Funeral Home marketers can use research statistics from Johnson Consulting Group's recent study of 71,950 at-need surveys to craft their marketing strategy.
While there are many important takeaways in the study (and I have listed the URL for the complete study below), this particular article will focus on creating a marketing strategy for funeral homes based on one set of questions from that study, having to do with the reasons why a family chose a particular funeral home.
These are the top 4 reasons:
· Previously served family
· Convenient location
If these are the most important reasons why someone chose a funeral home, then the funeral home’s marketing strategy needs to address those points.
1. Previously served family – I don’t know how you maintain your records, but nowadays there are many easy techniques to keep your database cleaned and up-to-date, including NCOA (national change of address) as well as data appending services that keep the phone numbers or email addresses current. There are software products that help you arrange your data and make it easy to have your data cleaned and updated. Dataman Group in Boca Raton FL works with many companies on data hygiene and appending email addresses or cell phone numbers to their file.
Make sure that your intake paperwork includes extractable fields for expanded next of kin information and keep in touch with them using multiple marketing channels.
A family who was happy with the services you provided for their parents are excellent prospects for future business. You need to be able to stay in touch with them or they may forget about you.
2. Convenient location – Geo-targeting has always been important in the Death Care Industry. A geotargeted marketing strategy allows the marketer to literally draw a circle around their location and focus on particular user groups to better target their efforts. It’s one of the reasons why direct marketing has always been so cost-effective for marketers. There is no reason to ever waste precious marketing dollars advertising to people outside of your trading area.
Remember to segment within geography and offer messaging and offer geared to the specific groups. While we always think of these as direct mail strategies, the same though process applies to email and social media marketing.
3. Pre-arranged – If they’ve already paid for it, absolutely they will come to your establishment. But companies need to do their due diligence and keep that paperwork up-to-date! You also want to have updated contact information on your existing contracts. By keeping in touch with them, you continue to strengthen the relationship, which is wonderful for referrals.
4. Reputation – Today, a reputation is one of the most valuable marketing assets a brand or business can have. The JCG study c onfirmed again that firms with higher satisfaction have higher sales.
That’s great when we look at people who are already familiar with your Funeral Home. However, the majority of people in your trading area may not have personal experience with you and are replying on your Funeral Home’s reputation or on-line reviews to decide whether they want to do business with you.
Reputation marketing is not about responding to crises or “ managing” your reputation. It’s about being proactive and amplifying your reputation to people who don’t know about you.
Make sure all your marketing includes information about your glowing reviews. Put them on your direct mailers and brochures. Include them on your website and make sure there is a link to them if you use email or social media to reach out to your prospects.
Funeral homes need to constantly review their response rates to make sure their marketing strategy stays current.
Johnson Consulting Group (JCG) continues to collect data through their Performance Tracker program, and will continue to share it with the profession. Click here for more information about them and their study.
Dataman Group Direct (DGD) in Boca Raton, FL works with businesses in the Death Care Industry to help them reach the right people for both pre-need and at-need. They can be reached at 800-771-3282. Click here for more information.