In the current marketing landscape, choosing between traditional and digital signage solutions is crucial for most businesses. Generally, businesses should opt for signage solutions that improve customer experience, provoke an emotional response, and meet brand aesthetics and style. While static signage has improved from the handprints and proved its effectiveness over several years, most businesses opt for digital signage solutions, which is the current evolutionary trend that has surpassed static signage boundaries.
Static vs Digital Signage
Over time, static signage has been the backbone of indoor and outdoor signage with two main functions; informing and decorating. Widely known as out-of-home advertising, this includes the use of customized signs for interior and exterior branding of vehicles, buildings, billboards, street furniture, stands, and banners. This option enables businesses to decorate both the interior and exterior with welcome signs, stickers, vinyl letterings, and more.
On the other hand, digital signs include any electronic display that advertises and informs through audio, texts, video walls, and animation. The main differentiating factor between digital and static is that the content in digital signs can be changed with ease and customized to deliver specific information to the target audience. This is a key solution for businesses looking to complement the current tech revolutions.
Benefits of Digital Signage over Static Signage
Below are some reasons you should switch from static to digital signage;
1. Capture and Increase Customer Attention
The effectiveness of digital solutions in capturing audience attention and increasing awareness cannot be compared to static marketing options. This is beneficial for your business in several ways. Humans are naturally visual learners with very short attention spans. However, compared to static signs, digital solutions are excellent for attracting and holding their attention. Videos increase attention and help customers learn with ease.
A good application of digital signs’ effectiveness in grabbing attention is in spreading emergency information in real-time. In case of an emergency, you can leverage the attention-grabbing benefits of this solution to direct your viewers and employees on how to handle the situation. The option also significantly decreases customers’ perceived wait time. Most customers are drawn to videos. Therefore, with engaging content, time seemingly passes faster.
Most tech-advanced businesses understand this concept. For instance, restaurants often hand out menus to customers waiting for their orders. This distracts for several minutes before their orders are ready. Retail locations can also install display screens to distract customers with product videos, news, sporting events, or weather reports.
2. Empower Customers
Digital signage not only enables businesses to distribute content but also empowers customers to control the content. This is possible in the following ways;
- Customers can make their own purchase decisions – most customers, especially millennials, prefer making individual purchase decisions without the influence of salespeople. Interactive digital signage features demo videos and other options that customers can engage with before making a purchase decision. This also decreases employee workload.
- Provide wayfinding features – digital signs’ interactivity eliminates the static maps, offering intuitive wayfinding tools for customers, new guests, and visitors in your business. Visitors can easily browse through various directories, request custom directions, and more.
- Provide Customer Entertainment – a study by ULI concluded that half of the millennial men and 70 percent of women consider shopping a source of entertainment that should be shared with family and friends. Digital signs make it easy to entertain and woo such customers. Retail stores can share anything from news, videos, and more on your digital screens.
3. Improve Internal Communication
Digital signs are not only beneficial for communicating with customers and prospects. They also ease internal communication with your employees. They benefit businesses in the following ways;
- Easily share business updates – digital signs are a good option if you need to get your staff or departmental team on the same page, regardless of their location. You can send consistent messages to multiple offices in different locations in a single click.
- Training staff – digital signs are also effective training tools. Companies can use tutorials and videos when training new staff. Besides, you can provide continuous training by stocking several resources that employees can easily access if they need a refresher.
- Motivation – digital signage is an effective motivation tool for any sales staff. Digital screens are good leaderboards that inspire staff to present the product accurately and competitively.
4. Financial Benefits
Besides promoting your products and services, digital signage is also a good source of revenue. The financial benefits include;
- Renting ad space for non-competing products – with the attention of highly-engaged customers, you can rent out spaces to other complementing and non-competing products and businesses. Other businesses can market their products and services as brief clips and banners on the screen.
- No replacement signs are needed – unlike static signage, you can change the content on digital signs at little or no cost in a short time over the internet. You can update content regularly without having to purchase new signs. Digital displays spread out across the country can be changed remotely simultaneously. This improves your products’ professional appearance, as there won’t be crossed-off or outdated information in your signage.
- Eliminates strain on human resources – informative and intuitive digital billboards eliminate the need of employing guides who can direct customers, visitors, and guests. Similarly, there is no need to hire new people when you need to change the ads. Simply sign in to your content management system to make the changes with a single click.
Unlike static signs, digital signage provides insightful and beneficial analytics about your business. Integrating your digital signage solution with digital signage analytics software helps in capturing several insightful information. For instance, the solution can report on the most searched products. If product sales are not consistent with analytics reports, you can consider lowering the price or improving customers’ perceived value.
Such information wouldn’t be apparent with static signage, especially if customers left your store without making inquiries. Digital displays can also be fitted with video cameras that capture every shopper’s eye movements. This reveals areas within the display that capture the most attention.
6. Repurpose Social Media Content
The power of social media, especially Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, in influencing and enticing shoppers is unmatched. However, creating social media posts and running these campaigns can be challenging. Fortunately, with good social media content, you can repurpose and use it in digital signage without necessarily having to create new digital content for your digital signage solutions. Various apps make it easier to select and use your entire social media feed.
Digital signs are better than static ad solutions in many aspects. While the initial installation cost of new electronic signage can be high, it provides assured returns on investment. It also saves the environment, space and creates an instant wow effect. However, you should consider several factors to enjoy these benefits.
For instance, choosing the best digital signage hardware, software, reliable WI-FI, and signage player are key. You should as well do your research and create dynamic content that suits your brand. Apart from social media feed streams, you can use captivating ads, promotional information, customer testimonials, and product reviews.