Organizations of different sizes in various industries are all making use of digital signage to engage and inform visitors as well as employees. While some believe that the investment is highly effective, some do not see much of an improvement in communications.
Well, success strategies are plenty; and failure recipes are very few. Here’s a look at the latter.
- Signs that are visually confusing
If a person takes too long to understand your LED sign, then you should know something is wrong. We all know that only a few precious seconds are available to attract a reader and a few more to maintain his/her attention. Too much clutter on the screen means your original message is lost – people will find it confusing and simply walk past it. DO NOT design your content with:
- too much text
- too many content zones
- more than one font per message
- all italics
- all bold
- all caps
- text lines too close together
- text in many different clashing colors
- Awkward movement on the LED display
It is a fact that moving content gets noticed five times more than static content. But while moving content is needed to grab viewer attention, too much movement on the screen will create visual chaos and make people walk away. Animation and video should be used sparingly – to enhance, not weaken the content.
- Poor quality images
An LED sign with text only will most certainly represent failure. Hence imagery is a must – but it should be of high quality. Stretched, squashed or low resolution images will not look professional. Common clipart is also not favored for sophisticated audiences. Best is to use high resolution images to reinforce your message.
- No contrast
Bad contrasting options:
- white text on light background
- dark text on dark background
Principles of contrasting colors should be used not just to make your message legible, but to enhance the key elements. Bold text here and there and high contrasting colors help to do so. Be very careful in varying your content design so as to not make a mess and drive viewers away.
- No tailored content
Some LED sign users simply have a minimized version of their website on the digital displays. This is an utter recipe for failure. Your content needs to be tailored to your screen size, location and audience. Unique content, easy to read at a distance, and intriguing enough to make people stop and read is what will make an LED sign successful.
- Poor placement
Don’t place your shopping center LED screen too high, or in a position where it can catch a glare at certain times of the day. Place your screens at eye level, or slightly higher. And if it has to be placed even higher, tilt them downwards slightly. Also make sure your screen is located in high traffic areas.
- No call to action
At the end of every message on an LED display, you need to encourage the viewer to go and do something – either visit a store, sign up for something, attend a meeting, visit your website, etc. A call-to-action makes viewers feel like they are a part of something and helps you analyze how effective your sign is.
- Not knowing your audience
Study your audience carefully in order to be able to communicate effectively. Know their wants and needs, preferred data types – humor, tips, tricks, what challenges they are faced with, can you help them overcome those challenges? Will your audience interact with the screens physically then and there or later in terms of calls-to-action? Thorough research to study your audience is extremely essential.
- No communication with stakeholders
In an LED sign campaign, stakeholders could be HR professionals, technology providers, advertisers, content creators or the management team. It is very important to identify everyone who is a part of this campaign and make sure all stakeholders are on the same page. For example, no point having an IT team install a signage without consulting the people who are going to manage it.
- No maintenance
Before deploying your signage system, give some thought to maintenance and expansion. Provide for system upgrades 3-5 years down the line. If you don’t maintain and upgrade, something will eventually break.
- No flexibility
Don’t depend on your current digital signage management team sticking around for years. At one point or the other, new people will take over. Hence make sure you have clear instructions and training procedures. Also, don’t solidify your system so much that you cannot adapt to changing technologies, trends and demographics in the future. Be flexible enough to adapt to change if you want your digital signage system to bring in returns for a long term.