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How Your Virtual Assistant Can Help with LinkedIn, Part 1

Now that you are up and running with Twitter, we’re going to explore how your virtual assistant can help you make the most of LinkedIn. We’ll revisit more advanced Twitter after we get your social media world up and running at the ground level.

LinkedIn is a business social network. It has LinkedIn has over 60 million members in over 200 countries and territories around the world. A new member joins LinkedIn approximately every second, and about half of our members are outside the U.S. Executives from all Fortune 500 companies are LinkedIn members.

Here’s how LinkedIn describes its social network: “When you join, you create a profile that summarizes your professional expertise and accomplishments. You can then form enduring connections by inviting trusted contacts to join LinkedIn and connect to you. Your network consists of your connections, your connections’ connections, and the people they know, linking you to a vast number of qualified professionals and experts.”

Of course, typing all of this information in can be time-consuming. Your virtual assistant can transfer your professional expertise and accomplishments right from your resume to LinkedIn. Your virtual assistant can also manage what information is publicly available, help you build your network of contacts, monitor LinkedIn discussions based on the topics that interest you, and post updates.

What’s interesting is that you can link your Twitter account to your LinkedIn account, so that your tweets show up as status updates. So what are you waiting for? Give your virtual assistant your resume and let them get you all set up on the largest business social networking site in the world. Before long, you’ll be making new connections that could lead to profitable opportunities for your business.
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More Top Twitter Tips for Your Virtual Assistant

If you read my last column – and if you shared it with your virtual assistant – the you should be well on your way to tweeting effectively. With some of the fundamentals out of the way, let's look at a few more Twitter tips that your virtual assistant can put to good use.

Share pictures

You probably know you can post photos to Facebook, but did you know your VA can share photos on Twitter? You can with a services like Twitpic, Tweetphoto and Twitgoo. Granted, 140 characters can only say a few words, but you can share photos that will speak thousands of words about your products and services with these tools.

Add hashmarks to your tweets
If you want to raise the volume on your tweets by making it easier for people to find your posts, tell your virtual assistant to add hashmarks to your tweets. Here's how it works: Just put the "#" symbol in front of your subject. So if you are writing about virtual offices, you would put #virtualoffices at the end of your post to signal the Twitter search engine to categorize your tweet.

Tweet from a smartphone
If your virtual assistant is on the run, they can still keep up with Twitter posts on many smartphones. Blackberries and iPhones have special Twitter applications that let you log on to the microblogging platform and execute your social media strategy.

Tweet from a desktop client
Just like your virtual assistant can send tweets from a smartphone, she can also tweet from a desktop client that makes it much easier to manage the responses and even engage in conversation with others who follow your brand. Check out Twhirl, TwitterFox and TweetDeck, three of the more popular applications.

Use the @ symbol strategically
If you want to send a public reply to another Twitter user's tweet, just use the @ symbol in front of that person's Twitter handle. Even if you aren't following that person, the message will still get to them. Your virtual assistant might want to do this to make an introduction or start up a conversation in the Twitterverse.
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Are Your Virtual Assistants All a Twitter?

We've been talking this week about how virtual assistants can help you run with your social media marketing plan. Now, we're going to begin looking at some specific tips and tricks you can share with your virtual assistant to help them make the most of your Twitter accounts.

Twitter is a microblogging service that invites you to answer the question, "What's happening?" You have 140 characters (not words) to tell your followers what is going on. You can share anything you want, so long as it's only 140 characters, including promotional messages.

We'll spend the next few days focusing on Twitter, then we'll move on to LinkedIn and Facebook. By the time we're done with this series, you will have equipped your virtual assistant as your personal social media marketing expert. So let's get on with some tweeting tips that could help you drive revenue for your company.

Expand your Twitterverse
If you want people to follow you, following them is one way to do it. You can use search.twitter.com to find your friends, companies you work with, people interested in specific topics, and so on. You can follow them and hope they follow you back.

Shrink your URLs down to size
Because links can take up way too many characters, you need to make sure your virtual assistant uses a link shortening service like bit.ly. These services let you shrink down a long URL into something that's only a few characters so it doesn't waste valuable promotional space. These links also let you lead people back to your Web site for special offers.

Don't forget to Direct Message
Your virtual assistant should definitely keep Direct Messages in the mix. You can use the Direct Message (DM) feature to send a private message to another Twitter user. Keep in mind that you have to limit your message to 140 characters.

Are you retweeting?
If you don't have anything on your mind but want to keep the conversation going, your virtual assistant can always use a technique called retweeting. You may have seen the letter RT at the beginning of tweets. This stands for Retweet. Essentially, you are resending someone else's tweet using your own twitter handle.

Stay tuned for more top Twitter tips.
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Virtual Assistants Can Execute Your Social Media Strategy

Now that you've developed a social media strategy, it's time to hand it off to a virtual assistant who can execute it in brilliant form.

In order to succeed with social media marketing, you need to keep up with posts in Facebook, comments on blogs, Direct Messages on Twitter and all the rest. You won't get much ROI on your social media plan if you don’t work the plan diligently. That's why you should consider a virtual assistant to run with the social networking ball.

So how do you execute a social media strategy?

1. Start by setting some daily goals. How often do you want to post to your social networks or blogs? Make sure you give your virtual assistant the materials he or she needs to properly execute the strategy. If you are going to post several times a day, send the virtual assistant all the content at the beginning of the day and set a posting schedule that they can follow daily.

2. Engage with your audiences. Be sure your virtual assistant knows enough about your products and services to intelligently engage with audiences on trends in your industry, questions about your company, and so on. Your virtual assistant can also be dispatched to comment on your behalf on other social media accounts and blogs related to your industry. Again, just make sure they know enough to comment intelligently.

3. Act on feedback. What type of feedback are you getting in the social media world? Make sure your virtual assistant alerts you when you hit on a big topic that spreads like wildfire so you can do it again. And if you are getting backlash, make sure your virtual assistant knows to alert you right away so you can step in and comment personally, if appropriate.

These are just a few of the ways a virtual assistant can help you execute your social media plan. As you get more comfortable, you can off-task additional social media duties to your virtual assistant so you can keep growing your impact in the social networking world without missing a beat keeping up with your clients.
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Five Ways to Save $100s on Your Office Space

Are you looking to cut costs on office space? OK, so maybe that's a silly question. Who isn't?

Well, Davinci Virtual is offering up five ways to save hundreds of dollars in overhead – without hurting your image. Let's face it. Your business image could make or break a business deal. Do you really want your clients to meet you at your home office? Do you always want to rely on a restaurant for business meetings? OK, silly question. Who would?

A virtual office can give you a prestigious business address, access to first-class meeting rooms, and friendly live receptionists at a fraction of the cost of a traditional office space and office staff. So are you ready to learn about the five ways to save hundreds of dollars on your office space? OK, silly question. Who isn't?

1. Free access to meeting rooms

You don't have to invite clients to your home office or foot the bill at a restaurant when you work with Davinci Virtual. The company offers plans as low as $59 a month, which makes it possibly for a company of any size to conduct meetings in a professional office location.

2. Get your phones answered professionally

Davinci Virtual offers Live Receptionist support that gives your clients consistent and professional answering on each and every call. That means you have a reliable virtual receptionist in place to make sure you no longer miss calls or business opportunities.

3. No-hassle set up

With Davinci Virtual, all you have to do is make one call script or fill out one e-mail form and your account is set up. It's just that easy. There are no hassles and no technical expertise needed. Just send Davinci the script and they'll do the rest.

4. Get up and running immediately

You don't have to waste time searching for an office space when you go virtual. You can instantly secure your new professional business address and begin booking conference rooms online right away.

5. Keep your business growing

When you get stretched thin do you miss important calls and give clients the wrong impression? With Davinci Virtual's Live Receptionist services, you can make sure your clients are taken care of even when you get too busy to handle the calls yourself. That keeps your business running strong.

How much is it going to cost you? Live Receptionist solutions start at $99 a month and virtual office addresses and conference room access start at $50 a month. So what are you waiting for? Beef up your business image for pennies on the dollar by picking your phone plan and virtual office location today.
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