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Events — 15 Nov 2022

Email Templates that Get your Clients to Refer You

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10 Email Templates that Get your Clients to Refer You

Asking for a client referral is a high-value ask. Your email seeking such a referral will yield better results when you follow expert-approved practices. For instance, along with a great subject line and your signature, it should mention 

  • A significant outcome your client achieved with your service or product
  • An incentive for them
  • A call to action.

Now, when it comes to approaching people, we all know that asking for a referral from a happy and long-term client is quite easy. 

But, how do you break the ice with other clients, associates, or even your networking group? How do you convince them to refer you to their network without seeming pushy?

That’s where we come in. 

In this post, you’ll find 10 ready to use client referral templates customized to use with different categories of your network. This way, you also will be able to find out the potential referrers in your network you may have missed before and the best way to approach them.

Also read: What is a Referral Business Model

Types of client referral templates

There are mainly two types of client referral templates you can use.

Personal client referral templatesMass client referral templates
  • Used to send out emails individually and are highly personalized.
  • Every email consists of details that are only relevant to the respective recipient.
  • Used as a part of a referral program that you promote to a mass audience.
  • Although the program has benefits for the recipient, the emails are generalized.

Personal client referral templates are ideal to use with people: 

  • You have a good relationship with
  • Who have indicated positive experiences with your brand
  • Who are repeat buyers
  • Who offer services that are complementary to yours.

The best time to ask for referrals from these people is right after they have shared a positive response or shown signs of commitment. 

Mass client referral templates, on the other hand, are used: 

  • When you haven’t had a personalized interaction with someone in your network
  • When you don’t have a clue about how they feel about your services, but you have a referral program in place. 

Related reading: 

  1. How to Use Referral Marketing to Boost Your Campaigns
  2. 10 Referral Introduction Emails You Need to See For Your Next Email Campaign
  3. A Guide to Referral Marketing Systems

Client referral templates

In this section, you’ll see 10 client referral templates to email your potential referrers. 

Template 1: Asking for a referral from a mass audience

One of the easiest ways to ask for referrals is through an automated program set up using a referral software. The software can automate much of the process and notify you to track the results. Giving your audience a ready-to-share link that they can send to their network makes the process smoother and increases the chances of participation.

Hello [Referrer name],

Thank you for continuing to trust us and we are grateful for your loyalty. It’s been a pleasure serving you and we would love to extend our service to someone you think will benefit from [Your business name]. 

Do you have anyone in your network who may benefit from or could be interested in [Product/Service]? If so, I’d like to personally invite you to refer us to them. 

As a part of our [Program name] program, you get a [Describe what their reward is] when every referral makes their first transaction using your link. 

How it works:

Step 1: You share the below link with your network.

Step 2: They complete their first transaction and receive a discount.

Step 3: You get rewarded.

Here’s your link to share with your network: [Personalized and trackable link]

Feel free to reach out if you have any questions or need assistance. We’re always here to help.

Regards,

[Your name]

See 8 real referral programs that have worked well.

Template 2: Asking for a referral from a loyal/repeat purchase client

When a client has made a repeat purchase, it’s an indication of their preference for your product/service over your competitors. It shows commitment and thus an opportunity to ask for a referral.

When requesting a referral from a loyal client or a repeat purchase client, you want to keep the focus on their happiness and satisfaction with your services. Having said that, do not make it sound like you’re taking them for a ride because they have stayed with you. 

Your need to be polite, friendly, and offer great value to your client. For example, ask them if they think your service can be improved in any way before you make the ask.

Hello [Client name],

Hope things are going well with you. I’m so glad to know that you’re happy with our service and are achieving your goals/Thanks so much for your second purchase/renewing your subscription with [Your business name]. 

It’s clients like you who keep us going and we really appreciate your continued interest in us. If there is any area you think we need to improve on, feel free to let me know and I will work with my team to look into that.

Since things are going well for you, I couldn’t help but wonder if you have anyone in your network that might find value in our service/product. I would love to help them achieve similar results and would love it if you referred us to them. 

Alternatively, if anyone comes to mind you can also share their contact details with me. An ideal client would be [Your target audience].

Once your referee completes their first transaction with us, you earn a [Describe the reward] as an incentive. I’d be happy to personally get on a call and understand their needs to suggest a suitable service/product. 

Regards,

[Your name]

Template 3: Asking for a referral from a new client

When we say a ‘new client’, we are referring to someone who is on board, has used your product or service at least once and has in some way indicated they are pleased. The “ask” here may be more difficult than with a loyal client, but it’s too big a room to ignore when someone sees value in what you have to offer.

This could take a week, a month, or even more, but when you see that you’ve made a positive impression, it’s time to ask.

Hello [Client name],

You told me you’re happy with our work and I’m glad to hear this has happened over such a short course of time. We will always take care of your needs with our service/product and you can always contact me. 

In the meantime, do you know someone in your network that also might find value in our service/product? Perhaps your clients, vendors, or associates? If there is an opportunity, please refer us to them over the phone or by email. I can share a ready-to-send email template with you that you can use to reach out to them. 

Alternatively, if anyone comes to mind you can also share their contact details with me. An ideal client would be [Your target audience].

Once your referee completes their first transaction with us, you earn a [Describe the reward] as an incentive. I’d be happy to personally get on a call and understand their needs to suggest a suitable service/product.

Please let me know.

Regards,

[Your name]

If your referrer agrees, send them a template they can use.

If they’re on the fence about it, keep the lighthearted conversations going and bring it up again in the future.

Template 4: Asking for a referral from a partner, vendor, or affiliate

You likely have partners, service providers, affiliates, etc., in your network who provide services or have a product complimentary to yours. If you have a good relationship with your point of contact in these businesses, you have an opportunity to leverage that.

Hello [Name],

Hope all is well with you. I’m writing to you with a proposal that may benefit the both of us. 

First off, I’d like to inform you that our clients have a [Satisfaction score] satisfaction score with our services/product. Since you are in the [Your industry] space and our offerings make the best match, I’d like to request something from you.

Do you know anyone among your clients or network who would benefit from [Your business name]? An ideal client would be [Describe your target audience]. One thing that really helps us stand out is [USP]. I’d be happy if you can refer us to them and would love to do the same for you in my network. 

Alternatively, if anyone comes to mind you can also share their contact details with me. 

Also, once your referee completes their first transaction with us, you earn a [Reward] as an incentive for bringing them to us.

Regards,

[Your name]

Template 5: Asking for a referral when a client has shared positive feedback, a review, or comment 

Clients don’t usually leave a review without being prompted unless they have had a significant experience with you, negative or positive. So, when you encounter someone who is spreading a positive word, you know that this someone is highly satisfied with your services. 

Check your marketing platforms regularly to identify clients that have shared positive feedback, review or a comment. 

Hello, [Client name]

Thanks for sharing your feedback/reviewing us/commenting on our post. We’re so glad we were able to meet your expectations.

Since you were willing to let others know of how [Product/service] helped you, I wanted to ask you: Is there anyone particular in your network that might benefit from [Product/service] like you? Could you please refer us to them and initiate a formal connection between us? 

Alternatively, if anyone comes to mind you can also share their contact details with me. An ideal client would be [Your target audience].

Once your referee completes their first transaction with us, you earn a [Reward] as an incentive for bringing them to us.

I’d greatly appreciate it. I’m looking forward to hearing from you.

Regards,

[Your name]

Template 6: Asking for a referral following a customer satisfaction survey

A survey is one of the best ways to know what your clients truly think of your offerings and if it’s helping them the way you intended it to. When your clients give you a high satisfaction score, it’s indicative that they like your product/service.

This is a good opportunity to acknowledge their appreciation and ask them for a referral. But also remember to touch upon any specific feedback they have given so they know you’ve paid attention.

Hello [Client name],

When you recently took our survey, you indicated a satisfaction score of [Their score]. We’re so glad we were able to meet your expectations.

Since you find such high value in [Product/service], I wanted to ask you: Is there anyone in your network that might benefit from [Product/service] like you? Could you please refer us to them and initiate a formal connection between us?

Alternatively, if anyone comes to mind you can also share their contact details with me. An ideal client would be [Your target audience]. 

Once your referee completes their first transaction with us, you earn a [Reward] as an incentive for bringing them to us. 

I’d greatly appreciate it. I’m looking forward to hearing from you.

Regards,

[Your name]

Template 7: Asking for a referral from your networking groups, friends, and family 

Your networking group may consist of people you have known from the previous organizations you’ve worked with, from an event, or simply a LinkedIn connection. They aren’t necessarily connected to your business or industry. 

When it comes to friends and family, you may have a good enough rapport with a lot of them to simply connect over a call and ask for a referral. The template here is to use with people you don’t regularly interact with and have a slightly formal relationship with. 

They may not totally understand what your business is about. So, explain what you do, tell them how they benefit, and ask for a referral.

Hello [Recipient Name],

Hope all is well with you. I’m writing to you with a proposal that may benefit the both of us. As you may know, our [Product/service] helps [The problem your business solves and your industry]. 

I wanted to know if there is anyone in your network that might benefit from [Product/service]? One thing that really helps us stand out is [USP]. Could you please refer us to them and initiate a formal connection between us? 

Alternatively, if anyone comes to mind you can also share their contact details with me. An ideal client would be [Your target audience].

Once your referee completes their first transaction with us, you earn a [Reward] as an incentive.

I’d greatly appreciate it. I’m looking forward to hearing from you.

Regards,

[Your name]

Template 8: Following up after the referral request 

You have sent your first request, and it’s been over a week or two and you haven’t heard from them. In such a case, it’s good for you to follow up with your potential referrer to remind them of your request. 

Hello [Recipient Name],

It’s been a few weeks since we last spoke. Hope you’re doing well. 

About what I had requested when we last spoke, did you think of anyone that might benefit from [Product/service]? 

Please put me in touch with them and I’ll gladly take it from there. As I mentioned last time, once your referee completes their first transaction with us, you earn a [Reward] as an incentive. 

Regards,

[Your name]

Template 9: Thanking when they agree to refer you

When someone agrees to give you a referral, thank them and share a template they can use to reach out to their network.

That’s great [Client name]! 

I have an email template you can use to reach out to your associate. This will save your time too. 

[Template]

Regards,

[Your name]

Now, once you’re referred it’s your job to convince them to buy from you. You can either do that by yourself or bring in one of your sales team. 

Template 10: Thanking after receiving a referral

Your referrer connected you with their network and vouched for your offerings. A key step to maintain the relationship with your connection is to thank them after you successfully receive a referral from them. 

You can do this over email or a phone call to show your appreciation. Also, now is the time to offer the reward you had promised. 

Here’s a template you can use for the same:

Dear [Referrer name],

Thank you for referring [Referee name] to our [Product/service name]. 

I sincerely appreciate your confidence in us and will continue to do our best to serve you. Also, as promised, you will receive a [reward] for helping us extend our services. 

Thanks again, and please let me know if you can think of anyone else I should contact. If I can be of any help, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

Regards,

[Your name]

Here’s a template to use for unsuccessful referrals.

Dear [Referrer name],

Thank you for referring [Referee name] to our [Product/service name]. 

I sincerely appreciate your confidence in us and will continue to do our best to serve you. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like [Referee name] needs our services at the moment. But if that changes and they come back to us, I’ll let you know. 

Thanks again, and please let me know if you can think of anyone else I should contact. If I can be of any help, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

Regards,

[Your name]

Asking for client referrals: Best practices

There are several things to follow when it comes to asking for referrals to maximize your chances of getting at least one from your contacts.

1. Build a relationship

client referral templates
Source (freepik.com)
build a relationship
Source (freepik.com)

Referral requests are nothing like cold calls. Your request will only be considered if you have a good relationship with them to start with, no matter how short it is. 

Make calls or send texts to your customers to stay updated about their needs and get them the appropriate help. While you’re at it, make an effort to break the ice and build a rapport by discussing a couple of things outside of your business. All in all, stay connected, find a common ground, and build on it.

This way, when you eventually ask them to refer you, it won’t seem out of the blue.

2. Offer value

offer value
Source (freepik.com)

While great service and a good relationship will get them to consider your request, sometimes it’s not enough to get a referral. Your potential referrers will be more likely to show interest in your proposal if they find value for themselves. 

Incentivizing them with a discount, a gift card, etc., are some ways to go about it. See some reward ideas for your referral program.

Pro tip: Make your referral program a contest by introducing urgency among your happiest clients. For example, the first 10 clients to get a referral for you will win a higher incentive. 

3. Grab attention with a magnetic subject line

A person receives over 100 emails per day. You need to convince your recipient to first open your email from a pool of hundreds. So, your subject line is key. 

Here are some things we normally see in great subject lines:

  • Highlight the core benefits.
  • Use power words like ‘you’.
  • Personalize your subject line.
  • Use a number to show the reward.
  • Use emojis.

4. Personalize your email

Remember that when you are writing to people, they need to feel special and not one of the many you are contacting. Bring up any specific interactions you have had with them in the past or any commonality like a common interest to strengthen the connection and impact.

5. Be concise 

With your strong subject line, even if your potential referrer opens your email, you only have 3 seconds to get their attention. Get to the point quickly and be concise about what you want to convey.

Lay out the instructions in simple, easy-to-understand terms. For instance, what you need them to do, what they gain, will their referees gain a benefit, etc.

6. Use a friendly tone

You’re asking for a favor here. Yes, the incentive is a reward. But, not everyone may see it as valuable as you want them to. Keep your tone lighthearted and friendly so your email doesn’t come across as demanding.

7. Emphasize mutual connection

You may sometimes have a common connection in your network. Find out your referrer’s relationship with them before you write this email. If they share a good rapport, mention this mutual connection in your email to add another layer of trust. 

8. Offer a referral template to your client 

Offering a ready-to-use template makes your referrer’s work easier, making them more likely to refer you. The template should mainly introduce your offerings to the referee. 

Hello [Recipient name],

I don’t know if I have mentioned this before, but I’ve been working with [Your business name] for the past [No. of years/months/weeks]. I was just talking to [Your name], the [Your designation] at [Your business name] and realized their [Product/service] will really help you in [Benefit]. 

I have CCd [Your name] in this email. Please feel free to ask them about anything you want to know. 

[Your name], please feel free to take this forward.

Regards, 

[Referrer’s name]

9. Send it at the right time

Schedule your email to be sent at a time when your recipient is most likely to open it. Although there are general best practices and best times to send emails, one size doesn’t fit all. Start with the general best time to send, for instance, Thursday 8-9 am. Then, A/B test your emails on different days and times to see what works best for your audience.

Start sending those referral requests now

By putting together these templates as a part of your referral strategy, you have multiple means of referrals coming in. Combining these with a referral program software, you can easily figure out how well these emails are working in getting you the referrals.

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Sindhu Prabhu

Written by

Sindhu helps campaigners in the political, nonprofit, advocacy, and business space strategize their campaigns for maximum success through her content at CallHub. Her passion for marketing flows through every piece she writes. She is a favorite hooman to her 3 cats, sings once in a while, and loves exploring. Find her on LinkedIn here: Sindhu Prabhu

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