By Tom Atkins


We live in an interactive, media-centric world, which explains the explosion of digital signage over the past few years. From single kiosks to multisite media displays, digital signage engages and keeps people’s attention, but for many, it’s a scary proposition, a new technology they don’t understand. Here are some tips to beginning your move to digital signage.

The very first thing you should do is think hard about what you want your digital signage to do. For all the changes in technology and delivery, a compelling message and clear purpose are still at the center. Are you telling a story? Are you providing information? Branding? Do you want to call your viewers to act? Think carefully about your goals first. Everything else comes out of this.

There are several layers to digital signage, and after you have a clear image of what you want to do, you should think about each layer carefully.

Layer One – Attract Attention

You want the screen to stop people in their tracks. Location, design, screen size and quality combine with your video and graphics to do this. It’s all important. If you compromise on either aspect, the techology or the production values, you won’t get the full impact you are after.

Layer Two – A Compelling Story

People will stop when a dynamic image on a quality screen grabs their attention. But you want to keep their attention and move them to do something. This takes a compelling story, told well.

Layer Three – The Call to Action

What do you want them to do? Buy something? Go to a web site? Remember a program? Be clear on what you want to do, and make it easy for them to do it. Just like in navigating a web site, if it’s not easy, people won’t bother.

Layer Four – Fulfillment

Once your viewer has responded to the call to action, you want to reward them in some way. Congratulate them. Thank them. Offer them a coupon. Let them know you appreciate their action. All this re-inforces the first message and increases the chance that they will return to the experience again.

Many digital signage professionals storyboard their digital signage experience in the same way video producers storyboard a TV program or advertisement, paying careful attention to all four layers of the digital signage experience.

The choice of technology is a critical part of the equation. Technology affects how the story is told, whether or not the signage “pops” and grabs attention, the workflow and cost of updating and maintaining the signage, and the reliability of the system.

When you are considering digital signage, look to your integrator to help turn your vision into reality. An integrator like Advanced AV can help you find the right technology for your project, whether it’s a single unit in a mall, or hundreds of locations around the country. We can help you sort through delivery technologies to make the process of updating and sending media easier and utterly reliable and let you focus on the message.