How to Write a Good Business Referral Letter

A business referral letter is a good way for an individual to inform businesses and colleagues about their experiences with a particular company. It is mainly used to recommend a service, product or business in writing to someone else, which is more formal than by word-of-mouth. 

The writer puts his or her reputation on the line when they send a business referral letter as well as the reputation of the recommended company. A letter of referral should only be sent if the writer is completely confident in the business’s ability to deliver excellent service.

A letter gives the writer the opportunity to go into detail about why they recommend the company to a potential client such as expressing their professional and personal opinion about why they think the recipient should use the particular company. 

Letter should be honest

The letter should be honest, but it should also be promotional. In some cases, company policies regarding referral letters are to protect against a possible lawsuit. The common practice is that referral letters should be positive as well as factual.

Businesses often ask customers to write referral letters. This is considered good business practice and is the best source of new business. Customers who are attracted by a referral are already pre-disposed to like the product or service. Satisfied customers can be asked to actively promote the business on professional and social networks. 

If a company delivers value to its customers, the employees may be proud to ask for a referral letter to spread the word. If a customer doesn’t want to provide a referral letter, there may be a good reason. 

opportunity to learn

This is an opportunity to learn if the business falls short in some way. If the customer is happy to write a positive letter, the employee can give suggestions about what to say that will help promote the company.

For those who have been asked to write a referral letter, it is recommended that they spend a little time organizing their thoughts about their experience with the business before starting to write. 

They can jot down a few details to be added to the letter such as the names of employees who gave good service, why they used the business and the benefit they received. An anecdote can be included in the letter that illustrates the positive interaction.

The following points should be made clear in the letter:

• How does the sender know the recommended company?
• What are the sender’s qualifications for making a recommendation?
• What are the exceptional qualities of the recommended company?
• What is an example of their best work?
• Does the recommendation sound sincere or is it over-the-top?
• Is there an anecdote that illustrates the benefits of using the business?

Here is a sample business referral letter. It is in business-letter format. If it is being sent to a specific person in a company it can be addressed to their name and position, but if there is no particular recipient, there need be no salutation. It should be written on the sender’s business letterhead to give it more weight. 

If they don’t have letterhead, they can put their name and the name of their business, if applicable, at the top of the page in the place of a letterhead. The letter can be sent through the mail or hand delivered. In many cases, the company that is recommended will use the letter as a testimonial from a satisfied customer.

Sample business referral letter

Kevin Logan
ABC Hotel
7806 Green Street
Oakland, CA, 19113

May 26, 2019

Sandy James
XYZ resort
5435 Wonder Lane
Oakland, CA, 19113

RE: Letter of Referral

Dear Ms. James

This letter is to introduce you to ABC Catering Services and to recommend them for your next event. We have used ABC Catering Services for all of our weddings for the past five years, and they have always met or exceeded our expectations. Their food is excellent, and they arrive on time and leave the place spotless when the reception or formal dinner is over.

The chief chef, Andre, always discusses the menus for each wedding breakfast, reception or formal dinner in person with our clients, and is able to meet a variety of dietary requests with ease. This is the main reason there are no mistakes on the special day.

They have a courteous wait staff that is extremely attentive and often anticipate issues before they become problems. We make it a point to provide our customers with a smooth and flawless wedding reception, and ABC Catering Services has never let us down.

I believe you will find their services will enhance your next event. If you have any questions, I can be reached at 555-123-4567 or at logan@email.com.

Sincerely,

Signature
Kevin Logan
ABC Hotel
CEO

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