Your launch is finished and your e-Course delivery has begun. It’s been a big journey of planning, creating and launching your e-Course but it doesn’t end here. In fact, the rubber has only just hit the road! It’s important to delight your participants by being really present and providing the best service you can during (and beyond) your e-Course delivery. But it’s equally important to honour yourself and know your limits. Enter: boundaries! Here are my top tips for setting boundaries in your e-Course.
Setting clear boundaries in your e-Course
Before we start a conversation about communicating and sticking to your boundaries, let’s start by setting clear boundaries before a situation arises.
There will always be hiccups and road bumps along the way as you deliver your e-Course so it’s always good to be prepared for anything!
This means taking a look at potential hiccups and road bumps that could occur during your e-Course delivery and setting clear boundaries before you’re “in” the situation.
Some common road bumps include:
- Complaints or refunds
- Community management taking up too much time
- Participant requests for “special conditions”
Once you’ve identified potential road bumps, start creating a boundary or ‘policy’ to help support you in this area.
Take some time to ground yourself and really feel into the situation. What action would feel really good for you? Would you be able to ‘back yourself’ with this boundary? Does this boundary make you constrict or expand?Only you know what’s right for you and your e-Course! Click To Tweet
Example of boundaries that you might want to consider include:
- Guarantees and refund policies
- Community guidelines
- “What to expect” section of your membership site that clearly outlines all that’s included as part of e-Course delivery
Setting these boundaries from the start makes it easier for you to communicate and stick to your boundaries later on.
Communicating your boundaries in your e-Course
So you’ve grounded yourself, felt into your options and created your boundaries. You may have them written in your notebook or as a document on your computer. Now it’s time to communicate them with your participants!
Let’s look at the common road bumps and how you can communicate your boundaries in each of the situations…
Complaints or refunds
This is an important one and you need to state your guarantee and refund policy upfront and explicitly in a number of areas.
I believe it’s best to display your guarantee and refund policy:
- Firstly as it’s own section on the sales page before participants purchase
- Secondly as part of the FAQs on your sales page
- Thirdly on the payment page as participants purchase (if possible)
- Finally in a follow-up email after purchase
I have actually found that since communicating my refund policy multiple times I have had less refund requests as people are more aware of the terms right from the beginning and therefore make a conscious commitment to doing the program.
Community management taking up too much time
Community guidelines should be communicated with participants and provide information of:
- Your expectations of your community
- The tone and the vibe
- The behaviours that are acceptable (including promotional guidelines) and those that are not
They might also include boundaries around “office hours” and the level of support your provide.
My community guidelines are available in the sidebar of the Membership site so that we can update them quickly and easily and they are easy to find. You might also like to include a link to them in your forum. For example, when using a Facebook Group you could link to community guidelines in the group description, pinned post or even in the Facebook cover image.
Participants requests for “special conditions”
This situation covers all of the situations where participants ask for something outside the scope of your e-Course. Maybe they want immediate access to all of the modules despite the content being “dripped” each week. Or maybe they want an extra live call as they missed the last one. Whatever the request, it’s important to clearly communicate the inclusions of the e-Course and what participants can expect from you.
This can be done:
- Firstly as a section of your sales page before participants purchase
- Secondly as a part of your FAQs
- Thirdly in a follow-up email when participants purchase
- Finally as part of the membership site in the form of a course overview or progress tracker
As you’ll see from all of the above examples, you want to communicate your boundaries in as many places as possible!
Sticking to your boundaries in your e-Course
The final phase of setting boundaries in your e-Course is to stick to them! I always get excited when I see e-Course creators publicly stick to their boundaries in community forums by saying no or “not this time”. It shows that they’re committed to their boundaries and are willing to walk the walk and talk the talk!
But let me be honest: this isn’t always easy and I’m a huge believer in hiring a team to support you in this.
For example, I have a virtual assistant to support me with refund requests as people often use emotional or abusive language and I am very emotionally attached to my work – naturally!
Instead, my assistant will give me a summary of the request – using only the facts and I am able to make a decision without being drawn into the negative energy.
I also have a community manager (actually two!) who support me in my community forums (read my tips on hiring and onboarding a community manager here).
This is just a starting point for creating boundaries in your e-Course and it’s definitely something that you will continuously work on as your e-Course and business grow and thrive!