Archive for April, 2011

New Families and Their Languages

Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

Our country’s population base is changing every day. We all know that the number of people is growing, but are you aware of what ethnicity is growing?
White people constitute 80% of the population, 15% are Hispanic, 13% are African-American, 5% are Asian. This amount is greater than 100% since the US Census Bureau aggregates Hispanic data among all types based on original country of origin. This means that there may be an additional market of non-English speakers in your area that can use your services. If you’ve thought about it and need help with translation of written documents and placing it in your marketing materials or website, give us a call. Some ethnic groups are very loyal and serving just one person in that group could increase your business substantially.
Source: US Census Bureau

Digital Media Etiquette Policy Launch

Wednesday, April 20th, 2011

Beyond Indigo Funerals Launches Digital Media Etiquette Policy
Program Protects Online Reputations Of Funeral Homes By Ensuring Employees Adhere To Specific Guidelines And Standards

HANOVER, MN (April 20, 2011) — Funeral industry marketer Beyond Indigo Funerals has developed a new program to ensure that funeral professionals use proper digital media etiquette. This Technology and Social Media Policy protects funeral businesses from having employees post inappropriate or negative online content.

Businesses spend a lot of time and money protecting their online reputations, because negative reviews and comments make as much impact as positive ones. The Technology and Social Media Policy enables funeral professionals to monitor and control their online perceptions in two ways: providing employees with clear etiquette guidelines and managing employees’ digital conduct. This includes managing employee content with regards to company emails, blog posts, and comments posted on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, MySpace, Wikipedia, and online review sites. The policy, which is fully customizable, is designed to maintain the integrity and consistency of all marketing messages and materials disseminated from a particular funeral home.

“Businesses must proactively manage their online images in order to ensure that their employees reflect positivity, accuracy, and appropriateness” said Kelly Baltzell, M.A., president and founder of Beyond Indigo Funerals. “We want to give our clients peace of mind as they expand their marketing efforts into the digital landscape.”

Please visit the following link for more information.

Do you use video on your website?

Monday, April 18th, 2011

How would you be your own movie star? Ok, that may not be a good idea for the camera shy. However, it has been proven that websites attract more viewers and longer “on screen” time with the addition of videos. These videos don’t need to be elaborate and you certainly don’t need to hire someone to do it. In fact, a simple camera phone will work fine. Many people have questions about various parts of the funeral process. You have to answer them in person when they come in for service. How about if you were able to educate them BEFORE they needed to see you or your staff? Not only do you become the “expert,” but people already have a feeling or emotion about you. Emotional connections will result in increased conversions and sales. You also become an expert in the your area because people rely on you for pertinent information. Video is an excellent tool to generate pre-need customers! You educate them about why they need it and the phone will ring. Videos only need to be 5 minutes in length and you can shoot and upload within minutes. Give it a try and see how it works! Check out this video about cremation services.

Winter burials

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011

As I was reading the weekend paper and cruising the web, I came across an interesting article about winter burials in North Dakota.

Apparently, the weather is so severe that plowing the roads to the cemeteries and utilizing heaters to unfreeze the ground for digging have become too expensive. Some cemeteries have started to pre-dig holes in the fall to allow winter burials, but there’s no law in place to require a winter burial in North Dakota. Other states like Minnesota and New York require burials to occur in winter regardless of weather conditions.
The down side of delaying burial is the affect on families who have to go through another time of mourning.

Read the full article on

Woolen Casket?

Wednesday, April 6th, 2011

I was reading an article in Time magazine recently and came across an intereresting topic from the U.K. Apparently, there is an entrepreneur there who has been experiementing with making woolen caskets. All he needed was the wool from 3 sheep and cardboard to line the casket to create one. The casket is also strong and is capable of supporting 840 pounds! He’s been selling approximately 50-60 of these caskets lately and intends to grow the share to 20% of the entire U.K. market in the upcoming years.

woolen casket

woolen casket

Currently, he is selling his product in several countries in Europe and recently signed a U.S. distributor. Will this be a new option that you will offer as part of a green burial?
Read the entire article.

Google’s ‘Plus 1′ Feature Enhances Social Search

Tuesday, April 5th, 2011

Google is taking their social search model a step further by incorporating a “+1″ button alongside every link in their search page.  This feature gives you, the searcher, the ability to recommend something to your entire Google network* with a click of the mouse.  It is similar, if not exactly, like Facebook’s “Like” icon.  As a consumer, I think it will be helpful to know that a contact has +1′d a restaurant when deciding where to eat for dinner.  As a marketer, I immediately want to know… how can this “+1″ feature pay off in terms of SEO, reach, and my bottom line.

Google hasn’t directly said if/how these recommendations will affect the overall search rating for the link; that may come later.  Its goal (for round 1) is to make search results more relevant to individuals by showing them that someone they know has given it their thumb’s up.  It’s an interesting development and for now, a ”watch-this-space” moment for SEO and Google search results.

Tip:  In order to use Google’s “+1″ feature, you need to have a Google Account.  If you already have one, you’ll need to upgrade it.  From your account, you’ll be able to see all the items you’ve “+1″, so you can delete your endorsements should choose to.

*Google may add other signals, like your Twitter connections, in the future.