Showcasing the work and skills of our community and members is an important part of the work we’re doing at Digital Women.
And with our series of Member Spotlights, we help our community get to know members better.
This Member Spotlight highlights Emma Read – Founder & Virtual Assistant Matchmaker at Emma Read VA & Associates, Emma Read is a Virtual Assistant Matchmaker who connects female founders with multi-talented UK virtual assistants whose reliable, expert support sets them free. Free to spend time growing their business, pursuing their ambitions, or taking on more projects they love! Every business is different – and so is every virtual assistant! Emma will work with you to personally match you with a VA based on your requirements. How much more could you achieve if you could delegate your business admin and free up time and headspace? 💗
First off – What do you love about Digital Women?
Where do I start?! I love having access to an amazing community of women to lean on for advice, support and accountability, especially since the new Freelance & Founders Slack channel was set up. I also love knowing that whenever I want to learn about something new in the digital space I can just log on to the members’ area and find relevant training.
Emma, tell us about your freelance / founder story
I started working as a Virtual Assistant back in 2016 having been made redundant from my IT Coordinator role with a leading UK property company. My partner ran his own signwriting business and I’d seen first-hand how much work was involved in running a business and I made it my mission to provide freedom and time to busy business owners. I was soon fully booked but I wanted to continue to help the amazing female founders who are overworked, overwhelmed and unable to grow their businesses as a result. So I’ve grown a team of talented, reliable Virtual Assistants and when I’m not working with my own clients I focus on providing high-calibre VAs to ambitious female founders via my matchmaking service.
Emma, tell us more about you, your work and the services you provide:
I offer a unique Virtual Assistant matchmaking service and carefully match ambitious female founders with top UK Virtual Assistants who have the specific background, skills and experience they need to scale their business to the next level. As well as making a match based on the Virtual Assistant’s industry knowledge, skills and experience, I also consider the client’s personality, values and preferred way of working. From traditional Executive Assistants to Digital Marketing Assistants and Virtual Assistants who specialise in working with neurodiverse clients, I help my clients find the RIGHT talent for their specific needs.
All Virtual Assistants I recommend go through a thorough vetting process and only a select few are invited to join my VA Directory. Those selected have access to the hive mind of me and ALL my Virtual Assistants – so my clients get personal, one-to-one support AND benefit from our combined skills and experience.
Clients can also hire additional Virtual Assistants as their needs change, or their business grows. We’re their bolt-on remote team there to support them every step of the way. My mission is to provide valuable business support services to happy clients who consider me a partner in their success and to build a reputation for being indispensable.
I strive to be the best possible choice of Virtual Assistant company for female founders nationwide.
And the services you provide?
Virtual Assistant Matchmaking and 1:1 Consultation Days.
My Virtual Assistants can help with:
Following up enquiries
Data entry Research
System set up
Social media marketing
Requesting reviews Brainstorming ideas
And much more…
My 1:1 Consultation Days are for female founders who aren’t quite ready to start working with a Virtual Assistant, but who would benefit from a full day working together to learn more about setting their business up for success so that when they ARE ready to outsource, it’s a smooth and easy process. I aim to be there for my clients every step of their journey.
What Digital Skills do you think are most important for Founders / Freelancers?
Understanding tech-automation so they can streamline their business processes and run their business as efficiently as possible. Also, digital marketing is a must! If you can’t market your business you won’t get anywhere very fast.
What is your favourite social media channel and why?
If you’d asked me a year ago I would have said Instagram, but I stopped using it earlier this year as it just wasn’t a place I enjoyed hanging out anymore. Nowadays I love LinkedIn (I never thought I’d say that as I used to find it so stuffy and corporate but it’s changed so much). It’s now a great platform for making new connections, having great conversations, building new relationships and generating new leads.
Where do you go to learn new digital skills for your business?
When I first started my business back in 2016 I found the free courses by Google Digital Garage really helpful. There are also a lot of courses on OpenLearn, which is free learning from the Open University. These days I learn new digital skills via skill sharing, training and other resources in the Digital Women Members Club.
What trends do you see emerging in digital in the next 12 months?
I think many small businesses will focus more of their marketing efforts on email marketing. Organic reach on social media is so poor and email marketing is an easy way for small businesses to connect with their audience. For the same reason, I think influencer marketing will also continue to grow.
Tell us one thing you’ve gained from being a member of Digital Women
I’ve gained a wonderfully supportive community of like-minded female founders in the Founder and Freelancer Club.