A Year in the Life of a Red Desk VA
2019 is almost at an end so we thought it would be nice to take a look at a year in the life of a Red Desk VA.
Red Desk 10
In November 2018, Red Desk Virtual celebrated 10 years in business. We did a little retrospective on how Red Desk has developed over the last decade and how, although we work virtually, many of our clients and contacts are local to North London.
You may wonder how we get most of our clients, well mostly through recommendation. One of our first new clients of 2019 was a local building company who wanted assistance with their website and social media. It has come full circle as they are about to launch a different strand of their business and we are branching out into project managing the website build plus managing their online presence.
Live Twitter Coverage
In February, we were brought in last minute to assist with some event promotion of an awards ceremony. We very quickly built interest around it and monitored Twitter during the event (retweeting and interacting where relevant). This has led us to stay on with the client, encouraging nominations and raising awareness of the event ahead of the 2020 ceremony.
The advantage of being a Red Desk VA is that you have someone to cover for you when you go on holiday. For many self-employed freelancers, the thought of taking a two week break involves a lot of hassle but at Red Desk Virtual, we always have someone to cover for us. When we meet a new client, we explain that one person will be the main point of contact but there is a second person to cover for holidays or can be brought in when the workload increases.
Although the majority of our client base is social media focussed, it is nice to have the occasional administration project. We have been very lucky to have been working with a soft skills charity over the past year which has been running workshops in Further Education colleges in 9 boroughs of London. It is really rewarding to be part of a team that is able to boost young people’s confidence and employability chances from organising these workshops. We are looking forward to continuing with this foundation in 2020.
December 2019 has been extremely busy for us with meetings with a number of new clients that we shall be working for in 2020. We are looking forward to researching the markets for these varied businesses and managing their online presence.
Rebranding: When to Change Your Business Name
Rebranding is a tricky topic, especially when it comes to changing your business name. We’ve been working with a local business for a number of years, and last year they not only relocated but also changed business names. So how do you deal with this from a marketing perspective?
Don’t ditch the old name completely
You’ll find that your loyal customers need to adjust to your new location and name. It is therefore an idea to keep the contact details and references on the website and Google Local entry for a while. You can either put the old name in brackets beside it or “formerly old name”.
Integrate new and old business logos
Find a way of integrating both logos for a transition period. For example you could use the new logo as the profile picture on your social media but have both showing on the header picture. Customers will soon get used to the idea of associating the old and new logo with your new business name.
How long to transition from old to new business name?
It is very difficult to decide how long you should leave it before excluding references to the old name entirely. It really depends on the reasons why you had to change your name in the first place. If it was a copyright issue or business breakup then it is probably best to stop references within a couple of weeks/months. However if you are keeping the name due to customer loyalty then you can leave the references up for longer.
• If in effect two companies are merging, you will need to pick which Google Local entry or social media profile to use and make sure you either merge or delete the other account
• Don’t ignore online directories like Yell and Thomson Local – you will either need to update the entries or request they are removed
• Take advantage of the rebrand to revamp your website with a fresh look
For more tips including website URLs, social media accounts and Companies House advice, you might wish to read our article on Rebranding your Small Business – what to consider.
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