What is digital signage?
Any form of business communication where a digital messaging device replaces or supplements other forms of messaging is referred to as digital signage.
In very simple and basic terms, digital signage is some sort of a screen (most likely LED or LCD), with some kind of visual message presented in a digital format, and a mediator for the screen to display these messages. While this is just a basic explanation, the digital signage industry is much bigger and offers much more than just that.
Until recently, such communication methods were not viable or cost-effective. But the LED revolution is changing all of that. Digital screens have become so affordable that they can compete with the printing costs of static posters over a period of time. These displays are thin and can hang on walls, and they can communicate with other computers in the network to fetch content.
How does a digital signage system work?
In simple technical terms, if you have a PowerPoint presentation on a pen drive which is played continuously in rotation on a flatscreen TV, this is called digital signage.
A basic digital signage network needs a way to:
- create content
- organize and schedule this content
- transfer content onto the display
- make sure the content reaches an audience.
Costs associated with digital signage
- Hardware cost
- Displays – brand, size, resolution, and features. As a general rule, commercial LED displays are preferred for businesses over consumer displays because these are built to last longer and have more processing power to manage heavy display loads.
- Media Players – come in 3 categories: boxes, plug-and-play sticks, and all-in-one solutions. A visual communication network should have one digital signage player per screen.
- Mounting hardware – flat wall, tilted wall mount, ceiling mount, video wall mount, etc. The location of your screen and the viewing angles necessary will help determine what kind of mount is needed.
- Installation – labor costs depend on the scope and scale of the digital signage solution.
Cloud-based digital signage software usually comes with a monthly licensing fee which also provides access to several features such as apps, pre-designed templates, tutorials, and 24-hour support.
- Personnel and IT
- Device provisioning: When setting up a digital signage network, you need to connect all media players and screens to function as digital signage. By doing so, content can be streamed easily across multiple screens.
- Integration: hiring experts to take care of this process is highly advisable as you may encounter some unforeseen hiccups which will leave you stranded.
- Content creation: training your staff to use digital signage software, content management systems, and create customized content with these.
- Maintenance: keep staff on standby to fix any complications that arise with your digital signage.
How can digital signage benefit a business
- Digital signage can attract customers to your location and encourage them to purchase products within your store.
- Educate customers about your best, most popular, and most valuable products and services through digital signage.
- Promotional products, items on sale, and product demos can also be showcased on LED displays.
- Promote lesser known products or services through digital signage and create awareness amongst the public that these too are offered by your company.
- Share information such as brand news, policy changes, and other industry news as well.
- Entertain customers with interesting images and videos to increase the time spent at your outlet and make their wait time seem shorter – particularly important for banks, hospitals, and restaurants.
- Narrate a story about your business, how you got started, or a behind the scenes look to build relationships with your customers.
- Show off your corporate social responsibility projects to convey to those millennials that your company is more than just about business.
- Share appropriate posts from your social media profile, especially those created by your customers. Offer discounts to encourage customers to advertise your brand on social media.
- Online reviews are highly trusted by consumers. Display your online reviews on your indoor digital signage and let customers in-store see what other satisfied customers have to say.
- With interactive digital signage and touch screen technology, you can get your audience to engage with the brand to get more information and provide feedback about your offerings.
- Generate revenue by offering paid advertisement slots to other brands that target the same audience as yours.