Using Data to Connect with and Retain Funeral Home Client Families

For many funeral homes, goal setting includes defining a target for the amount of preneed and at-need business your firm will generate. The most successful firms maintain a preneed to at-need ratio 60/40, which may seem like a stretch goal. Fortunately, you can turn to easily accessible data to help you find and retain your client families.

When building your preneed prospecting list, begin with your existing client families. A study by Salesforce indicates that 72% of customers will share their good experiences with others, so your client families are a great place to start.

Once you have your list ready to go, there are several data sources you can use to generate new leads and retain your client families through stronger relationships that lead to referrals.

Consumer Research

Your client families know the value of preplanning because they have experienced the benefits for themselves. Our latest policy owner survey results reveal that over half (63%) of policy owners have recommended prearranging to one or more people or plan to recommend it to someone they know. These findings reinforce just how valuable word-of-mouth referrals and online reviews can be for your business.

To get an in-depth look at what the families in your community want, your next step is to complete a custom market analysis. This type of study will help you uncover potential service gaps so you can strengthen efforts to provide ongoing support and effective communication with the people you have served.

Who is your audience? The latest U.S. Census Data is now available. Search your city, county or zip code to learn the demographics of your population – you may be surprised how much these are shifting in your community. This data will determine your audience, which will drive your marketing strategies.

Social Media Metrics and Advertising

Followers of your social and digital media pages have likely visited you first because they already worked with or visited your funeral home. They are now ambassadors of your brand. It’s important to keep a close eye on your social media performance to understand which content resonates with them so they will continue to engage with and share your messaging.

We know that word-of-mouth recommendations generate new preneed business, but so could an inexpensive ad from your social media page. If you are looking for tips, download our social media guide here. You can also review quick tips for expanding your reach from Bill Johnston, the founder of Post and Boost, one of Homesteaders’ affinity partners.

Website Analytics

First impressions play a significant role in consumers’ purchase decisions. Homesteaders’ research shows that nearly 75% percent of preneed policy owners make funeral arrangements with the first firm they consider. Ensuring your firm is top-of-mind – and not your competitor down the street – is more important than ever before.

According to a 2018 Pew Research Center survey, a majority of Americans (81%) rely heavily on their own research when they make a major decision. Often, that research begins with an online search. How does your website performance measure up?

Review your high-level website analytics to see what types of users are engaging with your online presence and conduct an audit to help optimize your funeral home website. This can lay the groundwork for converting that traffic into preneed and at-need business through online funeral planning.

Although it’s becoming easier to get data that shows what your client families want, that information isn’t worth much unless it is turned into meaningful action. Contact your Homesteaders Account Executive to learn more about how we can help you strengthen relationships with the families you want to retain.

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