Podcast points out importance of “Focus” in building your brand



Only a few years ago Dan Garrett of the United Kingdom founded the will writing company Farewill in that country.  He estimates that his company has moved, via estates, a wealth transfer of more than 100 billion pounds of assets.  He’s moved on to also start a firm in Direct Cremation with “Farewill Funerals”.  During this recent podcast he touches on how to build a brand in the “Death Industry”.


Farewill Funerals seems to be capitalizing on the Direct Cremation with No Services (DCNS) growth that has happened in Great Britain.  As pointed out by this somewhat dated article, the death of superstar icon David Bowie in Great Britain and his choice of Direct Cremation with No Services is what is given impetus for Brits to look at DCNS as a viable and growing option for death care.


When that happened in 2016 “Simplicity, the direct cremation arm of funeral giant Dignity, says it saw a 400% increase in people buying direct cremations in the first six months of (that) year compared with the same period (of the prior) year. Meanwhile, specialist firm Pure Cremation (had) reported a tenfold increase in sales.”


According to recent statistics in Great Britain, DCNS has moved from about a 3% market share to about 20% market share of dispositions in the past five years.  I’m guessing that statistic and the fact that Dan Garrett had access to his age-appropriate clientele from his will and probate businesses is what spurred his movement into the Direct Cremation market with Farewill Funerals.


When you look at the websites of Farewill Funerals and that of Pure Cremation you will see that there now seems to be a competition among the two brands for the Direct Cremation customer in England and Wales.  In U.S. dollar amounts the websites show the following price points for what looks like pretty similar service  —  Pure Cremation – US$ 1,770 and Farewill Funerals – US$ 2,024.


At Funeral Director Daily we do not know the respective market shares of the companies but podcast host Max Rothery gives, in the linked podcast, three take-aways from his interview with Dan Garrett in building a Death Care brand.  They are:

  • Great products always win
  • Ruthless Focus
  • Organizational Structure


Funeral Director Daily take:  I found this podcast fascinating.  It gives you a viewpoint of somebody who came from outside of our industry and profession and how they viewed funeral service. . . .and, has a really different point of view on the consumers of our product and how, he believes, they want to approach purchasing it.


Tom Anderson
Funeral Director Daily

For instance, Garrett states, “You know, you’re, you’re unlikely to want to mull over your funeral, even when you’re in the final stages of life. . . So, so really, you know, there’s fascinating history behind these (funeral) sectors. Uh, but it’s really changing at a faster rate than it ever has done at the moment. . . . .you know, this is the biggest consumer industry that’s been untouched by any sort of, not just technology, but customer centricity.”


All in all, this podcast was eye-opening for me.  There is also a complete transcript with the podcast if you would rather just read the article.  My biggest take after listening is that the death care business will always be there, but how we acquire our clientele will probably change much more in the next decade than most of us realize. . . .The days of putting your firm name on a big building and then letting people call you when necessary is probably on its way out. . .and you have to be open-minded about how you will acquire clientele in the future.


More news from the world of Death Care:


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