The adaptability and engagement capabilities of digital signage make it an essential tool for businesses. Touch screen kiosks, point-of-sale displays, digital signs and 4K displays are all appealing but none offer the impact of a video wall.
The Power of Video Walls
Video walls usually serve as the artistic centerpiece of the space in which they are located. They draw in viewers to communicate a powerful message about the brand, product or service.
They offer more immersive experiences that engage persuasively. They invite viewers to play.
This can be observed in airports where video walls are commonly found. With constantly updating flight information, travelers are able to confirm times, locations and view up-to-the-minute changes.
Video walls are also widely implemented in malls and retail locations. While a single display does have visual impact and encourages customer engagement, a video wall does it on a much grander scale, while still maintaining the visual integrity of the picture, video or message. The impact on customers is powerful.
To enjoy these benefits, integrators and end users need a thorough plan to execute a successful video wall project. The plan needs to consider multiple components and parties including location, uses, users, components, and ease of use.
Designing a Video Wall
For video walls to be effective, a number of components must work cohesively to create a professional pro-AV display. Each part plays a crucial role in the overall effect of video walls: software, hardware, and content. When working together, the components form potent visual experiences that influence behavior and performance.
Before companies invest in video walls, they (together with deployers and integrators) must consider what’s necessary for successful video wall execution. This takes planning and research and learning what will work best for each specific space and the consumers within it.
Budget: there are always ambiguous parts to every plan. One of them is the budget. It can be a challenge to get a good grasp on what a video wall will cost you before there is a clearer idea of what is wanted. A good place to start from is to look at the company’s needs: how will the video wall function within the company, who will be involved with its day-to-day operation? The budget will need to cover hardware and software, installation, ongoing costs, future maintenance, and content.
Location: location will be an essential part of any video wall project. Placement is crucial and is often dependent on the type of use. Consider foot traffic, viewing impact and overall aesthetic. Look at how much space is actually needed for the entire system, and how it will affect that chosen space. While video walls should catch the eye and engage, they shouldn’t dominate and overwhelm. The electrical and ventilation needs of video walls will also need evaluation.
Installation: because of the complexity and value of video walls, companies are encouraged to hire professionals for installation. Companies should expect a site survey, and the correct mounting equipment is a necessity. Installation should also cover system setup, calibration, and physical alignment.
Components: components aren’t all about the video wall controller, but also about the number of monitors and the software. The number of images desired should play a factor in choosing the ideal number of monitors, and professional software should be one that offers enterprise features but still easy to use. The content sources will also need to be determined—for example, social media, integration with proprietary software, live feeds, etc.
Content: the crowning jewel of the video wall is the content. It’s not always as simple as throwing a bunch of images and streaming videos, it’s about curating content that speaks to the consumer. Content should be displayed at correct resolutions and ratios, and placement of images will differ depending on whether they are motion graphics, still images or a combination.
Keys to Video Wall Success
Placement and content are important for successful video wall projects. Content especially will be the driving force.
When looking at content, businesses should:
- Consider the source – will the content be created in-house or from an outside source
- Offer a solution – consumers respond well to solutions or answers to questions they have
- Make text big – video walls need impact, and small text won’t cut it
- Keep it precise and concise – don’t make messages long and drawn out. 30 seconds for a full story is the recommended time.
- Include a brand – take the opportunity to familiarize consumers more with the company’s brand; in other words, elevate brand awareness
- Catch the eye – incorporate colors and motion that will attract viewers and encourage message retention
- Test it – periodically perform test runs with different content piece to gauge engagement
A Look at Successful Video Wall Projects
Several companies have already used video walls to their advantage. Starbucks is a primary example of a company that uses a compelling display to make a powerfully adaptive and versatile impact. The Seattle coffee giant’s enormous lobby video wall got a lot of interest from digital signage enthusiasts.
And of course, there is Samsung, who consistently pushes the envelope for uniqueness and multi-monitor displays that can’t be overlooked.
For Integrators, Playing Your Part in a Video Wall Project
In the end, collaboration is what will make a successful video wall project. Each part that goes into a video wall design, installation and execution has a different face behind it, which means it’s important for everyone to be on the same page. By working together, a company and its team of professionals can create a powerful digital signage tool that leaves a lasting impression.