I was just re-reading some old personal blog posts I wrote around the time I started Final Embrace for the funeral industry and found this interesting tidbit about podcasts:

For the longest time (roughly three months and two days) I didn’t understand podcasting.  I just figured it was some really technical new medium that only the well-connected internet users were experimenting with.

Then I heard a podcast.  To be fair, it may have been one of the worst podcasts ever made, but it was my first, so I use it here as the example.

Turns out that podcasting is nothing more than someone talking into a microphone about crap no one else cares about.

Let me get this straight:  computer technology has evolved to such a point that we can now carry with us the ability to listen to boring people pontificate on subjects about which they have only cursory knowledge while we ride the bus?

I’m confused.  I thought that was why they invented the transistor radio in the SIXTIES!  But it’s even worse.  At least with ad-supported radio, you have to possess at least a sliver of talent.  But  today’s podcasting makes any idiot with a microphone a “star” of their own show. 

The internet is turning into ham radio.  Have you seen the people who operate ham radios? 

I have little hope for the future of this planet.

Those of you who have been lurking here for any period of time will probably know that I’ve done my share of podcasts (seems I wised up, eh?) but you haven’t seen many lately.

And why is that?

Laziness and a lack of time to sit at a computer and record my conversations with folks.  And also because my video camera is such a pleasant companion that I’d much rather get audio AND video for the same amount of work.

Still, I think podcasts have their purpose and I’ll be posting more soon.


Robin Heppell, Funeral FuturistThe guy to the right, Robin Heppell of the Funeral Futurist, and I recently spent 40 minutes discussing the future of the funeral industry and the Internet, and how the industry can use blogging to market services right now.

You can hear our interview on The Funeral Futurist website in a post titled, Blogging for Funeral Homes with Tim Totten.

After that interview, I also spent 15 minutes chatting with a gentleman from American Funeral Director Magazine (the one published by Kates-Boylston).

He wanted to discuss how funeral homes can use blogs to better connect with a community and a general funeral audience.

Here’s a super-simplified version of my thoughts on funeral blogging:

1.  Blogs are, at the very least, a place to practice your pitch and interaction with clients for free.
2.  A blog can be a free online obituary listing for your firm.
3.  Blogging reveals your true voice, which lets people see the “real you.”
4.  Blogging focuses your thoughts.
5.  Blogging can create a few evangelists or “true fans” who will help spread the word about you to the community.
6.  Blogging connects you to the tech-savvy members of your community.

For more, listen to the Funeral Futurist interview or check out an upcoming issue of American Funeral Director.


I had the most delightful interview with Connie Smith, the Sr. Vice President of Professional Development for the NFDA.

We discussed the upcoming convention, ways that the NFDA helps funeral homes and the biggest challenges facing the industry.  Check it out!

Interview with Connie Smith of the NFDA (12:44) 

They say that slow and steady wins the race, so I’ve been slowly adding to our rich collection of interesting podcasts.

Containing everything from interviews with successful funeral directors, advertising experts and consumers to short audio essays on topics like employee relations, community involvement and how to greet clients, our podcast vault is brimming with almost two hours of exciting, funeral industry content.

And we’ve got a lot more on the way.

Still to come:

Parts 3 & 4 of my interview with funeral home copywriter, Kim Stacey

Parts 3, 4 & 5 of my interview with Life Story Network Co-Founder, Herb Ayres

My interview with visionary businessman Ron Holt of Two Maids & A Mop

Audio Essay “Time to Make the Donuts”

Audio Essay “Spoon Feed Them”


And we took the suggestion of Candace of In Repose and have begun tagging all our podcasts with the total running time, so you can decide whether you’ve got time to listen to it.

To see a list of ALL our podcasts, click here or choose the PODCAST link at the top of the blog.

In this podcast, Herb Ayres and I discuss the role of pets in The Life Story Network of funeral homes, the way they utilize pet memorialization to cultivate other business and the importance of knowing who your client is.

Herb of Life Story Network – Part 3 (7:39)


Herb of Life Story Network – Part 2 (11:54)
Herb of Life Story Network – Part 1 (5:44)

Kim Stacey Interview:  Part 1 (11:03) 
Kim Stacey Interview:  Part 2 (13:30)

In this PODCAST, Herb and I discuss the beginnings of The Life Story Network of funeral homes and the aims of their business.

 We also discuss their consumer-driven website and the issues that plague most funeral home websites.

PODCAST:  Herb Ayres of Life Story Network – Part 2

It’s been awhile since I recorded this interview with Herb Ayres, but my regular readers will remember that in the last few weeks we’ve been busy making and selling quilted mortuary cot covers.

So here’s Part 1 of my interview with Herb Ayres for our MEET YOUR MAKER series.  I’d call this one “The Life Story Network Introduction” since Herb describes the network and tells us why it’s gaining such popularity.

PODCAST:  Herb Ayres of Life Story Network – Part 1

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