I've recently had the pleasure of working with the gorgeous and inspiring Tracey Spencer on her e-course Head to Heart. Tracey is not only a knock-out coach (she's 25 years old, and was recently crowned Beautiful You's Emerging Coach 2014-2016, how's that for amazing!), but she's also a seriously knock-out chick! I've been so blessed to have crossed paths with this lady in my business and am thrilled to have her in my life.
I sat down with Trace to extract all the juicy parts of putting together an e-course and how to launch it with your heart, not just your head. Tracey shares a beautiful perspective on how to not only create your e-course, but how to send it out into the world with as much love as possible, knowing that if you've truly created something from that passionate place within, the right people will find their way to it, in exactly the right time! (Aka, no sleazy sales tactics necessary!).
So if you've got that e-book or e-course idea floating around in the crevices of your mind, sit down, grab a wine and tune into this juicy-ness!
On Creating An E-Course
How did you go about developing your e-course?
At first I thought I'd just put it together myself, but then I realised I wanted to make this an actual part of my business and take it seriously. I think that process looks different for everyone, but for me, that happened over 8-months. It evolved quite quickly from thinking 'How can I do this straight away and work with what I've got now' to 'How can I turn this into the best thing I can do with the content?'. The first step for that was running it as an email course, and then the next step was turning it into what it is now. Making the decision to take it seriously made all the difference.
For me, I had the content from my 1:1 work and then turned that into the e-mail e-course and then into what it is now. But for me the most important part was getting clear on what you actually have to do. For example, what are the actual steps for me to create this PDF or what are the actual steps for me to put the sales page together. Break it down and get real about what you actually need to do, rather than let your mind blow it up into this big massive thing. And then once you're clear on those steps, actually do the steps, not just write 10 to-do lists.
Were there any resources you reached out for when planning your e-course?
I basically just googled 'e-course launching' to get an understanding of what other people's experiences of launching an e-course were. I definitely read Claire Bakers wrap-up of her e-course, what she learned and what she hired out etc, which was a great one.
To be honest, I mainly just winged it. Having the communication between the team I had on board and then reaching out to people that have already done it - and not just reading their blogs, actually talking to them. Cassie Mendoza-Jones was a great help, as she's obviously launched e-courses before. Having these people around me was really key. They're the ones that can help guide you and say 'This is going to happen' or 'You might get stressed over this' or just 'You're going to be okay, it's totally normal'.
I think it's important to know that there's absolutely no right or wrong way to go about it - it's all a learning experience.
Doing Bright Eyed & Blog Hearted definitely planted the seed that it would totally be doable to create an e-course. I loved the setup of BE & BH, and I figured I could adapt that model to do it my own way. I think the key is though, once you know what you're doing stop comparing!
What parts of the process did you enjoy?
Collaborating was definitely one of the parts I look back at, and enjoyed feeling like I had a team on this. Meeting my designers, copy writer, having the people along in my video and bouncing ideas off all the people involved. By having a team energy in it, it gives you energy at the same time rather than being depleted you're energised by everyone who's pouring their love into it as well.
The whole process really opened me up both creatively and also my 'planning' side. Before developing the e-course, I hadn't ever really looked at a 3-month time frame and had to plan it back. So I was really learning about myself in that part.
Actually just writing the e-course, and being in that energy was also really exciting. Letting the ideas come to me as I'm writing, like 'how am I going to do the photoshoot?'. Always coming back to the fact that you're meant to have fun when you're creating - if you're not having fun, then it's not aligned. Obviously you're not going to be having fun 24/7 when you're working at midnight, but you've got to really be inspired in order to make it all happen.
Finally, seeing the end result and going 'I did that. I created something from my mind into a physical reality. Just having a finished product and being part of it is one of the coolest things.
Putting your course out there
What barriers/obstacles came up for you before stepping into developing your e-course?
The first mindset barrier to overcome was definately getting overwhelmed with how much you think you need to do for it, where as when you actually break it down, it is totally doable! Because people focus on the end thing and think 'Crap, I have 50 things to do!' but when you actually break it down, it's actually not that hard - anyone can create an e-course!
The second mindset barrier is getting overwhelmed with how much money it might cost, but again, if you break it down most people can afford to create an e-course, even if you have to create a basic version first. Most people can either make it work, as I did at first through an e-mail version of the e-course or set out to manifest the money when you're ready to put money into it. I think money is definitely a huge block. I recently shared some of the REAL figures with a friend; this is how much I invested for the video, this is how much I invested in the website etc. and it helped her realise that it was actually sooo doable. It's definitely an investment, but it's totally doable if you want to commit to it.
Just making the decision that you're going to do it gets rid of everything else. If you're fluffing around and you're like "maybe I will, maybe I won't, I don't know if I can" you're not committed. As soon as you make a decision in your mind, it can happen realy quickly from there - it happened in 2 or 3 months for me, everything just fell into place. So make a decision and commit - but maybe that's because I'm an Aries and like to get shit done.
What things were you considering before seeking out a designer?
I don't remember who I heard it from, but I remember hearing a quote that goes something like:
"Identify what your genius is and what it is not."
I can spend a week doing little canva things, or I can leave it up to the pros who can do a job ten times better than me. The thing is, we can also feel good about asking for help, because it's an energy exchange and yes, it costs money but at the time my time was more valuable at that stage for me to focus on the writing and the creative process.
I think you need to get to that point where you realise that if you want to make something the best it can be, that means asking for help so I can focus on what I'm good at.
What other products/services did you invest in?
I invested in a photographer for professional shots for the site & a videographer for my promo video. JuJu Creative Hub obviously did my web design and Alanna Wimmer did the logo & e-book design. Leah Davies worked with me on the copywriting for the sales page and helped me get my words out in a logical way. I also worked with Cassie Mendoza-Jones for some Kinesiology, which is funny, because I'd never done it before in my life until I was guided to do it as part of the process in creating my course.
Can you tell us a bit about the 'emotional' side of launching your e-course?
I think it's really important to know that you can have all the right intentions for balance but when you're working with your own body's energy and cycles you'll go when you need to go and stop when you need to stop. That can also look really different every day. You can have these ideas of how you're going to find support throughout out it, like I'm going to get a massage once a week and I'm going to eat really nourishing foods and yes that's the right intention to look after yourself. But if it goes out the window sometimes you just need to realise that's because you're rolling with where your energy is at. There were definitely times when I guess you could call it 'burnt out', but I was really just working in the zone.
Make sure you have a really supportive group of people around you, a partner, your working team or just a group of supportive friends that you can have a whinge to but are also going to encourage you and tell you "you got this, man" when you need it.
Can you share with us a little about how you went about promoting your e-course?
Firstly, you've got to understand that there is absolutely no pattern for when people are going to sign up - you might think somethings going to work and it doesn't, and vice versa. All expectations go completely out the door, so just write completely from your heart and without any expectation.
There were times when I got no sign ups for four days, and I'd want to freak out, but then if you come back to knowing that the exact people that are meant to be here will be here. The exact amount will also be here - we have no control over that.
So in 'promoting' my course, I tried to create my posts completely by thinking 'what would help someone today' and 'how can I turn this into a story', rather than just promoting the course - that way you're still providing value along the way.
It was actually the days where I was completely chilled out, exploring nature and just enjoying life were actually the ones where I got the most sign ups. I wasn't near my computer, constantly checking emails. I remember one of the moments, where I was just completely lost in nature, staring at a group of ants for at least ten minutes and then when I got home three people had just signed up in that space of time. When your energy is most present and most connected to yourself, that's when your energy is magnetic, but that doesn't necessarily mean you have to be actively promoting it, people will be feeling it whether you're online or not.
What did your Launch Day look like?
We (my partner and I) had a play day - he took the day off work, we went out for brekkie and both did a little dance in the lounge room when everything went live.
I sent myself flowers from my favourite florist and wrote a letter to myself reminding myself to surrender it to the universe because I've done my best, the rest is out of my hands now.
I knew beforehand that I wanted to be out of the house; instead of just scrolling paypal all day, which just breeds a 'lack mentality', because you're constantly checking in to see if someone's bought your e-course instead of celebrating what you've already achieved. No matter what happens, you need to celebrate yourself for creating this awesome thing.
The night before, I actually laid out all the PDF's from the course, and put little crystals, candles and gold coins around them and said a little prayer over it, and then let it go. Try and find a ritual that feels good to you, either the night before or the morning of launching and really know in your heart that you've shown up and you've done your best and whatever happens from here is just an amazing bonus!!
Top Tips For Launching Your Next E-course, with your heart:
- Take some time out between the cut off date for registrations and actually launching the first module of your e-course. This can help you ensure you get everything in order
- Send yourself flowers and a love note to congratulate yourself on launch day (before you've even signed up one person!)
- Assess your money blocks going in - before you open the gates to receive. Make sure you have bank accounts, paypal requirements etc all sorted
- At the time it might not seem like things are going in the flow, but for the first round sometimes that's just the way it is. You'll most likely look back and realise that everything had it's own perfect flow
- Step away from it. The real magic of manifesting doesn't happen looking at your sign-up page. Take some time away from it all and let those that resonate with your e-course find it