Catholic Funeral & Cemetery Services (CFCS) is the leading Church-owned provider of cemetery and funeral services in North America. CFCS had created a proven model to transform Catholic cemeteries and funeral service ministries, helping revolutionize the important ministry in dozens of Catholic dioceses across North America.
CFCS wanted to reach key diocesan decision makers as it competed with publicly-traded secular competitors. As the Covid-19 Pandemic spiraled, the nonprofit was especially motivated by Pope Francis’ call to turn the moment of crisis into an opportunity to serve others. We quickly evolved our existing communications plan for the year and launched a new cross-channel campaign called “Shepherds’ Hour of Need.”
- We secured the ShepherdsHourOfNeed domain and rapidly created a microsite designed to provide bishops and priests with centralized funeral-related resources from across CFCS teams
- We built visuals and copy for our campaign launch ads, using top-performing ads creative from our existing social media program
- Research revealed the Catholic-focused traditional media channels (print and television) that CFCS’ key audience segments consumed most often; we created print and web-based ads for top outlets leading back to the campaign microsite
- We continued to deepen the microsite’s content post-launch; for instance, we produced an animated web video telling the story of CFCS staff hand-sewing blankets to wrap the bodies of early Covid victims in, before restrictions were eased, avoiding burials in hospital gowns
- As with all Pesch communications programs, we implemented an integrated communications approach to couple the paid and owned media with earned media; we secured coverage on national Catholic television and in influential outlets like the National Catholic Register and Crux
- Today, the ShepherdsHourOfNeed.com website is an important portal for CFCS’ Pastoral Care Program, and innovative ministry that connects qualified volunteers with grieving family members — after a rollout in a single archdiocese, CFCS has taken the program nationwide