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ICCFA Industry News 2.12.2016

Rick Platter's picture

The ICCFA 2016 Annual Convention & Expo April 13-16, 2016 in New Orleans - We still have plenty of Booth Space, do not miss out on meeting so many possible NEW customers and strengthing your current customer relations.
Click this link to download the booth application.
Click this link to see the Live Floor Plan.

This ‘Death Suit’ Makes Burials Eco- and Wallet-Friendly (U.S.)

Life storyteller helps grieving families in loss (U.S.)

SCI saw fewer funerals, declining revenue in 2015 (U.S.)

Park Lawn Corporation Announces Investment in Mundell Funeral Home Limited (Canada)



ICCFA Industry News 2.2.2016

Rick Platter's picture

Funeral Directors & Sales Managers: How are You Marketing At-need?

datadale's picture

Successful At-need marketing requires strong branding and high visibility in the marketplace.

While this is typically not product for a direct mail campaign, at-need services should be prominent in any mailing sent out by a funeral chapel or cemetery.

Key Lead Generators for At-Need :

1. A solid PPC campaign, targeted to the local area, which would enable people in need
to quickly and efficiently find your cemetery/funeral home on their mobile phones and click to call.

2. High speed, mobile compatible destination website.
How does your site look on a mobile device? Remember, people will need to find your cemetery or funeral chapel from their homes or a hospital – they will be using their mobile phones. If your site doesn’t load quickly, people will drop you like a hot potato. This is vital to your businesses’ success. Engage a web developer to do this for you and do it right.

3. Developing quality content to increase SEO & drive prospects to your site. This is your opportunity to provide information that might be of interest to your families or to your community. Examples could include:

• A roundup of links to relevant community news, either weekly or monthly.
• Answers to client families’ frequently asked questions about your funeral home and funeral services.
• Topics that dive into issues they might want to consider, such as personalized services or what options are available to them.
• Grief & healing advice – answer some common questions surrounding grief in a Q&A form.

4. Do you have a blog? – You can be creative. Write a post titled “10 Ways to Celebrate Your Loved One’s Life” and include some of your service as examples. Or, you can “curate” content. For example, there was an article this past weekend in the NY Times about taking funeral services to the home.
You might also want to consider using “guest bloggers” – maybe someone from a local hospice might shed some light onto their services.

5. Billboards – Billboards can be excellent, well-priced exposure. You want visibility. You want your Chapel or cemetery’s name front & center.

6. Presence at Community Events, festivals
You want to expose as many people as possible to your Cemetery and Funeral Chapel. This is an opportunity for you to be noticed at Chamber of Commerce programs, art fairs, home shows. You are not only strengthening your brand as a pillar of the community, but taking advantage of a great opportunity for you to collect leads for Pre-need.

7. Creating Community Events at Your location
Your goal is to expose members of your community to your facilities. You might want to offer events that give something back to your community and still be aligned with the services you offer:

• Deepening your relationship with client families by holding grief and healing events to help them face their feelings.
• Hosting events at hospices and assisted living facilities.
• Holding pre-planning meetings to help client families “start the conversation” about their end-of-life decisions.

8. Build relationships – Network, network, network. You want to make friends at hospitals and hospice. You need the clergy in your area to be familiar with your facility and services. You want members of the local police, fire department and EMTs to be able to share your name & phone #. These are people who are on the front line when a death occurs and can refer your services

Dataman Group in Boca Raton, FL works with sales managers, marketing directors and owns of Cemeteries and Funeral Chapels across the United States, providing lists for Pre-Need lead generation and Final Expense prospecting. DataDale will be speaking on Lead Generation at the annual ICCFA convention in New Orleans in April, 2016. Go to for information.

In Memorium – Kobe Filhaber

datadale's picture

Kobe Filhaber passed away on January 11, 2016 after a lengthy illness. He was an excellent dog and our hearts ache with loss.

Kobe was the Chief DataDog on the Dataman Group Canine Staff. He took his career very seriously and never missed a day at the Dataman Group office

Kobe was very busy at work. His responsibilities ranged from meeting & greeting clients, supervision of all the DataDogs at mealtimes, accompanying Ed to the bank and on a wide array of errands as well as mail pickup & delivery.

As Chief DataDog, Kobe was in charge of the Dataman Group Canine Training Program. He truly imprinted his paw prints on Kaycee Filhaber, his sister, full-time companion and best friend and part-timer, Nadi Erasmous. Kobe was also mentoring and training our youngest DataDog, Dez Filhaber who we expect to assume some of Kobe’s duties in the Office.

Kobe was truly the Big Dog on campus. He was a handsome devil with a penchant for chasing birds, barking at the landscapers and blocking the­­­­­­­­­­ Dataman Group entry door. But there is no question that his favorite activity was being with Kaycee. They were together 24/7 – lying together on the floor mat in front of the door, strolling side-by-side on long walks, and sleeping together in bed curled up like 2 shrimp. We mourn alongside her.

The Dataman Group flag is at half-mast. We all miss him so much.

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6 Steps to Increasing Lead Generation Response

datadale's picture

Locate prospects who NEED your product, rather than people who could be convinced to want it
Make them feel important & valued and remind them they can’t get along without you.
Reach out to them in the most opportune way, based on audience and product
Make them an offer they can’t refuse
Follow up quickly and in a professional manner
Deliver what you promise. Your brand will benefit and you’ll get referrals.

Let this become your marketing mantra and your marketing ROI will benefit

BioUrn4Pets Creates a "Circle of Life" Memorial

BioUrn4Pets's picture

Maka joined our family when she was an 8-week old puppy. As newlyweds, we doted on Maka and considered her our "baby". Maka rode "shotgun" in my husband's work truck, and was always the center of attention any time they stopped to stretch their legs. When our son was born, Maka welcomed him into the family and considered him her baby too! The two were inseparable, and their bond was delightful to watch. As our son learned to walk, Maka was by his side every step, often losing handfuls of fur as he would stumble and fall. She never minded, and the two soon went on adventures together running side-by-side, Sadly, Maka crossed the Rainbow Bridge when our son was about 6 years old. We were all devastated by her loss, but not as much as our son. For years, he couldn't walk past her urn in the living room without making a comment about how much he missed her, regardless of the fact that we had a houseful of dogs. His bond with Maka was so strong, he just couldn't let go of the pain of losing her... that is, until I created BioUrn!

In 2013, I brought BioUrn to market as a pet memorial, and we filmed the preparation and planting of our first BioUrn using Maka's ashes. I knew I had a unique & extraordinary product, but what I didn't realize was the impact BioUrn had on children who were grieving the loss of their family pet. Once Maka's BioUrn began to sprout a seedling, our son would make a direct route to her tree, fussing over it and noting its growth with a big smile on his face. What was once a sad, mournful statement about missing her became a joyful acknowledgement of her growing presence in our garden and even more important was the renewed joy in our hearts.

Veterinary professionals and parents agree that the loss of a family pet can be emotionally devastating, especially for children who could be experiencing loss for the first time. BioUrn helps to create a "Circle of Life" experience, which is extremely helpful when coping with the loss of a family pet. Creating new life with their pets ashes, allows pet lovers to deal with the pain of their loss, and helps them through the bonding process when a new pet enters the family. BioUrn was created by a pet lover, for pet lovers and is offered by My Eternal Family Tree, a veteran owned, family run business. Handmade in USA BioUrn will grow your chosen tree, and is good for the planet, and for the people who love it. Now available for people and pets, we welcome you to visit our website ,browse our tree selection, and ask yourself, "What tree would I be?"

Kickstart Your Marketing Program with 55 Words that Convert

datadale's picture

It doesn’t matter whether this is a subject line of an e-mail, teaser copy on an envelope, the headline of a post or even a tweet – the right verb can make a dramatic difference in the response or open rate.

Marketing Guru, Pat Friesen, has put together this very comprehensive list of the top 55 words that convert.
As always, marketers need to test to see which one performs best for their individual direct marketing program.

BTW - I used the verb “Kickstart” in my headline to generate interest. Which ones do you think will excite your customers?

1. act
2. add
3. apply
4. boost
5. buy
6. build
7. call
8. choose
9. claim
10. click
11. compare
12. confirm
13. connect
14. contact
15. discover
16. download
17. explore
18. find
19. follow
20. get
21. grab
22. go
23. improve
24. increase
25. join
26. kickstart
27. keep
28. like 29. learn
30. make
31. master
32. pack
33. plan
34. perfect
35. polish
36. read
37. receive
38. reduce
39. register
40. reply
41. save
42. see
43. send
44. share
45. shop
46. sign (up)
47. start
48. take
49. talk
50. try
51. tweet
52. update
53. view
54. visit
55. watch