Social Media for Funeral Directors: Here’s What to Know

Posted August 30, 2017

5 min read

“Social media is the current state of marketing,” says Ryan Thogmartin, a death care entrepreneur, the CEO of DISRUPT Media and creator of DISRUPT Media a full-service creative agency built for the now. They partner with death care companies to drive deep rooted brand loyalty and measurable leads through social media. “1.32 billion people log on to Facebook every single day. How can you possibly ignore this as a business?” he adds.

We spoke with Thogmartin about the value of social media for funeral homes, including some of the top tips to make sure you are using social media to generate meaningful content and relationships with families. Let’s dig deeper.

The Benefits of Social Media that Funeral Homes Should Know

“Social and digital are more cost effective and in a profession where we see profit margins steadily declining, being cost effective is critical,” says Thogmartin. Social and digital are also measurable and extremely targeted.

“Knowing who is seeing your content and being able to measure the return is a luxury funeral homes have never had before,” explains Thogmartin.

Thogmartin says other key benefits of digital and social media marketing include:

  • Ability to listen to consumers
  • Brand awareness and visibility
  • Brand loyalty that can be built over time
  • The ability to educate and inform families
  • The ability to humanize your brand
  • Drive sales
  • Higher conversation rates
  • Effective targeting
  • Retargeting your consumers
  • Increased web traffic

Thogmartin says Facebook offers many benefits right now to funeral professionals. “[With Facebook, you can cater to [families] by investing the time and the small amount of money it takes to reach your audience because it will pay for itself in the long run.”

Social Media: Still Based on Marketing Fundamentals

Social media and digital content can help funeral directors reach and build stronger relationships with families. Don’t believe the skeptics who think it’s “just a fad” or not important to funeral homes. Instead, approach your digital and social strategy just like you would with more “traditional” tactics.

As “new” or different as social media may seem, effective social media is based on fundamentals of relationship-building, Thogmartin explains. “It’s knowing [families in the community] and what they want. If you can provide value you absolutely build relationships,” says Thogmartin.

Tips to keep in mind include:

1. Make sure you have a strategy…with defined goals.

Just like with any marketing strategy (or tactic), be sure you have a plan in place. Hone in on your targeting, positioning, messaging, and show what that will look like on a content calendar. “You can’t just post content for the sake of posting content,” says Thogmartin. A strategy that focuses on unique, informative, and compelling content that educates or informs families will deliver results.

2. Create content that is transparent and real.

“Content that focuses on you, your staff and what you do better than anyone else [is an effective place to start],” says Thogmartin. Try to stay away from content that could be posted by any funeral home; put another way, aim to make your content reflects your firm and your points of differentiation.

3. Get visual and use video.

No one expects (or necessarily wants) high production video, but be sure you use compelling visuals, including video. Even if it requires a bit of investment, strong visuals—from photos to videos—can be a great way to show off your funeral home and its assets.

4. Use ads and boosted content.

Don’t forget that social media platforms want to monetize their value and reach—but that also means you have the opportunity to use ads to reach your target audience. Many funeral homes choose Facebook ads because of format flexibility, transparent analytics (which helps to show you ROI), and they allow for highly-targeted ad placements.

Don’t Think Results Will Happen Overnight

Just like with any kind of relationship you’re cultivating with families, digital marketing doesn’t convert overnight. Know that all the “touch points” (or interactions and engagements) you have with a consumer can help educate and inform them so they are most likely to choose you when the time comes.

In today’s world, it takes more than just one interaction with a consumer to gain that commitment.

And, while this is true, don’t start to think it’s just about pushing out messages or content. (It’s not quantity over quality—it’s quality over quantity.) “Touching the consumer as many times as possible is never bad. However, if you are just pushing a message and never providing engagement or value then you will just be part of the ‘noise’. Craft a strategy that provides value and not just a pushy sales message and cutting through the ‘noise’ becomes easy,” adds Thogmartin.

Also consider how in a recent NFDA Consumer Survey, 82 percent of people indicated that they only consider one funeral home when making prearrangements. This is one more figure that indicates that funeral homes who engage and provide value first will win the consumer relationship.

“Those are pretty good odds. Use social media to reach the exact target audience, engage, and provide value, and win calls. It’s a no brainer.”

Save at Least an Hour of Your Time Per Case With CRäKN

CRäKN provides everything you need to centralize your information and manage your day-to-day activities as a funeral pro so that you can streamline your operations, prevent errors, and save time. With enterprise resource planning and customer relationship management, you’ll have the ability to manage, track, and optimize your process so that you can spend more time marketing to, and serving, your families.

Find out more about how CRäKN can help you collaborate and optimize your resources: request a demo today.

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