One of the biggest mistakes I’ve watched small businesses make is spending several thousand dollars on a beautiful website and then never putting forth the effort to tell anyone about it. I’m not sure what it is about websites that makes people think that they are magic money-making trees. Websites are just a tool to help you reach your target audience. If you want the tool to work you’re going to have to pick it up and use it. So how can a cemetery put their website to work? I am glad you asked!
Send a Mailer announcing the Cemetery has a Website
What about all those owners of graves and lots? Do they know they can buy additional services for their loved ones right on your website? Start sending out correspondence (you know, good ole’ snail mail) reminding folks to take time to honor their loved ones once again. Make sure they know your cemetery is accommodating during the Holidays (Memorial Day, Veteran’s Day, Christmas, etc.).
Start Email Marketing, Collect Emails on your Cemetery Website
Direct Mail is a great way to let your customers know that your cemetery has a website, but email is a much more inexpensive and powerful way to keep in touch. Make sure your website makes an effort to collect and organize the email addresses of your visitors. Create a monthly newsletter or use other creative ways to collect visitors’ email addresses. Send emails when a loved one’s birth date and death date comes around on the calendar. The marketing opportunities are endless and easy once the right strategies and tools are in place!
Use Social Media (Facebook/Google+) to benefit your Cemetery
Once you start selling products (traditional & virtual) on your cemetery’s website you can easily connect with your customers via social networks. The social media outlets are perfect for driving the awareness of upcoming burials. This is an amazing way to help the friends and family of your community. The burden of thinking of and telling everyone they know can be greatly lightened as the cemetery respectfully announces funeral arrangements and service times. Once you’ve interacted with the community online they can be directed back to the loved one’s memorial page on the cemetery’s website where condolences can be left and flowers or other fitting gifts can be purchased for the family.
Chances are your cemetery already has a website; the question is – are you marketing it? Implementing these marketing practices can be the difference between a poor or great investment. If you haven’t read my article on How Cemeteries Can Generate New Revenue with a Website I would encourage you to check it out.