Digital signage let you spread the message of your business. But spreading the messages of others with your own digital signage can be just as opportune! In fact, these two options are by no means exclusive. You can find a comfortable balance between the two. The beauty of digital signage advertising is that it can rotate a large quantity of content. This allows you to provide advertising space for multiple clients as well as display your own content throughout its runtime.
Selling advertising space isn’t a difficult matter to grasp. Third party advertising can be incorporated in your campaigns quite easily, especially if you’re using a good digital signage software. First, let’s discuss whether or not you should sell the digital signage space you have for advertising purposes. Then, we’ll have a look at the two main ways to sell. And thirdly, how to proceed once you’ve decided which one of the two suits you best.
To sell or not to sell?
In order to make the decision of selling or not selling advertising space, establish the potential of profitability. Is it more profitable for you to fully make use of your digital signage for yourself? Or is it more profitable to sell it to others for advertising purposes? Don't forget, you need to also account for the operational time and costs that come with it. If you’re able to come up with digital signage campaigns beneficial to your business, by all means, keep it for yourself. Why sell parts of something which can be more benefitial to your own business goals? If you are guided by the desire to keep your branding clean, renting out space to others is not in your interest.
Perhaps you have a different dilemma, though. Maybe you don’t want to or simply can’t invest time and money in extensive digital signage campaigns. Or it could be that you simply wish to diversify your narrow digital signage content and sell advertising space as a way to include more content alongside your regular campaigns while at the same time generating additional revenue.
The advertising space selling options below will tell you which one suits you best.
Collaborate with local businesses
This method of selling advertising space gives greater diversity to your content. It incorporates advertising from other businesses into your digital signage campaigns. This means people who are viewing your digital signage will see your messages, but also receive third party advertising in short bursts. Naturally, you determine the amount of advertising you want to show.
There are some guidelines to this method. Good advertising aims to reach a target audience based on relevant criteria for the product or service advertised. This is why digital signage owners collaborate with businesses of products their audiences are likely to be interested in. Thus, this will result in more purchases. One such example is advertising for school supplies on digital displays at schools or campuses. Another is digital signage at airports or bus stops advertising for local restaurants visitors would like to try out. Meanwhile, if you advertise for gardening equipment or kitchen appliances at a tourist location, unlikely will you witness a profit spike.
As you can see, it’s not collaboration based solely on physical location. This is because the audience exposed to the digital displays is specific; it’s not everyone. However, there are some exceptions where all sorts of advertising are possible. This exception typically applies to locations with extremely high traffic. Billboards, for example, are seen by many different audience types, and they can advertise all sorts of businesses. This is then a separate business model in itself almost exclusively showcasing other businesses’ campaigns.
Sell advertising space full-time
This business model might be the easiest to handle. You need to bring in a little bit of creativity for campaigns. It is challenging to set up, though. People are willing to pay for advertising space only if it actually promises to work. Simply put, if your signage location gets a lot of traffic, and the advertisers see a good return on their ad spent, your signage real estate will be in high demand. Selling advertising space on a barren residential street will hardly yield you any profit.
The standard example for this are digital billboards as already mentioned. Note, however, that you should think twice before buying digital billboards for this purpose. While they’re amazing at spreading messages, they require great positioning to ensure success. This is especially important as they’re expensive to maintain and use up a lot of energy working 24/7. To cover these costs, they need to be able to pull their weight.
How do you sell advertising space?
Once you’ve decided to sell advertising space with either of the aforementioned models, what do you do next? To bring your plan into action, you need to gather information and insights about what you’re offering. This will help you attract advertisers who need advertising space.
To successfully sell advertising space, you need to understand how it works and present it to potential clients with clarity. Establish how well the ads work for the locations they’re placed in. If you have multiple locations, break down information about them individually. This starts with the traffic they get, the demographic that is likely to see them and when, etc. In short, try to analyse and specify the audience most likely to see the advertising at each location, at any given time.
Some companies will want to advertise to the retail industry to a specific subgroup of people with a specific style. Others will aim at travelers or a specific demographic like best agers or young families with kids. Make sure to specify which of these pass by which location. This way, it becomes immediately clear to companies looking for advertising space how they can use it.
This is only the beginning of a wider picture of selling advertising space. Possibilities are vast, and you can carry out many variations, such as offer clients lower rates based on certain criteria. You can give special price advantages if a client takes up multiple advertising locations. There are businesses who are interested in minimal advertising of only a few minutes per day. With that in mind, you can sell based on minutes or seconds of advertising space consumed.
Keep your clients informed throughout the process
When selling advertising space, you should give your clients a breakdown of how it performed after a period of time. You can highlight how many times in the past week or month a campaign was shown and at what times. You can combine this information with data about how many people frequented the location. Software like OnSign TV can help you achieve this. Detailed reporting takes time, so this mainly applied for larger operations of selling advertising space.
Business types and desires will also vary, and you may encounter some who are sceptical on the power of advertising. Ideally, you must understand the power your digital signage has and present it to businesses interested in it. Also, make sure you can explain the status of the digital signage industry and how well it’s doing today, as well as in the projected future.