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Referral Thank You Notes To Try in 2024

Creating heartfelt referral thank you notes can go a long way toward building your business and ensuring its success. After all, everyone needs a ‘pat on the back’ or other shows of appreciation for their efforts. ...

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Referral Thank You Notes

Creating heartfelt referral thank you notes can go a long way toward building your business and ensuring its success. After all, everyone needs a ‘pat on the back’ or other shows of appreciation for their efforts.

Thanking people for referring others to your business personalizes the brand-referral partnership. Sure, you can give referrers gift cards, discount coupons, and other perks. However, a simple yet heartfelt thank you note is enough for most people.

Please continue reading to learn more. We promise the things you’ll learn from this post will help you boost your referral marketing program to greater heights.

What is a Referral Thank You Note?

As the name implies, a referral thank you note is a short yet profound message conveying appreciation for someone’s (referrer) efforts in bringing (referring) more potential clients (referees) to your business.

It’s like sending out thank you notes to people who attended your wedding anniversary or a celebration of a career milestone. The only difference is you’re giving these simple yet heartfelt messages to people you recommended your brand, services, and products to their social networks, often through conventional word-of-mouth marketing.

In short, you’re thanking them for bringing new leads to your business.

The Importance of Sending Referral Thank You Notes

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Businesses succeed because of everyone’s collective efforts. Personnel and staff perform their jobs, while customers and business partners recommend the brand to their social contacts and networks.

They could share your brand with relatives, Facebook friends, colleagues, and others. These individuals might grow interested in learning more about your business, opening many opportunities for leads.

And get this.

Referrers don’t charge you a penny for recommending your business, products, and services to their contacts. They will do it willingly because they believe in your brand and offerings. That counts a lot!

Writing a simple thank you note can show your gratitude for their willingness and commitment to contribute to business success by driving more leads.

While referrers can receive discounts, gift cards, and other incentives for every client referral, a heartfelt thank you is often enough. It shows genuine appreciation and promotes healthy (and mutually beneficial relationships). Referrers will feel closer to your organization, especially if you dedicate time and effort to handwriting thank you messages.

Showing appreciation matters!

Eleven in 20 customers will not trust companies that don’t appreciate them. Meanwhile, three in five businesses lose customers because the latter don’t believe the former cared about them. Hence, referrer appreciation can also impact your business success.

According to Amit Kumar of the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin, thanking someone improves the recipient’s well-being and happiness. The happier they are, the more positive their relationships with the thank you note sender. And that fosters deep interpersonal connections.

Stronger and deeper relationships can stimulate future business referrals. It encourages business expansion by increasing opportunities for lead conversions. And that translates to increased growth and success.

What are the Different Types of Referral Thank You Notes?

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Conveying a business owner’s appreciation for people driving more traffic to the company is easy, although one method stands out. You can consider the following two thank you note types to send to your referrers.


Handwritten notes are preferable to automated or template versions because they convey sincerity. Writing a note by hand is time-consuming. But since you’re willing to do it anyway, referrals will appreciate you more. They will feel special. And that can translate to higher customer retention rates.

Handwritten outreach notes make your referrers feel special, encouraging them to continue recommending your brand to their social circles.

Unfortunately, writing thank you notes to thousands of referrers can be time-consuming (and painful to the wrist and fingers). Snail mail can be a problem, too. Moreover, excellent penmanship is necessary to create stunning handwritten messages.

Thankfully, some companies offer handwritten automation solutions to simplify the process without undermining its personalized and sincere nature.

Email message

Writing a referral thank you note by hand can be tedious and slow. And if you have hundreds of referrers to thank, sending an email message is a better option.

Although email thank you messages can be less personal than handwritten notes, you can make them fun and engaging. Personalization or customization is possible with such messages, allowing you to connect with recipients and show appreciation.

The best part? Emails are trackable and editable. You can tweak these messages for more effective future use.

Most businesses create a referral thank you letter template with customizable fields. Such a thank-you note features a structured format to convey a constant message, its customizable sections add a touch of personalization to appeal to specific email recipients.

How to Write a Great Referral Thank You Note

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Thanking referrers for recommending your business to others is essential for growing your company. But how do you write a genuine letter or note expressing appreciation and gratitude for the referrers’ actions? Please consider the following.

Have an appropriate greeting

You don’t enter somebody else’s house upon opening the door. It’s the same thing with thank-you messages. Blurting thank you right off the bat can be rude and show disrespect for the recipient.

Instead, start with an appropriate greeting. Most businesses begin with “Dear (the recipient’s salutation and last name),” while others are more open, especially with recipients they know.

Consider the recipient’s job title and find the most fitting salutation.

For example, a Senior Manager for Marketing Affairs might require the more formal “Mr.” or “Ms. Or Mrs.”

On the other hand, doctors, lawyers, engineers, and other professionals demand the correct salutation (i.e., Dr., Atty., and Engr.).

Some thank-you note recipients might require a less formal salutation. For example, you could use “Hey,” “Hello,” “Good news,” “Howdy,” and “Hey, there.”

Hence, businesses must know their recipients, although starting with a more professional greeting is better for conveying courtesy and respect. It’s perfect for maintaining and strengthening a professional relationship with individual referrers.

You might also want to be cautious about the recipient’s pronouns, opting for a more neutral salutation. For example, if you’re unsure of the recipient’s pronouns, you could say “Hi (first and last name)” without the formal salutation (i.e., Mr., Ms., or Mrs.).

Of course, recipients with a personal relationship are more open to unique and fun greetings.

Show your gratitude

Thanking someone means a lot. However, you might want to specify what the recipient did that you’re grateful for. You cannot simply write “thank you” and expect the recipient to appreciate the gesture.

So, what should you do?

Identify which referral you’re thanking the referrer for. Is it for the ten friends they recommended the brand to, or is it the company that wanted to partner with you after the referrer recommendation? Your customer interacts with many people, and they might not know which referral they made you are thanking them for.

Next, how did the referral impact your business? Did the referees sign up for your premium plans, or did they invite their social networks to join? Describing the effects of the referral to your company can motivate referrers to invite more friends.

Lastly, recognize and praise each recipient for every thoughtful referral. Let them know how you value their contribution to your business’s success.

Provide rewards and incentives

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Although we mentioned that some people only require a simple yet heartfelt thank you note for referring new customers to the business, giving incentives or rewards won’t hurt your business.

Consider these the icing on your referral marketing cake. For example, you could offer a 5% or 10% discount on the referrer’s next purchase or send free products. You could also award customers loyalty program points and make them eligible to secure highly-coveted items.

Adding incentives to your thank-you note shows you value the referrer’s efforts. They will continue inviting friends, acquaintances, colleagues, and other social contacts to your business. And that boosts brand awareness and increases the chances of converting more leads.

You might want to analyze your referral rewards strategy, though. You will not want to spend more than your profit. It should be high enough to motivate customers to continue referring or recommending the brand but low enough not to hurt your bottom line.

Write a brief conclusion

Like any letter, a referral thank you note must have a favorable or pleasant closing. And this section must flow from the greeting or salutation. Your goal is to create messages that leave positive impressions throughout.

End the message by thanking the recipient for inviting more people to your business. Mention how much you value their continued support. You can also add a promise to continue delivering stellar offerings to surprise your growing customer base.

Try to limit the sentences for this section to only two. However, be sure to make the conclusion as catchy or engaging as the greeting.

Include detailed contact information

Some businesses forget this part, hoping recipients already know. However, reminding thank-you note recipients about this information can cement brand awareness, recognition, and loyalty.

It is worth pointing out that some customers might want to reply to your letter. Such actions can enhance business relationships by opening and maintaining open communication channels.

Please don’t forget to include your business details, including contact numbers, addresses, office hours, and other relevant information. You can also add social media accounts (i.e., Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, Pinterest, YouTube, and other platforms that customers can reach).

Examples of Referral Thank You Note 

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Let’s look at some examples of referral thank-you messages.

Example 1: Individual customers

Dear (name of valued customer),

Thank you very much for inviting (customer’s referee) to subscribe to our Premium plans. We at (company name) treasure your continued support, and as such, we would like to give you a special discount on your next quarterly subscription. Please click on this coupon to enjoy your reward.

On behalf of (company name), I am eternally grateful for your positive review and kind referral. Trust us to deliver the same high-quality services to (customer’s referee) and future referrals.

Example 2: Business contacts

(Referrer’s full name and position)

(Referrer’s company name)

Dear (Mr./Ms.) (Referrer’s last name),

I would like to extend my heartfelt gratitude for referring (Referee’s name) to our business (Company name). I appreciate and value your trust and confidence in our offerings, allowing us to build new relationships with your referral. 

Please accept this special offer as a token of our appreciation. You can contact me anytime about this business discount or if you have other queries. Thank you very much.

Example 3: Employee referral

Dear (Employee salutation and last name),

Thank you for your continued dedication to our company, especially for becoming a reliable ambassador for our brand. We appreciate your referring (Referee name) to our organization, further cementing our belief that employees like you are the heart and soul of this business.

In this regard, allow us to show heartfelt appreciation for your referrals by crediting a cash incentive on your next salary. Again, thank you for being our company’s beacon to the world.

How to Measure the Impact of Referral Thank You Notes?

Thanking customers and business partners for inviting or referring new customers to your company is crucial for showing appreciation. Knowing that such a strategy works is also essential. Thankfully, you can observe several tricks to measure the impact of referral thank-you messages.

First, you could track how many recipients respond to your thank you letter. One of the most effective ways to do this is by adding a CTA button to your email message. Do they perform the desired action? You could also add a self-stamped return envelope to handwritten thank yous. How many return envelopes did you receive?

Second, analyze the feedback quality. Engage your customers or referrers on social media and check each referrer’s comments or replies’ content, tone, and sentiment. Doing so will give you an idea of customers’ appreciation (or lack of) of your thank-you note.

You could also evaluate their product reviews. Do you sense enthusiasm, admiration, happiness, or gratitude? Or is it disappointment, confusion, anger, or frustration?

Third, analyze customer retention rate. This metric allows you to gauge your customers’ brand loyalty, satisfaction, and commitment level. If they appreciate your thank you note, they will stay with you longer and participate in activities more frequently.

Fourth, measure and analyze the referral rate after sending the thank you note. Effective thank-you messages encourage referrers to boost their referral activities. Hence, you should see an uptick in referral rates.

Fifth, experiment (A/B testing) with different thank-you note variations by varying their format, language, message, layout, design, tone, or CTA. This trick lets you know which style is more effective.


  • What should I say in a referral thank you note?

You can always express gratitude (say thank you) for the recipient’s efforts in bringing more customers to the business. Highlight the impact of their referral activities on your company’s goals and underscore their invaluable contribution. How you convey this message depends on whether you’re thanking a professional or personal contact.

  • Why should personalization be a referral thank you note?

Personalizing a referral thank-you note conveys genuineness or sincerity. It shows the recipient you’re devoting time and effort to create a message made especially for them. That endears your company more to the customer, encouraging them to continue inviting more customers to the business.

  • How to send a business referral thank you note?

Most businesses prefer referral thank-you messages by email. Hence, you can check the customer’s business email address and send the thank you note through this channel. However, mailing the letter is more professional than email when sending a personalized handwritten note.

  • Should I offer a gift to my referral thank you note?

Adding a gift, reward, or incentive to a thank-you note isn’t mandatory. However, it can strengthen the message you want to convey – that you appreciate the recipient’s efforts of referring more customers to the business. Such a strategy also encourages customers to continue inviting new people.

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Thanking customers and partners for inviting or referring more new customers to your business is a sound strategy. It strengthens relationships and solidifies trust, allowing your brand to grow, expand, and succeed.

This strategy hinges on people’s innate need to feel appreciated and valued. Thanking them will make them happy and feel content about their contribution to your business. And if you add incentives to the thank-you note, you can expect these customers to become more vigorous in their invitations and recommendations.

Ellie Tran, a seasoned SEO content writer with three years of experience in the eCommerce world. Being a part of the UpPromote team, Ellie wants to assist Shopify merchants in achieving success through useful content & actionable insights. Ellie's commitment to learning never stops; she's always eager to gain more knowledge about SEO and content marketing to create valuable content for users. When she's not working on content, Ellie enjoys baking and exploring new places.