Monday, May 25, 2009

Interactive Business Workshop: The Time is Now 11:59

Join Us for an Interactive Seminar & Workshop

Learn Why Now is the Time to Grow Your Business & How You Can Succeed While Others Fear and Fail

Carpe Momentum

In an economy where every new client, every new project can feel like a stay of execution instead of a new start, you need to see every opportunity, and seize it.

Here’s why.

And how.

Where & When
Friday June 12th
1:00 to 4:00 p.m.
9380 Elk Grove-Florin Road
Elk Grove California
Space is very limited. Register Now!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Sue...always has her focus on building my business and getting a great return on my investment! Martino IT

Monday, May 18, 2009

Hire a Virtual Assistant to Update Your Website

So you have your website. Now you want to make sure it gets updated regularly. Especially since fresh content means that not only will your website be more search engine friendly, it also means your visitors are more likely to return to see what new thing you have posted.

You're excited and can't wait to update your website weekly with a new event, tip, article, or other information. With great intentions you decide you'll do this yourself. Perhaps you want to save money. Perhaps you've been told you should update your website yourself. You may be an author and you know you have lots of new material to add to the website each week.

However a couple of things happen. You soon find yourself too busy to keep up and the next thing you know it's been six months since you touched your website. The other thing that happens is you realize you love to write but get frustrated because updating your website isn't what you are passionate about. You soon lose interest in the website as you spend more time doing what you are passionate about - writing.

I think of it this way: though you are a writer, you are not a book binder. You hire someone to do the work of putting your book together. Perhaps you are a painter. You probably aren't a framer also. So why are you trying to be a web designer when that's not what you do best? Shouldn't you hire someone to do what you aren't excited about?

So what's the solution? How can you get your website updated regularly without spending a fortune? That's where a virtual assistant can help. You can still write all that great material to be posted on your website. But let your virtual assistant do the technical part and actually update your website. Doesn't that make sense?

Friday, May 15, 2009

International Virtual Assistants Day

Today, May 15, 2009, is International Virtual Assistants Day.

The virtual assistant industry continues to grow as more solo professionals have a need for quality assistance to help them grow their businesses.

Some of the online marketing strategies we use to assist solo professionals are:

1. Blogs
2. Websites
3. Ezines
4. Email marketing
5. Social networking
6. Article submissions
7. Virtual event promotion

What would you like a virtual assistant to do for you?

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

What Is Work/Life Balance?

Our power went out yesterday. So business as usual wasn't... Our older daughter took the five-year old, Fiona, to the park. I went to the Placer Women's Network luncheon. And by the time I got home power was back up. Even then, it wasn't business as usual.

Fiona still wanted my attention. So instead of staying buried behind my computer screen, I took her outside so she could play while I caught up on some writing (including writing this blog post). Fiona decided to look for some 'interesting things' because, as she put it, "she's surely curious"!

My daughter was happy that I was spending time with her, answering her constant questions. And I was happy to be outside on a beautiful, sunny day with a nice breeze. And I was still able to get some work done.

Now that's work/life balance!

Now I just need to be able to do this in Ireland!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Social Networking Can Work for Your Business

Social networking is the wave many solopreneurs are now riding. Using social networking as a piece of your marketing strategy helps your prospects get to know you and your business, how you work, what values and ethics you uphold. Your prospects come to trust you, turn to you for information, and eventually want your services and products. They will even refer you to other people they know who can use your services.

Why haven't you decided to ride the wave of social networking? Some small business owners I've talked to give these reasons for not jumping into social networking:

1. It's too complicated.
2. It takes too much time.
3. There's no way to track the return on investment
4. You can't get new clients from social networking

Social networking does not need to be complicated or take hours and hours each day. So how can you use social networking responsibly and effectively? Remember - no one wants to be inundated with offers of your costly services all day long. When I start getting a dozen messages everyday from the same people over and over again offering their expensive services, I quickly tire of that and don't want to hear from them anymore.

However, I do appreciate receiving valuable and interesting information, tips, quotes, etc. So start small. I suggest taking these steps in this order:

1. Post tips your prospects can use
2. Offer a free report or gift to those who sign up for your newsletter
3. Put together a free or low-cost teleseminar to build your list and promote it

Remember, social networking needs to be about building relationships - not primarily about self-promotion. So balance is needed when using social networking as a marketing strategy.

A virtual assistant can help you get started in social networking and assist in maintaining your profile. Save time by having your virtual assistant update your social sites on a regular basis. There are tools, such as, that can be used to schedule Tweets in advance so you're not spending every minute of the day on Twitter.

If you're not using social networking to market your business, you're missing out on a big piece of the puzzle. Remember that it may take seeing your information 8-20 times before a prospect picks up the phone to call you or contacts you through your website. So let's get busy and start networking!

For over 25 years Sue Canfield, Virtual Office Administrator and Owner of Awesome Assistant, has helped small business owners with administrative tasks. Since 2005 she has worked with over 30 clients to help them grow their businesses, specifically by using online marketing strategies such as email newsletters, blogs, articles, and social networking. Her mission is to partner with her clients to work together to create and implement strategies to promote their businesses. For more information about how she can help your business, visit

Monday, May 11, 2009

When Your Spouse is Your Business Partner

My husband and I work together from home running three separate businesses and have worked together this way for the last two and a half years. Sometimes we’re asked how in the world we manage to work together and still be happy. My question is, why can’t you work with your closest friend and still stay the best of friends?

Recently I was listening to a presentation and the story was told again about how the husband and wife each worked outside the home and by the time they each got home at the end of the day, they were too tired to even be civil to one another. Each had a hard day and didn’t really want to hear what the other person had to say. Arguments easily erupted as each thought their day was harder than their spouse’s.

Here’s an advantage to working all day along with my spouse. As things come up in our businesses, we can immediately discuss them and bounce ideas off each other. If a situation with our young daughter comes up that needs to be handled, we’re both there to take care of the problem. Instead of thinking that one of us had a harder day than the other, we already know how each other’s day went and can help overcome any challenges as they arise instead of dealing with it all at once at the end of the day.

Do you work with your spouse? How do you handle challenges that arise?

P.S. My best friend is my husband and I love working with him!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Are You a Victorious Woman?

May is International Victorious Woman Month. To learn more, visit

Friday, May 1, 2009

Special Offer - Update social networking profiles for $125 -

Improve Your Business Image in May

May is International Business Image Improvement Month. What will do to improve your business image in May?

Put together a strategy to improve just one thing about your business image this month. It could be as simple as proofreading everything you publish at least three times. You'd be amazed how many times I find typos or grammatical errors in website copy. That alone can be a big turnoff to prospects interested in working with you.

I'd love to hear what you plan on doing in May to improve your business image.

What It Means to be Happy - Despite Difficult Economic Times

I love having a journal and putting down on paper my thoughts, ideas, questions. I recently wrote about what it means to be happy - even during difficult times.

Excerpt from my journal dated March 26, 2009:
I'm finally reading Tuesdays with Morrie. My daughter brought it to me while I was in the hospital a few weeks ago. Having just experienced a scary health issue, and having survived a life-threatening illness nearly three years ago, I have a different perspective from some as I read the book. I understand how it feels to lose control of your life, of certain physical abilities. I understand to a better degree how short life is and what we need to do to be happy.

Happiness seems to elude so many people and they continue to search for it in all the wrong places. Sure, having enough money to meet our needs contributes to an easier life. But true happiness comes from within each of us. Yes, it is possible to be happy in spite of any difficult circumstances. Much has been written on the subject of happiness. And I'm sure that anything I write has already been written. Yet I feel a need, am compelled, to write down my thoughts and feelings on the matter. Maybe the way I word it will change just one person's thinking. I don't need to change the world. But if I can influence even one person - that's enough.

Have you ever noticed that unhappy people are usually very negative? Often the more we try to reason with a person to try to help them focus on what's positive in their lives, the more they find to be negative about. It's as though they don't really want to be happy. On the other hand, there are those who seem happy, positive, and find the good side in every situation. Sometimes their attitude is so upbeat, it's hard to believe it's real.

Then there's me, and others, who do get down once in a while. We do get upset, angry, frustrated, sad, depressed. Sometimes it feels as though we just want to crawl in a deep, dark hole and never come out.

YET - we are usually happy, positive people. We don't allow our negative emotions to become our primary focus in life. We may have a bad day, week, or even months. But our overall attitude is happy, positive, upbeat. People around us know we have a positive, happy outlook on life. They understand that there are times we get down. But we don't stay down!


Interviewed for Virtual Assistant Forums

I have been a member of since July 2008. Virtual Assistant Forums (VAF) just celebrated their 2-year anniversary. Congratulations!

The VAF has been a wonderful resource for virtual assistants. Everyone is helpful and friendly and I've even had the opportunity to meet one of the members in person. If you are a virtual assistant looking for resources and an opportunity to network with other VAs, is the place to go.

I was privileged to be interviewed at VAF for the month of May. Please read the entire interview and let me hear from you.