Social Media Client: Ali Mearza
Ali Mearza is a leading Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon based in Harley Street, London. Ali specialises in Cornea, Cataract & Laser Refractive Surgery using leading edge technologies. Whilst his practice is very successful, and Ali has featured on the Discovery Channel, E4, Channel 5 and articles in the National Press, Ali wanted to extend his reputation for excellence by using social mediaplatforms to communicate his brand, expertise and knowledge. In particular, it was felt this activity would be a great way to connect with a younger demographic who may be looking for Laser Eye surgery procedures.
Ali and his team approached Get Ahead VA to implement a suitable social media package, which would enable Ali to begin developing his presence on both Facebook and Twitter.
Rebecca Newenham, Founder of Get Ahead VA, “When Ali approached us to help with his social media we were delighted to offer our support. Our knowledge developing social media activity lent itself to Ali’s requirements and we were excited to work alongside him.”
As with many new clients, Ali did not have a Facebook or Twitter account, and initially it was anticipated that due to time constraints, Ali would not be able to interact or post content on a regular basis. Therefore, Get Ahead VA was able to provide the flexibility and knowledge to support Ali by searching and developing content and managing schedules, thereby, freeing up much needed time. Having said that, now 5 months later, Ali is a great advocate and user of his Twitter and Facebook accounts and consistently interacts and posts his own updates on a regular basis.
Social Media – Set up
Get Ahead VA, Vanessa Hodges, Marketing Specialist, set up a business Facebook page and a Twitter account with branding to match Ali’s website. Vanessa also developed content for the biography profiles, which were consistent with one another and all other marketing materials. Images and logos were resized to work with customised headers on all platforms. Research was carried out to follow as many relevant and interesting Twitter accounts to begin building followers.
Each month, Vanessa develops a content schedule for review by Ali. Ali is able to provide feedback and update content where appropriate. This content is then scheduled and posted onto Twitter, Facebook and Google+. Throughout the month content is sent out daily allowing followers to retweet and favourite.
The key to getting any kind of results from social media is to strike a balance between sourcing good, relevant content and personal interaction. As a result, after a relatively short period of time, Ali has now over 1,000 followers on Twitter, with 948 post reached and 156 total of pages liked on Facebook. These results are a great representation of how to develop awareness and followers with an outsourced solution such as Get Ahead VA.
Ali Mearza says “Rebecca and her team have been amazing at taking away the 'fear factor' of social media. They have taken me from total novice too social media whizz in no time at all! They've been great to work with; really took the time to understand our business and listen to our needs before getting everything up and running. It's been a whirlwind learning curve but we wouldn't have it any other way!”
VA client –
AlfaPeople is one of the largest Microsoft Dynamic partners in the world with more than 400 employees in 14 countries focused on Microsoft Dynamics AX and CRM. Rob Ubee is the Managing Director of AlfaPeople in the UK (http://alfapeople.com/)
Time consuming distractions: The UK business has been growing steadily but Rob was frustrated by the plethora of tasks that were distracting him from what he really needed to focus on. Rob said, “I was spending far too much time booking travel, checking timesheets, raising repeat invoices and recording my own expenses. My inbox was growing ever longer!”
Initially, Rob thought about employing an administrator, but he realised that there wouldn’t be enough work to keep them occupied 100% of the time. He had heard about Virtual Personal Assistants and did some research, but was concerned about allowing someone he didn’t know to participate in the business.
Personal touch builds trust: At this point, Rebecca Newenham, Founder of GetAhead VA, was introduced to Rob and a meeting was arranged in London. “It was really important for me to meet Rebecca and Leslie, who has now been working with us for 6 months. I needed to be sure that Leslie had the skills required, would fit the culture of the business and that I could trust her with the tasks and information that I was giving her access to.”
Flexible time and Added Value: Leslie took over one task at a time following a process that was developed to ensure a smooth handover. The flexibility meant that once one task has been handed over Leslie’s time could be increased to start working on the next one. Rob said “This flexibility of time would have been incredibly difficult to achieve had we employed an office assistant.” Moving forward, Rob is looking to increase Leslie’s time so that she is available to other members of the team.
Additionally, Leslie has been able to help with ad-hoc tasks such as proof reading and sense checking proposals. Having someone from outside the company has helped ensure that the proposals were clear and understandable to the non-technical reader.
Great value for money: GetAhead invoice all their clients by the minute. If it’s a quiet period Rob only needs to pay for the time that Leslie has logged. “Engaging a Virtual Assistant has been a very cost effective way to bring office administration to the business. The way that GetAhead charge is extremely fair”, commented Rob.
Freedom to grow the business: “Leslie has been proactively helpful and is a great addition to our team. We had good business growth last year and I know this is down to the fact that I gained time back to focus on the areas that would make this happen” Rob reflected.
Read recent articles and features about Rebecca Newenham and the Get Ahead team:
Today we meet Rebecca Newenham, Founder of Get Ahead VA. Rebecca is a mum of 3 daughters and here she talks about her career and how she started Get Ahead VA and her plans for the future.
Boardroom Mum: Can you please tell us a little bit about yourself?
Rebecca Newenham: I have a business studies degree and during the course I worked on two placements. The first with in Sainsburys in their Head Office working in the buying department, followed by some time at Marks & Spencer in retail buying.
Read more here
We caught up with Rebecca from Get Ahead VA who tells us her business success story of how she started her own business as a Virtual Assistant.
What is your business called and when did you start it?
I started Get Ahead VA in 2010 after recognising a gap in the market for virtual assistance (VA) services that offered the flexibility, value and performance that small businesses and start-ups need in the 21st century, digital economy. We take on the tasks they don’t have time to do, the skills to do or simply don’t want to do – enabling them to get back to what they do best – growing and running their businesses.
Read more here