It’s a struggle for funeral homes to advertise.
Where do we advertise? At nursing homes? Hospitals? Bars? Along dangerous highways?
It’s a struggle for us to sponsor events.
What should we sponsor? A BBQ fundraiser? Who wants to see a funeral home ad on the back of their son’s Little League uniform?
And when other businesses can donate a coupon or a gift certificate to a charity auction, the funeral homes can donate … what? A used casket? A groupon?
There’s a lot of opportunity for us to fail in our advertising. And with that in mind, here’s a great example:
I get it. You’re desperate to show that you’re a part of a community. But, there’s better ways to do it. She’s almost dead. You’re a funeral home. You don’t see a conflict of interest? For goodness sake, get a new advertisement department.
Really? Are you serious? The perfect gift for Valentines Day? Is the person who designed this a human being? If there was a Darwin Award for people who kill their own businesses, you’d be this year’s recipient.
So, you’ve got to have some control over the side of your building … right? You’re “FuneralCare” … that’s what you call yourself. ”Care” is part of your name. And you have a billboard for a zombie show on the side of your building? Zombies + Funeral + Care ≠ Awesome Advertising.
Okay. So you need a little more business, but there’s better ways to do it. Join a church. Make friends at a local civic organization. Joining the local chapter of the Juggalos would be a more honest way to get business. But, please, don’t make us funeral directors look anymore weirder than we already are!!!
I have sleep apnea.
And I love camping.
But my sleep apnea demands a CPAP machine so that I don’t choke on my flabby throat skin that folds over when I lay down to sleep.
And the CPAP machine demands electric.
Being that I’m pretty sleep deprived without my CPAP machine, I had to give up on the camping.
That is, until I had the genius idea to buy a cheap camper.
IT WAS A MATCH MADE IN HEAVEN!
Not only is camping AWESOME, and my camper TOTALLY AWESOMEST, but camping is really CHEAP and totally the best short vacation for this stressed out funeral director / seminary student / soon to be adoptive parent and my beautiful wife.
And my dog, Yogi, loves it too!
But, Hurricane Irene stormed through on early Sunday morning and murdered my lovely traveling vacation spot!!!
Nicki and I are no longer happy campers …
This is what I’m going to put in the newspaper:
“Shorty” Sunline passed away tragically on Sunday, August 29, 2011 from unnatural nature causes.
“Shorty” was born in 1982. ”Shorty” enjoyed short stays in the local campgrounds, but would occasionally travel long distances. He especially loved his annual trips to Raystown Lake and unfortunately missed this year’s trip by one week.
He will be fondly remember for his lovely cold Air Conditioning, his nice, clean smelling cabin and the joyful times he spent with Yogi the dog.
The funeral service will be held at the convenience of his owners and/or anyone who is willing to pull him out from under the tree that landed on top of him.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the “Buy Caleb Wilde a New Camper” fund.
I’m going to take a couple weeks to grieve (right now I’m just walking around like a zombie), and then I’m going to see if I can’t get some insurance money and go back on the market again to find more love.
So, if you would, leave me some condolences or some scripture to cheer me up as I grieve this awful, tragic murder. Or, share with me a storm related story of your own, where you too lost a beloved possession … let me know I’m not alone in this.
For the past 12 days, I’ve been in San Diego, Temecula, San Fransisco and I’m presently outside Sacramento visiting my wife’s family and friends.
Sometime last week, my brother-in-law and I had the opportunity to walk through the USS Midway Aircraft Carrier in San Diego harbor and understand the life of a sailor on a floating city.
And, I found the perfect opportunity to engage in my first planking, which I accomplished on an F-14 Fighter Jet. Planking is a new phenomena where you attempt to lay on top of something random. The harder and more random the plank, the better the plank.
Anyways, here’s pictorial documentation of my planking. Tom Cruise made a movie with F-14s. I planked on one. Actor playing a pretend pilot in Top Gun vs. Funeral Director planking. Who’s cooler? I think you know the answer.
On Saturday, I walked as a part of Biblical Seminary‘s graduating class of 2011.
As a testimony to Biblical’s attempt to move away from a more scholastically based education style and move towards a more missional approach, I can honestly say that I made just as many long lasting friends and mentors as I gained new ideas.
These pictures are the record.
The first pic is of Nicki and I. These past nine years have been a combination of me working full-time and going to school full-time, and Nicki sacrificing by picking up the many loose ends that I left behind. No more. If I pursue any more higher ed. degrees (which I hope to do), honey, I’m giving you more of me and less to work.
The second pic is of my parents, who also helped pick up the loose ends that both I and Nicki missed. All of us have been blessed by people who lend us their hands to help us along … I’ve been blessed to have those helpers also be my parents.
The forth picture is me receiving my diploma from Biblical’s President, Dr. David Dunbar.
The fifth picture is of my best friend from seminary, J.R. Briggs, who has authored a number of books, including When God Says Jump, he has the blessing of being mentored by Eugene Peterson, and is the pastor of cutting edge missional church, called Renew. He’s one of the best people I’ve ever met.
The sixth picture is of me and Jung Mo Koo (a MDiv. student who will graduate in about two years) and his lovely family who blessed me with so much of their wonderful Korean food and love that I’m probably a good five pounds heavier for it and a good 20 degrees happier because of their graciousness to reach out to an American.
On that note, one of the great parts of Biblical is the diversity of the student body, which is about one third white, one third Asian and one third African American, with nearly one third of the total being women.
The seventh picture is of me and my good friend, Dr. Derek Cooper, who is the professor of Christian history and author of So You’re Thinking About Going to Seminary and about three or four books that are forthcoming.
And finally, the ninth photo is of me and Dr. John Franke author of Beyond Foundationalism with Stanley Grenz, The Character of Theology [which is by far the best postconservative theology introduction] and Manifold Witness, as well as numerous other contributions. John’s had a bigger influence in on my thought life than I’ve allowed him to know, for fear that he might think I’m a stalker. The photo captures him telling me the most encouraging words of the day … he said, “When you do your Ph.D and need a reference, let me know … you’re a really bright guy.” Coming from John, the Oxford grad, it meant a lot especially as I consider the path ahead of me.
Our adoption process is under way. The next major step for us is to make a portfolio that will be shown to expecting mothers. The mothers-to-be will page through our portfolio (along with about 40 other portfolios from 40 other families) and if the expecting mothers like what they see (and read), we’ll have made the cut to the next round. So, the portfolio is like the first impression, which needs to be real positive for us since I have the obvious negative of being a funeral director (who wants their kid to be adopted by a funeral director?).
My sister, Emma, graciously gave us a couple hours yesterday and took some photos of us. Below are some of the better ones. We have not edited the photos … they are in the raw.
So, here’s the question: help us determine which photos should go into our portfolio by telling us which photos you like the best. And, if you’re a photo smarty, give us some of your insight and/or ideas as to different, fun and creative shoots we could do that would help our portfolio stand out from the rest (as you can tell, we’re not looking for studio shots, but fun, creative photos that capture our fun-loving nature and hopefully appeal to those looking at the photos). Any fun ideas you could share with us would be SUPER helpful!
BTW, you may need to click on the photo if you want the full effect. Also, for the sake of clarity, just pretend they’re numbered, with “1″ starting at the top left through “8″ at the bottom right.