Digital Signage Implementation In 2021

Digital Signage Implementation In 2021

A) Introduction: Opportunities For Maximizing Digital Signage ROI

Since it’s introduction, digital signage has shown to have increased benefits across multiple verticals. Like any technology though, proper utilization is the best way to ensure you receive the maximum ROI.

Digital signage is thankfully versatile enough that you can use it for virtually any communications strategy. In the article below, we’ll go into different aspects of digital signage implementation that can help maximize your ROI.

Thanks to technology, digital sign usage has increased without a significant increase in cost. Depending on your business’s size and goals, you can implement digital signage to engage your customers. The trends below are examples of how signage can be used to inform, advertise, and educate audiences in your facility.

1. Screen Traffic Analytics 

Digital signs have long been a subjective marketing technique, with little direct evidence available for measurement. We always “trust” that the signs are being viewed as originally intended. But in 2021 and beyond, screen traffic analytics provide direct evidence for your digital signage campaign. 

This technology works by using sensors to detect engagement, length of exposure, and the number of people interacting with your message. And while you can use facial recognition features if collecting personal information is appropriate, the technology is also applicable less intrusively.

Companies can now adjust message type, length, and timing to fit their audience’s behavioral patterns. And now you have the data to back up such decisions.  

2. Integration With The Brand Design Landscape

Inconsistent messaging is an easy way of decreasing brand engagement. As digital signs grow in popularity, many businesses fall victim to “cookie-cutter” displays that regurgitate off-brand messages. One of the best practices is to create consistent messaging across all your signs.

If dealing with children’s products, witty, colorful, and easy-to-read content will do the trick. A healthcare facility may wish to stick to a helpful, authoritative, and objective tone on their displays. 

Integration does more than just boost customer engagement. It also motivates your employees and streamlines the process of transitioning internal content to your public signs.  

3. Integrating Signs With Mobile Devices 

It’s about time that we started using mobile devices to communicate with digital signs. And it’s not just about QR codes. While those are useful for quickly scanning and finding product information, you can expect to see this integration increase in 2021 and beyond.

When installing digital signs, the goal should be to create a seamless interface between the user’s device and your screens. This can be done from the perspective of both internal and external parties. For example, digital sign operators can quickly use their mobile devices to boost interactivity and adjust what’s been shown on digitals screens.

Whether you need to communicate an emergency or update your customers about an on-going sale, the adjustments can be made right from your mobile device (or via an internet connection).

Even more exciting is that consumers can bring their mobile devices to life via your digital screens. They can install apps that allow them to share selfies, savings, and other content that boosts engagement. This content can also be posted on your social media platforms to drive traffic and generate customer loyalty.

4. A New Focus On Your Team 

Every successful business recognizes just how important their employees are. This is why digital signs have evolved from communication tools into company information systems. When installed and operated correctly, you can use these displays to improve safety on the factory floor, praise hardworking employees, and share business goals in real-time. Digital signs for employees are likely to have the highest ROI. 

You already know how and where your workers are likely to digest information. Working out other details, such as screen configuration, networking, internet, and content management, will align with your overall goals.

C) How To Put Your Digital Signs To Work: Implementation Of Digital Signage Solutions 

The digital signage space has been infused with exciting technologies that your business can explore. From larger LCD screen sizes to multimedia connectivity, you have the freedom of personalizing your campaign to meet each customer’s needs. 

But the interactivity of digital signage may confuse implementation. Where should you start when designing, installing, and maintaining screens in your facility? And which are the best practices for maximizing ROI without unrealistically high setup costs?

1. It Starts With Setting Measurable Objectives 

Even before diving into content-rich digital signage campaigns, start by considering the primary purpose of your business. What do you wish to achieve by installing digital signs? Your goals will vary by industry, company size, budget, and location. For example, transportation service providers may consider digital signage to reduce customer wait times and employee costs. Retailers often install signs to communicate discounts, loyalty programs, and product information. 

In the usage cases above, digital signage implementation will vary. Airports may apply bold and static signs to direct traffic as necessary. On the other hand, a retailer may opt for interactive touchscreens that customers can use to explore product features. And while retailers may set their screens to mostly suit visual applications, airports may integrate sound features to communicate real-time updates. 

Businesses should begin their digital signage landscape by identifying customer pain points. Suppose your target audience needs more information to navigate your store. In that case, emphasis should be placed on visual and easily-comprehensible designs.

Screen-traffic analytics is a useful tool you can use to measure the engagement level of digital signs. With the feedback obtained from facial expressions, foot traffic, and taps/clicks, you can deliver highly customized content at just the right time.

2. Hardware Considerations 

While sound goals and objectives are the foundation of your digital signage campaign, the next step will be installing the right type of hardware. But hardware considerations extend beyond screen size and how many displays you can afford. To make objective decisions, consider the following factors:

  • Screen and content resolution
  • Placement in your location 
  • Hardware processing power and integration 
  • Audio capabilities in the workplace
  • Hygiene and safety of touchscreen devices
  • The Multimedia landscape

Screen resolution is one of the most significant cost drivers when selecting hardware. Indeed, many businesses make the mistake of repurposing consumer-grade displays for commercial usage. Not only are these displays of low resolution, but they’re also not designed for rugged applications that may cause wear and tear in a short period. Furthermore, your brand may be damaged by low-quality LCD screens that your audience has a hard time viewing. 

A better approach is to invest in high-resolution multimedia displays that boost engagement whenever they’re operating. In 2021, that means digital screens capable of displaying different types of content, interacting with your local network, and using power efficiently.

Furthermore, consider media players that work with smart technology to send/receive signals in real-time. This is based on screen traffic analytics, where content automatically adjusts to audience preferences and the businesses’ goals. 

Finally, screen placement will be critical to ROI. While the in-your-face approach has been popular over the years, such signs may be considered intrusive by your customers. Instead, balance screen placement to blend with your location. Seating/resting areas are an excellent place to install screens in transport hubs, malls, and hospitals. Hallways and entrances are also good options, as long as the displays don’t impede traffic flow.

The placement of your digital screens will also influence the type of content being shown. Consider factors such as length of exposure, nature of the display, internet connectivity, and visual/textual media when selecting a location. 

3. Optimizing Content For Your Digital screens 

After selecting the appropriate hardware for your digital signage campaign, your next step will be determining what these signs show. A content management strategy for digital signage could influence customer engagement and ROI. To be effective, look beyond tools that just swap out digital images. Your content should be managed by interactive software that can adjust messages according to:

  • Location 
  • Facial expressions 
  • Time of day
  • Foot traffic 
  • Internet speeds
  • Emergencies  

To achieve these goals, you need a content-rich digital signage campaign. This means leveraging software management and data analytics to update the content shown on LCD screens automatically.

Both large and small businesses can take advantage of content-rich campaigns. For example, a small fast-food restaurant can integrate sales reports with advertising media to push their most popular meals. You may even include data (such as percentages and infographics) on your screens to engage your audience.

4. Menus With Hardware Integration 

For larger companies, enterprise-level controls can be integrated with your digital displays to deliver consistent, branded messages. This is why installing the right equipment is critical. Screens with network connectivity, high resolution, and split-screen functionality can adjust content across thousands of displays.

Menus are also a useful feature to integrate with your hardware. Menus create an on-demand content delivery system that can be used in many different settings. Furthermore, media players come equipped with software that can power digital menu boards. 

For most businesses, the challenge lies in optimizing content to fit this technology. What types of messages are suitable for your audience, and how can you design them for timely delivery? Content varies significantly by industry. For example, financial companies can condense their messages into numbers and acronyms that their audience will digest with just a glance.

On the other hand, sports-related businesses may blend images and video with game statistics to draw attention. A menu option can be used to integrate different content niches into the same platform. Users can touch the screen to select their preference or mirror the available options from their mobile devices.  

While finance or exchange rate messages can be quick and to the point, recreational messages (such as sports) may require longer display times. Proper timing and a blend of audio/video may also be necessary to increase interactivity.

Content such as emergency messages in hospitals should be displayed adequately for patients and visitors to understand. And for retailers, varying font sizes is an excellent way of drawing attention to price reductions, operating hours, or new product launches.

5. Exploring Digital Signage Software 

Sound objectives, hardware, and content are essential pieces of your digital signage campaign. However, you need robust software to bring these separate components to life. There are many solutions available to power your content-driven signage. Smaller businesses may find one platform adequate for content management, hardware control, and maintenance.

On the other hand, larger corporations may require different tools for each application. Dedicated software for content generation and media player management provides more options when using thousands of displays across multiple locations. 

When choosing tools for your digital signs in the workplace, consider what your content goals are. Does the software use analytics to display messages on time and in the right format? Are all images being delivered in high resolution? Are all calls-to-action and text easy to program within the platform? Furthermore, the software should be interactive by having templates available for customization. Templates are a great place to start for your digital signs, providing a solid foundation for optimizing content delivery. 

Your software management strategy should also include advanced tools such as dashboard controls, streaming, and smart playlists. Such tools integrate different components of your digital signs to deliver on-brand messages. For example, dashboards provide a centralized hub where you can design templates, schedule message delivery, and program variables that trigger automated content.

Furthermore, you can integrate your displays with live video at high resolution. Streaming provides a natural, authentic atmosphere that draws attention.

To Finalize: A Touch Of Creativity In Your Digital Signage Implementation

The potential of digital signs in 2021 is endless. As you think of ways to revolutionize your digital signage campaign in the workplace, don’t be afraid to think outside the box. Reflect on customer pain points and how you can resolve them via interactive digital displays.

For instance, transportation companies can stream selfies and videos from their customers to give others a taste of the travel experience. Screens/media players that display real-time metrics within the company may also increase employee engagement, interactivity, and morale. 

Compare your content delivery goals with software management capabilities before making a final decision. Combined with the factors outlined in this piece, you’ll be at the forefront of driving customer engagement with high ROI.    

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