Business Strategy

Mission Accomplished: The Secret Sauce to Getting Kicka$$ Testimonials and Success Stories for Your Product, Program or Course (Even If It’s Brand, Spanking New!)

What do you do if you’re not getting enough sales? What if you’re not selling as much of your products, programs, courses or services, as you want to?

The answer could be a lot simpler than you think because you might be missing just one ingredient in your sales and marketing message…

Social proof.

So that’s basically success stories and testimonials from students and clients and it’s the credibility you get — not from what you say — but from what other people say about you and your work.

Now, I know you might be thinking, “But Marisa, I’ve never sold this product, program or course before, so how can I get testimonials?”  

Don’t worry if that’s you because I’m going to tell you a little later, exactly what you can do about that.

But first I want to talk about some super fun ways to get powerful testimonials and success stories if you already have a program or if you’re in the process of delivering a program or product.

How We Got 700 Pages of Testimonials

I was on the phone the other day with Mary Morrissey’s team (Mary’s a transformational leader who teaches thousands of people how to become a life coach).

And someone on her team asked me, “Marisa, how in the world did you get over 700 pages of testimonials for your Experience Product Masterclass and how can we get more testimonials for some of our brand, new products?” 

Here’s my answer…

You want to incentivize people to give you testimonials by building it right into your program.

For instance, in our Experience Product Masterclass or EPM, we tell students they’ll receive a special graduation bonus as soon as they finish the program and submit their story.

So, a few interesting things happen when people get that graduation bonus…

The first thing is that they feel really good because the bonus includes a round of applause and a bunch of confetti raining down on them, inside the membership site 

The other thing is they get to score an additional 50 Experience Points (we’ve got a gamified membership site that involves collecting Experience Points… it’s a LOT of fun!)

And when a student submits their graduation story, we also send them a certificate via snail mail and we give them full permission to use my trademarked term “Experience Product” to describe their product.

Plus, they get to use our seal which links back to our CertifiedEP.com website. 

We’ve been using the graduation bonus for a while now and it works like an automated testimonial machine because it creates this massive incentive for students to not just complete the program but to share their journey and their success story at the end of their experience.

400,000 Reasons to Share 

Here’s something else you can do to get awesome testimonials… 

Focus on collecting as many video testimonials as you can.

Videos are even more powerful than written testimonials because people can actually hear your students speak their story. 

So, here’s what I recommend…

Tell your students you’re running a contest where you’ll film the best student or client story, at the end of your program.

Make sure you let them know you’ll be sharing their video with all of your future prospects, which is basically free marketing for them.

All they need to do to be considered is record a short — 60 seconds or less — video of their “before and after” story. 

I call it “before and after” because the story’s about where they were before — their lowest point and the greatest challenges and struggles they had — and where they got to after your program or course. 

So, we’ve had EPM students bring in up to 400 thousand dollars during the program.

That’s a pretty big leap from where they were before to where they were after EPM and we received a bunch of unforgettable testimonials from ecstatic students who couldn’t wait to share their story with the world  

The Most Important Words at Live Your Message

We also get a lot of positive feedback and success stories from our Mission Accomplished T-shirts.

So, “Mission Accomplished” is a very important phrase here at Live Your Message because it’s what we say when someone realizes our program mission, which is a major milestone. 

We’ve defined a Mission Accomplished state for every one of our programs and people know exactly what they need to do to get there. 

For instance, if you’re in our year-long Mentorship program, you know you’ve hit Mission Accomplished when you earn back all the money you invested to join the program.

And when one of our Mentorship students earns their money back, we give them a Mission Accomplished T-shirt.

Some people get their shirt in the first week or two of the program and some people — especially if they’re just beginning — might take the entire year to earn their money back.

But it really doesn’t matter how long it takes because getting to Mission Accomplished is a huge milestone.

People are beyond excited and proud to get their t-shirt and it becomes a part of their success story. 

The shirt symbolizes all of the hard work and blood, sweat and tears they’ve put into earning their money back . 

So, we have all these different ways that we reward and incentivize not just getting to Mission Accomplished but telling the story and sharing the experience of how they got there. 

What to Do When You’re Brand New

As promised let me answer the question I mentioned at the start…

What do you do if you’ve never launched your product before or you’re brand new to business and you don’t have testimonials yet?

What I recommend is that you offer your program or course at a “beta price.” 

Basically, let people know that you’re offering your program at a highly discounted rate and, in order to create an awesome experience, you’re going to be fully invested in their success and you’ll be giving them a ton of personal feedback — more than future students.

So, your customers get all of that for a significantly lower price in exchange for their testimonial and if they’re really happy with your product, they can go ahead and refer potential customers, students and clients too.

So, there you have it, the secret sauce we use, not just for a few testimonials or a couple dozen testimonials but 700 pages of testimonials from happy students and customers all around the world. 

I hope this helps you get more sales and I hope you can get more students to complete your course or program because that’s when you get to change lives…

And I know that’s why you do what you do in the first place!

So, go out there and make Mission Accomplished happen for yourself and every, single one of your students. I know they’ll love you for it because you’ve done something very few people do… deliver on your promises.

How about you? Have you felt excited to share your success story after you get through a course or program?

Or maybe you couldn’t wait to record a testimonial for a product or service? What inspired you, what got you motivated, what made you want to tell the world? 

Share below… I’d love to know 

And if you have a kicka$$ testimonial from your student or client, don’t be shy… 

Share in the comments. I personally read and reply to each one! 

Love it? Hate it? Let me know...

  1. Leslie McKay

    As savvy and cool as ever Marissa, I’ll definitely be running with these ideas 🤸🏻‍♀️

    Reply ·
    1. Marisa Murgatroyd

      Stoked you’re taking action on this Leslie!

      Reply ·
  2. Roe Couture DeSaro

    I love all thiese ideas and incentives. This came at a great time as I just finished up my 1st online group program and some of the results have been amazing and I was talking to them about wanting to do case study videos. I’m thinking livestreaming them but adding a brief 1-2 minute or asking them to write their ‘story’s vs.testimonial is a huge insight for me. Thank-you. Looking forward to joining your EP course last year wasn’t right time for me. I am all about experiences in all areas of my life. Thanks

    Reply ·
    1. Marisa Murgatroyd

      Sweet Roe! I’m glad this year is the right timing for you. We open up our free training series on Monday (October 7)! 🙂

      Reply ·
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About the Author Marisa Murgatroyd

Marisa is the founder of Live Your Message, where she turns entrepreneurs into Online Superheroes, and the creator of Start With You where she helps people just like you to discover the business they're meant to build, not just the business they can build. At 4’11 and a quarter, she’s called the shortest woman in marketing — and that doesn’t stop her from having huge ideas. She’s the “go to” brand builder for industry luminaries and heavyweights such as Justin Livingston, Callan Rush, Danny Iny, Alexis Neely and Susan Peirce Thompson. Marisa helps entrepreneurs create a business that is authentic and aligned with who they are, to empower them to turn up the dial on their “inner superhero”, so they can be the superhero to their tribe, as well as in their own lives.

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