Personalizing Email Referrals to Book More Clients

I’m what you’d call a Connector.  I love connecting people.

Business, dating, social connections…I’m all over it like syrup on waffles.

When I received an email from John, I excitedly referred Stephanie his way for business advice.  She’s a no-nonsense, hustler, and goes above to ensure her clients are well taken care of.

I cc’d her on the email referral and Stephanie responded by encouraging John to review her website for more information.

And then I was all, like, Hold up, boo.

Oh, and here’s another thing about me:  I’m honest and give unsolicited advice.
(Okay that was two things about me, but cut me some slack.)

I adore Stephanie…she’s amazing at what she does…but I thought her email response sold her services/business acumen/credibility short.  So I told her as much.

Here’s an excerpt from the email I sent her:

i have a piece of (UNSOLICITED) advice.  if you don't want it, feel free to ignore it!!!  😉

i just can't help sharing because it really helped me in my business when someone told me the same thing.

okay, so when you're introduced to a potential client via email, the lead is warmer than, say, someone randomly stumbling across your work.  because someone vouched for you (in this case, me), you have a greater chance of booking because you can connect based on their needs immediately.

but this begs the question:  what are their needs?

once you know this, you know–precisely–how to sell to them.

i'd suggest that instead of having someone take a look at your website (as you suggested in your email to john), you could email them 4-6 really basic questions to get a good idea of what they do, what they need and what they're looking for.

simply by the mere gesture of tailoring your response to them keeps them as a strong business lead.  the more you personalize initial correspondence, the greater the chance you can close the deal.


I took the time to share my insight with her because someone did the same for me.  And now–with Stephanie’s permission–I’m able to share with you, too.

If you’re stuck wondering what questions you could ask a prospective customer from a referral, here’s a short list to get your wheels turning:

  • In 2-3 sentences describe what you’re looking for
  • Is there a particular deadline/timeline/date you are considering?
  • Would you prefer communicating via email or setting up a phone call?
  • What could I do/provide/service to make your life easier?
  • Is there a particular budget I should be mindful of?


Obviously you can (and should) tailor questions to what your business does, but I hope these prompts help you find stronger ways to get more business via email.

I wish you all the best, I really do.  I want you to build a business, and life, you love so here’s to doing great things.  Together.