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CANA's 2019 Cremation Symposium & Art of Selling Cremation Preneed Summit 2
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CANA's 2019 Cremation Symposium & Art of Selling Cremation Preneed Summit 2

2/5/2019 to 2/7/2019
When: February 5-7, 2019
Contact: CANA Staff

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Weren't able to join us in Las Vegas for our two spectacular events? Worry not! Recordings of both events are available for purchase. See below for details about our Second Preneed Summit and the 2019 Cremation Symposium.


The Art of Selling Cremation 2:  A Preneed Summit

At CANA’s Art of Selling Cremation 2: A Preneed Summit, held February 5, 2019 in Las Vegas, five leading experts dispelled common myths and laid out the elements of a successful preneed plan involving cremation.

From consumer misconceptions to our own false assumptions, preneed programs present a number of hurdles. But a successful preneed strategy is not only possible, it is critical for business success in today’s environment. Unfortunately, the rare but well-publicized instances of insurance and trust fraud have colored some consumers’ view of preneed planning. At the same time, many owners and managers suspect the lack of interest is due to the rise in cremation, assuming families may not be willing to prepay for this increasingly dominant form of disposition. The facts, however, tell a different story.

Whether your preneed program has stagnated or you have never considered one, it’s time to rethink your strategy. This additional source of revenue can be a boon to your business — particularly if you are looking to sell anytime soon. And just as important, it brings peace of mind to customers.


To purchase this full event recording for $75, visit and use your existing log in information or create your free account today!

You Cannot be All Things to All People
Vinnie Faccinto
SVP Operations & Business Growth, SMART Cremation

As much as we would like to be all things to all people, we just can’t. This session will show you how to use demographics to understand exactly why you can’t and shouldn’t try.

The Art (and Science!) of Creating a Successful Preneed Program
Heather Kiteley
President, Guaranteed Funeral Deposits of Canada (GFD)

Have you adapted your preneed program to meet the challenges of a modern, informed, digital society? The collective wisdom of preneed “insiders” (including managers, funding providers and experienced writers) over the past 25 years are frequently subjective and often flawed. Traditional measures such as lead return ratio and superstar sellers, typically used to gauge the success of preneed programs in the past, can be outdated and ineffective. Prepare to have your pre-need assumptions challenged in this thought-provoking session. Learn how to hack your processes to experience success and benefit the families you serve.

Progressive Marketing Concepts
John Baker
Regional VP, NGL

While marketers today are focused on social media and internet advertising, the funeral industry still relies heavily on community outreach activities because relationships are so important. Please join us for a discussion around ways to utilize all marketing channels to reach your customers so that you can simplify what you are already doing today.

Lead Generation: Cutting to the Chase
Dean Lambert
SVP Marketing & Communications, Homesteaders

With so many lead generation options available today, it can be difficult to create a strategy that results in sustained marketing success. This presentation will summarize several of the options available to B2C marketers, provide information on how to measure success, and when it may be time to change tactics.

Cremation Demographics: Strategic Selling Strategies
Mitch Rose
CEO, The Woodlawn Cemetery
President of CANA

Consumers choose cremation more than casketed burial nationwide, but cremation rates are rising at different speeds in different geographic regions. Learn strategies to start where your customers are and introduce them to the features and benefits of the options in your service and product offerings to help them find the best solution for their needs. Traditional top down and bottom up selling strategies, presentations and pricing will be presented to strengthen the perceived value and satisfaction for cremation families.

Open Discussion

Discussion of day’s presentations facilitated by Mitch Rose and Vinnie Faccinto


2019 Cremation Symposium

The 2019 program delivered insights and trends in consumer behavior, customer experience, marketing and technology — all aimed at helping attendees unleash their business superpowers. Other sessions focused on staff development (including sample job descriptions and performance evaluations), building a stronger team (no trust falls involved), and becoming a leader in the workplace and the community… a real KAPOW!

By purchasing the recordings of this event you will hear from these experts. Typically, continuing education credits are not available for event recordings.


To purchase this full event recording for $100, visit and use your existing log in information to or create your free account today!

Plug the Expectation Gap
Daniel Lemin

Today’s consumer has all the outward appearances of being picky, choosy and hard-to-please. They demand personalized products at the same or lower price, but seemingly don’t reward the companies that deliver it. Where does that leave your industry?
Perhaps we’ve been looking at this problem wrong all along. In this rapid-fire keynote session we’ll explore three big global forces shaping purchase decisions by consumers: personalization, transparency and experience. Each holds massive opportunity for organizations of all kinds and in all industries, but we often look at them from an operations perspective. We’ll change that. We’ll look at these forces from a sales and marketing perspective, unlocking opportunities to meet consumers where they are with the personalization, information and experiences they crave.

Operational Efficiency: Using Technology to Maximize Cremation Profits
Tyler Yamasaki
Parting Pro

Consumers now expect more value for lower costs. With the availability of so many low-cost cremation options, how can businesses use operational efficiency to not only maintain, but thrive in the current climate? Your business no longer has the luxury of inefficiency. Every minute spent doing inefficient tasks is more money wasted and less time spent helping families. There is a way we can become more efficient, more technically proficient, and more helpful to families without sacrificing the dignified and empathetic touch of the death care profession.


Professor B and the Y-Men: Mentoring the Next Generation of Heroes
Glenda Stansbury & Zach Carnley, Matt Morian
InSight Books & Millennial Directors

There is a growing gap in employment expectations between owners/managers and the incoming employee pool. The generational delineation known as Millennials has grown up with a world view and skill set that is worlds apart from the typical Baby Boomer. Often it feels as if they are speaking two different languages. And, too often, the frustrated owners just throw up their hands and shake their heads and mutter, “Millennials”.
For firms to survive and thrive today and in the future, there is a great need for an understanding and meeting on common ground, recognizing the benefits of tradition while building on the opportunities of the future. This requires communication and mentoring, adaptation and growth by all concerned. This panel discussion with two Millennials and a Baby Boomer will provide insight and suggestions for bridging that gap, for creating an atmosphere of collaboration and give specific tools for implementing strategies that will provide success for the employee and the firm.

Superheroes Unite

Have an urgent dilemma? No need to flash a distress signal. All superheroes will assemble for the annual mind meld. Continue to build your arsenal of tools for solving common business issues through individualized coaching.

Best Practices in Personalization and Ceremony
Lindsey Ballard
Ballard-Sunder Funeral & Cremation

There are so many ways to personalize and infuse ceremony into every interaction with the family, where do you begin? Join Lindsey as she facilitates this interactive session where attendees will share examples and pictures and talk about how they implement these practices within their business. Through the collection of ideas in advance of the event, a handout will be created with unlimited ideas for you take back with you. One lucky contributor will win a cash prize!

Building your League of Cremationists
Jennifer Head
CANA Education Director

Your number one asset is your people. Employee turnover is costly and wastes business resources including time and money. Hiring the right people from the very start is the key to success. But how do you make sure you’re bringing the right people on board? It’s all about culture and competencies. In this workshop session, you’ll identify the key competencies of your company as well as those needed by employees to be successful. Then we’ll translate that into effective job descriptions and job postings and talk about the interview process. We’ll conclude the session by talking about how we implement training programs to help develop our employees into the best cremationists they can be.

Choosing to be a Leader of Influence
Robbie Pape
Asst VP of Service and Support, SCI

Robbie Pape will explain the four sure-fire ways to become an influential leader. She explains that it all begins with the power of choice. When we have awareness of all of the choices we are making every day – conscious and subconscious as well as positive and negative, we have the potential to change the way we live the rest of our lives. She will discuss ways to be powerful in our choices while being outcome focused and benefit driven. She will discuss the power of choosing to be positive and the importance of choosing to accept personal responsibility in our lives instead of choosing to play the victim. Robbie says key to being a powerful, positive leader is simply to Choose It!