As the cremation rate continues to rise, it’s more important than ever to find new ways to generate revenue for your funeral home. One way to generate additional revenue is to add to the value of products and services you already offer with personalization.
Although it may seem like so many of your customers are looking for the cheapest and easiest way to leave this world, there are even more families that are seeking unique, memorable and meaningful life celebrations for their loved ones.
Personalization has become something we all expect. We personalize our orders at restaurants, we personalize every detail of our homes down to the faucets and drains, and when it comes to death, we want that personalized too. This new demand has today’s funeral homes transforming from traditional ceremonies to fully personalized and contemporary events that truly reflect the life of the deceased. New technologies are emerging that make it possible for funeral directors to meet the demands of people’s desires to stand out from the crowd with personalization.
Here are 10 elements of a funeral that can be transformed into a personalized experience:
Obituaries can tell a person’s life store in a very meaningful way. What personal tidbits can you pull to come up with a touching tribute that will truly reflect their special life? An obituary doesn’t have to be boring; make it unique with details or memories that will touch people differently.
A funeral memorial program can be a very personalized detail of the funeral arrangement. Make sure your programs have the option to include a few photos, a reading, quotes or other comments that represent the deceased. Choose their favorite color and try to incorporate their characteristics into the final piece. Many people keep funeral programs as-a-way to remember; the more personalized, the better.
A visitation, or wake, is the perfect time to showcase your ability to personalize a funeral. Consider adding unique display of photos, memorabilia, collections or other things that made the person unique and special. Did the deceased love the beach? Were they a Harley lover? Integrating some of these elements into the visitation can have a significant impact on the visitors and make them feel like you went above and beyond.
The Headstone or Marker
Paper rots and memories fade, but high detailed photos permanently engraved on granite will last forever. When a loved one passes, many families will have gone through years and years of photographs and cherished memories. They might have already selected their favorite photos to share with loved ones in the form of a tribute video or other photo display. Those same favorite images can be brought to life when laser engraved onto a memorial. Personalized memorials will not only be admired for generations to come but will add a significant amount of revenue to your sales.
If a family is opting for cremation, there is still a chance that you can personalize an urn of their choice. Offering personalized urns will set you apart from your competitors, adding a high level of customer satisfaction to your services. Don’t just provide cremation – specialize in cremation by turning it into a high revenue opportunity that will delight your customers one by one. Often, families don’t purchase an urn because they simply don’t see anything that they like that reflects their loved one. But, if you can offer them a personalized urn, they will be much more likely to buy. This means more revenue for your business and more satisfied customers!
Music can transport us to a different place and provides a way to grieve the loss of a loved one on a different level. Consider the deceased’s favorite music, artist or genres and play songs that will truly reflect their life.
Just like the visitation can be personalized with aspects of the deceased, the reception can also be customized. Set up an elaborate photo display or displays of personal items that will make the attendees genuinely feel like you care. These are details that won’t be missed, and it is a unique opportunity to show off your personalization abilities.
Memorial gifts are similar in that of a wedding favor and are quickly rising in popularity. This is an ideal chance to showcase something special about the deceased. What were their favorite hobbies? Is there something that they were known for? For example, if the deceased was really into baseball, you could offer laser engraved baseballs for the attendees. Or, if the deceased loved the beach, you could provide laser engraved pieces of driftwood to represent that detail about them. Another idea is to offer laser cut wooden hearts with a bible verse or other meaningful quote. Something like that can be easily produced with the right equipment.
What better way to reminisce than with photos and memories that bring back the happy times and special occasions that make up a well-lived life. Offering tribute videos give your families a chance to create an entirely personalized slideshow that can be admired by all the attendees. Most tribute videos offer custom scenic backgrounds, music and other motion effects that will indeed bring the photos to life.
Many families are looking to send off their loved one in an exceptional way. You can do things like dove releases, lantern releases or even fireworks. As you get to know a family, you may be able to dig a little deeper and find something that will honor the deceased like never-before. The attendees won’t forget this wow factor, and it’s a good chance they’ll come to you when they need your services.
Although cremation has more than likely affected your revenue, there are plenty of ways to make up for that loss, you just need to find creative ways to generate revenue. FBA
Kristin Rappaport is the Lead Designer and Marketing Strategist at SuperNova International and AP Lazer. AP Lazer manufacturers laser engraving and cutting equipment that help funeral homes offer meaningful personalized products, stand out from their competition and generate new revenue streams both inside and outside of the death care industry. AP Lazer has helped many funeral homes grow their business, attract new clients and diversify into other high profit markets. Contact her at [email protected]