The use of digital signage, the digital labelling at the POS or at the POI gained more and more significance over the last years and officiates as a modern channel for communication, which plays chosen contents target group-related and chronologically balanced. Schools and colleges show their schedules via monitors, real estate agents present their offers via LCD Screens in their shop-window and restaurants can automatically update their menu depending on the time of day. To shorten it up, digital signage is used wherever the customer is addressed.
Way too often the necessity of a detailed planning is underestimated when it comes to the implementation of digital signage solutions, which has the effect that resources like time, effort and money are being used inefficiently. The following basic steps are going to help you all reach the maximum potential of digital signage in order to get to the ROI as soon as possible.
Define your Goals when Using Digital Signage Solutions:
Every effort with the installation of digital signage solutions is fruitless, if you don’t set your goals clearly before you start. Just because the next-door competitor installed new monitors does not have to mean that you have to go buy some new ones as soon as possible without even thinking it through. It is decisive for you to inform yourself about what possibilities there are for you. Those possibilities vary from LCD screens to kiosk-systems to video canvas or to Tablet Computers. Every medium reaches for its own goal, which should be well coordinated with the needs of each business. The following questions are going to help you to find the right software for your company:
- Do I want to create a nicer ambience in my store?
- Do I want to inform, entertain or a combination of both?
- Do I want to advertise certain products / a certain group of products?
- Do I want to increase the attention of my occasional customers?
- Do I want to keep my costumers in my store for a longer time in the future?
- How much do I have to invest?
- Does my medium fit my target group and my corporate identity?
The questions should be pointed at the target industry in order to solve the individual challenges. Therefore, quality has to stand over quantity. There is no need for e.g. 20 screens on the sales area, which would probably be a distraction for the customers.
Choose the Right Digital Signage Provider
Due to the increasing significance of digital signage, more and more provider are taking place on the market who offer different solutions and, especially, different prices. When choosing a provider, it mostly depends on the size of the company as medium-sized businesses contrary to huge concerns are more likely to be limited when implementing a digital signage solution. The following points are supposed to be a helpful guide for you:
Technical Aspect: is there a necessary training when implementing or can you do it by yourself? According to your resources the complexibility of a digital signage solution plays a significant role. You should provide yourself with detailed technical information of every provider, in order to find out if it’s possible to bring the technical power on a similar point with your resources. Also for medium-sized businesses, there are digital signage systems which are, from the technical aspect, easy-to-use.
Pricing: Often provider will not talk about prices first, because the pricing mostly depends on the size of the project and are made individually based on costs and time effort. In advance though, you can check if the provider offers a complete solution, or if he just has the software or the hardware to offer.
Product Features: Does the product fit my self-defined expectations? In order to find out free test versions or a detailed advisory of a member of the company would be very helpful. Therefore you should find out what the digital signage world in general has to offer, so you can compare the results you will get from your studies of different systems. This will help you to get an overall view of every single possibility and will help you to find the best possible system for yourself.
No ROI without the Right Content
In advance of investing in a digital signage solution, the content of your advertisement needs to be planned. As already mentioned, the content that is being created needs to fit your target group. It has to support your product, do not let it be a distraction. This does not mean though, that the content is supposed to be static or unnoticeably. Mostly, dynamic content gets the consumer to do a certain action, a so called “call-to-action” content is recommendable in order to reach your goal. When it comes to digital advertising the “call-to-action” is absolutely necessary and probably the most important part of content creation. A measurement of the ROI is not possible without an action of the addressee and in most cases the advertisement aim misses its initial purpose. As an example, the textile retail trade can offer “online coupons” in order to create a network between the E-Commerce (the online shop) and the typical trade in a store. The catering trade has the opportunity to communicate specific menus fitting the time of day, to support the guest’s decision. Other than the “call-to-action” within digital signage contents, quality and corporate identity should be taken into consideration when creating contents. While planning digital advertisement you should take the follow up costs into consideration.
The right Justification of Digital Signage at the POS
The determinant positioning of the hardware builds on the pre-defined contents. When installing a digital signage system, the priority has to be to take the recipient situation into consideration. The contents should reach the desired consumer at the desired place in order to achieve the planned effect. A digital guide sign in a shopping center should be positioned in the centrum or in the entry hall so the visitor has a clear overview of where he is and where he wants to go. On the other side, if you want to use digital signage at the cashier point, the customer already decided what he wants, so at this place you would rather want to choose entertaining contents. All in all, the positioning of the systems should depend on the planned content. Here, the angle in which the screens are orientated plays an important role. If you put up the screen at the eye level of the visitor, you need to orient it downwards, and the other way around. Another important aspect are the light-circumstances at the POS, because if the screen reflects the daylight, even the best content would not have any effect because it would not be noticeable for the customer.
Digital Signage as a Strategic Channel of Communication
All in all there is to say, that every step while planning to invest in a digital signage solution builds on one another. The strategic planning for an implementation of a digital signage solution is absolutely necessary, because otherwise it is not possible to get out the maximum potential of it, or to measure the ROI. You need to take the effort of time while planning, implementing, and controlling the system into consideration and align it with the resources of your company. Even if the costs in contrast to the “classic” print medium seem very high, digital signage will pay off medium to long termed. Additionally, digital signage will help you in your stationary trade, to create a “new” atmosphere in your store, to gain new customers ,and to address your customer’s in a better way.