Strategic Funeral Resources Introduces Innovative AVA Software
Artificial Intelligence (AI) Technology Created Specifically for Online Funeral Arrangements
Barrie, ON – Strategic Funeral Resources, the consulting company that helps funeral homes innovate and transform, has recently introduced its Automated Virtual Arranger (AVA) software. The AVA process takes the best types of human interactions – engaging, warm and emotional connections – and combines them with revolutionary Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology to create a lifelike, interactive experience with a digital personal assistant; think Alexa or Siri for funeral planning.
“The AVA digital avatar presents families with funeral options in an easy-to-understand format and helps them understand the whole process before they ever need to speak with a funeral director or visit the funeral home.,” said Curt Fitzsimmons, President of Strategic Funeral Resources. “It’s important to understand that AVA is designed to enhance the arrangement experience, not to replace the face-to-face interaction with funeral directors.”
AVA comes to life with one click on a funeral home’s website. The lifelike virtual personal assistant leads families through a self-guided journey that covers everything from cremation and burials to caskets, urns, service offerings, and pricing. While some funeral homes shy away from technology believing it will impact foot traffic to their facilities, the opposite can actually occur. AVA puts families at ease. They are better informed and therefore feel they are making better decisions.
“Our software helps funeral homes generate what we like to call ‘educated’ leads. Families now arrive at the funeral home enlightened about the services and products they want and are speaking ‘funeral’,” added Fitzsimmons. “I strongly believe the more information a family has before making a decision, the better value that decision will be when they come to make their final arrangements. It’s a win-win for both the family and the funeral home.”
Before the pandemic began impacting in-person meetings, technology has altered how families shop – whether for clothes, cars, homes, or funeral-related items. While a portion of the population still wants to make pre-need or at-need arrangements inside a funeral home, a growing subset prefers to browse the options from the convenience of the home, the office, or even the hospital.
“AVA guides the family through a complete funeral service from start to finish based on what the family selects,” says Fitzsimmons. “If the family wants, they can even pay and sign contracts online – they never have to enter the funeral home. Of course, this is not our preferred method of contact, but as funeral home owners, we need to be ready to meet their demands.”
While a standard script for funeral homes is provided, many funeral homes choose to customize both the content and the avatar being used to deliver the message. Instead of using a generic computer-generated avatar, AVA can look – and sound – like the funeral home owner or any member of the staff. The program can run in multiple ethnicities and languages to eliminate cultural barriers, and the software is not just limited to arrangements. It can also be used to market new products and services, run contests, or even train staff.
“I believe online arrangements are a very important option for families,” emphasizes Fitzsimmons. “Some people will always prefer to go into a funeral home, but many people out there today are looking for different ways to arrange a funeral – whether at-need or pre-need. This viable, easy-to-use, informational software allows them to do just that.”
To learn more about AVA, the automated virtual arranger, please visit strategicfuneralresources.com or contact Strategic Funeral Resources at 647-207-2878.
About Strategic Funeral Resources: Strategic Funeral Resources is a boutique funeral solution firm that provides outstanding, customized client service and solutions, just like your funeral home or cemetery. Over the years, the firm has provided a wide range of services for burial or cremation opportunities, both tactical and strategic. Strategic Funeral Resources’ arrangement office focus has helped their funeral home clients to build their businesses profitably while implementing new ideas and concepts for the future.
Photo Caption: Funeral homes can choose to customize the avatar used to deliver the message. Instead of showing a generic avatar, AVA can look – and sound – like the funeral home owner or any member of the staff.