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Ultimate Guide to Refer-A-Friend Emails That Get Referrals

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Marko Zivanovic

Content Manager

How to introduce your referral program?

Many businesses use social media marketing and introduce the referral program through excellent customer experiences. However, when you need to get the word out about your referral program, sending emails is a great way to do it. 

Email remains the most cost-effective marketing channel for small businesses. This makes emails a great way to continue to spread the word about your referral program and help grow your business.

As a way to get more referrals, use a personalized email strategy that includes attention-grabbing emails and referral rewards your customers want. When you create the right emails to express the benefits of your referral program and allow them to pass the word along, you can achieve a more effective referral program for your business.

What is a Refer-a-Friend Email?

The refer-a-friend email can help you promote more awareness of your referral program by offering incentives for your customer base to refer their friends, who may be interested in your products or services. It is a message that you send to your customers, inviting them to tell their friends and network about their experiences with your business.

When to Send a Refer-a-Friend Email

Before you send your first refer-a-friend email, ask yourself: why send it, and how much will my customers love it? 

If you want your product or service to succeed, you can’t just randomly send emails. You need to wait until customers are ready for your offering. Send refer-a-friend emails only when someone is ready to use your services and is open to your referral offer. 

The best times to send refer-a-friend emails are:

  • Immediately after customers bought a product from your business
  • Right after they came into your business for a small group class or spa session

If they are loyal customers at one of these points, they know your business. You can take advantage of this by reaching out to them with refer-a-friend emails that include more referral rewards and value. You can even intrigue them with more exciting referral bonuses in your email marketing strategy such as a thank-you email after a class or a purchase. 

Anatomy of a Great Refer-a-Friend Email Template

If a business sends refer-a-friend emails to their existing customers without including any referral offers or incentives, many people are not aware of what it takes to join referral programs.

There are many email templates out there, but referral emails are different as they need to be clear, direct, and personal. To increase referrals and sales, use these four essential components of a great referral email template that will entice your existing customers to share your product with their friends. 

Email Subject Line

Keep your subject lines simple and direct when writing an email. You need to be careful to not sound too spammy or desperate in the subject line, since they may turn customers off and not click on the email.

Refer-a-friend emails can include any of these subject lines:

When you’re first promoting your referral program

Refer Friends to Win Big

Grow Your Network, Grow Your Health

Referral Program: Earn Rewards for Your Referrals

After a customer buys a product or service

Refer a Friend & Get 20% Off Your Next Spa Day (Or Gym Class)!

Refer & Get a Free Product!

10% Off Your Next Spa Day Just For Telling Friends!

If a customer hasn’t taken part in the referral program

Hey, Want to Get Rewarded For Spreading the Word?

Get Rewarded for Being Your Best Self

Become Part of Our Gym (or Spa) Referral Program

To spread by word-of-mouth, you can also appeal to their emotions

Become a Gym Referral Legend 

Refer Your Friends to The Best!

Get Rewarded for All Your Hard Work

Don’t forget to add your customers’ names to the email subject line as personalized emails can lead to an open rate of 50%. It’s easy to get lost in all the details when you’re writing a good email and forget about what really matters- getting the right headline (and your customers’ names) right.

Email Headline

A catchy email headline can be the difference between people opening and ignoring your referral emails. The right words will make them want to open it, but the wrong ones will cause them to delete or move on.

Creating an email headline that captures a customer’s attention can take time, but it does matter to capture their interest and have them read beyond the subject line. Email headlines become all the more important since they appear in the preview text since 43.5% of people read their emails on their smartphones.

For your email headline, refrain from using overly long or complicated sentences. The headline should be used for offering your recipients a sneak peek at what’s inside the email. If it is interesting and relevant to them, they are likely to open the email.

Email Copy

As simple as this may seem, imagine you are writing an email for one person rather than hundreds or thousands. Tell them what you would like them to do after reading your exciting message. 

Tone, voice and language are three critical elements that make up a strong email. You should consider what tone of voice you want to use with your customers because it can either help or hurt your referral marketing campaign. 

Be sure to also include what your incentive is, why the customer will want it and how they’ll benefit from taking part in the referral program. Your incentive must be very clear and easy to understand for customers to choose whether to participate. 

It’s also important to be clear on the rules and stipulations of your referral program. If you use a “get-give” system in your program, make sure the customers know what they are giving or receiving for every successful referral. They also must know if there is a limit to the number of referral bonuses or if they have to refer a certain number of people, so they know what to expect from the program without any confusion.

Email CTA

In order to make sure that the referral process doesn’t feel like a lot of work, you need to have one clear and actionable call-to-action in your email. When sending refer-a-friend emails, make sure that you have one clear CTA. 

Your calls-to-action may say, “Refer a Friend Now” or “Share Your Referral Link.” It is very important to give your customers a specific call-to-action if they’re to participate in your referral program. By doing this, you will be more likely to get them to take action.

Create the Right Refer-a-Friend Email

Your referral program emails are part of your referral marketing strategy that lets you leverage your existing customer base to grow your business. 

You can use this type of email to ask customers for referrals, and it’s one way small businesses are increasingly successful in getting more referrals from their existing customers. The best refer-a-friend emails have clear CTAs, tell the incentive upfront, and give customers an opportunity to do something with the information they just read. 

A wide range of email marketing tools can help you with sending and tracking email marketing emails. But it can be too much to track alongside your referral program metrics. 

referral marketing platform gives you the option to customize email marketing messages based on referral tracking. When you’re working with a referral marketing platform, every aspect of the process is automated. 

Not only will you be able to track your referrals, but also promote them using social media and email campaigns. You can see how your referral emails work all in one place and help you improve your referral program.

Marko Zivanovic

Content Manager

I use engaging words and strategic approaches to create content that converts.

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Marko Zivanovic

Content Manager

I use engaging words and strategic approaches to create content that converts.

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