5 Tips For Engaging Funeral Home Facebook Fans

December 17, 2012
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With more than a billion active users, Facebook is a massive marketing opportunity for funeral homes – and some funeral homes are positioning themselves to take full advantage of what “FB” has to offer. According to a 2012 study conducted by ConnectingDirectors.com and ISMPI, Inc. 60 percent of funeral homes say they have a Facebook Page.
This is great, but very few are actually engaging their fans and followers.
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Though a substantial percentage of funeral homes now have fan pages, at this point in the game, simply being on Facebook is not enough. For a fan page to be effective as a marketing tool, time must be devoted to building and sustaining an active, engaged fan base. Very few funeral homes are devoting time to social media and using social media channels, specifically Facebook, correctly. Building a fan base for a funeral home Facebook Page in not easy. It takes time devoting and fan engagement. So how do you effectively create an engaging Facebook Page for a funeral home? (Here is a hint: it’s not by posting obituary after obituary).
Here are 5 Easy to Implement engagement tips for your funeral home Facebook Page:

1. Be Real and Be Cool.

Facebook puts the megaphone in your hand. You are the center of attention. Don’t blow it by being boring. People who like your Funeral Home may “like” your fan page, but the personality behind the funeral home (you the Funeral Director) is what will drive them to engage. Don’t be afraid to be real. You don’t have to be somber and stern. Fans respond to posts with individuality. If you have a dedicated social media manager or enabled multiple funeral directors access to post on the Page (not recommend unless you have the proper social media policy in place), reveal who’s posting: “Tim from XYZ Funeral Home” beats “XYZ Funeral Home,” any day.

2. Go visual.

Photos garner more attention and engagement than any other type of media on Facebook. More responses means more exposure, which equates to expanding the “Reach” of each post and ultimately the reach of your funeral home’s exposure.

Disclaimer: Due to recent changes in the Facebook algorithm (Edgerank) we have found that a mixture of text, links and photos works best. Text only posts are getting further “Reach” than text+link and photos, but Photos garner more engagement which can dramatically increase reach.

The following graph shows the breakdown for post type and the level of engagement for each. 

This information was taken for a analytical report ran on the Facebook Page of our social media client James A Dyal Funeral Home in Summerville, SC

3. Stack the deck.

One of the easiest ways to start building your Fan Page audience so you have someone to engage is by inviting friends and business contacts to connect with your fan page by uploading an email contact list and inviting everyone on it to “like” your page. People familiar with you or your funeral home are far more likely to engage with your fan page than those with whom you have had no previous contact. This opportunity is only available to Facebook pages with 4,999 likes or less, so take advantage of it while you can. And as you have previous read, the real value of your Facebook Page in not in your Likes and Fans, its in the “friends” of your fans.

4. Make your fans interesting by association.

Everyone wants to be clever and entertaining on Facebook but how does a funeral home do this yet still remain sensitive and professional? Easy, give your followers what they want. Post genuinely unique, compelling content that is relevant to your funeral home business. Your fans will like it, comment on it, share it. Each time they share your content, their friends will have the opportunity to like your page too.

Look at the examples below and notice the number of times each post has been shared.

How did the engagement on these posts effect the reach of the funeral home’s brand and who engaged with the posts?

Look at the numbers from the graph below: 73% of the impressions on each post came from Facebook users within 25 miles of the funeral home and the 55+ age group viewed these posts more than any other age braket (do you think this is the funeral homes target user? Duh…YES!):

5. Don’t be a vacuum salesman.

Use Facebook as a means to build relationships, not pound your services or pre-need opportunites. If your fans like you, business will follow. Make interaction the goal, and don’t underestimate your followers – they like being marketed to about as much as you do (do you really want to be sold to all the time?). If you’re genuine and give with no expectation of getting, your fans will respond.

About DISRUPT Media:

DISRUPT Media is a social media marketing agency specializing in social media strategy and channel management. A funeral home’s success ultimately requires participation in the conversations that are taking place online. We help funeral homes find strategic approaches to social media and social networking. Our strategies enable funeral homes to create relevant and profitable experiences in social media.

For more information on embracing social media for your funeral home please contact DISRUPT Media.

DISRUPT Media

DISRUPT Media

DISRUPT Media is a full service social media agency specializing in social media strategy, management and reporting for funeral companies. DISRUPT Media is the creator of the FUNERAL Social Design Process which is the only full service social media strategy program crafted specifically for the funeral profession.

Go to http://funeralsocial.com to find out more about the services we offer. Our clients who are apart of our FUNERAL Social Design Process are seeing an increase in post reach and engagement of over 300%.
DISRUPT Media
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