Below are the 5 most common problems we solve for our clients.
1. Too many price shoppers
There’s a golden rule of marketing….when all things are equal the deciding criteria is price. If you have too many price shoppers it is because from the outside looking in there is no difference between your firm and your competitors’.
You could be that absolute best funeral home in town but if your marketing is the same as every other funeral home you are telling the public that you are the same. Therefore they price shop you!
We fix this problem by making sure your marketing communicates the unique experience the family will have at your funeral home. If there is nothing unique, we will help you create an advantage using some low-cost innovations.
2. Revenue has plateaued or is declining
This is a common problem for many funeral homes. Even if the call volume remains unchanged, the revenue per call is declining because fewer people want a full service funeral. The end result is that revenues and net profit keeps getting smaller.
There are a number of issues that can contribute to a revenue problem. It could be something as obvious as a new aggressive competitor or something as subtle as changing demographics in your community. The best thing to do is perform an audit against our Funeral Business Builder Master Plan and identify the areas that need attention. Our Initial Marketing Assessment is the first step in the process.
It is worth noting that for many funeral homes, growth is possible with the right strategy and plan. For example, Eastside Memorial has seen revenues double in the four years since engaging our services. They continue to win calls while their competitor’s parking lot sits empty.
3. Best Kept Secret Syndrome
This can be a frustrating problem for a funeral home owner. Not only are they not winning calls, they’re not even getting price shoppers. This is especially frustrating when the owners knows that they do a much better job than their competition.
This is one of my favorite problems to encounter because when we fix it the business can grow pretty quickly. The root cause of best kept secret syndrome is often related to how the funeral home ranks on Google. Google is the new Yellow Pages and if families cannot find you on Google they won’t call you.
We also to dig a little deeper into the quality of the services being provided. If the funeral home is actually better than the competition than it should be reflected in the presence of better online reviews.
Fixing the Google ranking and getting more 5 star reviews can go along way towards solving the best kept secret problem.
4. Stuck in the past
This is rarely the reason clients contact us but it is often a problem that needs to be addressed in the course of our project. Many funeral homes have a tremendous ability to run a high quality funeral but in an era in which fewer people want a traditional funeral they are struggling.
Fortunately, I’ve had the pleasure of working with some of the most creative and innovative funeral homes in the industry. This experience plus my own studies has provided me with a wealth of ideas that can be used to create a new style of service that provide a great option for families who don’t want a traditional funeral but are open to the possibility of doing something else (if you have something to offer).
The great thing about this problem is that when we solve it we’re creating a significant competitive advantage that helps fuel the growth of the business.
Check out the video below to see what one of my clients in Australia is doing.
5. Rogue Team
This is another one of those problems that we often uncover during the course of our work with a client. I’ll work with the client to develop the right strategy for their situation and develop the solutions only to find that the Funeral Directors will not cooperate with the implementation.
It’s typically not an outright rebellion but more of a passive aggressive refusal to change the way they’ve been doing things for years. The owner sees the vision and wants to make the changes but the team will not cooperate.
That’s why the Funeral Business Builder Master Plan includes a step to create a master plan for your business. This plan outlines specific instructions for every step of serving the family from how the phone is answered to how aftercare is conducted.
I’ve found over the years that the best way to reign in a rogue team is to provide very specific instructions and hold them accountable. Yes, this will sometimes lead to turnover but losing a Funeral Director employee is better than losing your business!