Whether you’re looking for financing, planning for succession, or just taking stock of your business, don’t forget about digital marketing and social media. Here’s why investing in a solid, comprehensive digital strategy pays you back by adding to your firm’s financial value.

The advent of the digital age changed almost everything about sales and marketing. How people shop. Where they look for information. Where people buy. Even how they do the actual purchasing metamorphosed into a whole new creature (wild beast?) in the past two decades.

It’s even changing how investors look at a firm’s value.

In the past year, we’ve seen an increase in clients signing up for our social media and digital marketing services because they are succession planning or looking at investment dollars. How does that relate to digital and social media marketing? They’ve been told that solid social media and digital marketing efforts are part of what investors and banks examine when selecting a firm or approving a loan. And, no, just having a website is no longer enough.

President and CEO, Jake Johnson, of Johnson Consulting Group agrees.

“Lenders and investors expect businesses to have social media marketing.  Social media has become the new “Consumer Reports.”  It was not too long ago that a company’s website was used to “validate” they are a legit business.  Now, I believe the consumer understands the company controls the website content. Social media allows the researching consumer or investor to see what the public is saying about the company.  One would only invest in companies with solid customer experience/service and educational aspects,” Johnson said.

What does digital and social media marketing say about your business?

Just as investors and banks assess the physical structure of a facility, the digital structure of an organization says a lot about the company. Things like:

  • Is the business staying current with market trends?
  • Do they have a clear and effective message?
  • Are they consistent in their marketing efforts?
  • Are there multiple touchpoints to help foster relationships?
  • Can community member access your information and services online?

So, what sort of things might investors look at specifically? Things like:

  • Do they have a social media presence?
  • Is their digital marketing consistent and frequent?
  • Do they have an appealing and modern website?
  • Do they have online reviews and make use of them in their marketing?
  • How effective is their SEO?
  • Do they use Google ads?
  • Do they offer online arrangement options?
  • Do they have a solid email list and send out newsletters?

Why does digital marketing and social media strategy impact a firm’s value?

It should come as no surprise that investors look at digital as part of their examination of a business. A solid digital marketing strategy across multiple channels builds relationships with people where they research and shop today.  Here are a few fascinating numbers to prove just how much digital matters:

  • Facebook is the most popular social networking site for baby boomers. [source]
  • Baby boomers are 19% more likely to share content compared to any other generation. [source]
  • Baby boomers and seniors spend more time online than they watch TV. [source]
  • 91% of local searches say they use Facebook to find local businesses online. [source]
  • 90% of all online searches happen through Google. [source]
  • 99% of US consumers check their email everyday [source]
  • Email marketing packs an astounding 3800% ROI [source]

 

What does all this mean? If you don’t have a comprehensive digital strategy that touches multiple online channels including:

  • Websites
  • Social media and Facebook in particular (while baby boomers are your primary target audience)
  • SEO
  • Email marketing and newsletters
  • Google ads

Then not only are you missing out on valuable business opportunities by connecting with your community, you’re also missing a key piece of business strategy needed for succession planning, overall company value and business health.

What now?

Take stock of your digital marketing and social media. Ask yourself:

  • What’s going well?
  • What do you realistically have time for?
  • What type of information do people respond to in your community?

Then look at your marketing channels.

  • Is your website up-to-date, responsive, attractive and easy to navigate?
  • Do you have an email list that you regularly reach out to with interesting, helpful, and educational content?
  • What social posts and ad campaigns work for you?
  • What gets the most likes, comments and shares on posts and which of your ad campaigns drive signups.

We know the life of a funeral director is already full of relationships and responsibilities, and you didn’t get into this line of work to run a Facebook account or an email marketing program. However, like proper maintenance of your funeral home’s physical building or your cemetery grounds must be part of your business plan, proper maintenance of your website, social media marketing, email nurturing, SEO, and overall digital strategy are essential to business health. FBA


Heather is the Director of Marketing at Funeral Innovations. She brings marketing and additional writing expertise to their team. She previously covered breaking news, politics, and religion for print, digital, and radio news outlets before slipping journalism’s tentacles and diving into the digital marketing world. She spent the past several years at a digital advertising agency working on marketing and content solutions for adidas, Reebok, and Chipotle among other brands. To connect with Heather, call her at 303-717-3774 or email her at [email protected]