Put simply, 2016 was our best year ever. We welcomed hundreds of new businesses to the FrontRunner family, saw our team grow and continued to bring about change in the funeral industry. We turned out some of 2016’s best funeral home website designs, gave many firms one-point of data entry and saw over one million interactions with the Book Of Memories from families all over North America. Time seemed to fly by and we can’t wait to see what 2017 has in store for us and our wonderful clients. That being said, let’s take this time to look back at the people, places and events that made this past year so special.
Social media has changed the way we communicate, the way we do business and it has completely reshaped interpersonal relationships. We are now able to access more than just information; we are able to understand the human experience of others through profiles, insights, engagement and constant digital conversation. For the last seven years, Social Media Day has been celebrated globally to recognize the significant innovations brought forth by social networks and to mark this year’s occasion we have some tips and tricks for establishing a great social media presence. Continue reading →
As 2015 comes to an end, we look back and reflect on things that have happened over the course of a year – and my what a year it has been! If someone were to ask our strategy team some of the biggest things that came to light this past year in the funeral profession and what funeral homes should be aware of in the online world, they’d probably say that the online world has opened a funeral homes door to more than just those in their community – they’ve been exposed to the web. While that is a great thing for their business and they get more business from this, it is also a scary thing if a funeral home isn’t on it’s A-game, knowing how their firm looks online. It’s time for Funeral Homes to watch their obituaries online and know who, what, when and why companies take their obituaries and treat them like their own. It’s a practice that has surfaced in 2015 and is only going to get worse. Continue reading →
Approaching a new year often leaves us with a mix of emotions. We’re anxious and excited for the year ahead but at the same time we like to look back on the highlights of the past year and take some time to reflect on the positives. As it turns out, 2015 has been quite the incredible year for us here at FrontRunner. We launched our technology center workshops, hired lots of amazing new staff, and had a blast at MANY (probably too many) trade shows across North America, just to name a few. However, one of the year’s biggest highlights is keeping clients, old and new, smiling with a shiny new FrontRunner funeral home website! Continue reading →
Attention all FrontRunner clients, this post is for you and it’s full of great enhancements to the Book of Memories program coming Wednesday, November 11th! Everyone loves to know their feedback is being heard and because of the great feedback from our great clients like you, we’ve made the Book of Memories that much better. Our team has been hard at work over the past few months to add some new features into the Book of Memories tribute pages. Our staff comes up with some great ideas, but tapping into the minds our clients is priceless. After all, who better to help us improve our systems, than the people who use them day in and day out?
This particular batch of enhancements is surrounding the Book of Memories online memorials and includes features for both administrators and users/the families you serve:
1. Scroll Through Multiple Photos vs. Just One at a Time.
“I want it to be meaningful, special, unique”. These are words funeral directors hear often from families when planning a service. Every family wants their loved one’s ceremony or memorial service to reflect that person’s life and provide them with the lasting memories they want and need to move forward. Families expect funeral directors to provide those unique touches that they simply cannot get anywhere else. Today, technology provides funeral homes with so many great ways to achieve something very special. Taking advantage of tribute videos and online memorial pages is just one way to give families what they are looking for, but having that video or tribute page be a theme that truly reflects the life of the deceased, now that’s unique! Continue reading →
Last week, I had the pleasure of sitting in on a cremation presentation at the New York State Funeral Directors Association Convention. The title of the presentation was “All Cremations DO NOT Have to be DIRECT” by Mike Nicodemus; VP of Cremation Services with the National Funeral Directors Association, and let me tell you it was just as educational for me as it was entertaining. For those of you who have sat in on a presentation with Mike, it’s hard not to have a good laugh in there at some point. Or, as one of my colleagues who was with me, Jules Green said, “even for a squirrel like me, that was very, very interesting and I stayed focused. Who would have thought?”
It’s always great being on the other end of these presentations. Usually, I am the one at the front of the room teaching funeral directors, but this time I was there to learn and it was so nice to take some time to just listen to some incredible stats and listen and watch funeral directors in the room share their insights on such a growing topic.
I always say that you can use the Internet to get a message out to the masses, instead of just 100 people in a room. So, what a perfect opportunity to write a blog post on some of the things that I heard during the session and chuckled about (as some of it was quite comical). Let’s do a little recap of some of the major points that I personally thought were pretty important:
Providing families with great service is a funeral director’s number one priority. As such, we at FrontRunner are constantly looking for ways to help you improve and expand your service options and we are so pleased to announce another expansion to the Book of Memories. Through a partnership with Remembering Books, you are now able to print your online Book of Memories content into stunning hard-copy books for families to have days, months and even years after the service.
These funeral register books are very customizable and beautifully designed. Multiple copies can be easily created with no tools required, providing families with a product they will be proud to have on display in their home. Watch the video below to see just how easy it is to bring a deceased’s Book of Memories to life!
From the moment a death occurs, communication between friends and loved ones begins. And that communication, even with those you love, can be painful when grief is so fresh, especially if the phone doesn’t seem to stop ringing. Whoever they are, when they first hear of the passing, generally they ask themselves, or Google, three questions:
When is the service?
Where is the service?
Where should I stay? (If they are coming from out of town)
A part of your role as a funeral director is getting the news out. It is so important to post the service information as soon as possible onto your funeral home’s website. For the most part, funeral directors first think about sending the obituary to the newspaper, and leave the posting of that obituary and service information on their website as an afterthought. As you read above, some of the first questions that come to a persons mind when they hear about the death is asking when and where the service is being held. If they turn to Google and find the obituary and service information on a newspapers website, rather than your website – you are missing out on thousands of dollars in revenues, branding and so much more.
Next month marks FrontRunner’s one-year anniversary in our brand new offices. It is hard to believe that we have already been at our new location for almost one year, but where it has come is truly unbelievable.When we first started looking to expand to a larger location, it was a task that seemed next to impossible. At the time, our team was split between two offices and it lost it’s “FrontRunner team” feel. We knew that we had to bring everyone back under one roof. So, we looked and looked and looked. Finally, a beautiful 6,500 square foot commercial condo right on Kingston’s waterfront came on the market and we saw the perfect opportunity to not only have the best office space, but also to build a Technology Center for clients and funeral professionals to be able to come and learn about using technology and marketing to truly grow their business. Continue reading →