Last Updated on

5 minutes to read

As a small business owner, you’re well aware of how much customer referrals can boost your bottom line. You may even be inclined to give a little discount or token for the help. This, in its simplest sense, is the basis of a referral program.

Referrals are the most recommended form of marketing. As Forbes notes, they “require almost no financial investment, but they bring in very valuable warm leads.” (Learn more about creating a full referral program in our comprehensive Referral Marketing 101 article.)

Once you decide to launch a referral program, the next step is figuring out how to let your customers know. One of the most effective ways is through referral program flyers, or simply referral flyers. The following post details how to create a referral program flyer, using two real life examples. We also include a free template below to help get you started.

Referral program flyers

Referral program flyers are exactly what they sound like – flyers designed to share the details of your referral program. By combining both text and images in a single layout, referral flyers give readers all they need to know at a glance.

What sets referral flyers apart from your everyday flyer, however, is where and when you choose to distribute them.

For example, will you post them on your site’s home page? Include them in your weekly newsletter? Is your referral program ongoing or only for a limited time?

All these decisions determine the number of people who will see the flyer and, ultimately, the overall success of your referral program.

To be effective, a referral program flyer should be part of a well-planned referral program strategy. In fact, flyers can even work in tandem with other mediums – an eye-catching Instagram or Facebook post, a concise tweet, a quick text message.

Pretty much any means of communication you have with your customers can be used to spread the word about a referral program. Referral flyers, however, remain a popular choice. And with the following tips and templates, they can also be relatively simple to make.

referral flyer template

(Photo by KOBU Agency on Unsplash)

How to create a referral program flyer

Before even thinking of flyer designs or color schemes, it’s best to settle all your referral program details. The following are some basic points to cover:

  • Set your goals: Get contact details, grow brand awareness, increase sales, etc.
  • Decide on the incentive you’re offering: Discounts, free products, store credit, etc.
  • Define any parameters: Number of incentives you’re giving out, duration of program
  • Set up a way to track progress: A spreadsheet can do the job, but there are also several great referral programs (us being one of them!) that come with a lot of added features

For some more referral program ideas, you can check out our roundup of the top referral programs by experts.

In most cases, only the incentives and parameters will be included on your referral flyer. For example, you may be offering a $50 incentive for every friend referred by a customer for the month of December. This information, at the very least, should be found on your referral flyer.

Tools to design referral program flyers

Any graphic design tool (or even a Word document, really) can be used to mock up a functioning referral program flyer. There are a few favorite options below:

  • Poster My Wall: A repository of every template imaginable, from menus to bible studies. And yes, this includes a good selection of referral flyer templates, as well.
  • Canva: This is a well-known design tool. Although it doesn’t specifically have referral program designs, it does offer a lot of flyer inspiration and ideas.
  • LucidPress: Designed specifically for brands and businesses, this tool has templates for a number of business needs – and yes, flyers are included.

Examples of referral program flyers (and why they work)

As with most visual applications, it helps to see them in action. Below are two effective examples of a referral program flyer – one shared through an app, one through a newsletter:


Tesla Flyer Website


Although not as attractive as their previous $1000 discount, Tesla still offers customers a chance to earn awards every time their specific referral link is used (shared through the Tesla app).

For instance, the company offers 1,000 miles of free Supercharging for both parties (the referrer and the referred) with the purchase of a new Tesla car. Each car referral also comes with a chance to win a Model Y each month or a Roadster supercar each quarter. Referral links used to purchase a solar panel or solar roof will earn each party $250 after system activation.

Why it works: Tesla’s referral program hopes to “transition to sustainable energy and grow our community,” which is already a great incentive in itself. It also offers double incentives, rewarding both parties involved in the referral. The company shares referral updates and awards through its own app, only adding to the luxurious feeling of being a Tesla driver.


Casper Newsletter

(Source: Rejoiner)

As one of the first entrants in the bed-in-a-box game, how does Casper manage to remain competitive? Aside from convenience and competitive pricing, the company also employs a well-crafted referral program.

In this example, sent through the company’s newsletter, customers enjoy catchy copy, a simple layout, and a sweet $50 Amazon Gift Card for every referred friend. Plus, the friend gets $75 off their new Casper mattress and an additional product.

Why it works: Being one of the first companies to sell mattresses without the middleman, Casper was already something worth talking about. The referral program flyer it used was also easy on the eyes, with a soft, inviting blue and simple text. The brand even managed to use familiar idioms in a fresh way, which further emphasized its novel brand.

Download a free referral program flyer template

We designed a referral flyer to help as you start your own referral program. Simply click on the image below to download our free referral program flyer template and customize it to your needs:Referral program flyer template

Kat Dalao

Posted by Kat Dalao

Kat Dalao is a content manager based in New York. She's spent her career in publishing, first as a writer and then a creative director for a magazine. In her spare time, she does random projects, explores the city, and bakes (mostly to satisfy her own sweet tooth).