One of the things that often comes up for VAs is a general confusion around being visible. Quite often a VA will be unhappy about the amount of effort they’re putting into being visible, and the lack of results it’s gaining them in return. However, as is often the case, the answer isn’t always what they expect.
For many, the hard work they’re putting into their business is hiding a fear – the fear of being visible. They may well argue that they’re working hard on their visibility, but what they’re doing is working hard to convince themselves that it is visibility they’re working on!
Visibility isn’t a byproduct of the ‘things’ you have
I see far too many VAs working on their visibility from the safety of the things they accumulate. What does this mean? Well, if you consider working on the right business name, creating a pretty logo, setting up social media profiles and having business cards as forms of visibility – you’re wrong! These items are only tools that you can use to raise your visibility. On their own, they’re just things.
Are you hiding in plain sight?
Often these tools are used to help VAs hide in plain sight. What exactly does it mean ‘to hide in plain sight?’ It means that you’re not actively trying to be hidden, but you’re not actively being visible either. You’re masking your presence, by losing yourself in the crowd, The people who know what you do can easily find you, but you’re not actively making yourself visible to those who don’t know you and what you can offer.
Build it and they will come but they won’t know you’ve built it unless you tell them
Having a website and profiles on all the pertinent social media platforms is like you putting your name card on a window ledge in a busy shopping centre. People passing by probably won’t give it any attention. They’re too busy being attracted by the colourful window displays and the TV screens showing the latest adverts. If someone knows you by name, seeing it typed on a card on a window ledge may pique their interest a little, as you’re already on their radar. But that’s it. If you want people to notice you, you need to be visible – consistently, and let them know you’re there – frequently.
You have something unique to offer
If you believe you offer a service that will positively impact on your clients, you need to get visible. Stop worrying about providing something unique or finding that ‘one thing’ that makes you different – you already have it. You. You are the unique part of your business. You need to make you visible, relevant and in front of your ideal clients and you need to be sharing your solutions to their problems.
What it means to be visible
Being visible is about actively putting yourself in a place where you can be seen by, and interact with, your prospective clients. Visibility is about you bringing your solution to the table and taking steps to ensure you’re showcasing it to your ideal clients. It’s about being in a place where you can interact with your prospective clients so you can build on those connections. Visibility is about being seen and heard by the people you want to see and hear you.
How to get visible
I could spend time telling you what social media platforms to go on and how to use them to get your business visible, but each VA business is unique. Your clients may not be in the same place as another VAs client. You may prefer in-person networking, whilst another VA may want to get visible via video or livestream. I’ll share some links at the end of this blog post, for further reading on how to utilise the different options available to you.
In the meantime, here are some overriding tips to help you stop hiding in plain sight and put yourself firmly in the visibility spotlight.
Know your audience
You can’t get visible until you know who your audience is. Only then will you know where they hang out, what they need, what they like and how they spend their downtime. Know your ideal client inside out. Not only will this help you establish where to find them, but it also helps you create a relatable message to connect with them.
Offer something that’s valuable
Your ideal clients are looking for solutions to their problems. Whether they’re time-strapped or suffering from a skill shortage, you could potentially have what they need. So once you know your ideal client, establish what is going to be a valuable solution for them.
Have a plan in place to put yourself out there
Once you know who you’re looking to connect with and what they want or need, it’s time to work out how you’re going to get seen by them. How you’re going to get visible. Decide on the platforms you’re going to use, the type of media you’re going to utilise and the frequency it’s going to happen. If it helps, have a few things scheduled or created in advance, so you can hit the ground running.
Get visible; share you and your story
Once you’ve got a plan in place, implement it! Commit to being actively visible and sharing who you are and what you can offer your ideal clients. Work on getting them to know you, so they can connect with you and build on that connection. Share behind the scenes glimpses, take them on a typical client journey, share your journey and why you do what you do. And don’t be afraid to share your successes, showcase testimonials and reviews, and promote your solutions.
Be patient but persistent
The more you put yourself out there, the better your chances of being seen. As this Entrepreneur article on What Visibility Means in Business confirms, you need to cut through the online clutter and noise. It won’t happen overnight and it takes time, but people will start to notice. It’s about knowing your audience and bringing a solution to the table.
Be in the visibility game for the long haul, not just a couple of nights. Commit to trying something for at least 3 months, before you decide if it’s working or not. Monitor and track your results and tweak things as you go. Not only will this help you grow your visibility, but it will also grow your confidence as regularly put yourself out there.
Helpful articles to get you visible
Being visible is something that doesn’t happen overnight, but it will never happen if you don’t get started! As I mentioned earlier, there are lots of resources on this website and within my courses, to help you raise your visibility and grow your business. Here are a few blog posts I’d recommend for further reading:
Should VAs use Pinterest to market their VA business? (The 5-day challenge has ended, but you should grab a copy of the Pinterest cheatsheet it directs you to).
What are your thoughts around being visible? Do you agree with the points in today’s blog post or do you have something you’d like to add? Why not share your thoughts and opinions – and even your intended action steps, if you want to be accountable – in the comments box below!