Whether we like it or not, attention is a valuable commodity online. The brands and companies that rise to the top are the ones that can leverage people’s increasingly short attention spans and provide them with a memorable experience. The thing is, creating great ads and campaigns requires a lot of planning. If you’d like to focus on strategy, hire a marketing virtual assistant.
A marketing VA cuts back the time it takes to build a successful content marketing campaign. Keep reading to see exactly how much time is spent on creating content and how virtual assistants help free up time for marketers.
The Time Cost of Successful Content Marketing
Being strategic with your work schedule is practically a requirement to succeed these days. Marketing is not just one activity—it’s not all Google ads, nor is it just social media. It takes several components to create an effective marketing strategy, and team leaders or managers must know how to prioritize, be selective of what they work on, and understand how long different tasks take to complete.
The marketing mix also affects how long it takes to create a campaign. What’s more, there’s no “perfect” mix of content–it varies from one company to another. Marketing mixes will differ depending on the marketing team’s skills, goals, and the brand’s audience. A manager must know the amount of time it takes their team to create different types of content. If not, they can’t make informed planning decisions or even begin to prioritize.
Finally, knowing how much time commitment each team member must make will help marketers better quantify their campaigns’ impact. Time spent can be a data point to help the team understand how well their messages are coming across.
A Marketing Virtual Assistant Helps Save Time
A remote assistant is an invaluable addition to any marketing team. Your team’s marketing VA does more than schedule posts for your social media pages. You can offload many time-consuming but necessary tasks to a marketing virtual assistant. Here are 5 things you can start with, and how much time you could save when you offload to an assistant.
Marketing Virtual Assistants Write Blog Posts
By nature, blog posts take a while to complete. Since blogs are meant to be highly informative guides to a topic in the company’s area of expertise, writers must spend time verifying information, proofreading, and ensuring that the text is both SEO and reader-friendly.
According to this HubSpot Article, global blogging benchmarks vary per region. On average, though, marketers report spending 1 to 2 hours writing a 500-word article. Note that Hubspot’s data only covers the actual writing process, and doesn’t take into account planning, creation of a content calendar, interviewing, research, and more. Here are other numbers of note:
- Making a post, from research to proofreading, takes anywhere from 1 week to 1 month.
- Depending on your goal, you’d need to post a minimum of 1 blog a week (for brand awareness) or a maximum of 4 blogs a week (for search optimization).
- Blog posts rank better these days when they are in the 1,500 to 2,000-word range.
Taking all of these things in consideration, you’ll need to set aside 4 to 16 hours per week just for writing posts. When you have a marketing VA, you can offload your blogging tasks easily. With a virtual assistant, especially from a managed and vetted provider like Wing, you’re sure that you’re getting comprehensive, well-written content.
They Create Logos and Infographics
Copy online isn’t complete without graphics, and the internet today is largely dependent on visual communication. However, design projects take just as long as writing copy. A cursory search online of “how long does a design project take” would yield several answers from different graphic design studios.
Roughly speaking, though, it appears that digital collaterals take anywhere from 1 to 6 workdays to make. Meanwhile, print collaterals may take up to 12 days. Keep in mind that these numbers refer to the execution and designing phase, and it does not include the time you spend conceptualizing the design and revising it.
Assuming that for a Facebook video ad, you spend a combined 8 hours on ideation and revision, plus another 8 hours on actually making the ad, you need to set aside at least 12 hours a week to finish one project. If you’re trying to get the word out about your brand and ramp up your ad campaigns, you’d benefit from having a dedicated marketing virtual assistant who will do all of the heavy design lifting for you.
Marketing VAs Post on Social Media
Besides copy and graphics, you must consider the time it takes to distribute your collaterals. Depending on your social media strategy, you would need to set aside about 1 hour each day on preparing and scheduling 1 social media post. You might be thinking, 1 hour per day on 1 post is too much! Well, not really—here’s why:
Let’s take Instagram. To make 1 IG post, you have to do several things. You’d need to plan your photo, stage, shoot, edit it, write your caption, and schedule or publish. If your brand uses real photos in your feed, all of these tasks would easily add up to 1 hour, perhaps more. If you use illustrations, you have to factor in the time it takes to make the designs. That would replace the time it takes to prep and shoot your photo.
Furthermore, these estimates are only for Instagram, and it may take more or less time to make social media posts on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and others. Hashtag research, the best time of day to post, and even how many times you post per day vary according to the platform used.
When you have a marketing VA, you can offload the social media management to them. You might even want to hire a dedicated social media VA besides a content marketing VA, so they can cover more tasks at the same time.
They Handle Community Engagement
Another big time-sink for businesses is handling customer or community engagement. Online, this refers to the task of responding to comments and queries on your blog, social media, or website. If you think about it, managing your brand’s reputation is a full-time job in itself!
Responding to comments takes up about 2 hours a day, while queries take up an additional 1 hour. That’s 3 hours of your time each day that you could have used to do other things! If you haven’t built up your audience, you’d still have to engage with them. After all, the more people talk about you online, the better. You gain brand authority and set yourself up for more sales.
However, building a community, especially online, would take more than 3 hours per day. If you want to be more hands-off with your community management, you can assign this task to your marketing virtual assistant.
Marketing VAs Provide Admin Support
Last but not the least, marketing VAs can also help with administrative tasks. For example, they can do research on your target market, compile data from different sources, and create reports. They can also help with lead generation by finding contact information and sending out drip campaigns.
Marketing admin tasks are essential, but they can be very time-consuming. It’s hard to even quantify the amount of time these small tasks take! If you want to focus on the creative aspects of marketing or if you simply don’t have the time to do the admin work, consider hiring a marketing virtual assistant.
What to Look for in a Marketing Virtual Assistant
When you’re looking for a marketing VA, these are some skills that you should keep an eye out for:
1. They should have experience in marketing, sales, communication, or related disciplines. This is a given, but it’s still worth mentioning. After all, even if you’re there to help your VA get off the ground, it’s better if they’d built a runway!
2. They should be well-versed in different social media platforms. As mentioned earlier, each platform has its quirks, and you want your VA to be familiar with them. A big part of marketing is being able to communicate your message clearly to your target audience. Your VA should be able to do this effectively.
3. They should be able to take initiative and work independently. Marketing VAs need to be proactive to be effective. They should be able to work on their own and come up with creative ideas.
4. They should be organized and detail-oriented. This is important for admin tasks such as research and data compilation. Your VA should be able to keep track of all the details and ensure that everything is in order.
Streamline your workflow with a marketing virtual assistant
If you’re looking for a marketing virtual assistant, these are some skills that you should keep an eye out for! With a good marketing VA on your team, you can focus on other aspects of your business while leaving the marketing in good hands.
Get your marketing strategy together with a virtual assistant from Wing. Our managed, dedicated assistants can handle everything from marketing admin tasks to content writing and graphic design. Get in touch with us today to learn more!
Aya is Wing Assistant’s blog manager. When she’s not wrangling content briefs, editing article drafts and handling on-page SEO, she is crafting messages for Wing’s other communication materials. Aya writes about SaaS startups, marketing for startups, search engine optimization, and pop culture.