Email Introduction Etiquette

If You Are Requesting An Introduction To Someone


Let’s use this scenario:  Joe the Founder is asking Mark the Advisor to give him an introduction to Suzanne the Investor. 

Mark just agreed to make the introduction on your behalf.  Joe should make it super easy for Mark to send the intro:


Thanks Mark. I’ll send you a fresh email now that you can forward on.


And then Joe should send a brand new email which includes everything he wants Suzanne to see:



Thanks so much for offering to introduce me to Suzanne the Investor. 

I want to tell her about my new startup Instacolor. It’s Instagram meets Color but for videos.  We have amazing traction growing 20 percent month over month for the past four months. We are currently doing 50,000 uploads a day and we’re raising a seed round.


Joe the Founder

Recent Press: Techcrunch, PandoDaily, The Next Web


The reason you send a fresh email is that you want Mark the Advisor to be able to forward it from his mobile phone without having to delete all the content from your previous conversation.  This also gives you a chance to succinctly describe your startup exactly the way you want it to be heard. As always, you should obey the Emailing Busy People rules and make sure that your email is super short, very clear and makes a specific ask.


If You’re Requesting An Introduction On Behalf Of Someone


So now, Mark the Advisor will introduce Joe the Founder to Suzanne the Investor.

Should he just cc them both?

No!!!  That’s rude to Suzanne because it traps her into the conversation. Instead, Mark should forward the email from Joe with an intro request on top. It could be something like this:



Would you like to be introduced to Joe the Founder who runs Instacolor? I promise you it will be worth your time.  See below for more details.


Mark the Advisor


If Suzanne receives this email, and she trusts Mark, she’ll almost certainly say yes. But she still has the opportunity to say no.

Often times Mark The Advisor won’t be so enthusiastic though. Instead he might say something like



Joe the Founder asked for an introduction.  See below.



Now Suzanne the Investor gets to make her own decision. And if she decides it’s not worth her time, she gets to allow Mark to make the pass.

If she is willing to take the meeting, then…


Once The Introduction Is Made


Mark The Advisor will send a short email to both Suzanne the Investor and Joe the Founder and say:


Suzanne, please meet Joe and vice versa. You guys will enjoy chatting.


At which point, Joe should respond and move Mark the Advisor to BCC and say:


Thanks Mark (moved to bcc).  

Suzanne, great to meet you.  Are you available to meet…




That, my friends, is proper email etiquette for requesting introductions.  Whether you’re interested in commercial real estate, startups, or anything else…please use it.


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