I happened to see this article from the Wise County Messenger the other day. There is nothing wrong with the article and sometimes news gets out like this. However, it reminded me that when you are in business, and especially personal service businesses like the death care industry, you want to really “own” the message that is being put out on your business.
This article deals with the closing of at least one location of a funeral business. Interestingly enough, the reporter said that they heard a rumor and went to check it out. According to the article, the reporter found a note on the door that said that this funeral location was “closed”. It took a call by the reporter to the other location to find out, yes – the funeral home was closed but people could transfer their pre-arrangements from the closed location to the other location.
There is no real indication of what happened. . . are the two businesses still related or is there two separate entities that own the locations?
I’ve seen funeral homes go to great lengths, especially in acquisitions, to get the story they want told out. Most of the time that deals with a larger company buying a family owned firm but wanting to get the message out that “nothing” is changing. . . . the old owner will be working with the new owner.
Getting the message from a sign on the door just does not seem like a good idea to me. It leaves too many questions in the consumer mind as to what happened. Our advice is get out ahead of the sale, closure or relocation, mention it ahead of time, and let pre-arrangement families know ahead of time that they have options available, and their funeral service investments are safe and secure.