:Marketing / Copywriting and branding

How to help your students promote your referral program

one student showing another a computer one student showing another a computer

With the new Teachable student referrals program, your students can refer your course to their audiences. This helps you gain access to new potential students. And new students mean more exposure for your school or course. With our double-sided reward structure, your students will benefit from referring others as well. But just how do you ask for referrals and convey the value of referrals in an authentic way? We’ll show you.

A win-win scenario

Our new program is pretty simple. You decide what percentage discount you want to offer your students and those they refer. So when an existing student refers a friend who signs up for a course, they each get that discount and you get a new student. It’s a fantastic opportunity for creators looking to increase the number of students enrolled in their courses.

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How to help your students promote your course

The easier it is for your students to promote your course, the more likely they are to do it. People are four times more likely to buy something if a friend recommended it. So referrals can really help increase the number of students enrolled in your courses.

You can help make referring friends easy for your students to do. By writing some starter copy, all your students have to do is add a personal anecdote to a formulaic post. Then students can share their testimonials and referral links. Depending on the student, they might share it on their Instagram story or their Facebook page. Just like that, you’ve got your course in front of their entire audience.

How to let your students know they can refer friends

You need to make sure your students know you even have a referral program. They can’t take advantage of something they don’t know exists! One of the first things to keep in mind when reaching out to students is which channels they’re most accustomed to hearing from you on. For some students this might be email, for others it might be Facebook or Instagram.

Whatever it is, make students aware that you have a referral program. So give them the details of how it works and the discount you’re offering them and their friends who they refer.


Dear students, I’m excited to announce that I have started a referral program! So now when you refer your friends, followers, or clients, to my course(s) you will both receive a discount of [discount amount].

Share this good news and let your students know that there will be more information to come. This is also a great time to add a referral block to your course curriculum so students can learn about referrals while taking your courses. You can also add a “Refer a friend” tab on your school’s page. That way there are multiple opportunities for students to learn about your referral program.

Help your students understand referrals thoroughly

Once your students know that you have a referral program, the next step is to make sure they understand it fully. Add this explanation to the announcement or you can share it as a follow-up later on once you’re ready to launch.

Don’t forget to add your “Refer a friend” tab on your school’s page and referral block in your course with a step-by-step explanation on how to enroll in your referral offer. You can find the details of how to set that up in our Knowledge Base.

After a student signs up for referrals, they’ll be assigned a referral link that is unique to their account. When they share that link and someone signs up using it, their reward will be added to their account.

Example copy students can use for referrals

Once your students know you’ve got a referral program and they have their referral link, they’ll need to share it. Because they’ll be more likely to share something if it’s easy for them to do, help them get started with some example copy.

Share prompts that students can customize to fit their experiences and that they can easily share. The easier it is, the more likely they are to do it.

To help you do that we created a list of things to include in these prompts:
  • A personal anecdote

  • Course title

  • When they took the course

  • The reason they took the course

  • What they gained from the course

  • Who they recommend it for

  • Their referral link

That might seem like a lot to include but it doesn’t mean that the referral note has to be lengthy. You can get all of this core information in there in just a few sentences.


I took [creator’s name]’s course [course title] on [course content] to help improve my [whatever you wanted to learn]. The course took place during [month, year] and I enjoyed the [self-paced? cohort-based?] learning experience. After completing the course I felt like I had gained [whatever you learned/gained!]. This course would be great for anyone looking to learn [your recommendation]. Interested in discussing why I loved this course so much? Feel free to reach out via [best way to reach you]. If you’ve already made up your mind and want to sign up for the course at a discount, use this link to sign up: [referral link]

Remember: This is all about helping your students find the right words to explain what your course means to them and share that with others. It’s not about telling them what to say or forcing a formulaic review. Instead, think of this as a way to help your students put into words the transformation your course helped them make. Their referral can also be about the impact your course had on them that they think others might find helpful. Keep it authentic to you, your course, and your students.

Give it a try

The above is just an example of what you might share with your students. Each creator and each of their students will have a different story they’re looking to tell when referring others. So, while you can certainly use the example above as a starting point, make it your own. And make it clear for your students that they should make it their own when sharing it with others. The personal stories of growth and enjoyment are the ones that really touch home, so they’re ideal for referrals.

Author: Nina Godlewski, Nina is a Content Marketing Strategist at Teachable. She has a passion for taking complex topics and making them accessible for any reader. Previously she's written for Lending Tree, Fundera, Newsweek, and Business Insider.

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