get what you pay for. There are some great freelancers who know how to work in the real estate industry and who might fit the bill… but still plan to do quite a bit of training to get your VA up to speed.
VAStaffer is a company with a large team of over 100 virtual assistants. They provide supports for many different types of businesses in many different industries. Here’s a message from their founder…
“As the Chief Growth Officer at VA Staffer, I enable high-performers with virtual assistants & remote teams so that they can get more done every day — and still have time for themselves!
We’ve figured out what methods and strategies work best for high-performing entrepreneurs like you, and it’s become a seamless process to give people a renewed sense of time and freedom.
So if you find yourself working alone, buried in the day-to-day of your business…
Or if you aren’t fully utilizing the systems that you’ve put in place…
Why not increase the time you spend on moving the money needle while your virtual assistant handles the rest (email marketing, invoice management, social media management, lead generation, etc.)?
You might feel a bit guilty at first – handing over the work you’re used to doing yourself, but remember…
The secret of highly productive people is that they don’t do everything themselves.”
5. 24/7 Virtual Assistant
24/7 Virtual Assistant is a large company with lots of virtual assistants. They support many different businesses in many different industries. Here is some info from their homepage…
“That’s where we come in. 24/7 allows you to streamline everything in work and in life, allowing you the time to work on the things that matter most to you and your business. We give you laser precision to focus on the big picture while we take care of the details. Our Virtual Assistants can take care of nearly anything, from paying bills, booking travel or even take care of some online shopping. As a 24/7 client, you’ll work with a smart, capable, college educated and dedicated Virtual Assistant who works remotely from our Offshore location or right here in the USA. Just delegate and consider it done.”
WoodBows is another popular service for hiring virtual assistants. Here is WoodBows’ argument for why you should choose them…
“We have one of the highest clients’ retention rate in the virtual assistant niche, that is, 98.4%. In other words, 98.4% of our clients stick to WoodBows for their business needs when it comes to virtual assistance.
We also have a 99.7% client repetition rate, which means, 99.7% of our clients keep coming back to us when they want a dedicated virtual assistant. And we were featured on BloggerLocal USA for that matter.
Clutch.co, a reputed review company in the US, has reviewed more than 300 companies in the virtual assistance niche in the world and selected WoodBows as best of all and gave us the first rank among all the 300 companies.
TimeDoctor evaluated all the virtual assistant companies in the United States. They chose WoodBows as one of the top three best virtual assistant providing companies.”
7. Process Black Marketing
Process Black Marketing is a holistic marketing companies that offers services ranging from sales funnels and social media to email marketing, content creation, and — you guessed it — virtual assistants. Here’s a blurb from their About page…
“We innovate and streamline marketing processes for maximum efficiency. We do this for all forward thinking businesses who understand that the system is the solution. We accomplish this by educating, teaching and inspiring the ProcessBlack team to better assist our clients, and by providing our clients with the marketing resources needed to move their company forward.”
MyOutDesk is a virtual assistant company that serves many different businesses, including ones in the real estate industry — household names like Coldwell Banker and Re/Max are clients of theirs. Here’s a blurb…
“MyOutDesk Real Estate Virtual Assistants can help by making calls, gathering documentation, chasing signatures & nurturing leads in your pipeline. At the same time, you focus on closing deals—as well as helping you schedule meetings, talking to clients, staying on top of your networking, and building the relationships that grow your revenue.”
Fiverr is a massive freelancer marketplace that’s particularly known for finding cheap workers. For that reason, we don’t really recommend it if you’re looking to build a long-term relationship with your VA — but it can be a helpful marketplace for getting little tasks done here and there.
VA4REI is a company that has virtual assistants specifically for real estate investors. They claim that their “well-trained and highly skilled virtual assistants take care of the most tedious and daunting tasks of your Real Estate business so you can focus on what you do best, closing the business.”
Virtual assistants can help you grow your real estate investing business faster than you’d be able to on your own.
And now you have the knowledge you need to find great VAs, hire them, and train them.
All that’s left is action.