There's big change brewing in the death care industry: families want to put the "fun" in funerals—many families are replacing traditional funerals with celebration-of-life memorial services. How can your funeral home deliver a flawless, memorable event, and why is that so important? This blog provides five tips to help make sure celebrations run smoothly.
Festive celebrations are replacing comparatively somber funerals in many parts of the world. One reason for this is the rising popularity of cremations. The funeral industry is responding and adapting to changing demands.
Mark Musgrove, past president of the National Funeral Directors Association, notes, "Services are more life-centered, around the person's personality, likes and dislikes. They're unique and not standardized. The only way we can survive is to provide the services that families find meaningful."
As funeral homes continue to adapt and provide custom celebration of life memorials, the need for attention to detail is becoming increasingly important. As professionals, we have to be able to recognize that even the tiniest of details can be very important to families, even if they don't express it during the arrangement conference.
Here are our 5 Tips for repeatable success in booking and delivering memorable celebrations of life.
Celebration of life events present a shift away from traditional, structured, and often religious services. They are a way to reflect on a life well lived, and often focus on creating an atmosphere that represents the deceased based upon the things that brought them joy in life. As you meet with the decedent's family:
Understand what type of event the family envisions:
The answers to the above questions have a distinct impact on a funeral home's resource scheduling, such as:
To collect, manage, and track all details for a celebration of life, software built specifically for funeral homes provides a single source to:
Funeral home operational software makes it easier to keep track of communications with external vendors like florists, stationers, caterers, and rental companies—important service providers for delivering successful celebrations of life memorials.
In addition, funeral homes can streamline coordination with these partners by using a death care marketplace, an online resource that allows you to conveniently book facilities, services, and resources day or night. Web-based scheduling, facility selection, and intake forms reduce the time and effort it takes to make bookings with service partners and providers.
Celebrations of life raise expectations around customer service and event orchestration. It makes sense to have a back-up system in place to deal with any issues that arise. Funeral home operational software offers capabilities to design the perfect workflows to match your business processes and build escalation rules. This makes it easier to ensure that all resources are tracked and on schedule. Alerts can be created to handle issues that need escalation, fast.
Word-of-mouth recommendations are invaluable for funeral homes, particularly those branching out into full-fledged celebration marketing. After the event, be sure to send the customer a thank you note or email and encourage them to provide any feedback. A review on Facebook or a quote to post the funeral home's website are feathers for your cap—don't be shy about asking for them.
It's true that celebrations of life are transforming the way people think about funeral homes. To keep pace, learn more about OpusXenta's innovative operational and marketplace solutions, which are digitally transforming the death care industry. Visit opusxenta.com and follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.