What is Smart Digital Signage?
Modern businesses are increasingly replacing static signs with engaging digital displays. If you are looking into digital signage solutions, you have likely seen many brands offering ‘smart signage’ platforms. However, it is often unclear what smart digital signage is, especially for firms adopting the technology for the first time.
The global digital signage market is worth $16.3 billion in 2021. Accordingly, it has attracted many players from across the world. The guide below will help you identify smart signage platforms to broadcast innovative content:
What Is Smart Digital Signage?
Automation is redefining the digital era, thanks to machine learning, IoT, and artificial intelligence. For example, homeowners can now use a host of smart home devices, including smart locks, smart thermostats, and smart speakers from companies like Samsung and LG. When applied to digital signage, smart platforms let users publish content to the cloud and update screens remotely.
You require an external media player like a PC or USB to edit digital content on most digital signage displays. Furthermore, some platforms require users to visit every digital sign to edit or upload content. As a result, employees waste valuable time that they could use on more productive tasks.
With smart digital signage, signs have remote content management software. Thus, you only need the internet to change digital content from your PC. Other features of a digital signage platform include:
It Is Dynamic and Programmatic
Static signs offer limited flexibility since you need to print new ones to reflect changes. On the other hand, it is simple to make instant amends on digital screens. If you want a more dynamic solution, smart digital signage provides better convenience.
Smart signage can change automatically based on inputs from other business applications and data sources. For instance, in-store smart signs can display real-time social media campaigns if you add your brand’s accounts. Smart sign APIs linked to your firm’s database trigger automatic updates that serve shoppers better. For example, restaurant managers can connect menu boards with Point of sale (POC) to acquire pricing and availability information.
Smart signage screens can feature an embedded SoC (System on a Chip) to simplify digital signage deployments. The chip allows for integration with operating systems like Linux or windows, HTML5 browser, and a content management system (CMS).
Another common method is by using a digital signage player. This hardware connects to your screens to help manage your chosen CMS and display the content on the screen. Depending on the content for your solution, there are players out there that are powerful enough and built specifically for that use such as video wall players.
What’s more, with both the SoC or player hardware, you can easily change the content via the cloud, regardless of where you are.
While basic digital signage solutions let you loop content, you have to log into the system to change messages. In contrast, smart scheduling allows you to pre-determine content for different times of the day.
For example, a restaurant’s digital display can show deals for specific holidays or times of the day. This way, you’ll be able to plan out content for when it will help maximize your ROI.
What’s more, it is possible to select expiration dates for advertising promotions. This level of flexibility suits retailers who run frequent sales and discounts.
Benefits of Smart Digital Signage
Digital screens are incredibly effective at grabbing attention. If you have invested in digital signage solutions, you may be looking to upgrade to more sophisticated options. The benefits of smart digital signage include:
Simplifies Content Management
Many digital signage platforms rely on user intervention to adjust content. In contrast, smart signage allows for auto-updates, thereby simplifying the deployment process. Additionally, employees can make updates from anywhere with a mobile device, PC, or tablet.
In addition to the user-friendly interface, you can auto-refresh digital messages or content in real-time. This could be news stories, social media, or even office spreadsheets.
In the digital era, nothing engages customers more than premier UHD picture quality. Fortunately, digital signage allows businesses to deliver high-impact visuals that tell a story. For instance, retail stores can use interactive displays that offer product comparisons and information.
The major advantage of smart signage is that it allows for real-time customer engagement. In fact, intelligent screens trigger content defined to a target demographic when a customer walks up to a screen. As a result, shoppers find the precise information they are looking for, thereby encouraging them to make purchases. You can even set a customized greeting to welcome each customer.
Additionally, intelligent digital signs are effective because they reach a customer when deciding if they will make a purchase. By parading the right information at the right time via high-definition screen images, you can expect improved sales.
Smart digital signage solutions feature visual sensors that detect a customer’s demographics, walking path, attention span, among other characteristics. Subsequently, the screen updates the content to display customized messages. By understanding how customers shop, you can promote products more effectively.
Additionally, smart digital signage saves time and money. Further, smart signage is easy to maintain while offering scalability to accommodate a company’s growth. Lastly, employees save the time they use to update content or direct shoppers and visitors.
Use of Artificial Intelligence/ Machine Learning in Smart Digital Content
In early digital signage, large PCs provided the hardware and software to process and show digital content. However, advancements in artificial intelligence, as well as machine learning, have enabled the use of smaller components. Today, digital signage manufacturers offer modules that integrate into the display panel or media boxes.
These technologies leverage deep learning to determine which information is relevant to a particular shopper. AI engines analyze large sets of data and create patterns. Then, the platforms draw conclusions and react to real-time situations. This means that the technology refers to your shopping history when you visit your favorite store. Subsequently, you get personalized ads of products that you are likely to buy. As a result, your customer experience improves every time you shop at the store.
Is Smart Digital Signage for You?
A Smart digital platform is a valuable upgrade for any business that wants improved customer engagement. Some concerns with the technology include:
High Upfront Cost of Implementation?
Digital signage has many benefits, including boosting sales and increasing customer awareness. However, many companies are hesitant to invest because of high upfront costs. In addition to the cost of screens, you need an external media player and a proprietary CMS. Afterward, someone needs to manage content and troubleshoot any issues.
What’s more, smart signage offers more flexibility in content management. Also, some players have prebuilt templates for small-scale applications. Larger organizations can use third-party web-enabled CMS solutions.
Ensuring Data Integrity from 3rd Party Sources
When deploying smart signage, check the security measures that your third-party providers have taken. Hackers are increasingly hacking digital signage players for profit, fun, or propaganda. Thus, it is essential to work with providers committed to data integrity. For example, a provider can encrypt all communication, undergo frequent security audits, and obtain SSL certificates.
Smart displays are the next frontier in digital signage as they offer increased customer engagement and improved ROI. In fact, a smart digital signage screen features an embedded media player that automatically updates content. As a result, you deliver more personalized ads and enjoy better results from your promotions.