When the podcast Serial hit the Internet last fall, like millions of other listeners I quickly fell under its spell. The spin-off of Chicago Public Media’s This American Life laid out the case of accused killer Adnan Syed in a series of riveting twists and turns. Listeners flocked to streaming devices in droves to hear what evidence might be uncovered next in the examination of the 1999 murder of Baltimore high school student Hae Min Lee.
Serial smashed the records for podcast downloads and its success was widely covered in the mainstream media. The coverage led many people to discover this “new” way of getting information on everything from hard news to comedy. But the fact of the matter is, podcasts were not new at all. They’ve been around for a decade.
Until recently, listening to podcasts was primarily the realm of iTunes users and technology aficionados. Those days are now a thing of the past. Today’s technology for both listening to and creating podcasts has become much more accessible. There is an ever-broadening range of quality content available and advertisers have started to snap to the fact that they can make money by targeting podcast subscribers. It is now estimated that podcasts reach some 40 million listeners each month and growing.
Despite the recent rapid growth, the podcast industry is still relatively immature. This makes it somewhat surprising that that funeral industry, generally a community tied to traditional business tools and techniques, began to embrace the medium some time ago. The podcast landscape is already populated with a healthy selection of programming aimed at educating both professionals and consumers about the industry. Since the base of podcast listeners continues to expand, it is likely that more and more funeral-related content will continue to be added.
In addition to dedicated programs such as Green Burial, FuneralProChat, and The Good Goodbye, the topic of funerals pops up on well-known programs such as Stuff You Should Know. For those who aren’t so much interested in the funeral business but want information about death in general, there are plenty of resources available.
To help you find a funeral industry podcast that interests you we’ve included a list of resources below. If you know of one that we have missed, be sure to mention it in the comments.
FUNERAL RADIO: Funeral Radio is really not so much a podcast as it a network of programs relating to the funeral industry. Most of these programs can be downloaded directly from the website or from iTunes.
- Directors’ Exchange : (Hosted by Ray Aikens) Directors’ Exchange features commentary from leading funeral industry analysts and practitioners and examines the forces impacting industry growth and profitability.
- The Dan Isard Show: (Hosted by Dan Isard) The Dan Isard Show covers business topics for funeral and cemetery professionals. Isard is the president of the Foresight Companies, a financial planning and management consulting firm for the funeral industry.
- Green Burial Radio Program: (Hosted by Dan Sehee). Sehee is the founder of the Green Burial Council. His podcast covers a full range of issues relating to alternative and eco-friendly burial options.
- Make Ceremony Matter (Hosted by Cyndy Neilly-Spence) Make Ceremony Matter focuses on the power of ceremony by exploring the subject with various industry experts. Ms. Neilly-Spence is a Master Life-Cycle Celebrant.
- A Good Goodbye (Hosted by Gail Rubin) Rubin, The Doyenne of Death®, discusses topics relating to death and dying using her unique blend of wit and humor.
- Funeral Services and the Web (Hosted by Tyler Frazier) Frazier focuses on helping funeral-related businesses make the most of technology and the Internet.
- Funeral Directors Chat (Hosted by Nancy Burban) Burban is a partner at Burban Turner Media, a firm that specializes in marketing and media strategy for the death care industry. The program interviews funeral professionals and covers a wide variety of industry topics.
FUNERAL GURUS: Produced by Robin Heppell, owner and operator of a funeral planning and consulting company, the podcast focuses on the latest trends in funeral services and primarily uses an interview format.
FUNERAL FUTURIST: A sister podcast to Funeral Gurus, Funeral Futurist is also produced by Robin Heppell. This podcast focuses on marketing tools and techniques for industry professionals.
FUNERAL PRO CHAT: Geared to funeral professionals, FuneralProChat is sponsored by Answering Service for Directors (ASD). The series offers interviews with guests who discuss a variety of industry topics. Like Funeral Directors Chat, the show is hosted by Nancy Burban..
PODCASTS ABOUT DEATH
- What’s the Deal with Headstones
- How Dying Works
- How Coffins Work
- How Autopsies Work
- How Death Masks Work
- Bizarre Ways To Die
- Is there a Worse Way To Die