A super simple referral system that really works!

I’m helping a group of physicians build a new medical practice.

Their marketing budget is very limited and asking for referrals makes them feel uncomfortably sales-y.

We developed a simple process that has been very effective and they love it.

1. We identified a major concern among their ideal patients. These doctors specialize in older adults and diabetes is a major worry.

2. We wanted the information to be specific to their community. In an afternoon session I led, the doctors & staff wrote a small pamphlet titled, “Resources and Tips for Diabetics in Springfield.”

They could have easily purchased a prepared pamphlet, but the pride of authorship is an important part of this system. We included tips on diabetes management and a directory of local service providers.

3. A graphic designer produced the booklet and we included photos and bios of the doctors and their nurses to build recognition. Each bio includes fun personal information to make them approachable.

4. They hold a “Resources and Tips for Diabetics in Springfield” seminar on the first Tuesday of every month at the public library near their office.

Repetition is key! A standing meeting makes it easy for community partners to promote. Holding the meeting in the public library draws more people than if it were at their office.

5. We have a 3 line script for the doctors, nurses, and staff to offer the guide and to ask if there is anyone that they should invite to the seminar. The scripted language is important because it keeps the message consistent.

They don’t ask for referrals to become patients, they invite people to the seminar. The team takes pride in getting people to the seminars and educating them. They are making a name for themselves around town.

This type of educational marketing isn’t new, but they needed someone to spearhead the project, develop the steps, and get it done.

If you’d like help putting together a similar system for your business, drop me a line at

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