Blog
April 10, 2018

Is Your Signage Ready to Launch?

It's an exciting time at your company when you've decided to go digital with your signage - but that knot in your stomach saying "Is it ready" is probably keeping you up at night.  Here's a list of things to keep in mind to deciding to go LIVE! 

Core Concept

At the core, your digital signage is promoting a product or a brand.  Is your signage properly addressing your target market and how they receive information about your product/brand?  If not, rethink your digital strategy to ensure they are open to your messaging and more likely to buy!

Technology

Are you working with a reputable company who has the knowledge to put together all the pieces of your signage?  There's not only the digital screens, but hooking it up, making sure it is all compatible and finally the messaging platform.  All components need to work flawlessly together?  Not sure...contact BLR for a consultation.

Hardware

You've picked out your technology, but have you thought through how that technology gets put together and displayed?  Making sure your digital display has enough space to be mounted and is in plain view is just as important as the technology itself.  Make sure before you go live with your messaging that you've thought through this as well!

 

 

April 3, 2018

Artificial Intelligence Increases Digital Signage Success


Artificial Intelligence  noun

  1. The theory and development of computer systems able to perform tasks that normally require human intelligence, such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision-making, and translation between languages.

How Does Artificial Intelligence Work?

Artificial Intelligence platforms are able to evaluate data to find patterns and then can deliver a specific action based on that data.  They call this use of data driven by artificial intelligence: deep learning.  While deep learning is relatively new, it has the power to provide extraordinary results.  

How Can We Use Artificial Intelligence with Digital Signage?

Imagine having an interactive digital screen in your store that allowed you to taylor the message being displayed that is directly responsive to the weather outside?  For example, a clothing store displays sweaters and coats when the weather is cold - and shows tank tops and shorts when the weather is warm outside.  Artificial Intelligence would make this possible.  

In another scenario - what if the digital screen was 'smart' enough that it REMEMBERED your customers through facial recognition and could welcome them back!  

Looking Ahead.

 

The global digital signage market is expected to grow to $31.71 billion by 2025. While the AI market is predicted to rise to nearly $60 billion by 2025.

Read more about Artificial Intelligence from Doug Bannister at Digital Signage Today.

 

 

March 13, 2018

5 considerations for time-saving, digital signage collaboration in the workplace

 


By Darin Crosby, global vice president of sales, Datapath Ltd.

Collaboration.

If you've heard the word, you've heard it a thousand times. I have lost count of the number of seminars and webinars I've watched and articles I've read covering the subject in recent years.

And there's the crux; the subject. In truth, collaboration (from an A/V perspective) is many different things to many different people. Video conferencing is collaboration, as is, in essence, a basic group email. I guess even work conversations in corridors tick the collaboration box.

But here I want to address the software application-sharing aspect. There are many things to consider to ensure application-sharing and collaboration is a truly beneficial, time-saving practice in the workplace. For any business or organization that is looking to invest in this technology, here are a few essentials to consider:

  • Writing to the source file — Annotating over a screen in a meeting, and then having to replicate those amendments on the source document when back at your desk is counter-productive. Good software can help you to edit direct to the source file. This saves valuable time in repeating any edits.
  • Priorities management — Look for solutions that provide complete control over who does what. It may be that a large group need to view an application, but with only a select few allowed permissions to edit.
  • Video wall compatibility — A major consideration for large organizations, where applications are needed to be shared and viewed on a command and control center video wall. This feature is also important for boardroom environments.
  • IT infrastructure — Rather than operating on company networks, look at secure peer-to-peer solutions. Peer-to-peer sharing brings two key benefits. Firstly, it takes away the load from network servers – something that is warmly welcomed by IT departments! Secondly, it provides additional security as only those in the group have the ability to access.
  • Share and annotate anything, in real time — Our definition of application sharing means sharing anything – regardless of whether the third party has the software or not. This means that any software window (accountancy software, CRM, pay rolls, medical documents, architectural plans — the list is endless) can be shared with a third party, as long as they are members of the same organization

 

March 6, 2018

7 shortcuts to higher profits via menu board optimization


By Tom Cook, principal, King-Casey

Originally posted on Fast Casual

Designing a menu that communicates critical menu elements to simplify the customer purchase process isn't easy, but there is a tool that can help; the optimized menu board.

Research shows that 56 percent of customers can be influenced by the menu board, about About 74 percent said than an easy-to-read menu board is their top priority. The CEO of a QSR chain recently told us that: "Menu board optimization is one of the best investments my company can make. It far exceeds almost any other strategy I could pursue to increase profits."

So why do so many menu boards underperform? One big reason is that they are strategically weak. They don't incorporate business objectives or take into consideration how customers actually use menu boards. Effective menu board design follows a structured, analytical approach that is much more than a graphic exercise. Our firm has identified seven truths that collectively result in world-class menu board strategy and design.

1. Leverage hot spots

2. Evaluate real estate

3. Location, location, location

6. Brand it
Great branding is more than a logo. It should extend to every aspect of the business that involves the customer, especially the menu board. Doing so will heighten a customer's trust and overall experience. When designing a branded menu board, never forget that your number one priority is simplicity and ease-of-use. Don't get carried away with clever designs and superfluous graphic details. Your customer wants something that is easy to read and navigate.

7. Measure it
Metrics matter. Now that you have optimized your menu board, it is time to measure the success of your efforts. Look for sales, margin and ticket increases, improved throughput, improved customer satisfaction and, equally important, happier franchisees. This is another area where the "Research Primer" noted above can be a big help.

 

Image via istock.

February 13, 2018

Stadiums Use Digital Signage to Enhance Fan Experience


Stadiums are an exciting place that utilize their space for both sporting events and concerts.  They provide a place for people to come together and engage in entertainment and camaraderie.  What if these high-energy places could be taken to a new level with digital signage?  

Digital signage in stadiums provides an outlet for more than just statistics about a game.  Displays can showcase information about a player's family, hobbies and interests that make an engaging atmosphere for fans.  Fans could be engaged even further with interactive kiosks with games or the ability to take selfies. 

During non-game day events, digital displays can easily transform into a wayfinder, presentation slides, streaming video and advertisements.  With traditional signage, all of these uses would be impossible and extremely expensive to continually change out content.

These digital displays throughout the stadium are not just advertising - they are a way to add value to the fans' experience and keep them coming back for more.

 

February 7, 2018

7 design principles for awesome digital signage

By Rich Archer, digital director, Omnivex

The medium changes, art remains.

The digital age has brought an untold number of new opportunities to artists. In the 1600s an artist might sculpt clay or paint on large canvas. Today, some of the best artists are creating digital animations or designing apps.

Digital signage is one of those evolving mediums. It is an interesting mix of the traditional and the new age. While the concept of a sign is as old as civilization itself, a linked digital communications platform is something entirely new. Which means that if you're reading this, you are working in somewhat uncharted territory.

Never fear!

The right designs are as aesthetically oriented as they are utilitarian. This necessity for form and function means that experienced professionals rely on a tightly knit group of core concepts to create masterpieces that pass internal review and look amazing in the field. Wait, what if you aren't a digital design expert but have a network of digital signs you are tasked with creating content for – where do you start? Well, start with this guide!

Do your research

The first facet of creating the perfect digital communication design is research! Start with a brand style guide and required content. Most organizations have brand guidelines and these are important for gaining insight into the colors and visual style considered acceptable by your company. If a brand guide is unavailable, it's a good idea to create one. Use the guide to define color schemes, fonts, and rules around logo usage for your digital signage.

Next, think about what you are trying to communicate and consider how that information is currently shared. Who is the audience? What are the important messages and content? What systems/feeds will the data and information on the digital signs come from?

Create a realistic outline

Outline exactly what kind of content is going to be included in the digital content solution. This provides insight into the scope of the project and how the material will be seen. One approach is to use a content matrix that you fill out with a comprehensive list of the different type of content each screen will display. This is important for designing the layouts for different screen sizes.

Sketch some stuff

Now comes the fun part!

Start brainstorming potential ideas and putting pen to paper. It is a good idea to come up with several alternative designs and get input early in the process. Once the general details are mapped out it is important to set a timeline to keep the project on track.

Think about fonts

Once you have agreed on the deliverables and rough outlines, start to research fonts. It is common to use San Serif fonts for headings and pair them with Serif fonts for body copy.

Also, be sure to consider casing. When our eyes see all upper-case letters, it can be harder for them to make out the shape of the word because the texts become all blocks.

Put yourself in the shoes of an observer

Keep viewing distance in mind when creating your final design. A one-inch high font size is visible from around 20-25 feet. Think about where your audience will be standing and how they will be interacting with the message. Pixel density and monitor size also play crucial roles in the final visibility of the design.

Use color wisely

Use simple contrasts and avoid overwhelming your audience. There is a fine line between a design that "pops" and one that is an eyesore.

Put everything together and present

Gather all of your mockups get feedback. Ask yourself: Have I explored ideas fully? Have I given every idea I had a chance? Get some feedback. What do people like? What do people not like. Don’t take the feedback personal. Think of it as all objective.

Afterwards, finalize the mockups for every single screen size. I do these in Photoshop at 72 dpi, 1920 by 1080 aspect ratio. Then it is time to start building.

Now you should be ready to publish some killer designs!

 

February 1, 2018

Digital Signage Makes Way for 4K

January 24, 2018

2018 Ups the Digital Ante

2017 proved to be a huge push in changing to digital signage for many company strategies - so where do we go in 2018?  Clearly it's time to up the ante!

2018 will be the year that Ultra-High Definiton (UHD) as the new industry standard full color displays will have colors popping off the screen...which by the way are going to be wider and slimmer!  Video walls have already become commonplace, but this year be prepared to see even more with larger and newer configurations.

One big new secret...plan on seeing the use of "haptics", which is an electrostatic field that can fool human fingers to perceive textures on the screen!  Think of what it would be like to see a snake and feel it's scaly skin at the same time without the scary thought of it being live in person!


 

January 17, 2018

Fun Facts in Digital Signage

A recent Markets and Markets report predicted the digital signage market will grow to $32.8 billion by 2023 from $19.6 billion in 2016, a compound annual growth rate of 7.4 percent. Nearly everywhere one turns in any public place, they’re likely to encounter a digital display.

 

Over 40% of shoppers say that digital displays can change what they buy because relevant information is served close to the point of purchase.

 

71 percent of people said they felt advertising on digital billboards stood out more than online ads, and 46 percent said they were more prominent than even television ads.

 

73% of educational institutions see digital signage as crucial for the future of communication.

 

December 22, 2017

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays from BLR Sign System