Digital signage is becoming an important technology for disseminating information to customers and employees. Studies have suggested that advertised product dollar sales increase 26 percent with digital signage and reduce perceived wait time at check out by as much as 35 percent.
However, digital signage can be ineffective if not planned, and used, correctly. The wrong pixel pitch or a display that’s not bright enough can have a negative effect on customer experience.
The first person on a digital signage project team is the project owner. This is the person who has identified the need for digital signage. They may be in marketing, IT, or the C-suite.
It’s their job to work with the team to develop clear goals and expectations for the project. Regardless of technical expertise, their strategic participation is important to ensure there’s transparency and alignment around the goals. Depending on their position, they may or may not be involved in the digital signage implementation itself.
The second person to join the team is someone from your IT department. They own the network and should be involved early the planning process to understand what the network ‘asks’ are upfront.
Furthermore, IT is commonly charged with managing the ongoing audio visual maintenance and servicing. This mean working closely with an audio visual integrator even after the project is installed. Since IT will ‘own’ this relationship, they should provide input on what audio visual integrator and technology will be used in the project.
You may hear your marketing department exclaim, “Content Is King”. The common marketing slogan rings true for digital signage as well. Someone must bring together branding, messaging, and design to create powerful information that will drive to the project goals. You can have the best technology, but without relevant content your project will suffer.
In some companies the person that’s responsible for the website content also updates the digital signage since there may be an opportunity to leverage similar messaging on both systems. Others choose internal designers, and some opt to outsource the project to a professional content development organization. The right choice depends on the internal expertise and bandwidth within your organization.
While you may think, “my IT or facilities team can hang a TV,” there are many nuances that go with digital signage planning, design and implementation. This is even more important with video walls, Direct View LED and creative displays.
The right audio-visual integration partner will help you identify possible solutions, act as your subject matter expert, provide experience-based insights, manage the installation and provide ongoing support. They will understand the intricacies of each technology, how well they integrate, and how they can impact your business goals.
Identifying an audio-visual integrator that offers service packages can reduce some risk your company may face in a digital signage project. They’ll be more inclined to provide a robust solution upfront if they will be the ones fixing glitches post-install. Ask potential AV partners about their experience with signage. Keep in mind this ongoing support isn’t free, but can be an essential factor in long-term success.
A facilities specialist is a valuable addition to the team, especially with a large signage project. They will be able to contribute important information in the planning and installation process.
If you’re installing outdoor signage you may be required to get city permits. Facilities may also be able to provide direction on items like brightness of display near roadways. In addition, facilities will be important in coordinating new power or infrastructure needs.
During the installation process, facilities will work with the audio visual integrator on site access. They can provide direction on logistics, like getting a lift into the site, when needed.
Now that you have your team together, get clear on why the digital signage is needed in the first place.
What do you want to accomplish with it?
While these may seem like simple questions, they’re important to clearly and truthfully answer. Ask the project lead why they want a video wall and listen to the response. This is the nucleus that will drive the direction of the entire project.
Each person on the digital signage team needs to be clear on the goal of the signage and expectations around how it will function. Don’t forget to share this information with the audio visual integrator! The technology may be different if the project lead wants showcase dynamic marketing versus display real-time metrics to increase efficiencies. If you’re not clear on the direction starting out, you may waste time and money on a system that doesn’t solve your problem.
After the team is clear on the ‘why’ behind the project it’s time to get into the details.
The first distinction is whether the digital sign will go inside or outside. If it’s a window advertisement, which side of the window will it be on? Are there architectural constraints? This will have an immediate impact on the technology options.
The next item to address is the size of the display. This question tends to jump the top of the list. It’s what everyone wants to know. However, identifying the needed functionality first will create clarity on how big the digital signage needs to be.
Are you looking for an 8×8 video wall? Ask the team why. What is the reasoning behind the size? Does it align with your goals? If it is intended to be an attention-grabber, brightness may be an important factor. Thinking of a digital menu? Then it needs to be large enough customers can read it while standing at the counter. Understanding the relationship between the size and requirements will allow you to align the implementation and goals.
These steps will funnel the team down the path towards a successful digital signage initiative. There are many complexities to digital signage, but by getting the right team in place and asking the right questions up front your project will have a strong foundation to drive to the project goals.
What kind of impact can digital signage have on your organization? By focusing on the right team and asking the right questions, you have taken the first step in a successful digital signage initiative.
Get the right people on your digital signage project team and create transparency in your goals. Understand the ‘why’ behind your digital signage and what you’re trying to accomplish by investing time and money into display technologies.
Finally, ensure you have a trusted audio-visual integration partner by your side throughout the process. They will be able to help you understand the benefits and limitations of various systems.
Digital signage has the potential to influence employees and customers by providing them valuable information in a format that’s dynamic and interesting. With transparency around goals and a thoughtful content plan, your digital signage team can make a lasting impact on customer and employee experience.