I’ve spent the better part of the last two decades working in the funeral services profession, first as Senior VP and CMO of North America’s largest funeral and cemetery company, and now as a key advisor to OneDay. Technology – especially the internet – has transformed and evolved funeral services over the years, forcing operators to create solutions that meet family expectations for so many aspects of sales, arrangements, and most importantly, helping them have the best experience possible when remembering their loved ones.
But that’s the thing about evolution – it never stops. Today, funeral service providers are challenged to meet the dueling dynamics of eroding margins and families with demands fueled by the digital age. And until now, there simply hasn’t been a solution that could effectively address both of those enormous issues.
However, given my advisory role in helping Reflect by OneDay reach out to the masses, I’m in the enviable position to understand exactly what this reinvention of video offerings means at a time when the industry needs it most. With Reflect, operators have a high-margin source of new revenue that also meets or exceeds the digitally-driven expectations of today’s families.
A New Dimension to Video Offerings
Until Reflect, the traditional DVD slideshow has been the norm when it comes to video storytelling for memorial services. Pictures that everyone has seen time and again, the decedent’s favorite song playing in the background, perhaps even some old VHS footage – a slideshow is a well-intentioned effort that simply falls short of a family’s expectations in this hyperconnected digital age.
There’s just no sidestepping it. In an era defined by streaming video, mobile apps, cloud computing, and social media, family’s expect more than the same slideshow they could have gotten a decade ago. And in my mind, that’s one of the factors that makes Reflect so powerful.
With its ability to unite families and share memories, Reflect tells the stories behind those old, well-worn snapshots. It creates a third dimension for memories that a simple picture of a family vacation cannot match.
What was the real story behind the small moments during that vacation that makes it so memorable decades later? The sights, the sounds, touches, and smells – those are the recollections, the stories behind the photos, that Reflect captures so well and maintains forever, making it a massive step forward for funeral directors and their video offerings.
The Right Solution at the Right Time
No matter how you look at it, the funeral services industry is being challenged like never before. And while the pandemic challenged operators in a variety of ways, the issues now facing the industry were already well in motion before 2020.
With cremations increasing in popularity every year – a trend that will continue into the foreseeable future – operators need offerings that not only fill a need and meet family expectations, but also provide new sources of high-margin revenue. And these sources should provide the families they serve with relevant and contemporary solutions.
That makes Reflect the right solution at the right time, serving as an invaluable centerpiece for memorials while not increasing demands on an operator’s workflow and bandwidth. Despite an incredibly sophisticated technology working in the background, Reflect is simple to understand and use, making it an extremely viable offering for nearly every at-need call.
A Revolutionary Solution
When I say Reflect is a genuine gamechanger for an industry that desperately needs one, I hope my words and industry experience carry some weight.
In the near future, I’ll share more about the specific benefits that Reflect provides to both funeral service providers and families. With these initial insights, however, my focus is a single point – Reflect isn’t just evolutionary for funeral homes, it’s revolutionary. And I can’t wait to see all the value it brings to an industry and the families who will cherish the stories of their lives.