Effective funeral home marketing removes the disconnect between the value of funeral service and consumers’ misconceptions (or lack of awareness) about what skilled funeral professionals can do for them. If education is the key to building relationships with clients, no marketing tool has more potential for relevant connections than social media.
Social media platforms empower consumers by allowing them to quickly gather information and solicit personal recommendations for services. The immediate benefits for funeral homes that leverage social media include:
- Building your community. Your social media presence allows influencers to share their experiences with your firm through reviews and page shares.
- Generating leads. Social media is built for interaction that helps connect you with people who are interested in your funeral home’s services.
- Sharing your story. Your funeral home can leverage social media tools to explain the factors that differentiate your firm and make it a valuable part of your community.
- Increasing website traffic. Use social media in combination with your funeral home website to connect with families and educate them about what you offer (and why it’s important).
- Promoting events. You can boost attendance at your community events by spreading the word through social media – including the use of targeted advertising messages that make the most of your budget.
Focus on Facebook.
Although funeral professionals have experienced success with other funeral home social media platforms, most choose to focus the bulk of their efforts on Facebook – and for good reason. Facebook has been around for years, but its impact as a marketing tool isn’t slowing down. The social media platform recently reported that its monthly active users reached 1.86 billion at the end of 2016. This large, diverse user group also means Facebook can offer targeted advertising that remains relatively inexpensive compared to many other forms of advertising.
But the sheer size of its user base isn’t the only reason Facebook is an attractive option for funeral homes. Its user demographics are particularly appealing when it comes to communicating with people who might be more receptive to messages about funeral service and prearranging. According to Pew Research Center, 72% of online Americans ages 50-64 use Facebook. The fact tank also reports frequent activity among Facebook users – 76% of them use the site daily.
Engage your audience.
Facebook may be part of the daily routine for a large portion of the population, but that doesn’t mean people are willing to devote a significant amount of time to a single post. Posts that are brief (a recent study suggests 50 or fewer characters) tend to earn more engagement. Keep your messages short and to the point, and link to longer content such as a blog article if you need more space for your message.
Video content continues to dominate as a medium that allows funeral homes to capture the attention of people scrolling through their Facebook feeds. Funeral home marketing videos don’t have to cost a lot to make an impact, but make sure the content of your videos is immediately compelling to prevent your audience from moving on from your post. In the digital marketing environment, you’re not just competing against other funeral homes for attention – you’re competing against any other content that might make people lose interest in the story you’re telling.
Analyze your results.
Facebook provides at-a-glance information about your audience and your posts’ performance. You’ll find this data under the Insights tab in your page management tools.
The robust analytics are available for free and allow you to view data from categories such as:
- Posts: This section allows you to easily compare how many people were reached by or interacted with your posts. With these insights, you can identify and replicate factors that lead to successful posts.
- When Your Fans Are Online: Located in the Posts section, this feature can help you determine the best times to engage with your audience.
- Pages You Watch: This tool allows you to monitor the performance of similar business pages and see how your results stack up.
- People: View demographic information about your overall pool of Facebook fans and the people who are most likely to engage with your posts.
These are just a few of the metrics that are worth watching. You’ll have access to additional insights for paid Facebook advertising efforts.
Firms that join the social media conversation have the potential to become the voices for funeral service in their communities. You’ll earn trust and referrals from people who have already experienced your value proposition through your online marketing activities.