Only 11.5% of people have done funeral preplanning, per the 2019 NFDA Consumer Awareness and Preferences Study. This percent is significantly lower than the 2018 results, which found that 25.5% of survey respondents preplanned their funeral.
Although, the NFDA noted that one factor may be that there were more younger respondents in 2019 compared to 2018. However, both of these percentages are still alarmingly low.
As funeral directors, you see first-hand how not preplanning your funeral causes unnecessary added stress to grieving families. So, how can your funeral home’s staff emphasize the importance of preplanning without making it overwhelming? We’ve come up with four simple ways you can start the funeral preplanning conversation with families.
Pull Out the Have the Talk of a Lifetime Cards
The Have the Talk of a Lifetime program was a hot topic at the 2018 NFDA Convention, and I’m sure it will be at upcoming conventions too. That’s because it’s such a great resource for your funeral home and families. Specifically, the program’s Have the Talk of a Lifetime cards have changed the way we can go about funeral preplanning.
With these cards, families can answer the questions on them to learn more about each other. It’s a fun way to get to know your loved ones a little better, while also getting ideas for how they’d want to be remembered.
Since funeral preplanning can be an awkward topic that many families don’t know where to start with, these cards can help get the conversation going. Your staff can bring them out when meeting with families as an icebreaker, or you can host an event.
Host a Pizza and Preplan Event
A creative idea mentioned at the 2018 Funeral Service Business Plan was to host a Pizza and Preplan event. It’s another way to start the preplanning conversation with families in a more comfortable setting. Plus, who doesn’t love free food?
While everyone enjoys some pizza, a member of your funeral home’s staff can present about funeral preplanning. You can even make it an interactive presentation by incorporating the Have the Talk of a Lifetime cards or another activity, such as filling out a questionnaire and sharing your responses.
Have Online Funeral Preplanning Resources
Don’t make families wait until meeting with your funeral home’s staff to learn about preplanning. By having online resources available on your funeral home’s website, they can easily access this information. This way, they’ll have some background knowledge and ideas when they come to you for their preplanning needs.
For example, Frazer-powered websites come with a detailed preplanning webpage and convenient online preplanning form. This is a great resource to share with families at your preplanning events. Then, when they’re ready, you can invite them to fill out the preplanning form on your website or contact you with any questions.
Engage with Families on Social Media
Also, don’t forget about social media! It plays a major role in online marketing. For example, you can share your educational funeral preplanning resources on your funeral home’s social media pages. Your blog posts make an excellent resource to share on social media. And, you can repurpose your website content to write a preplanning blog post. You also can ask your followers if they have any preplanning questions and answer them in a Q&A segment.
If you’re hosting a preplanning event, boost attendance by using the Facebook Event tool and boosting posts about your event. And, make sure to share photos from the event afterward to increase attendance to your next one.
How does your funeral home start the funeral preplanning conversation with families? Share your suggestions with us in the comments!