Building trust with families is key for funeral directors to create the best possible funeral experience.
There are many factors that play into earning someone’s trust, but having these five traits can make it easier. Through TRUST: Thoughtfulness, Reliability, Understanding, Supportiveness, and, lastly, Trustworthiness, you can create trust with your client families.
So let’s explore these five characteristics and discuss how your funeral home can put these words into action.
As funeral directors, you can show families you care in many ways. Giving them a care package with basic groceries to get them through the first few days of grief is one way to show that you’re thinking of them.
You also can show thoughtfulness by checking in with them well after the funeral. You know grief doesn’t end with the funeral, so it shows you care about how they’re doing. And it’s the first step to creating trust.
These are a few simple ways to check in with families:
- Write them a note
- Give them a phone call
- Send them a private social media message
- Let them know they can visit your funeral home if they need anything
- Invite them to your annual remembrance program
You may want to ask families their preferred contact method, whether it’s a phone call, message, or visit.
Hosting a remembrance program for families is a great way to show thoughtfulness because you can show you want to honor the memory of their loved ones. To learn about how to create a remembrance program for your funeral home, check out this free remembrance program eBook.
For families to see your funeral home as reliable, you need to have a credible online and offline presence. They expect your website to load fast, be easy to navigate and have an appealing design. Also, they expect to easily find obituaries, your products and services along with prices, and your contact information.
Along with a website, your funeral home also should have an active presence on social media. You don’t need to be on every social media site — just pick one or two, such as Facebook and Twitter. Reviews, news articles, and other things published about your funeral home create more credibility and show your reliability.
Additionally, your funeral home’s certifications show you’re knowledgeable in what you do. With the funeral profession constantly changing, you should look for ways to expand your knowledge. This desire for knowledge and your follow-through with education shows families you’re reliable and creates trust that you’ll provide the best service.
To find ways you can expand your education, check out this free eBook.
You can show families you understand what they’re going through and want funeral planning to be as easy as possible. One way is to talk with them openly about your services and payment options, such as funeral financing, and what you think is best for them given their situation.
You’ve likely seen similar situations with other families, or even your own, so share those experiences to let the family know you understand what they’re going through.
Through active listening you can create a personalized funeral that shows who the deceased was. By remembering the tiny details they tell you about their loved one, it shows you understand what matters to them and creates trust.
These are a few ways to personalize a funeral:
- Photo displays
- Releasing ceremony
- Tribute video
- Food and drinks
If you want to learn more about how to personalize a funeral, read this funeral personalization article.
Being supportive is another key factor for creating trust. By giving families grief resources, it shows your funeral home supports them during their time of loss. You can invite them to your grief programs, grief email subscription, support groups, and other grief-related events.
Additionally, these are some grief resources you can suggest:
- These five grief blogs
- This blog article about healthy ways to cope with grief
- This article about grief and mourning
- These quotes and poems for coping with grief
Lastly, you can create trust by reaching out to your community to make a difference. Through working with other organizations to host community events, you show you’re a trustworthy place to work with. It also shows you take responsibility in helping educate others about funeral planning and healthy ways to cope with grief.
These are a few great organizations to work with:
- Hospice centers
- Nursing homes
- Animal shelters
- Veteran organizations
- And more!
How does your funeral home create trust? Share your ideas in the comments below!