While there are differing opinions about the ever-increasing pervasiveness of digital media in our lives, there is no denying that it is here to stay in some capacity.
For architects using digital signage, the challenge is turning something that has the potential to be disruptive into a practical tool that seamlessly integrates into a space. If done well, the addition of digital displays can actually increase overall aesthetic appeal and create an interactive customer experience that translates into new business potential.
The benefits of reinforcing your brand and improving communication through the addition of digital signage cannot be overstated.
The Merging of Architecture and Media
When digital signage was first introduced, it was typically an afterthought for pre-existing locations. Architects using digital signage added it to walls or mounted it in free-standing pedestals after the building had been fully designed and constructed. This approach certainly achieved basic communication goals, but it was not the most seamless or effective use of design and branding opportunities.
Today’s architects and interior designers understand that both the customer and employee experience is important, and it begins the moment a person walks through the door. By purposefully and strategically integrating digital signage into architecture, designers can maximize visibility and functionality without detracting from the overall look of the building.
Integrating technology such as digital signage also allows companies to provide approachable solutions that provide important information like office schedules and detailed maps. Instead of having to hunt down an employee for help, visitors are in charge of their own experience.
By providing convenient technology that is also familiar and user-friendly, companies can be both highly present and unobtrusive. Through subtle and stylish design techniques, you can empower customers with easy access to information without overwhelming them with screens.
How Digital Signage Extends the Value of a Well-Designed Space
Many modern sports arenas, airports, and retail spaces are calling on architects to create spaces that are more immersive and engaging for visitors. For example, Toronto’s Air Canada Center, the central arena for the city’s sports teams and large shows, uses digital displays to get fans excited about their events and to advertise their brand.
Properly designed digital signage also provides additional space for corporate sponsors to reach potential customers. Company logos emblazoned on cups, shirts and other merchandise can also be featured on large displays and may serve as its own visual focal point.
Digital signs are a powerful marketing tool because they are a highly sensory form of media. A display obviously offers a visual focal point, but touchscreens can be deployed to provide tactile experiences and empower consumers to explore new virtual experiences. As a final measure, pairing the right audio or music to a display will increase the effectiveness of your content.
Companies that fail to use space to inspire customers and influence consumer behavior are missing excellent opportunities. Architects using digital signage avoid this pitfall by making sure that technology is helping to make the most out of each location, both from an aesthetic and branding position.
The design and implementation of this technology are essential to inspire consumers to act in a certain way. These actions can range from making a purchase, downloading an app or becoming a brand ambassador for your business. By using digital signage, businesses can create brand experiences for customers that are seamless and memorable.
How Digital Signage Can Improve the ROI of Communications
Countless resources are spent developing a brand identity. Every detail of color, font, logo, images, and shapes are specifically chosen and arranged to evoke distinct emotions. As a result, companies are looking to get the maximum ROI on their marketing, branding and communication efforts. Digital signage helps designers deliver impressive returns by making targeted and immersive brand events.
Providing interactive media is the ideal way to turn static messages into a dynamic experience that inspires meaningful interactions, and they can continue to be adapted as needed. While the term “architecture” carries with it a sense of permanence, digital signage gives architects flexibility to adjust to their audience.
For example, large or multi-display screens can be built into the interior sides of buildings or erected into supportive pillars. Although the displays are fixed in place, the content can be instantly changed and updated depending on the audience. Whether companies need to advertise a new travel schedule, ongoing sales or a product launch, digital signage can keep up with the pace and still provide a significant return on communication investments.
It is also increasingly common for retail locations to provide a “store within a store” experience that streamlines communication and puts the shopper in charge. Many customers enjoy the freedom, immediacy, and anonymity of online shopping–so why shouldn’t they feel the same way in a brick-and-mortar store? Digital displays allow customers to search store inventory, comparison products and even schedule delivery, all on their own. In this way, all transaction communication is direct and controlled by the customer.
Architects using digital signage also need to take advantage of the more practical and straightforward uses for screens throughout a building, such as wayfinding options. This is especially important in large public spaces that welcome new visitors on a daily basis. A well-placed sign that clearly maps out the user’s current location can vastly improve the experience of a customer. While one positive customer may not immediately translate into a sale or increased revenue, it will be a vital part of a longer-term strategy for establishing brand reputation and customer loyalty.
A Distinct Edge
Digital displays and interactive media are now so commonplace that customers expect it wherever they go. This means that architects using digital signage have a distinct edge over their competitors, and can provide their clients with solutions that have a high return on investment.
Intelligent design and strategic implementation of digital signage solutions are vital to reinforcing brand messaging efforts. Architects, designers and businesses alike need to take full advantage of this powerful tool.