6 Benefits of Digital Signage and Mobile Devices Working Together

The world of digital signage provides many ways for you to reach your target consumer, one of which is the use of the digital display most people carry in their pockets. By relying on the wide spread of smartphones, your digital signage campaigns can reach a broader audience on a more personal level.

Mobile devices provide many benefits when combined with digital signage, of which only some are easier interactivity, access to more information, and an easier method to track analytics for your business.

1. Interactivity

The main advantage of the connection between a digital display and a mobile device, interactivity, opens new possibilities for reaching out to your audience. Typically done through following a link or URL, users can directly interact with the display in front of them. QR codes are also a very popular method. This interaction can be for the purpose of the user accessing additional information and is often even used to play games on the users’ phones and relay information to the display.

Mobile-Digital Signage interconnectivity

There are many reasons why you’d want to utilize interactivity and we’ll now highlight some of the most important ones.

2. Easier storytelling

Much like an interactive touchscreen display, your audience can have access to all the information you ordinarily can’t pack into a single image or video. For instance, you can raise brand awareness by sharing your company story with customers through their mobile devices.

Additionally, the integration of mobile and digital signage can open the doors to hyper-targeting where specific messages are delivered based on the target customer’s information. Using beacons to recognize the information about a customer, for instance their past purchase history, specific content can be displayed to them once their presence at a location is recognized.

3. Better analytics tracking

It can be a challenge to gather accurate analytics when you can’t see how a display influences the viewer. When mobile integration comes into play, you can track exactly how and what the user is interested in. This is even more effective if you allow purchasing decisions to be made through this interaction.

Digital signage analytics

More like with the analytics of your website, you can learn which parts of your digital signage campaign draw the most attention to the viewer and provoke a certain response. With this information at hand, you can better adjust your advertising campaigns and achieve greater success.

4. Drive higher sales

Integrating mobile with digital signage provides an opportunity for a more direct way to advertise content. As mentioned before, hyper-targeting and highlighting specific offers to specific customers can provoke more and better sales. With the analytical knowledge you gather from this information, you can see how effective it is and adjust your strategies to better predict customer behavior.

5. Draw people in with smart interactive campaigns

Although the combination of digital signage and mobile opens a lot of doors, you have to be creative if you want to make the most of the benefits they provide. This is why this form of interaction typically relies on games to draw people in and offer them a fun time.

One such creative example could be seen in 2013 when Despicable Me 2 came out. In an attempt to raise the anticipation, Universal Studios created an interactive experience for their target audience. Users could command minions on digital displays through text messages. The little creatures would dance and laugh based on the messages sent by the user. This might seem like a silly idea but more than 10 million shoppers sent messages to 259 screens in 51 locations.

6. Easier use of social media

Social media is a great feature combined with digital signage, but if you add mobile into the mix, it can be taken to a whole new level. Many people love to see their social media posts on digital displays. They’ll be excited and interested in sharing that information further. However, it’s an entirely different thing when the user is offered unique information they can share.

In 2015, Coca-Cola took this integration to a new level when it extended the “What’s In a Name?” campaign through a digital display in the iconic Times Square where a lot of tourists with spare time hang out. Users were encouraged to tweet their first name with #CokeMyName hashtag, which would result in a personalized story appearing on the Times Square display.

Digital Signage Sign by Coca-Cola

Be it for the purpose of raising brand awareness, sales, expanding your audience, or tracking analytics better, integrating mobile into your digital signage campaigns can bring only benefits to your goals.

The greatest challenge is to come up with content that works for your target audience. Despite Coca-Cola being a massive company, their “What’s In a Name?” campaign wasn’t overly complex. It had content people enjoyed seeing and sharing, and as a result they provided brand awareness to everyone they’re connected with on social media. With this and similar examples in mind, you can see how mobile-friendly digital signage campaigns can help you reach your audience in an easy and fun way.

 

5 Critical Digital Signage Engagement Methods You Should Know

There is no shortage of engagement tools in the world of digital signage. We have social media, video walls, interactive displays, mobile devices, apps, and much more!

Those are all tools you can use, but how are they best used, and which examples should you follow when planning your own highly engaging digital signage campaign?

Engaging content brings people together

Additionally, you’ve seen there are many engagement tools available, but is it mandatory to spend money and time on all of them?

#1 Narrow your focus to the local market

Digital signage campaigns are known for being very general for the brand and can be displayed in many different locations with ease. However, there is a hidden gem which fades when you create generic content which can be used anywhere. If you create content specific to a certain audience or region, it is more effective in that field.

In 2016, Spotify did a very localized campaign with quite an unusual focus. They showed digital ads such as "Dear 3,749 people who streamed 'It's The End Of The World As We Knew it' the day of the Brexit Vote. Hang In There."

Although a silly little ad at first, it generated a great deal of interaction and sharing, showing that making an ad extremely personal, yet let’s not forget funny at that, it can be an effective way to engage viewers.

#2 Create brand-unique content

Engagement tools are easy, if you know how to use them. Social media is a prevalent method people use to talk about your brand, learn to use it! If you truly want to engage the viewer in the field of social media, you must provide intriguing content,connecting real life with the online life at best. You will be guaranteed noteworthy publicity.

One example of the extreme level of such usage can be seen in a coughing anti-smoking ad used in Sweden. Quite literally, the display coughs when it detects smoke.

Digital signage engaging content ad

Granted, this example is pretty sophisticated, but digital signage doesn’t have to be that elaborate to work. A similar effect could have been achieved with non-interactive content filmed at that specific location. As long as it’s interesting and personal, people will talk about it!

#3 Use rotating content wisely

With so many methods and examples of effective content out there, people often ask whether an interactive display is worth the trouble. After all, if a smart billboard message can engage people, why should you invest in an interactive touchscreen display?

Digital signage engaging content in public places

It is true, there is still a place and a time for standard displays which only rotate information. This is primarily reserved for displays which reach out to many people at once, making interaction from a single individual strange and unattainable. Billboards are one of the common examples where you want to rotate carefully constructed campaigns.

#4 Should you invest in interactive displays?

As for interactive displays, they are highly effective and certainly worth the investment and should be placed at ideal locations where they’ll get the most interactions. Having an interactive display unlocks the potential for many different uses and methods of engagement.

By investing in an interactive display, you can allow customers to browse more engaging content, research product information or try interesting apps you’ve prepared for them. Interactivity itself is still an advanced concept, thus it will go hand in hand with carefully constructed engaging content aimed to provoke as much engagement as possible.

#5 Know the rules for creating engaging content

Regardless of what type of engaging content, method, or tool you use, it has to look good and meet or surpass particular expectations for it to be engaging in the first place. Some of the most important rules for creating engaging content is to establish the following:

  • Objectives must be determined at the start. What type of engagement are you seeking? What do you want the customer to do? Share on social media perhaps?
  • Audience must be specified. Who is your ad targeting? Previously, we've seen how Spotify targeted a specific response from a specific type of audience. You must do the same.
  • Visuals must be in perfect balance. This is a purely technical rule which ensures people can easily see and understand your content in hopes of provoking engagement.

Digital signage engaging content

Creating engaging content can be tricky as, much like marketing itself, it becomes hard to predict what draws people in and encourages them to take action. Experiment with your own specific brand style and create unique engaging content which will ensure you get the engagement you want.

Remember to have clearly outlined what you want to achieve and how you want the customer to engage. Although we’ve discussed engagement methods and tools, don’t forget to focus on the very basics of any advertising strategy, such as having a clear and visible call-to-action.

Additionally, do not be afraid to get inspired by examples of engaging digital signage campaigns which reached success, much like the ones shared in this article.

Create Epic Digital Signage Content With These 5 Tools

Once you’ve chosen the best hardware and location for your digital signage, the next critical step for an effective campaign is epic content!

You can create the content yourself following certain guidelines, or you can turn to tools which simplify the content creation process. There are all sorts of tools available online, both free and paid versions, which can help you in more ways than one. Naturally, you should look into using multiple tools to create versatile digital signage campaigns of all kinds.

Know content creation basics

All of the tools we will cover here are going to help you create content with ease but first you need to know what good digital signage content looks like.

For starters, you want your digital signage content to be visible from a distance, so try your best to make it as simple and easy to read as possible. You want the viewer to get the point of your content immediately, thus avoid extensive text. Further on, consider how to employ format and style, e.g. font and size, color combinations, varying content types such as text, drawings, images, video etc.

We won’t go into detail on the basics, but be sure to check out the basics of content creation and reflect what you want your end result to look like. Only then can you proceed with exploring these tools in more detail.

#1 Free stock photos

Stock photos are a great and easy way to make your digital signage content look professional and polished without having to execute and pay for photoshoots. The only challenge with stock photos is finding a specific image of something you have in mind. Still, they are great to fill out the “blank space” in your campaigns. For instance, they’d be great for backgrounds for simpler messages to make them look more appealing.

Some great and not overused free stock photo sites include Picography, StockSnap, Deathtostockphoto, Unsplash and Pixabay.

#2 Canva

Canva is a tool for creating beautiful layouts or digital flyers, for instance. You can use your own images (as well as the aforementioned stock photos) and import them into a selection of pre-made templates. Canva already has a selection of images you can begin with, but if you want to create more unique content, you are more than welcome to import your own.

Canva is a great choice to make simple yet beautiful combinations of text and images.

Digital signage content creation method: Canva

#3 PicMonkey

A very popular image editing tool, PicMonkey is a good option for anyone who wants to edit their own images online. You can manipulate images, crop them, adjust exposure, sharpen, play with colors, and more.

PicMonkey is a great option if you have a base image, yet a specific take on it in mind. The drawback with this tool is that most advanced options are only accessible with a premium subscription starting from $71.88 annually. Sadly, this is going to be necessary if you are aiming for particular designs to meet your brand style, but if all you need is a simple touch up and maybe some text, this is the tool for you.

#4 Font tools

Creating a strong message for your campaign is a straightforward process if you have the right tools. Previewing what your digital signage content looks like on the screen is an indispensable step because various fonts behave differently when they’re on your laptop or on the big screen. Some fonts might look bad together, or a certain font might be difficult to read from a distance.

Canva offers a tool to preview what certain font combinations will look like together. You are advised to use not more than two different fonts in any type of presentation. This tool can help you see how they might work together.

If you are uncertain which font to use for your digital signage content, then explore Font Squirrel, a site which has a variety of fonts to choose from, all of which are free for commercial use.

Digital signage content creation method: Fonts

#5 Placeit

An interesting tool, Placeit eliminates the need to spend time on manually merging two images together to make a polished, intriguing end result. Typically you’d need to have a designer who can adjust a stock photo to look unique to your brand, but Placeit eliminates that need.

If you are looking for professionally made images or videos matching your brand, this is the option for you! However, probably the main reason why you’ve never stumbled upon this site before is because it requires a subscription.

Pricing starts at $29 monthly for 9 high resolution images (with a minimum 3 months commitment), up to $199 dollars for unlimited videos and 9 images monthly. This is probably a reasonable price if you are going to be pumping out videos daily and you can make the most of the unlimited videos offer. Is it too pricey? You be the judge!

Digital signage content creation method: Placeit

When creating digital signage content on your own, the process gets less complicated with using the right tools. Be sure to check out more tips and tools for digital signage content creation to make it easier on yourself.

One fact you already know is that digital signage software is a big help to you by compiling images and text, certain apps to complement your digital signage content further, and scheduling the right campaigns at the right time.

 

Digital Signage News: Largest OOH Ad Database Surpasses 1 Million Assets, Analytics Explained, and More!

The fourth quarter is upon us, which means the stats for the previous one are up on display! Additionally, check out unique digital signage campaigns and investments the big brands like McDonald’s and JCDecaux are working on.

Aside from Q3 showing promising results, there are quite a bit of useful tips out recently in the digital signage world, tips you can definitely use. Starting from elaborating the way smart billboards work, to methods of gathering analytics to enhance your digital signage campaigns.

Digital signage analytics

Digital Out-Of-Home advertising still dominating over static sites, study says

A manchester study has revealed the extent of power and advantage DOOH has over static sites and the result is 250%. The study used brain imaging to explore neurological impact of DOOH content on audiences.

That’s right, the end result showed that the impact of full motion digital out of home advertising was 2.5 times stronger than static content.

The study included more than 100 participants in Manchester, UK, who walked passed three static and full motion displays. The displays used content for brands like Netflix and Gucci. The results were established upon studying headsets which recorded their brain responses to the content on the displays.

Q3 2017 U.S. OOH Advertising up 1.9%

The results for the third quarter are finally in and OOH advertising revenue has risen 1.9% over the previous year, amounting to $1.78 billion, as per the figures released by the Outdoor Advertising Association of America (OAAA).

Based on the figures released by the OAAA, at the top of the pyramid of best OOH advertisers in the third quarter were McDonald’s, Apple, Geico and American Express, to name a few.

“Smart billboards” and why you’re not not getting how they work

A recently published BillboardInsider article focused on how and why the public is misinterpreting the way smart billboards function when it comes to conducting digital signage campaigns. More specifically, the article focused on a podcast in which the hosts discussed the way they see and imagine smart billboards working.

In particular the subject of smart billboards established how to possibly show you specific advertisements based on your car type. They assumed that the smart billboard would somehow take a shot of your car, establish its brand and model and store those images in its memory for future use.

Digital signage billboard

If you’re curious, be sure to check out the full podcast and give your thoughts on it. Still, even though there are some inconsistencies in their assumptions on how smart billboards work, it is justified to be weirded out by technology which takes pictures of you or your car and selects specific content from this constellation. Despite it most likely not being true, a device storing images of the population can be quite a chilling thought.

McDonald’s in Italy: Interactive bus shelter menus

McDonald's teamed up with JCDecaux in launching three interactive DOOH bus shelters in Milan, Italy. McDonald’s has long had a tough stand in culinary heaven Italy. During this digital signage campaign, the essence of the McDonald's brand was highlighted while providing interactive touchscreens for ordering drinks and food. The service works via a connection with McDonald's delivery service which ensures food is delivered to the location as quickly as possible.

DOmedia, the largest Out-of-Home Ad database surpasses 1 million assets

DOmedia operates the largest database of OOH advertising in the U.S. In 2017, just under 25% of agency-driven advertising spend is managed via the DOmedia Demand-Site Platform (DSP).

A few weeks back, DOmedia announced this advertising database has surpassed 1 million assets and that advertising agencies in the U.S. can access this colossal database in attempts of maximizing the competition for their ad dollars.

Lisa Weinstein, former agency CEO and advisor to DOmedia, said, "If you don't have robust competition in the planning stage, it can be impossible to effectively assess whether media is being purchased at an equitable rate. Increased competition is a core part of increasing transparency and accountability in the Out-of-Home media space."

Video analytics software in a nutshell: pay attention!

Analytics are critical to establishing what works and what doesn’t. This applies to any kind of advertising. Still, it can be a tricky thing to set up and study. Analytics can be unpredictable but getting a broad image of the most effective steps you’ve taken thus far can ensure you take the right steps forward in the future.

There are various types of analytics to keep in mind when it comes to collecting data for digital signage campaigns. To name a few, first you have anonymous video analytics which analyzes raw data from a video camera and transforms it into raw statistics. Facial-form detection is another which detects the form of a face. It doesn't take video or images, but merely gathers statistics.

Be sure to check out the full details of these forms of software and see which one could benefit you best.

 

Some amazing digital signage news this week, especially as the ad revenue of the digital signage keeps rising. It would be a surprising twist if it stagnated or dropped. It appears though that we won’t have to report on that any time soon.

With all these amazing news in mind, we shall see what the statistics for Q4 will look like, and after that an overall view of 2017 as a whole and what it did for the digital signage world. Stay tuned!

5 Tips For Better Digital Signage Advertising

At its optimal power, digital signage advertising engages viewers, instructs them how to act and provokes a positive result for the corresponding business.

The vast majority of digital signage uses aim to enhance the success of sales and profit, be it in the long or short-term. In this case, digital signage is directly used to advertise products or services and there are various strategies and tips which can help you do it more effectively.

Digital signage advertising example

Digital signage advertising can be enhanced either through direct physical changes such as specific hardware, location of your signage, or through good looking content design. Additionally, from a strategic viewpoint for example, collaborations with local businesses or adopting certain trends can significantly improve your digital signage advertising success.

#1 Grasp the basics

By the time you intend to develop your advertising strategies, there are certain basics you must master before even thinking of trying out any digital signage ad strategy in particular.

Digital signage advertising design standards

Here are some tips with in depth links you should use to confirm you have grasped the basics of digital signage such as design and setup. If not, be sure to explore and familiarize yourself with these points before venturing forward:

  • Establish objectives of your digital signage campaign.
  • Have a flawless content strategy in place: rich content, easy to absorb and engaging at least to a certain degree. Make sure to research content creation guidelines if you need help.
  • Hardware location is vital! Ensure it’s in a place with solid traffic, easy to spot and the content is visible from the usual distance of the audience. Need some help on establishing viewing distance? No problem!
  • Use quality hardware, for instance displays of a satisfactory size and with adequate resolution.
  • Avoid repetitive content and error messages. Don’t solely relying on digital apps as the “meat” of your campaigns, i.e. don’t use a digital display to just advertise your social media content. Stay versatile and have unique content. Apps and live content are excellent but commonly, they shouldn’t be employed 100% of the time alone.

#2 Polish your engagement potential

You’ve got a grasp on the basics now, so we can proceed to some more advanced tips and strategies. Above all, engagement is key when it comes to current digital signage campaigns. This has become pretty commonplace and is certainly something worth focusing on.

Interactivity is undoubtedly the easiest way to engage a viewer. Fairly self-explanatory, it engages the viewer by allowing them to interact with the display. This is done via either a touchscreen display, or some other method of interaction. One example would be connecting to the display through a wireless connection from a mobile device and interacting with it in that way. Still, touchscreens are the most common today, so if possible, be sure to provide that option.

Social media is another form of more long-term engagement and interaction with the viewer that can begin with a digital display but can go deeper and extend to online interactions. Sharing social media feeds on your displays can draw the viewer in and create a path to communication between you and the customer.

#3 Mobile integration is the future

Aside from having hardware which provides Wi-Fi to any mobile device that approaches your display, there is more you can do for mobile users. Today's generation is glued to their in-pocket displays and consider it familiar ground. Thus, it stands to reason that using their devices to interact with your signage would certainly be a breeze.

Digital signage advertising via mobile

Mobile integration is extremely simple to achieve. Using URLs, the smartphone can interact with the display. This feature can be used to engage the customer, be it through playing games or reading on the go the product features, offers or similar content presented on the display.

#4 Collaborate with local businesses

Independent retailers are investing in digital screens more and more in attempts to sell advertising space to local businesses. Building collaborations between local businesses is a wise option, especially if there is significant traffic in the locations where the digital signage is located.

Another benefit to this type of collaboration comes to businesses which sell complementary goods. For instance, sport venues selling digital signage advertising space for sport events, gear or other services linked to the same industry.

#5 Anticipate future trends

This particular guideline will always be in, and will always benefit you regardless of what year you are reading this article. When researching for current trends, try your best to understand what fuels them and to grasp the mentality of your target audience so you could—cue evil laughter—manipulate them easier.

With all of these current tips and guidelines, keep in mind that most of them are based on the trends dominating the field of digital signage today. You should do your best to incorporate at least some into your digital signage advertising campaigns, but at the same time keep an eye out for upcoming trends as they are already being predicted for the upcoming year.