September 23, 2020

Industry Spotlight: The Pet Business

In our second Industry Spotlight, we want to highlight the Pet Business. Why would someone want to take their education from mortuary school and their investment in a funeral business and go into the pet funeral/cremation business?  Well, for many in urban and suburban communities, it is a great adjunct to your human funeral business. Did you know: 85 million families (that is about two out of every three families in the US own a pet) 63 million families own at least one dog 65% of all pet owners are either Gen X or Older The average lifespan of a dog or cat is seven years or less Pet ownership in the US during the pandemic is rising across all age groups 95% of pet owners think of them as family members 45% of American pet owners buy their pet’s […]
September 21, 2020

Ask the Experts! Your questions about expanding your business answered by Foresight!

We were recently asked what the process would entail for a successful business owner to now branch out and explore new business ventures, specifically Pet Services. John T. McQueen, CFSP, Director of Client Experience provides some insights on how to expand your business and where to begin. Question: My family and I have been running a successful funeral home for many years. We have begun to look into new ventures to expand our business and are interested in pet services. What advice can you offer us and where do we begin? John T. McQueen: Pet services can be a great addition to your funeral home offerings, but it must be well-thought out and planned.  There are also three basic models you can use to start a pet business – pet burials, pet cremations, and combination.  Most funeral homes that start […]
September 21, 2020

Should a Traditional Funeral Home Open a Low Cost Cremation Business?

Many funeral home owners are considering opening a discount cremation brand to defend their market share from aggressive competitors. Seems like an obvious idea, but is it the smart thing to do? That depends. On this episode, John T. McQueen, CFSP joins Welton Hong and Ellery Bowker to share his expertise. John, was a successful funeral home operator who simultaneously grew brands at the high and low ends of the market. Click the video below to learn the answers to these three important questions: How to decide if you should (or should not) open a discount cremation business How to avoid cannibalizing your traditional business How to create differentiation between the brands to show value and support pricing        
September 21, 2020

NFDA Consumer Awareness and Preferences Survey: My 2020 Takeaway

Before I comment on the top slides in the survey I think every funeral director should be focused on, allow me to say that I love the fact that this survey is intentionally trying to be more inclusive. One key point I must assert first is brought about by these changes in survey demographics. The 2020 survey takes into consideration people of wider race and age than ever before. It’s weighting younger this year, with 62.1% of respondents between ages 40 and 54 (compared to 36.1% in 2019 and 23.7% in 2018). The survey is also weighting more diverse. A higher percentage of respondents identified themselves as Hispanic (15.5%, compared to 11.1% in 2019), and fewer identified themselves as white (52.4%, compared to 57.9% in 2019). I also believe that leading to a shift in perceived results is the higher […]
September 21, 2020

Step 9: Collecting Receivables

Four objectives to increase receivables collection and cut down on bad debt. To explore the concept of collecting receivables, I first want to share with you the day I met with the funeral director who handled my father’s funeral. I had been in this profession as a consultant for about a decade, and to prepare for the aging of my parents, I set up a joint checking account with my folks. When my dad, Max, died, I went to the funeral director with my father’s checkbook in hand to make his final arrangements. I picked out the casket and arranged the other service details. (The cemetery plot had been pre-purchased.) When we were finished, I said to Bennett, the funeral director: “I have Max’s checkbook here. How much do I owe you?” Bennett said, “Dan, we will send you a […]
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