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Today I’m excited to welcome Kayla Sloan, a successful blogger and virtual assistant (VA) to the blog! Through her virtual assistant business she was able to leave her job as a credit analyst and grow a six figure yearly income.
If you’re not familiar with what a virtual assistant is or does, they essentially help bloggers or online business owners with things like:
- Social media management
- Email management
- Project management
- Graphic design
- Blog outreach
All of these tasks can be done virtually from the comfort of your own home with a computer and internet connection.
A virtual assistant typically offers 1-3 speciality services to clients in exchange for an hourly rate, and the starting rate for most North American VA’s averages about $25 per hour. No college degree needed!
With that said, Kayla will be sharing her personal journey to earning six figures as a VA and how it inspired the creation of her popular course $10K VA. To see how Kayla was able to quit her day job, build a six figure business and live life on her own terms, keep on reading!
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and how you were introduced to offering services online as a virtual assistant?
Hey there, I’m Kayla! I’m a business systems and outsourcing expert who helps people become their own boss and live a life of freedom. My website, KaylaSloan.com, is all about making your work life something you truly love.
I’m also the founder of the course and program $10K VA, where I teach my students how to make a consistent $10,000 per month as a virtual assistant!
In 2013, before I even knew what a VA was, I started my blog as a way to share my debt payoff progress and hold myself accountable. It also became a creative outlet for me.
Once I found my blogging rhythm and became more confident online, I started connecting with other bloggers in my niche. It started as a way to build friendships and add more accountability, but that’s actually how I landed my first gig as a freelance VA!
I asked around my network of blogging friends to see if anyone had any opportunities, and one of them became my first client. She had told me that she was overwhelmed and she wanted to hire me to help her with tasks in her business. I was desperate to work my way out of debt, so I said yes!
In our first month of working together, I earned $285. It was amazing! From there, my VA business just started growing through referrals.
How did you make time to build your VA business while working full time?
I just made the time and I didn’t allow myself to give in to excuses. I won’t lie, it was hard!
I worked nights, weekends, and even on my lunch breaks. I said no to a lot of socializing. Sometimes I’d even wake up earlier (think 5am!) to get some work done before it was time to get ready for my full-time job.
I had to learn to prioritize my side hustle and say no to the things that weren’t getting me further in my debt payoff journey. Was it hard? Absolutely. But, I kept telling myself that it was a short-term sacrifice so I could get ahead with my finances.
Can you share some of the first steps you took to start your VA business?
For me, my first steps weren’t exactly what I would recommend to new VAs now because I didn’t know what I was doing at the time! At the time that I started, there wasn’t really a handbook or guide on how to become a VA, so I just learned as I went and I definitely made some mistakes along the way.
I know that if I had help, I could have grown my business much more efficiently! For example, I invoiced via PayPal, and kept all of my hours worked in a spreadsheet!
It was super time consuming.
I also didn’t even have a contract with any of my clients when I started out. I was super lucky that nothing bad happened since I had no contract to really protect me. Looking back, that was a risky move!
If someone were to approach me right now and ask what their first steps should be, I would say decide on what you want to offer, make sure you have a few of the most important tools, learn how to create a contract, and price your services, and then go out and find your first client via cold pitching or asking your network!
I know a lot of people want to bootstrap their business in the beginning, which is fine, but a few select tools can help you grow so much faster and protect yourself and your business.
What were a few struggles you had to overcome while building your VA business?
There have been times where I forget my “why”. What I mean is, why was I making sacrifices and working so hard? You have to keep that big “why” in mind when things get hard.
There have been times where I worked 12-14 hour days, every single day of the week. To build a business, you have to sacrifice other things, at least in the short-term. But it’s not something you can sustain long-term, so you have to make sure you’re building your business in a smart way.
How long did it take you to scale your business to $10,000 per month?
It took me 12 months to get from $0 to about $3,000, at which point I quit my job. Then it took me about another 14 months to hit $10,000/month. I know if I had had some help in the beginning, I could have gotten there sooner.
What were some pivotal steps you had to take to reach $10K per month in your VA business?
I had to really niche down to my ideal client. I raised my rates and also improved efficiencies to help me get more done each day.
How has becoming a virtual assistant changed your life?
I was able to pay off my consumer debt, build a six-figure business, and start living life on my terms. I no longer have to ask for days off. I don’t worry about money, and I don’t stay up all night scared that I can’t pay my bills.
It’s also offered me the opportunity to make lifelong connections with my clients, and many have become friends as well! It’s really been a great experience overall, even if you took the money aspect out of it.
What inspired you to create a course of your own?
As I said before, when I started, there wasn’t a how-to guide or handbook on how to become a great VA. So I set out to create one on my own and $10K VA was born.
I wanted to create something that was more in-depth and offered a step-by-step guide for those who were just getting started. There are quite a few how-to blog posts on how to become a VA now, but none delve deep into exactly what you need to do to gain clients and scale your business. However, my course does!
I also discovered that there are a ton of business owners out there who need a VA and I was constantly being asked if I was still for hire. Now, I’m able to pass on those leads from my own personal network, to my VA students and graduates from the course.
Can you share one of your favorite student success stories?
My favorite success story is from one of my students, Kim. She is also a member of my team now and helps with the course, my website, and other projects.
She is one of my favorite success stories because it’s amazing to see the positive impact that her business has had on her life and her family.
She was able to quit her job and work from home to spend more time with her young daughter. Then, her business was growing so quickly that her husband was able to quit his job and become the caregiver and teacher for their daughter. Kim is the breadwinner in her family and that’s so inspiring to me!
Do you have any advice for someone reading that wants to become a virtual assistant but doesn’t know where to start?
A lot of people think that to become a virtual assistant, you have to have all of these skills and knowledge, but you really don’t. You just need to get started. And on top of that, anyone can be a VA! You can be male or female, a parent, a side hustler, whatever. As long as you’re willing to get started, you can turn this business into anything you want.
Where can everyone reading learn more about you and what you’re working on?
Kayla is a business systems and outsourcing expert, course creator, and blogger at KaylaSloan.com. She helps entrepreneurs create a thriving business that provides them the freedom, time and money to live a life they love.