How to be a Virtual Assistant

Where Do Virtual Assistants Get Their Clients?

By Tanya Kuhrt

I recently ran a survey to find out where virtual assistants get their clients. The results make interesting reading.


The first question I asked was where they got their very first client EVER.  Nearly 60% said that they got their first client through their existing network – family, friends, Linkedin contacts and so on. That’s great news for anyone just starting out as a virtual assistant (VA) as it means you are likely to get your first client without spending a penny!

Not one of them got their first client through paid advertising or free listings, with literally only 3% saying that they got their first client through their website.

The second most lucrative source for first clients was face-to-face networking at 12%, with social media coming in at 9%.

Interestingly, 18% got their first client through “other” means. The “other” included recruitment ads, freelanceer sites such as People per Hour and VA agencies. One responder even got their first client through cold calling!

How to be a Virtual Assistant

My second question was about current marketing activity. I asked: which are your most profitable marketing activities?

The number one most profitable activity turns out to be referrals from existing clients, showing that gaining new clients happens exponentially. In other words: the more clients you have, the more you get.

The next most profitable activity was face-to-face networking, closely followed by social media. Again, websites, paid advertising and free listings were way down on the list.

My own experience reflects these results – 75% of my clients have come through face-to-face networking. You might think this strange as virtual assistants by definition communicate and work online. However due to the nature of our work – for example logging into clients’ accounts and email inboxes – gaining trust and building relationships is key so it’s not that surprising after all.

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How to be a Virtual Assistant

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