Why Increasing Your Pre-Need Leads Is Easier Than You Think

Imagine this: Your funeral home creates a flawless, stupidly simple way for families to research, browse and even plan their funeral, right from your website. The solution you create is so simple that families don’t even need to pick up the phone to call you. Everything they need to know is right there for them.

I know, the idea of not talking to your families on the phone or having them come into your funeral home is scary. But hey, it’s 2014 (almost 2015), and times have changed. Your families have changed, too. And guess what? Although a lot of them still want to plan their funeral (or their loved one’s funeral) with the help of a human being, a lot of people want to take control of their funeral planning process by doing it themselves.

What if I told you that by helping your families take control of their funeral planning process, you could increase your pre-need leads 100%, 1,000%, or heck, even 2,000% in no time?

Sounds like a dream that might never come true, right?

I’m going to spend the next few minutes (or more, depending on how fast you read) explaining a recent customer service experience I recently had with Warby Parker, a designer eyewear company. You might be asking yourself how I could possibly be drawing such a strange parallel between purchasing eyeglasses and planning a funeral. But if you hear me out, there’s a valuable lesson to be learned.

Purchasing glasses is similar to planning a funeral (seriously)

If there’s one thing I hate doing more than anything in this entire world, it’s buying glasses. It’s a long, hard, aggravating process. And everytime I go to the eye doctor to get an eye exam, I feel like I’m getting ripped off in some way. Did my eyes really get that much worse? Do I really need to do all of these extra tests that add hundreds of dollars to my exam? Are polarized transition lenses and spring hinges truly that important to the quality of my glasses? Probably not, but I don’t really know better. In fact, I don’t know much about buying glasses at all. All of the lingo, the frame choices, the numbers – it’s all a blurry mess to me (quite literally).

When I was purchasing my glasses the other day, I realized that my intimidation and confusion on purchasing glasses is likely how many consumers feel about planning a funeral. They’re just as woefully uneducated about their funeral options as I am about my optometry options. Sure, planning a funeral is admittedly more important and involves a great deal more of emotions. But, again, for the sake of my point here, just stay with me while I highlight four ideas on making pre-planning simple for you and your families:

Lesson #1: Make it easy to break the ice

I came across Warby Parker all thanks to a Facebook ad that looked like this:


I couldn’t believe my eyes at first. I could try 5 pairs of glasses for 5 days, for free? With no pressure to purchase? AND for every pair purchased, a pair would be distributed to someone in need? It didn’t take any more selling for me after seeing that ad. To be able to offer a deal that’s so enticing, you can capture customers through a one-step process is pretty amazing in the world of marketing. What if you could show your potential families a way to pre-plan their services in a one-step process, too? Wouldn’t that be great?

Imagine this: Your funeral home website running an ad on Facebook that shows your beautiful memorial garden or the cemetery with a title and ad copy that focuses on a celebration rather than a loss. Once they click on it, they land on a resource hub that is as visually pleasing as it is informative. It’s got everything they need to pre-plan their funeral, right there for them.

By focusing on simplicity and showing your families the value of planning ahead, your families won’t be able to turn you away. After all, people are looking to plan their funeral ahead of time, they’re just not sure where to start. Use inspirational marketing to entice them and break the ice, and the rest will fall into place.

Lesson #2: Take all the legwork out of the pre-planning process


The process for signing up for this “5 pairs, 5 days” deal was really simple. All I had to do was choose 5 of my favorite frames online, and give Warby Parker my address, name and email. Within two business days, I had this nicely branded package sitting on my door step.


Included in the package was the 5 pairs of glasses, a shipping label to send them back when I was ready, and a postcard-like piece of paper that instructed me to write notes about my favorites. I was so surprised by how much of the legwork they took out purchasing glasses. Not only was the shipping fast, but they even provided me with a shipping label so I wouldn’t have to pay to send them back. I was truly in awe.

Imagine this: Having your families sign up to learn more about how they can create a unique life celebration on your website. Then, a few days later, a beautifully designed package arrives in the mail that includes everything they need to dive deeper into the details of planning a funeral. And when they’re ready to make a decision, you give them an easy way to take the next steps in their (or their loved one’s) life celebration.

Lesson #3: Encourage families to seek help from people they care about

One thing I really liked about the postcard in my Warby Parker package is the section where they encouraged me to take photos of myself with the glasses on and share them with the social media world using the hashtag #WarbyHomeTryOn. That way, I could get feedback from people I care about instead of being left with the daunting decision of choosing a pair of glasses on my own.

The most important decision to come across my desk today… #WarbyHomeTryOn #WarbyParker

A photo posted by @jeanettemorelan on

Although I chose not to share my photos with the world, I sent them to my closest friends and family and ultimately ended up choosing a pair of glasses thanks to the feedback from my Mother (who has surprisingly modern taste in glasses).

Imagine this: Including a conversation starter kit in the beautifully designed package you send your families that helps them brainstorm with their loved ones. Maybe you don’t include a hashtag in your package. But if you’re social media savvy, maybe you do.

Lesson #4: Be transparent with pricing

One of the reasons I chose Warby Parker over other budget-friendly eyeglass companies is because their pricing was simple. Sure, I could find glasses that “started at $4.99” online, but Warby Parker prices all of their glasses the exact same way. There are no hidden fees, no add-ons, no BS. It’s just simple, honest pricing. That’s actually the foundation of Warby Parker’s business – to provide glasses that don’t leave their customer’s wallets bare.


Imagine this: With your perfectly packaged pre-planning kit, you provide a GPL or price calculator that your families can use to estimate the cost of their funeral that’s as transparent as ever, making your families feel less intimidated and more comfortable making executive decisions about their funeral plans.

Bringing it all together

If you’re still with me, perhaps you had an epiphany similar to mine. Maybe you took away an idea that you can incorporate into your funeral home’s pre-planning process. Heck, maybe you didn’t learn a darn thing. But I hope that after you walk away from this blog, you at least realize how important it is to create a family-centric way that’s easy and simple when it comes to planning ahead. Families are busier than ever before, and they’re looking to give their business to companies who set out to make their lives easier. Are you the funeral home they’re going to give their business to?

Funerals, death and dying are hard enough topics to discuss at the dinner table. Why make it even harder by adding confusion and unnecessary steps to the process of planning for the inevitable?

Increase your pre-need leads today

Want to increase your pre-need leads, all while helping your families plan for the expected? Find out how you can by scheduling a free, in-depth website consultation with one of funeralOne’s Website Success Specialists. To schedule your consultation, click here or give us a call at 800-798-2575, ext. 5!

What other lessons can you take from my experience with Warby Parker? Tell me in the comments below!

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