Saint Joseph Funeral Home has already been able to establish their name in
the South Bend area of Indiana. This historic area is home to a number of
funeral homes who for the most part have used traditional forms of advertis-
ing to create business. Our team has laid out a plan to separate Saint Joseph
Funeral Home in the minds of its current and potential customers. When a
family lays their loved one to rest they want to feel that they have given them
the best possible funeral services to create a lasting memory. Each customer
should understand there are an array of options they are able to choose from
to create this special remembrance.
This campaign is based off of the slogan “Unlimited options for unlimited
legacies”. We were faced with the problem of consumer awareness of the
many options within the realm of cremation. When a loved one has passed
there is so much to plan for and at Saint Joseph’s we would like to show them
our unique options for cremation. This will create a distinction between us
and our competitors. Showing our clients that we have Crystal Egg’s, jewelry,
and a number of other options for the ashes of loved ones will certainly leave
an impression in the mind of those who see or hear our advertisements. With
Saint Joseph Funeral Home being in business for over 100 years we have also
decided to use testimonials from past clients to show future clients what we
have been able to accomplish. A company is only as strong as its reputation
and our success should be made known to the public. Using the mediums of
social media, radio, television commercials, and print advertisements we look
to show the South Bend area how choosing Saint Joseph Funeral home will
be the best decision for remembering their loved ones.
Sixteen men. Four Catholic Church Parishes. One mission to serve. That is how St.
Joseph Funeral Home began. In 1901, these 16 Catholic men were in need of their
own cemetery on the West Side of South Bend, Indiana. Together, they purchased
land and opened their funeral home in 1907.
Since the start, St. Joseph Funeral Home has grown from its Catholic beginnings to
an interfaith funeral home that now owns two locations, a crematory and stretches
across 110 acres of land. Hosting around 235 funerals each year, St. Joseph Funeral
Home is well known in the South Bend area. One funeral home is located on the
West side of South Bend on Mayflower Road and the other on the East side of
South Bend on Ireland Road.
With a board of seven members, five funeral directors, office and administration
members, managers and an executive team, St. Joseph’s works to help families and
friends celebrate the lives of their loved ones in redefined ways that still remain true
to their mission of serving their community with quality, integrity and
Mayflower Road Location
Chapel at the Ireland Road Location
St. Joseph Funeral Home spends approximately $5,200 on advertising per
month. The mediums of advertising used by the funeral home are television,
radio, sponsorships of local teams, print, social media, and a website. Shown
below is a breakdown of advertising expenses.
St. Joseph Funeral Home has used three themes in the past, “Slow down and
enjoy your family”, “Honoring the life you lived”, and “Get creative in funeral
planning.” Their latest theme “Get Creative” began as a radio advertisement
and was later turned into a television advertisement. Along with those, St.
Joseph Funeral Home also sponsors a baseball team, prints in local church
bulletins, and participates in other community events. As part of their
promotion strategy, St. Joseph Funeral Home has purchased several seats at the
South Bend Cubs stadium and gives them away as prizes at charity events and
promotions to customers.
Like any business, St. Joseph Funeral Home is faced with a few challenges. First, they are the
only funeral home in town that does not have a last name attached to it. This could pose as a
problem because some people may be drawn to a family named funeral home rather than St.
Joseph Funeral Home. However, this does make them unique in a way that they are run by a
board of directors and not just an owner. The name also causes many people to assume the
funeral home is run through the diocese, therefore making it only Catholic. In actuality, St.
Joseph Funeral Home does funerals of any faith as they do not want to limit their market.
Another problem that St. Joseph Funeral Home faces is the stigma around cremation. Many
people have a negative stigma about cremation. They assume that cremation can only be
direct cremation, which many people view as the cheap alternative to funerals and burials. In
actuality, you can have a full service, a graveside burial, and anything you’d like along with the
The funeral industry is one of many regulations. Often times regulations are set by the state.
As a funeral home in Indiana, there are a few regulations St. Joseph Funeral Home needs to
follow. The most important regulation to be aware of when advertising is that you cannot
offer an incentive or enticement valued at more than $50 to get someone to prearrange their
funeral. Also in Indiana, only a licensed funeral director can sell a funeral and most funeral
directors get a double license to include embalming.
There are separate regulations and laws to follow just for cremations. For example, a person
cannot be cremated until, at least, 48 hours after death. They must also have a signed
cremation authorization, certified death certificate, and a burial transit form. A certified
cremation officer is not a requirement, however St. Joseph Funeral Home has one. Finally,
the crematory must be kept working and up to date. St. Joseph Funeral Home follows this
regulation by doing an annual maintenance of the crematory.
A new market established in the funeral industry is pet cremation. A lot of
people are now considering pet cremation because they consider their pets to
be part of their family. St. Joseph funeral home was recently approached by the
South Bend Tribune to start featuring pet obituaries in the newspaper.
Many funeral services are often considered old fashioned and traditional.
However, there are many people nowadays who want to do things differently
and stray from tradition. It is important for the funeral service businesses to
find a way to blend old traditions with new ideas. This is one of the reasons
that cremation is becoming more popular.
It is known that when it comes to planning a funeral, pricing is the third or
fourth most important item on the customers list. A week after the services
have been completed, St. Joseph Funeral Home personally calls the customer to
ask them about their experience. Ninety-five percent of St. Joseph Funeral
Home’s customers are satisfied with the funeral service they purchased for their
loved one. Returning families make up about 85-90% of business.
As a funeral home, the demographic can really be any age. The average
consumer of St. Joseph Funeral Home is usually a person in their mid 70s. In
this case, the consumer is usually the spouse purchasing the funeral for their
deceased spouse, and more often than not it is the wife buying for her late
husband. The majority of the consumers are clerical and blue collar workers.
When looking at the psychographic profile of the customers it is clear that
most people do not want to talk about death at all. The customers that St.
Joseph Funeral Home is serving are going through the grieving process. Also, it
is important to keep in mind that retirement spurs preparation for death. This
being said, a lot of people who have just retired purchase a cemetery space just
a few years later. However, only 50% of consumers plan their funeral ahead of
St. Joseph Funeral Home’s audience is based off of the families in grieving
after the loss of a loved one. They look to give them an experience that is both
comfortable and friendly enough to bring them back if tragedy occurs again.
The campaign for the funeral home is going to simplify the purchase process
and show them their options for cremation or a traditional burial so they can
focus on remembering their loved one.
Kaniewski Funeral Homes is St. Joseph Funeral Home’s number one competitor, fol-
lowed closely by Palmer Funeral Homes. While both are larger than St. Joseph, they
often use generic advertising and do not market the cremation packages. Palmer’s
often attends many local events to get their brand name into the community.
Some of the before cremation options we will be advertising include:
Some for the after cremation options we will be advertising include:
St. Joseph Funeral Home
Advertisement Campaign Budget
Digital Billboard $ 2,100 Per week 4 1 1 $ 8,400
Church Bulletin Inserts $ 50
Per week 1 6 5 $ 1,500
WFRN 6:30am-8:00am $ 24 per :30 spot 15 12 1 $ 4,320
6:00pm $ 17 per :30 spot 20 12 1 $ 4,080
WZOC W-F $ 33 per :30 spot 10 12 1 $ 3,960
WZOC Sat-Sun $ 18 per :30 spot 20 12 1 $ 4,320
Total $ 26,580
St. Joseph Funeral Home’s advertising target market is people between the age
of 60-75 who are techy savvy for their age. Mostly Polish and Mexican people
of the Catholic faith. We will also be targeting the following churches: Holy
Family, St. Adalbert’s, St. Casimir, St. Stanislaus Kostka.
Advertising Communication Objective
We would like to change the way the customers see cremation. Direct crema-
tion currently has a negative connotation. We also want to show that there are
multiple options for both before and after cremation services.
Our theme for St. Joseph Funeral Home is “Unlimited Options for Unlimited
Journey’s.” We chose this theme because the generation of baby boomers want
to have options; they are not as traditional as before. This theme will also help us
in changing the stigma of cremation. It will be a way for people to have a memo-
rable, yet unique, service.
Social media will play a big role in our advertising campaign. We will revamp
St. Joseph Funeral Home’s Facebook page. The Facebook page will be used
for testimonials, links to blog posts about loss and grieving, “feel good” news,
special events happening in the community, and sponsorship/charity work. We
will also create a Twitter account for the funeral home. The Twitter account
will be used for obituaries, advice on grieving, blog posts about dealing with
loss and grieving, grief counseling facts, and things people do not know about
planning funerals. We will also create a LinkedIn account for St. Joseph Funer-
al Home. YouTube will be another source of social media that we will use for
our campaign. YouTube will allow us to set up a library of videos showcasing
our many options for post service memorials. The customers will be able to
view these videos before coming in to meet with the director which will allow
them to gain knowledge and make the process much smoother. This will also
help with pre-arrangements to make sure that our clients get what they want
and deserve. Other mediums of advertising that will be included in this cam-
paign are billboards and radio ads. Church bulletin inserts will also be used at
the parishes of St. Hedwig, St. Patrick, St. Jude, St. Matthew, and St. Stanislaus
Bishop and Martyr.
“So often cremation is thought of as a stand alone entity. Here at St. Joseph
Funeral home cremation opens the doors for unlimited options. We offer more
than just a cookie cutter funeral and it is all available to you here. Full fu-
neral services including visitations and memorials can happen before crema-
tion. Graveside burials or remembrance entities such as of jewelry and art
are available for after services. We will take you in and make sure you get the
remembrance you know your loved one deserved. St. Joseph Funeral home,
Where we believe in unlimited options for unlimited journeys.”
Church Bulletin Insert
St. Joseph Funeral Home
January $ 250 $ 360 $ 340 $ 330 $ 360 $ 1,640
February $ 4,200 $ 360 $ 340 $ 330 $ 360 $ 5,590
March $ 250 $ 4,200 $ 360 $ 340 $ 330 $ 360 $ 5,840
April $ 360 $ 340 $ 330 $ 360 $ 1,390
May $ 250 $ 360 $ 340 $ 330 $ 360 $ 1,640
June $ 360 $ 340 $ 330 $ 360 $ 1,390
July $ 250 $ 360 $ 340 $ 330 $ 360 $ 1,640
August $ 360 $ 340 $ 330 $ 360 $ 1,390
September $ 250 $ 360 $ 340 $ 330 $ 360 $ 1,640
October $ 360 $ 340 $ 330 $ 360 $ 1,390
November $ 250 $ 360 $ 340 $ 330 $ 360 $ 1,640
December $ 360 $ 340 $ 330 $ 360 $ 1,390
Total $ 1,500 $ 8,400 $ 4,320 $ 4,080 $ 3,960 $ 4,320 $ 26,580
This advertising campaign is designed to change the negative stigma towards
cremation. It is going to help show people that there are many aspects to crema-
tion. To measure the success of the campaign, the funeral home will keep track
of how many cremations they do. They will also keep track of how many people
purchase the crystal remembrance packages. During this campaign, St. Joseph
Funeral Home grew in the social media field. They can see their growing pro-
gress by keeping track of how many new followers they are receiving each week
and how many people are contacting them via Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or
through their website.
Dr. Michael Russell
Vice President & Manager of SJFH