5 Ways to Breathe Life into Your Funeral Home Business with Alan Creedy

5 Ways to Breathe Life into Your Funeral Home Business with Alan Creedy

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How do you fly in a market, where the society. And everything that comes with it has changed, drastically where. Your customer. Isn't really your customer, and where, the core service, that you're offering is a very. Delicate topic. To handle today, I'm sharing, five. Ways, with, you how, to bring life into your funeral, home business. And I'm, doing this by, interviewing. Ellen treaty's who actually he's, sharing, the West how you can improve your marketing. And it's not only interesting. For you if you run a funeral home business it's. Interesting, for you if you would like to run a business that, offers more, than just a, service, and ellen, is sharing. Not just five ways, in order to succeed, in the funeral home business he, has also helped, other small, businesses. To succeed and thrive, in, a changing environment. And, economy. So stay tuned, pick, up the Nuggets and make sure you take the most out of this interview today with Adam. Creed II from, Funeral Home consulting, doc, I'm happy, to have you as my guest Ellen say, hello to the to the crowd. I. Guess. They are great as always and Ellen. We've, been, like, there the way I reached out to you was because I found you talking. About principles. And strategies about how to market, funeral. Home businesses, and, before. We dive, into our topic I'd like to to. Have. You introduce yourself a little bit tell me tell us a little bit about your background your, story and how you can become a marketing. Expert for, that specific, industry. Well. I'm one of the old guys in funeral. Service I've been, involved. Since 1980. So what does that make me 38, years so. I've seen a lot of change here in North America over there was over, that period as a, from, a technical perspective I, am a certified public. With. A undergraduate. Degree in psychology so, I, spent. A good deal my career doing business, turnarounds. And. I got. Involved in funeral service as I said thirty-eight years ago with, a turnaround which, was very successful. But. Part of that means, that I have to be attentive to the strategy, as well as the financial part certified. Public accountant. In North America, is the equivalent, of a chartered accountant, in. Europe. So, I, have a great, deal of, experience. And, knowledge relative. To the, financial, part of the business but I spend, a lot of time now in, helping, people figure. Out how to respond, to the. The, changing. Market here in North America which I have. The impression is somewhat different than the rest of the world we'll talk about that but. My. Point is that, it. Isn't like it was when I first started and we need to just simply accept, that back. Mm-hmm-hmm. And. Yeah I mean the market is changing I'm. Curious, to learn more about how it's changing, in your area, but I'm I'm, quite confident, that similar. Changes, will affect us in, Europe as well I've seen a trend that what, happens. Overseas. Slowly. But steadily swaps. Over two or three year of a couple of years later so. For me what's always inspiring, is, what, can we learn from your findings, and how can we adopt in the chest to the future because they're the. Ones who will survive are the ones who will adopt. And. So, what. What do you think of what. Are the, biggest changes dance. Funeral. Industry. Is. Going, through in in your opinion. Well. If you look at marketing theory. You. Have, marketing. Theorists we'll talk about simple, products, and complex. Products, and over the last 40, years the. Funeral business here in North America has transitioned, from being a very.

Simple, Product to, a very, complex. Product, and I'm, going to define those for you it's simple it used to be that. That. When. People had a death they really only had two choices they had to make what. Funeral home were they going to use and what. Merchandise were they going to buy because. Everything else was prescript, was scripted out by society or the church or whomever today. We have a complex, product which, it. Involves. Multiple. Variables, but the variables. Are you, know the change, in roles that. That both the consumer, or, the customer, and the and the. Funeral. Home will. Have to adapt instead, of being an order taker we're. Seeing a society, that really is is, demanding. That, the. Practitioner. Take a more assertive role be. More of a teacher and. Those. That are doing that which is only a handful, are finding. Significant. Success both in revenue growth and in volume. So I. Really. Want to emphasize that point but, you have today. You, have instead of just one or two people and in arranged which you might have eight you. Know and that, eight maybe two of them haven't talked to each other in 20 years so, it's. Very very, complicated, it. Is is not just who, am I going to use and what, am I what, merchandise, but, maybe I'm not gonna buy any merchandise at all but. Maybe I'm not going to do anything at all so. It's, it's much more complicated. Process. And. I'm alright there when, you get into that theory you get into multiple, personality, types and and so, on but the truth is that the. The, level of sales. Sophistication. Them for the practitioner, is significantly. Greater than there ever was before. Mmm-hmm. I figured. The similar, things out to, be honest because as the as the complexity. Of the of everything, changes, and ante, it's, I mean it is a delicate, topic it's it's like I mean people. Are usually overwhelmed. When when they need to to, like. Use. That service, and everything comes like. Together, at once so you need, people. On the other side who are able to deal with that in a professional, way in an understanding. Way but. Also of course they need to make sure that they meet the demand of their customers. And not just yeah. Sell whatever. The, product for kale we, take it and and, we take the order and that's done so what do you mean with with. Companies. Need to become more like a teacher what, exactly have you figured out and how does it how, does it translate into growing, business. Well. Let me share a story with you. It might illustrate this better and to, the extent of your audience I have, a good friend in Independence. Missouri here. Central United States and I. Was talking with him and a while, ago he's one, of the practitioners, who's really having good success, and. I just, asked him I said what he what he well how, would you describe how you approached. Merchandising. Your service charge and he had a very unusual and, interesting response, he said you. Just said one, word courage. That's. A while okay, fine what does that mean he said well he. Said about, a year ago I decided, this was several years ago now but but he your, ago I decided that I, had. A moral, obligation to, make, sure that all of my customers. Understood, all their, options I said. Well that sounds like a great idea and he said well so. What does that have to do with courage he said well even. Today and he does 500, services a year and, he said even today I will, go into an Erasmus conference, and I'll be a little, anxious, that. Somebody, is going to resist, and, be upset because, I've, walked, them through all their options of. Course said well how, often does that happen he said we've had it happen once and we just went back to the to, the way we were I said but the interesting, part is that. Of the. People we work with now, it, is clear that they really, appreciate, our doing, that and not. Only we received a increase. In revenue, because people, understand, the, need for some, of the things that we're we're, doing but, we've, also begun to experience an increase in volume and we think that's attributed, to the fact that we've, actually helped, actually. Helped people avoid, making mistakes. Mm-hmm. So when. When you come right down to it Sebastian. We. We. That, our customers, know as much as we do, and. They're coming to us we. Think they're looking at us with. Resistance. And so on and they are because, it's an unfamiliar, transaction. But the truth of the matter is they, want guidance, and they want they, want somebody to help them understand, so let, me give you an example again, all right years.

Ago I had a funeral director explain to me and. I'm talking North American terms I really don't know how this works in Europe but it. Explained, to me in it. How. A one hours, visitation. Won't. Work. Mm-hmm. All right so I remembered, that and when my mother died and. I won't go into all the detail that that my sister, that's what my sister wanted to do was a one hours visitation, and I. Just said we're not will, do that but. We're. Gonna have a two-hour. Reception. Following all. Right and we paid the funeral director for that so on but. Everything. Everything. That that funeral director told me what's going to happen, or not going to happen actually, did happen so this, was a this, is an obligation, I feel you know why, doesn't it work well people, don't show up until 15, minutes before the service starts so, you stand there literally we stood there for 30 minutes wondering. If anybody, was coming, right. So if, a beer director had said you know we we can do an hour's visitation, prior to the service but you know here's some things you can expect. Having. Experienced. If we would go back wow he told us this was gonna happen, okay yeah. It. Increases, the credibility and so on so I hope that helps you understand what I mean by teaching mm-hmm. Oh definitely thanks, for it and it's telling. Teaching. Versus selling educating. The audience and. It provides a better value and. Understanding. Of what it is they need to be. Like. They need to consider because, you want to I think, that that's what I would, summon up you want to create, an experience for, everyone, not not for just for they're like it, is an experience, that you you kind of like. Life comes to an end but the the, participants, need to to, continue their lives but they want to have proper ending and everything. That comes along with so, you don't want to mess up with with, the logistics, of something. You you out prepare for because how. Would you know right it's it's you don't do this as I, know. You've, got 20, years experience let's, say and you. Can, say well. It's, a great idea to have people's. Bed stand up spontaneously, at the service to talk about Joe but. The, reality, is they're not going to talk about Joe they're going to talk about themselves, somebody's. Going to get emotional, everybody's going to keep feeling comfortable and wish this thing would be over so let's. Do it let's do let's, change how. We do this and and, all practitioners. Really know how they can adapt, that to. To make it work better for the families so going. Back to the to, the issue of complex. Versus simple just really, for. A moment for your audience. What. I tell my clients is it's, really not about providing. The service it's about helping, or. About becoming relevant all, right and here. In North America Society. Has changed radically. Radically. I I, got, married in 1972. What. People spend on on on, weddings, today is, over-the-top.

Based, On what most of my my. Colleagues. My friends and, associates, and, we were you, know middle middle upper-middle class so I can't, say that that we were we, were scrimpy but the same is true for funerals, so people. Can go over-the-top but they also want, something that's relevant, to, the. The loved one and you. Might and I I. Need. To put a link, on my website and I'll do that for you today but. There. Is a groundbreaking. Research that was done by the funeral service foundation, in North America, about, six, years ago hmm, on this. Topic and, what. We discovered, was that, a, number. Of things were one of the things that that, we. Discovered, in North America is the number one issue the number thing number, one thing, that people. Wanted. A. Transformational. Experience. We. Don't want to come into a funeral celebration. We call it now or. A celebration, of life or whatever euphemism you, want to work and leave. The same way they came in mmm. They, want and it doesn't have to be elaborate. But, it does have, to be relevant, mm-hmm. So. I'll put a link to that research, on my website it's, publicly, available, it's, about a hundred and twenty slides. This. Is a new. Unconventional. Research that used a combination, of anthropology. Sociology, psychology. And some. Other signs I don't remember but, it was getting into the consumers, unconscious, mind yeah, well, I definitely definitely linked to that research, in in below, the video and it. Prints it brings, up interesting questions. Because what you kind of what you're telling me is kind of this very, similar. To what I've experienced. And realized in researching, the market that that. Yeah the transformational. Experience. And not just you, know the simple. Thing but the, biggest, question that still kind of, interests. Me is how, do you educate how, do you how, do you be relevant, to, your. Clients, when. They don't really know what's. Behind, the, scenes so, how would you how would you go on about that how do you educate the. Audience when they don't know they're in need of that complex. Service. Sebastian. Do we have time for maybe a four minute story of course, we always have time for stories okay, well I just don't know how much time you put into into. Your readership, but several, years ago is, I got older I'm a baby boomer I'm 68, years old. I'm. Again having friends approached me to help them go. And make their funeral, pre-arrangements and I was, really appalled, by. The treatment. That they, got from people I knew and we're highly, experienced, it was basically. In an order taking process very. Profound, Tory or, mechanical. Transactional. And. I just I was surprised by that and. And. What. What. I. Came. To understand. When. I talked to colleagues, in, the profession is. And. This is the way I put it I said. I had, an I met with nine guys at a study group once and, I said let me ask you you, go to grab the mortuary school you, graduate, you're working in the funeral home you're washing cars you're mowing the law and you're going out for removals. You're, helping out an embalming you've been there about eight months and one. Day the communal drill busy you're minding your own business and, somebody hands you a file and says, the Smith family's coming in at two o'clock. Good, luck and you know. Every. One of the ways I've done that exercise the number of times every. Single one of those guys said, that's, how it happens, and. Half. Of them could actually name, the family and. All of them said nobody says good luck they say don't screw it up and. So. What I found was there's no training. Now how can you be a teacher if you don't have any training but. I a good, friend of mine puts. It this way he says you know when I go to work in the morning I have, to i've adopted an attitude he, said I I'm, thinking about, I'm, going to work to help somebody today and when I sit in an arrangement, conference, my mind is not on just. Ticking, off the checkmarks, and getting everything done. There I'm there to help so. Part of it is I've got I've got to figure out how. To, help them understand. The. Choices they're making I don't be a seller I just have to tell them from my experience, what, it is that that will work and will not work okay. So, hey. I go. Back to my mother's instance she was 92. Most. Of her friends had already died, it. Was going to be a small funeral. Logistically. From. A geographical, perspective a, nice, visitation. Beforehand, didn't make any sense so I. Actually. Did it all because I'm knowledgeable, but but, if Phoenix is you know I've been thinking about this this is kind of what I think might work best for you and how.

We Could kind of work. This out. Taking. 20 minutes I have one very. Prominent. Funeral. Director friend who, says he requires his staff. To. Put their pencils down and put their eyes up for 20 minutes before they start any arrangement, hey, that's how a pencils, down eyes up talk, to your client, talk to them about what they're you know what happened, how did this you know you know where are you feeling you must be very tired you, know develop. Some empathy and so on but. Then but there are emerging. Here. In United States is really one that's outstanding. I. Recommend. All the time called. The arrangers, Academy, that does training, for this purpose, and it it, isn't about selling, merchandise it, is really about helping people mm-hmm. Understand. When, it comes to. Acquiring. New, customers or. Like, I mean. How. Does all the changes, in society, and how people, for, services. Does it affect the you neural. Home. Industry, and and I'm actually interested how does the online world also affect, how people find, funeral. Home businesses, in your opinion also, taking into consideration the, teaching. Aspect that you just shared with me, there. Used to be and, I haven't seen it in funeral service, and. I'm going to give you to two, things there's I I feel strongly about but. There, used to be a newspaper. Ad series. Called glad you asked. A. Very small column you placed it on the obituary, page and it, was just basically answering. Questions. Like. How. Can. We get two people in one urn or you. Know what, things, not your funeral etiquette and so on and there's a little smattering. Of that but. I really believe that that having a educational. Blog not yet. Be careful how you write it but. I. We. Just I don't know how it is in Europe but. We, need to get over ourselves. We. Need to stop talking about how wonderful we are many. Years we've been in business there's. A funeral, home in Canada that actually has. Pictures. There. They're like two hundred years old and so they took pictures of all the original funeral. Directors you're looking at it and you're saying these, people are, stuck in the past I might use that mm-hmm.

You Know it's. It. Needs to be friendly. It. Needs, to be consumer, friendly he needs to be people you know what, you want to do is ask provocative. Questions. Mm-hmm. All right or, tell, provocative. Stories, I like people. Like story, so you know. Tell. Tell a story about somebody. You serve because I mostly. Will have these they some of you served who had a direct disposition. And came. Back later and and. Expressed. Some, form of regret and how you might have helped mm-hmm. Or. I'll. Tell you one that I do all, the time public. When. I'm somebody, tells me that they're. Quote, just going to be cremated, and. Scatter, the ashes I'll. Say, some well, you know that's really a lot of people are doing that that's a very romantic idea but, you really need to keep some. Of those ashes because, you don't know that somebody, in your family isn't going to have an, emotional, need to, have a physical place to go and you. Know 100. Percent of the time when I bring that up people go wow that's a great idea, thanks mm-hmm. So. You, know those are the types of things that, that. We. Could come up with a list but the blogging, idea I think, is great but, what funeral homes here fail to do and. Now. This gives me the second point what. They fail to do, is, collect. Email. Addresses from. The people not only that they're serving but the people that they have, visiting. Right. So average. Funeral, average, service the United States if they have a service is going to be 75 to 150, people mm-hmm. All right I gotta come inside your funeral hall all right how, do you be relevant to them well you make you, make the deceased relevant, that's the most important thing to do but. Here. In the United States there's a movement afoot. To. For. Elder. Care all. Right there are literally I, think 15, million. People. Who, are adult, caregivers. Mm-hmm. Think, about that for just a minute you've got people coming. Through your doors as a funeral home who have either just ended, a caregiving. Experience. Are. Anticipating. Becoming, a caregiver, or are. In, a caregiver, experience, mm-hmm, start, becoming a resource, for. That market, you've, become relevant. To them and you've, given people. A reason to sign. Up to. Get more information so, if, I were there I'd be I'd, be having a little I think, I you, know a little sign something, I'm not I'm not a graphic person, but but, something, that says you know sign. Up for our newsletter. And learn about such-and-such and, then there'd be a little business card under that that that had the email address, that they could stick in their pocket and and. Sign. Up for that I'd be collecting, email addresses at. Every, opportunity, I possibly, could. Mm-hmm. Yeah, I can see I can see how and wydad works but. I haven't encountered any, business out there who is doing something like that but. There. Are a few down, by you maybe yeah Adam, you probably count them on two hands all right mm-hm there, just aren't that many, and it's all it's a cost opportunity, because, quite honestly it's your least expensive but. Probably most powerful. Communication. System yeah, yeah, and those. Are the one the caregivers, who are at, one point in their life will, like.

Encounter. A situation where, the question, is asked okay who who. Are we going to use as the. Funeral service director, kind, of stuff so well. If your funeral homes loved to give brief. Seminars, and I thought that that's great how. Many times can you do that yeah, but if you were to bring in some, of the people who are experts, in care, giving. To. The community you'd be drawing not. Just the people you've served with people you might serve hmm. And and. So it, really. To me is more powerful but again that's I'm. A little out of the box. But. It's interesting so, basically. It devolves around, the idea of you are sharing knowledge. Providing. Value, going. Beyond, the actual service, to product and really providing. I, like, the I like the approach of asking. Provocative. Questions, and really get get. People, thinking of, like. What's. Important, to them what. Actually, matters and then they probe they very like get out of their little box and realize okay yeah it, actually, makes sense to, consider that and then and then to have that transformational. Experience, that I actually, desire. But, I couldn't see it because I was locked in in my limited. Perception, of how, things go in that industry. Yeah I would tell you that research, that I want to share with you and I'm going to send you the link all, right. The. Research. I said it's the great the single greatest concern. The. Single greatest fear, of. Baby. Boomers my generation, here in North America is. That after, we die we will be forgotten mm-hmm. And the. Thing that we want in that transformational. Experience, is somehow. To express. How I matter. Mm-hmm. Okay, so those. Those. Are important. Features. Of. How. That works but the truth is that what, funeral directors for funeral home owners or whatever need to realize is they, are in fact a subject, matter expert. Mm-hmm. They. Have they, have all the answers they. Just simply forgotten, some of the questions. Mm-hmm. And so. We, you're there and I have the guy who created the arrangers, Academy, when. He has a family that wants a director position. His. Response, is his, provocative question is that's. Great we can help you with that that's not a problem but. I need to understand, how. That how. That's going to help you and your family heal. Mm-hmm. And. He just shuts up. And some another person, I know, if. Somebody wants direct precision, it it. Directors. Position will say we'll look at had, perhaps, the mother or the wife or that or. He. Likes to say the oldest woman in the room just say how. Do you feel about that. You. Know and the truth is my mom my mother wanted to direct this position, but. I remember when she asked me to make her funeral pre Rangers that she told me that and she said but I know you're not gonna let me get away with that so whatever you want I don't care I won't be there.

Mm-hmm. But. The idea that I was going to. Dispose. Of my mother with without any level. Of celebration. Or commemoration, I mean, that's out, of, it I it, didn't matter whether I'm in field service or not that, would never have. Mm-hmm-hmm. Interesting. How. Is it like I mean I only can can speak from the market in Europe, but I'm curious, if it's similar to to, North America, I. Was. Told that people, tend to. -. Basically yeah. Are less, and less interested. In the. Whole rituals, and everything that comes around with and not, yet you tell me that's the very essence, of your business, because that is what matters and nothing else. So there's this like and. I've also seen funeral. Homes who are basically. Destroying. Their own market, by discounting, themselves. Too much I. Mean, how. Do you consider like what's the answer to this what's, the. Dynamics. To listen how can can funeral, home stop, it and and. Volve. Around. Those surveillance, I don't. Know how you. Part. Of what has happened in, what. We call death care in United States is it's the markets that have segmented, and some of those markets like the southern, part of the, state of Florida for instance are are, just done for at least for just generation they're just done they're. Gonna be direct disposition for. The ninety percent and. This. Doesn't III can't, come up with. Anything that anybody could afford to change that direction mm-hmm. But. You. Have to begin with your, implicit assumptions. And the implicit assumption. I think, in a large part of these discounters, is there, there is no value that the customer doesn't see any value and it and the people who do the service. Don't don't really see any value and yet. In, any market, there, is going to be at, least a segment of the market that sees, value okay. So. We. Have the United States these big-box stores that are quote unquote discount, centers. And. We. All go to them to. Buy our groceries and. Knickknacks and this type that, type of thing we. All know, in, the back of our mind that in order to get these discounts, we're giving something up, but. We really don't know what it is we're giving up or even if it matters mm-hmm. Okay. And I think that we come back to the issue of the. We. Have to be more intentional. Relative. To the people that we do have the opportunity to serve and, their. Friends. And guests, and so on you, know we have this opportunity if we have we're going to interact with 50. People we. Need to think through what, it is what the messages, were sending our mm-hm. So the. The, you, know we do have an opportunity to market people, think in terms of formal. Marketing like television. Billboards. And the like and, and that has its place but, when, you send a subliminal message through, a specific experience. It, is much. Stronger so, especially not what I meant to say this earlier I'm gonna say it now. We. Have not even though things have changed dramatically. Word-of-mouth. Marketing, is. Still the strongest. Strategy. In, in. Funeral, service, everybody. And I mean everybody I. Don't care what it is you want are, gonna ask other, people for. For. Recommendations. Or they're gonna go with the person, that they've had some, level of experience with, so, but. If we go back to strategy. Marketing strategy, by marketing strategy and turnaround switches and, has been my wife is, how, can I be different how, can I be. Dramatically. Different from. The. Perspective. The perception. Of. My. Marketplace, so, that they they. Go okay. This is this, is this is that. Type of organization and. That's. Him and. That. Is a very successful strategy so I think probably your viewers would be familiar where its circus away, mm-hmm. Yeah I circus. Away is a circus, but. It's a special kind of circus, so they set, themselves apart. Mm-hm, they use what's called a as a formal, you can get the book blue ocean strategy they. Set themselves apart, from, all, other circuses. So now the market, sees. Circuses. Like in a tent and. Then they see circus away which is an experience, mm-hmm. You, know it's a wholly different thing it's like as they've, actually created. A sub product, under that general. General. Name and United, States Southwest, Airlines is done the same thing mm-hmm. Yeah. Yeah so, ultimately what you're saying is like, in order to really stand, out and become. More. Successful and, have more influence on that market, is you need to be clear on who is the audience you're, serving. Can. You do to provide extra. Value. And really, create that transform, transformational.

Experience. And, and. Ultimately, attract, those people by, providing, information. And teach. Them, what's, necessary. And important, and ultimately. Deliver. On your promises, by teaching, by, training, your, their, own staff to be really able to fulfill. Your. Your your. Experience, so that's kind of the they already. Try. Don't you have to help people so if. You were really going to be honest, and straightforward about, what, is what if what a service. Celebration. Funeral, whatever it is mm-hmm. Provides to, the customer, my, what what are the values, of that and you had somebody was you know a friend. Approached, you and say you know I'm trying to figure out whether just to do just, to get rid of the body or do something celebrate, what's, what would you tell them I mean. It being honest about, it, well you know you don't have to have a church service that's true but, you do have to you, do for your own purposes, you need there's. There's. A real human, psychological. Need to be in physical contact with, other human beings hmm. That. Didn't, electronics. Will never replace a hug yeah. It, won't happen. There's. A there's a real need, to. To. Have. A. Formal. Structured. Gathering. That. Honors, the deceased. For. Your own psychological needs but really for the other the needs of your friends and family and the. Reason for that is is just we're wired that way so. You. Know here. In 9/11, when we had our major. Catastrophe. Back in and in. 2001. With. The with the twin towers the Pentagon and so on people, came out into this streets. To. Hug. Each other to communicate. To, they picked up the phone and call people just. To be in contact, with other people it's a human, need then. We have I know that when you, have had the bombings, in Paris and and. When. Princess die was killed we had the same same. Thing it's just a reality it's how we're wired and. If, you don't, do that, sometimes. There's no consequences, but if you it but sometimes there are very very real, consequences at, the, emotional level mm-hmm. Yeah. Totally, agree so, that because it so, go back to the segment, strategically. Sebastian. Yeah I'm, gonna focus on people who see value in life I'm, gonna focus on people who are willing, to pay me something for my services, mm-hmm, I must see people who have who, have personal. Ties and, so, on I'm gonna market, to those, and I'm gonna ignore the, people who don't care I'm, told that I believe that there are people who don't care fine, but. They're not my market, yeah. And.

Earlier. You said like yeah, you need to differentiate, yourself, in, that industry from. From your experience, can you share some examples. On how other, Funeral, Homes have, done that successfully and, how they differentiated. Themselves, from others, how. Was like wasn't their messaging, was it something, they did like just. To have an example to see how that looks like well. I, think you're referring to the. Formal marketing thing so, I will tell you and I'll, try to get some examples and link them to okay. One. That I like particularly. Is a guy out in our, state of Minnesota I think it's made no Wisconsin, Wisconsin, who. Has. More. Or less in formalised. Where. He's. Reduced the formality, of his, public, persona all. Right so. You go to his website and. He. Has a page for, each of his staff members including himself and, if. You mouse over the, picture. Of, that individual. Dressed. In their funeral, suit, funeral. Attire the. The vision visual, will change. To. Them in. A, casual, setting so for instance if you mouse over him last time I looked at it, changed, to him and I in, a golf setting, he playing golf and and. So what he sublimity saying is we're, funeral directors but we're really people - mm-hmm, all. Right there. The. There's. A there's. A there's a cemetery. Funeral. Home combination. In Toronto Canada and, this is the one you probably need to look at most, called. Mount, Pleasant group and they do about, 15,000. Funerals a year to, multiple. Demographics. I mean Indian, of. French German, Japanese. Chinese. Whatever. It is and they've, adapted to all those different cultures, but, they they. Use. Humor. A lot. In their, advertising, so, you're. All. You're. All familiar with the new Apple watch it's, been out for a couple of years so. They did an Apple watch spoop. Very professional. Advertising. Ad. Commercial. And they called it the. Mo. I can't remember exactly what, they called it the. But. Anyway this, was a watch you could buy and, it, looked really real, this was a watch you were supposedly able to buy they, told you when you were gonna die mm-hmm. The, quick bit that's what it was it was off the Fitbit so it was called equipment and. 30-second, ad very, professionally, done and they. Aired that they actually got orders. Or. But, that's, not the point their, strategy. Their single. Strategy strategy. Is. That people are going to be talking about them all the time sure, as we, do now, yeah. So I'll. Send you a link to the Mount Pleasant group and I don't, know if I can find that ad I can get them to share it I'm sure yeah.

You, Know. What. You're saying - what, you're doing is subliminal level when you do things like that is you're saying to the marketplace we're. Not your typical funeral. Home we're not your typical death. Care provider we're different, we're not sure you may not be sure how we're different but we're different mmm. We're, not at we're not nasty people, were we're, fun people, we're. We're you know and then when. You give people a meaningful experience that. Transformational. Experience, and you you. Help somebody, if. I were going to arrange the conference as a few director I would want to help somebody. Express. To, those guests. That they have why. That person matter. So. If you can do that the. Audience, is going to go I want, that that's me I want, that do that. Mmm. Perfect. I mean that that totally makes sense and still, there's. Not many companies, out there who do that right, even, we. Know it's it's the way it, works make them the hero of their own story and. And. You become the guide to, deliver. The. Experience in everything that comes with it that's, an important word you just used guide all. Right you're. The expert, you're the subject-matter expert, you need to be the guide you. Need to deal with the fact that sometimes you're not going to get the best sale you can get but, you did the right thing for the customer yeah. But other times you're gonna do much better than you might have otherwise. Mm-hmm. Always. Doing the right thing for the customer yeah. And. Then. Votive, mouth with happen although I can't. Guarantee every. Single person and they're not many but. Every single individual. That I'm, influenced. In this way has. Come. Back to me and said that their volume has grown in their revenue your average sale has grown significantly. Mm-hmm. But. You gotta, be, prepared for people to walk away somebody, yeah yeah, okay it's. Like I said I don't want, I don't. Personally. If I were a funeral, I wouldn't want to serve the, people who don't care go, elsewhere, hmm. And. Again you need to to, be to have courage to be, able to do that to have that standard it really does come back, which. Oz is my my last question, kind of already why. Don't. Like. Why don't do. Why. Aren't there some like many companies who do that like who, out. There and, differentiate, themselves but the, answer is is courage, selective courage in the end ins of being, afraid of a little deeper than that there's were much like how'd you come to him mm-hmm, a.

Fella. By the name Michael. Gerber wrote a book entitled a myth many years ago mm-hm, and he. Differentiated. Between, people. He labelled as technicians. And. People. He labeled his entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs, want, to build a business, mmm. Technicians, want. To do a job so what you will find and I don't think that North, America is unique in this at all is, that people, will reach a level of. Income. Or. Capacity. Or, whatever, and they're, happy, they're. Not really happy but they think they're happy or they think they're okay and they just stop so, I. Have, had clients who have come back to me after I've worked with them and said I really. Realize now I never wanted. To get this big I never really wanted to. To, to, have to work like, this and I'm not going to do it anymore and I respect, that okay now you know it's all right but. The. Reason that you don't see more people doing this is they. Know in their hearts, that they're going to end up at least for. A little while working. A much harder than they're working now and. They're. Also going to have some level of risk I mean you, think about it intellectually. Or emotionally most. People in this profession or caregivers, and the, idea of having a conflict, with somebody is, beyond. I mean. Critic it can turn, them into a tailspin, mm. Mm, hm. Interesting. So yeah the thing thing. I would recommend to your viewers is you, got to figure out who you want to be I think I just wrote a letter to a client right now that was exactly what I said you you, really need to think about who you want to be if you like where you are I can, help you be. Be. Less stressed, out but. If you really want to take advantage of some of the opportunities I see for you then you're gonna have to change your whole approach. But. You need to decide you need to get together with your wife you, need to figure out where you want to be and, if. You decide that you don't want any more than what you got yeah, three. $500,000. A year it's okay I mean a lot of people would love to make that kind of money hmm. Awesome. Make sense. Ellen. That, was a great. Conversation, with a lot of few nuggets in there and a lot of interesting insights, in how yeah. How humans, work and how your industry, works I'm. Sure, that everyone, will take regardless. Of their industry, because. I feel. We've been talking universal, principles, here and, I like that because. It's yeah, make your customer the hero become, the guide to go to and, provide outstanding, value and and, figure, out how that works for you in the industry that's, kind of mine to, sum it up briefly, my. Biggest takeaways, from our conversation, Thank. You Ellen, is there anything you'd like to share with with our audience. Anything how can we find you to learn more about your, work and how to get in touch with you, what's. The best things you've already discovered I published a website I, just got my blog started, today again, after a hiatus. But. I've, just updated everything, and, so. You can subscribe to that blog and. The, site as you said earlier is funeral. Home consulting.com. One. We're a funeral home consulting. And. I'm available by phone I do I love to do this zooom type meeting, you'd. Be surprised how few Funeral Homes really get comfortable with that but that's, okay the. Other thing that. I. Would enjoy doing and. I, think I would be willing I'm, not sure about this but are we willing to do it if, they, would just pay my travel expenses I'd love to come over and speak to some of your associations.

Mm-hmm. If. They, feel it's relevant well, yeah. Because. My, my goal is to. Give the individual. Practitioner. The. Tools, and resources even. If I don't get paid for it I get I've got good. Clients, I'm not worried about that but. To give, them the tools and resources to, help them become more, secure. For their future mmm. Awesome awesome and, I know yeah like there's not many people who do what you do and who have that experience to, really help people in debt on that mission so. I'll, make sure that as many people as possible will, will see that that interview, that we just done. And. Hopefully. People will realize yep makes, sense to have. Ellen, come over and talk, to our audience. So. Much for your time thank, you - thank you.

2018-06-19 19:12

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