Bringing Innovation to the Funeral Home Business: The Story Behind CRäKN

Posted December 14, 2017

4 min read

BusinessWise radio host Crystal L. Faulkner, CPA, CExP, MAFF of MCM CPAs & Advisors sat down with CRäKN’s Founder, President and CEO Scott Mindrum to talk about the power of using a story to brand your company, tech-based startups, growing a business in Cincinnati, Ohio, and much more.

The BusinessWise Radio show highlights highly successful people, companies, organizations and other issues relevant to the local community. Here are a few of the highlights from Mindrum’s appearance on the show.

This is part one in our two-part series covering the highlights from the interview.

“What’s the story behind CRäKN that many people don’t know?”

What many people don’t know about CRäKN is that the business is what you could call an accident. Mindrum was initially introduced to the profession because his wife grew up in a funeral family (locally in Cincinnati, Ohio). “She introduced the industry to me, and the opportunity [developed for me to] do mergers and acquisitions within that industry.”

It was during that time that he saw all the opportunities and a profession full of “big-hearted people.”

When Mindrum was involved with a very large acquisition on the West Coast (5,600 funerals and over 10,000 burials), he saw the kind of systems they had and how they were handling operations as well as accounting. “No other funeral home that I saw, or nobody else in the industry, had that type of technology. That’s been in my head since 1996,” he said.

Not only did he see a “pain point” he could solve, he also took note of meaningful trends in the funeral industry. “First, the death rate is projected to be doubling over the next ten years, so that rate will mean that there is going to be increased need for services. What’s compounding the problem is there are fewer graduates from the mortuary schools, so there’s less people to do the work,” explained Mindrum. “So, with those two issues—more customers, less people to do the work—efficiency tools are extremely valuable.”

“Why the name and branding around CRäKN?”

“It’s a very interesting play on the name,” said Faulkner when looking at CRäKN’s logo and branding.

The concept of a Kraken—or a Nordic sea monster—reflects how so many funeral directors could use extra “arms” to handle daily operations. With Mindrum’s Norwegian ancestry as inspiration, the idea of a smart, efficiency sea monster that would give funeral directors more arms to handle operations came alive.

After all, funeral directors really are the ultimate ‘jugglers’ of tasks, explained Mindrum. And, the spelling comes from Customer Relationships And Knowledge, keeping the Nordic umlaut over the “a.”

“It’s all in the name, and the logo is quite fascinating. How important and how much time and effort did you spend in really trying to come up with this unique name and logo?” asked Faulker.

“When we started this business, we had no idea what we were going to call it,” explained Mindrum. “As you know, I’m a recovering accountant so marketing things aren’t a natural thing to me,” shared Mindrum.

Mindrum went on to explain that while branding may have been outside his comfort zone, when he got to the other side of the process, he could say it was both fun and enjoyable. And, even though he may be an accountant at heart, he knows the value of branding and marketing.

“You want to also have colors that pop and imagery that is memorable, and the name needs to mean something. You need to be able to tell a story,” explained Mindrum.

Learn More About CRäKN

Simplify your life, and use a tool that gives you at least 3 hours back per case. With CRäKN, improve how you:

Collaborate: All your ongoing services are made visible and are more organized than ever before. Finally, everyone is now on the same page and resources can be optimized!

Communicate: Communicate across your funeral home - with notifications, the digital Whiteboard, and your synced calendar.

Coordinate: With all your up-to-date details in one place, coordination has never been easier. And you have one, single point of entry with your Whiteboard and calendar. Request a demo today!

More About BusinessWise Radio

Listen more to the interviews: on CRäKN branding, what CRäKN does, #StartupCincy success, on entrepreneurship, experience in the death care industry. BusinessWise airs on: WMKV | WLHS-FM 89.3 & 89.9; Mon – Fri at 7:30 am & 6:40 pm.

Categories: Industry


CRaKN CRäKN logo

We help funeral professionals save time, prevent duplicate work & reduce errors. Focus on the family, let us focus on helping you. Request a demo today!