Found My Niche, but not sure if it is in demand...

Hello Everyone,

After many years of playing small, I finally want to throw my whole heart into having a successful VA business. I have had many successes in the past helping startups (mostly friends) with administrative tasks and online event planning (at the time I did not even know I was a VA :laugh3:).

Fast forward, I finally made up my mind on last year that I would work from home and eventually transition into starting my own business. Well while working from home (still an employee), I stumbled across my passion, which is providing email support. Part of my job duties were to provide a high level of empathy when responding to each email and I always received a high level of positive responses from our customers.

I remember telling my supervisor that I really have found my niche, when he asked how was I consistently delivering high quality of work in only one month of being employed.

I now want to focus on providing email support only in my VA Business. I really enjoyed placing myself in the customer shoes and making the email personable, yet professional.

Email Support will include, but not limited to:


  • Answering questions about the clients product or services.
  • Handling complaints or cancellations.
  • Shipping inquiries.
  • Responding to customer feedback.
I will use the client knowledge base and research knowledge to create customized replies to emails.



For those clients who do not have a business knowledge base, I would like to offer a service to create a knowledge base for their team/employees. Also, if they need a FAQ for customers, I will create one for the website.



The problem I am having are:

1. I am not sure who I would market to.
2. I am not sure if it would be a profitable niche.

My question is, are there any companies that focus solely on email support as their niche?

I know I could do the typical VA tasks, but email support is tugging strongly at me. I am also a published author. Thanks for any feedback.

Your Hands of Excellence,
Sonja
 

SuzannaK

New Member
Hi Sonja,

Many businesses need someone who is passionate about taking good care of their customers, so it’s great that you are excited about customer service. I have seen RFPs for customer service, but they might also require phone support. But there are also companies that provide email support only to customers. There are many online stores out there that you could target. Some may need customer support but may not need a full time employee, so that can be an opportunity for you.
 
Thanks Suzanna for the reply. I definitely need to do my research because I have the passion, but have been down that road before where I didn't position myself properly to profit. I will check out online stores and see if I can hone in on a possible market. Thanks once again.

Your Hands of Excellence,
Sonja
 
Hello,

A lot of what you described would be in the area of customer service and support. There is most certainly a need for this type of service. You can work with online entrepreneurs that have membership sites, eCommerce shops, pretty much anyone that has a large online following and platform (coaches with programs, authors with books, local businesses that have large online following, and more).

So I think you may want to spend some more time defining what type of business you would like to assist (type as in industry) in term of customer support. Then, start hanging out wherever they hang out.

Caring about customer service and helping a brand do right by their cusotmers is one thing, but if you can find clients whose ideals and ethics align with yours - you can provide customer service that goes the extra mile!

Good luck!
 
Thank you for this Darlene! Your insightful comment is opening my eyes up more to the possibilities that my business will be successful. :happydance:

I always say I want to help small business owners, but that within itself is broad. To narrow it down I can ask myself, what type of small business owner. I really like how you stated, what type of industry.

As I was taking inventory of past projects I were a part of, this is what I discovered:

1. The were all online entrepreneurs.
2. The online entrepreneurs were all women.
3. They were all Life Coaches, Authors and/or Consultants.

I then looked at the type of services I provided for them and feedback I received. This is what I discovered:

1. They all needed help organizing systems.
2. I provided customer service and support via email only to customers/clients.
3. They all said I was good at providing excellent customer service, organizing systems, email marketing and online event planning.

With this new found discovery, I am seeing slowly how I can offer various services in the email genre (e.g. customer service & support, email marketing, email management) as well as offering a consulting service for those online entrepreneurs that may want help in organizing various systems.

I am really getting excited as the layers unfold. Thank you once again for making my day even brighter! :sunny:

Your Hands of Excellence,
Sonja
 
Sonja,

I am very happy to hear this. Your excitement is shining through too. Keep thinking about and honing in on your target audience. Once you have it clearly defined, the rest will start to fall into place (and your marketing efforts will become clear, targeted, etc).

Good luck!
 
Thank you once again! I haven't stopped researching since my last post lol! I am seeing the importance of honing in and properly researching before screaming to the world that you are open for business.

I have narrowed down my core service to email marketing management. This allows me to do the things I love and focus on a specialized skill (e.g. MailChimp). I was first feeling overwhelmed, but now I feel I can focus on learning all there is to know about email marketing versus being all over the place as a Generalist.

Now I can focused more on my target audience. The need is great for email marketing, but now I will begin really researching who I would want to have as an ideal client (Bloggers, Authors, Business Coaches, etc), instead of feeling I have to work with anyone who wants to hire me.

Have an awesome Virtual Week! :D

Your Hands of Excellence,
Sonja
 
Hi Sonja. I know exactly what you're dealing with. Our business is co-owned by myself and my husband. He did the paralegal services but has since had to back out and concentrate on his full-time job. Long story short, I was spread out too thin and have had to tear everything down and rebuild it from the foundation up.
Keep us in the loop about how you're doing.
 
Thanks for stopping by! Yes I am taking my time going full steam ahead while I am currently going through some life changing events. Having a strong foundation is so very important. I will utilize this time to get further training in my core service email marketing management since I know that is the area I will focus on. As you go through the rebuilding process in your business, I wish you much success. Keep me posted as well!

Your Hands of Excellence,
Sonja
 
I know this post is a few months ago, but I've been searching around on here and reading a lot. I found this one and thought it was great. I too have been trying to narrow down a niche, and with my past experience, customer service is my top skill. I currently answer incoming calls for an online eCommerce site, as well as order processing for them. All things I enjoy. But is it something that someone would really pay $25 an hour for, or should I possibly restructure my pricing by services? Right now, I get paid by the phone call that I receive. Which doesn't equate to much at the moment.
 
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