Tag Archives: hiring a virtual assistant

What’s the difference between marketing and selling?

difference between mark

I often get asked “what’s the difference between marketing and selling?” and potential clients often call asking if I can carry out sales calls and work on commission as they have seen that I specialise in marketing.  As you will see the two, although closely linked, are in fact very different processes, here I will explain why….

Selling and marketing are complex and complete books have been written on both so this is a very short explanation!

In a nutshell the marketing process is what takes place before you actually get to the buying process. For example you have seen on TV, in the paper or read on social media that Currys have a fabulous new television in store. This is part of the marketing process – it promotes the product or service. You decide to visit Currys where a sales person tells you all about the benefits of the television informing you through personal communications. You go to the checkout and purchase the TV – this is the selling process, the salesperson has persuaded you to actually buy it.

Marketing is about understanding your customer and anticipating their need and is well researched, identifying specific target audiences (i.e. the target audience for a business selling prams will include pregnant mothers and new parents). It provides strategic direction helping to attract that key customer to the business. The Chartered Institute of Marketing defines marketing as:

      “..the management process responsible for identifying, anticipating and satisfying
       customer requirements.”

Selling, on the other hand, involves a more tactical approach by finding prospects, persuading them to buy and keeping that customer happy.

As you can see there is a lot more to marketing than people think and it should be the driving force of any business. This includes having a marketing plan that dovetails with your overall business plan.

If you need help with your marketing or to write your plan then give me a call for a no obligation chat on 01303 647101 or email rachel@lighthouseva.co.uk

For more free marketing tips follow Lighthouse Virtual Assistant on Facebook.

Trial Lighthouse Virtual Assistant for FREE!

Trial LVA for the day!

Trial LVA for the day!

If you’re ready to save yourself some time and money then this trial is for you!

For many people working with a virtual assistant is a completely new concept and you may be a bit unsure how a VA can assist with reducing your daily workload and helping you save time and money.  With this in mind I am currently offering two hours of my time for FREE so that you can get an idea of the benefits I can provide for your business.

I specialise in PR and marketing so perhaps you’d like a press release written to promote your business or a newsletter template set up that you can email to all your clients?  I also provide an array of admin support so could carry out some word processing, create a professional invoice or set up a database to manage your client contact details or your budget.  See my full list of services to find other areas I can help you with and if you need something that’s not mentioned please do contact me as I may still be able to help you.

Feel free to find out a bit more about me before we work together or view my LinkedIn profile.

So if you’re ready to let me reduce your workload saving you both time and money just quote ‘Trial LVA for a day’ when you contact me and we’ll get cracking!  Terms and conditions do apply and these will be emailed to you.

Offer ends 31st January 2015.

Please don’t hesitate to contact me for a free no obligation chat on 07975 864093 or email rachel@lighthouseva.co.uk



Lunch with a Hero to raise funds for Ronald McDonald House Charities

Fancy a burger with Spiderman?

Fancy a burger with Spiderman?

This Saturday 25th October, at McDonalds, West Terrace, Folkestone, Kent  between 11am-3pm some very special heroes including Spiderman, Batman and a Princess will be visiting the town!

A fun day has been organised by local resident Hollie Weeks (with the help of Amazing Heroes and Emporium Parties) to raise money for the Ronald McDonald House Charities.

Children and their families are invited to come along dressed in their favourite hero outfits and enjoy a VIP lunch with their own hero. There will also be photo opportunities, face painting and a raffle.

Ronald McDonald House Charities is actually very close to my heart as we have stayed at the London based house many times when our son was receiving treatment at a nearby hospital.  The charity funds and builds houses close to or on site of hospitals allowing parents of sick children to stay for as long as is needed so that they can be close and stay together as a family at a particularly difficult time.  It really is a home from home and the charity has amazing volunteers that run the houses but also come in and cook meals for the resident families.

Organiser of the RMHC Lunch with a Hero event, Hollie Weeks adds: “I personally visited RMHC Brighton myself last year and the fundraising and hospitality of the staff there is admirable.”

Hollie and the team’s efforts to help raise money for this great cause are to be commended and I personally know how much of a difference it will make to families.  So please go along on Saturday and help support this amazing charity, I think it’s going be great fun!

More details about the event and Ronald McDonald House Charities.


A visit to the Kent 20/20 Vision Live Event

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Yesterday was a busy one here at Lighthouse Virtual Assistant as I attended the Kent 20/20 Vision Live event at the Kent County Showground in Detling.

This is a fantastic event where businesses have the opportunity to showcase their products and services whilst networking with other companies to help them prosper and grow.  This year the theme was ‘Innovate to Grow’ to recognise the key role innovation plays in a business.

There were just under 300 exhibitors at the event with speeches from Will Whitehorn, former Brand Director at Virgin Group and President of Virgin Galactic and Edward Perry, Co-Founder and CEO from the COOK chain who have reinvented the frozen ready meal market.

Workshops were also available throughout the day including Business Fire Safety from Kent Fire & Rescue and How to Become a True Social Business from Zoodikers Consulting Ltd.

If you’ve never been before it’s definitely worth it, the event is held annually and you can attend for free or pay to exhibit.  More information can be found here.

The event was extremely well organised and I know from previously exhibiting there that a lot of hard work goes into it, so congratulations to all involved.

Ten things Lighthouse Virtual Assistant can do for your business

What is a virtual assistant?

A Virtual Assistant (VA) can work for a business or individual to help reduce the daily workload using an array of communications methods such as email, internet, phone or Skype and it is today estimated that there are as many as 25,000* virtual assistants worldwide.

VAs come from a variety of business backgrounds with most having had experience in the non-virtual workplace.  Some VAs also have a certain area of expertise such as PR and marketing in my case.

Just half an hour of your time could                 save you hours down the line

   Just half an hour of your time could                 save you hours down the line

Due to the VAs ability to work remotely, clients don’t need to worry about finding extra work related office space or equipment and clients pay only for the work that the virtual assistant carries out. The independent contractual status of VAs means clients do not have the responsibility to provide employee taxes, benefits or insurance.

Below I have set out a list of ten services to demonstrate how Lighthouse Virtual Assistant can help your business save time and money:

  1. Research, write and schedule your social media posts to help you grow your online presence and attract more clients – see my social media stress buster package

  2. Organise your accounts on a simple excel spreadsheet so you can simply hand them over to your accountant when it’s time for your tax return

  3. Share my marketing and PR expertise with you to kick-start your marketing and show you how to ‘get in front’ of your ideal client with my one-to-one bespoke tutorials

  4. Planning an event such as a book launch, workshop, new product or service launch always take much longer than you expect. I can take away the stress for you and do all the planning for you.


    Save time and let me manage your social media accounts

      Save time and let me manage your           social media accounts

  5. E-marketing is key to building your client list, keeping in touch with current and potential clients and demonstrating your skills. I can set up and write content for your newsletters/emails so your clients and/or employees can keep up to speed with all the latest developments in your business

  6. Run a PR campaign to make your ideal client aware of your business and how it will benefit them

  7. Blogs are a great way of giving advice to your ideal client and showing your expertise and should be carried out regularly to ensure consistency in your marketing.  A lot of people struggle with either what to write about or making time to blog so I can research and write copy for you.

  8. Write you an annual marketing plan to sit alongside your business plan so that your marketing is proactive rather than reactive

    Let me help with your e-marketing

              Let me help with your                                      e-marketing

  9. Many of my clients want a presence online but really don’t know where to start.  I offer one-to-one social media tutorials to teach you how to promote your business on social media 

  10. Write a press release to promote a new event, product, service, member of staff. This is a great way to build relationships with the local media.

The above is not an exhaustive list of my services and I can always tailor packages to suit your individual business need. See more of my services.

To book your free half an hour consultation call 01303 647101 or email rachel@lighthouseva.co.uk

(* Source: Wikipedia)

Why did I set up Lighthouse Virtual Assistant?


This is my first blog for Lighthouse Virtual Assistant and I wanted to share my journey of setting up the business with you.

I have been thinking about this business venture for well over two years now and have talked a lot (probably too much!) about it with my family and friends as well as researching the industry as much as possible.  The more I thought and learnt about being a virtual assistant  the more excited I become about actually going ahead with it.

One of the most valuable books I have read is ’30 Day Setting up as a Virtual Assistant Challenge’ by Helen Stothard.  The methodical approach that Helen has set out on building up a business is excellent.  Ok, I may not have carried out all tasks over 30 days consecutively (sorry Helen!) but I have certainly found the information priceless.  The Society of Virtual Assistants website has also been a great research tool with lots of friendly advice from other virtual assistants for when you first start out.  I don’t think I’ve seen an industry where people are happy to share their experiences so freely and this also helped me to make my decision to make the business a reality.

The excitement grew as I began telling friends, family and previous colleagues about my idea and so many of them said “That sounds like a great idea I wish I had someone like it to help with all my paperwork.”

Having heard this time and time again I decided that was I was going to ‘go for it’!  The fact that I could run my own business specialising in the areas of PR and marketing that I’m passionate about just gives me such a buzz.

The flexibility of being virtual meaning I can work with anyone in potentially any industry and based anywhere is extremely exciting as are the new things I have learnt along the way such as setting up my own website.  I’ve always managed them in previous jobs but never actually started from scratch and I have really enjoyed doing this. I found linking emails to your website address a bit of a mind field but persevered and this is another new skill I have now learnt on my journey. I already have my first potential client so am really looking forward to getting my teeth stuck in!

Another thing that I have learnt is that the support from my family and friends whilst starting the business has been amazing and they are helping to spread the word.  One friend even dropped off some presents to celebrate the official start of the business including lots of stationary and an all important bar of chocolate and bottle of wine to enjoy after the busy working day!