If you have to wade through message after message of SPAM just to get to the important stuff, it may be high time that you start delegating that task to a Virtual Assistant.
It may seem like such a small and insignificant task to ask someone else to take care of your email, but what if it saved you from overlooking a client’s request, or a new client asking to work with you?
The first step in delegating this task is to set up your email address(s) in a gmail account. Of course, if gmail is your primary email, you can skip this step. Here is a great tutorial on how to read and send all your email with gmail. Remember, you can always have your VA take care of this step for you too (because we’re just that awesome).
Once that is squared away, your VA can go in and start ridding your inbox of all that SPAM that’s been accumulating over the years. Gmail’s spam filter is much better than most, so whatever lists you can’t be unsubscribed from, the filter can catch.
Now, I’m a label junkie. If I were to show you my inbox, you’d see that virtually EVERY email that comes in is color coded with it’s own label. I even took it a step further by installing Nested Labels in Google Labs which means I can have the mail label “Clients”, but when I click on the “+”, each of my client’s has it’s own folder (great for those of you who are used to Outlook’s folders).
Once things are organized, you can have your VA start responding to simple client requests, issues & questions. If you find yourself answering the same questions time and again, your VA can also set up a Canned Response.
Another Lab I use is called Super Stars. It allows me to easily see at a glance what I’ve completed, if I’m waiting for a question to be answered, and what is important. There are a lot of different colors to choose from, so if you use this, develop a SIMPLE system and document it so you and your VA are on the same page.
Give your VA clear instructions on how to handle sensitive tasks, what your priorities are, and who you keep on your VIP list.
Don’t forget, the Virtual Assistant Chicks are always here to take care of this for you!