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The passing of Steve Jobs is an important moment to mark. Jobs was someone obsessed with the user experience, quality, innovation, and excellence. Apparently unconcerned about the opinions of most everybody, Jobs wasn’t overwhelmed about the daily pursuits of most CEOs, in fact, his notable lack of fear of failure, reliance on his own instincts, and his insistence on perfecton as he defined it, enabled his companies to market products no one had ever envisioned. Of particular interest to those of us involved in pre need sales was his marketing all of his products for what they do, not for what they are. For example, the last 15 years of P.C. sales have been advertised based on their latest chip number, amount of gigawhats and mega whatevers. The biggest, fastest, computer for the least amount of money were the biggest sellers. All this has accomplished is driving down prices and making the computer a mere commodity with no unique selling proposition. Jobs was different. As a marketer, you could barely find the stats behind one of his offerings. When the latest Macbook Air came out I tried to figure out how big and fast it was by looking up the technical specs. I couldn’t find them all and I am pretty good searcher. What I could find was a bunch of things that the Air would do for me like, take it anywhere in stead of how light it was, use it anywhere instead of a backlit keyboard, instant use instead of a complicated explanation about the solid state hard drive, and so forth. Remember the IPOD ads. You didn’t hear alot about how many songs it stored but rather how cool it was to dance around with the white headphones sneaking out of your hooded sweatshirt. Apple products are all about what they do for you not what they are. Similarly, thats what pre need sales are all about. We can’t sell a 3 x 8 piece of dirt, a concrete chamber, a wooden capsule, or a body filled with noxious chemicals. We can only provide piece of mind, ease of payment, the loving experience of two people choosing together instead of one guessing what the other would have wanted. Otherwise, everything we have would simply be… well a commodity just like the other guys.