November 20, 2018

Project Everyone Has Big Global Goals

 

Eye spy with my little eye...

           an inspiring story of "Project Everyone".

"Project Everyone seeks to put the power of great communications behind The Sustainable Development Goals (also known as the Global Goals), accelerating the creation of a fairer world by 2030, where extreme poverty has been eradicated, climate change is properly addressed and injustice and inequality are unacceptable."

As a part of their tactic for dispersing the information about Project Everyone and their Global Goals, they are aiming to provide the largest advertising campaign which includes the use of digital signage!

You can follow their adventure on the Project Everyone Facebook page.


 

October 30, 2018

Digital signage helps firefighters save lives

Originally posted on www.digitalsignagetoday.com on  | by Bradley Cooper


 

Digital signage isn't just for advertisements; it can also supply lifesaving information. One example of this is the FireRescueTV platform, designed specifically for firefighters. Martin Grube, executive producer of FireRescueTV, created the platform to help firefighters train, get information on fires in progress and relax with entertaining content.

Digital Signage Today spoke with Grube to learn more about this platform.

Q. What kind of content does FireRescueTV offer?

A. I was a firefighter for over 35 years. My vision was to provide on-duty firefighters an easy-to-access library of training videos and provide a 24-hour loop of entertaining content catering to firefighters. Content such as fire house cooking, fire history, new firefighting equipment and new fire apparatus are just a few videos broadcast on the FRTV screen. Training videos created by firefighters out in the field are also added to the library along with FEMA, and other government first responder videos buried on the web are now easily accessed on the FRTV system.

Q. What is the primary benefit for fire stations?

A. There is a tremendous amount of information that is relayed to fire stations daily through emails, phone calls and paperwork. However, fire officers must log in, read each email, print and then post or verbally tell members of pertinent news. This information is fluid and constantly changing, and because firefighters work 24 hours a day, this information must be updated quickly. FireRescueTV allows the fire officers to send messages to one or all their fire stations in seconds. The data is updated on the screen and the information and meeting reminders rotate every 90 seconds.

Firefighters are required to perform a mandatory one-hour daily drill while on duty. Training never ends in the fire station, and many times, the shift begins with a morning muster and quick drill or safety talk over coffee. FRTV offers a complete library of over 300 content-based video drills on demand. Topics such as safety, EMT, HazMat are some of the categories. They simply use the provided touchpad (mouse) to access these drills that are streamed from the FRTV server. These drills are changed often to keep the content fresh.

FireRescueTV has partnered with the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration weather and the local weather for that client's zip code is displayed on the their FRTV screen every 15 minutes.

FireRescueTV has a working relationship with first responder news agencies and over 150 freelance news reporters and photographers who send in breaking news to FRTV. This news is fact checked and then placed on the FireRescueTV exclusive news crawl on the bottom of the FRTV screen.

Every fire station has a U.S. flag pole. Therefore, FRTV has placed a U.S. flag status widget on the bottom position of the screen to provide firefighters the proper flag status; full staff or half staff for the day.

Q. Do you provide a CMS for the fire stations?

A. FireRescueTV allows the fire officers full access to the message portion of the FRTV screen where critical station data and events are posted. Street closures, broken fire hydrants, upcoming training sessions can all be posted by the fire chief via a web portal or by using the free FRTV app.

The firefighters in the station have full access to the video library of training videos and new equipment product videos. The client does not have any control over the software other than posting messages. However, if they produce their own video content and want to share it with other firefighters, they send it to FRTV and we add it to the library and recognize the department for their submission.

Q. What type of displays do you use?

A. FireRescueTV has an account with a national electronics retailer and we order a 43-inch display nearest the new client location and they handle the delivery and drop off. This reduces the expense of storage of displays and shipping costs. We just ship the media player to the address. It is a plug and play system.

Q.How does the platform improve staff morale or help improve response times?

A. FireRescueTV allows volunteer firefighters to have easy access to content-based training every time they stop into their fire station. They do not have to drive to sit in a classroom for lecture. It is always available to fit their time schedules. They city career firefighters who are on duty for a 20-hour period can also obtain the lecture portion of training in their station, on duty and still available for calls in their area. This saves time and money.

Our software will also allow for the 911 CAD from their area to be fed onto the FRTV screen. It provides the firefighters the address to the calls as they are dispatched to.

Our software upgrade now will allow firefighters to post up to five JPEG images on the screen such as fires that they responded to, new truck photos or department history photos. This will greatly improve staff morale.

Q. What is the cost of FireRescueTV?

A. For $1,495, the fire station is shipped a media player with a 12-hour loop of content, a 43-inch display, an HDMI cable and a touchpad to access the video content on-demand. The screen comes with a stand mount or is hung on the wall by a team of two strong firefighters. The monthly service fee is only $19. Grube knows fire department budgets are limited and wanted to keep the monthly service very low and affordable.

The secondary revenue stream is from advertising. With the decline in print over the past decade, firefighters do not get fire related magazines to the station. Many magazines are going digital and firefighters have a vast amount of time between calls at the station. Fire equipment manufacturers and service providers are looking or ways to reach this multi-billion-dollar vertical market. FRTV offers these sponsors free production costs to develop their 60-second commercial that is broadcast every hour in every screen. Only fire related commercials are on the FRTV screens.

 

October 16, 2018

Content Becomes More Responsive


Digital Signage trends have continually moved towards a more personalized and interactive experience when a customer engages with screens. This has come a long way from the start of digital signage that simply showed digital imagery. With todays growing need for interactivity - we will continue to see this trend grow throughout the remainder of 2018.

Displays now have sensors inside of them that can feed data back to the company or trigger special ads to appear on the screen. For example, does it look like rain? The ad can change over to show umbrellas on sale! Sunny conditions ahead? Advertisements for a local park may appear.

The options are endless...how will you enhance your signage for the remainder of 2018?

August 21, 2018

Visualize The Future With Digital Signage

 

Originally posted on Forbes.com By Jose Avalos

 

Businesses intent on galvanizing customers to patronize physical stores are faced with the challenge of how best to understand their customers, strengthen their brand identity, increase efficiency, boost revenue and reduce costs.

One of the tools for overcoming these challenges is digital signage. Today, smart signs and interactive kiosks offer companies the ability to capture customer data in real-time, and to offer personalized recommendations based on individual preferences.


Digital signage is being used today by advertisers who want to customize messaging to target particular demographic segments. INTEL

A case in point are quick-service restaurants, which are installing self-ordering kiosks to better serve and understand their customers. Fast-food giant Wendy’s, for example, installed more than 1,000 self-ordering kiosks in the U.S. last year, in a move that underscores the growing popularity of this new breed of smart kiosks.

The adoption of innovative technology is expected to lower costs while increasing sales and customer satisfaction. In the case of the fast food industry, interactive kiosks are boosting total sales per transaction. The ability to collect real-time data facilitates everything from targeted marketing and more informed decision-making to better customer experiences and higher profitability.

The Connection Between Advertising And Outcomes

Digital signage is being used today by advertisers who want to customize messaging to target particular demographic segments. Accurate tracking requires, for example, the ability for a sign to distinguish the difference between a 25-year-old woman and a 55-year-old man.

Using facial detection technology and artificial intelligence (AI), different ads can be displayed based on an analysis of who has just walked into a store or stopped in front of a store window. That can mean higher conversions that ultimately boost bottom line.

Data being collected from digital signage is completely anonymous, with the results aggregated for specific demographic groups, but not individualized. But now, some retailers, such as Lolli & Pops, are testing the ability to identify and target individual loyalty program members — who have opted-in — as they walk into a store. Privacy is, of course, an important consideration. Businesses should ensure that their advertising and marketing meets applicable local laws and are respectful of individual customers.

Ultimately, AI-driven analytics will enable advertisers to track whether a customer made a purchase related to a customized ad they saw. Ad attribution, which connects the promotion with the outcome, is the Holy Grail for both retailers and advertising agencies.

The ability to connect the dots between advertising and outcomes is essential for companies investing in kiosks and digital signage. As advertisers gain a better understanding of how digital signs can deliver ROI, it will enable them to best use this technology to personalize customer experiences and increase bottom line.

Investing In Digital Signage

Whether it is digital signage or interactive kiosks, companies that are investing in this technology should ensure that their systems can scale and grow with their needs. It’s important to make sure the technology being implemented can handle future growth, and easily accommodate new capabilities. It also is essential to be able to add new features with software upgrades, rather than having to invest in new hardware.

The Intel Smart Display Module (SDM), for example, offers a scalable media player solution that is optimized for digital signage, kiosks, and point of sale systems. It accommodates a wide range of processors — from the Atom to Core i7 — and can handle whatever workload is required to run smart signs and interactive kiosks. Intel’s innovative visual technologies are making low-power, high performance platforms available for AI-related computing. This facilitates the kind of processing firepower necessary for workload consolidation when managing compute-intensive AI applications.

Visual solutions, such as digital signage and interactive kiosks, enable companies to deliver dynamic content, increase efficiency, and save time and money. Sensors that facilitate the collection of real-time data can now be paired with machine learning systems and IoT connectivity to facilitate data analysis on-the-fly. The result is better targeted advertising, improved customer experiences and, ultimately, positively affecting the bottom line.

To learn more about Intel’s digital signage solutions, visit www.intel.com/digitalsignage.

Jose Avalos heads the leadership and management of Intel’s world-wide retail and digital signage business. He holds an Executive MBA from Harvard Business School, an MSE in Electrical Engineering from Arizona State University, and a BS in Electrical Engineering from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Follow him @Intel_Jose on Twitter.

July 31, 2018

The Growing Impact of Digital Signage in Retail


Originally posted by Mark Boidman on June 11, 2018 at  www.digitalsignageconnection.com

Digital signage continues to make a powerful statement in retail as we are starting to see more digital displays, including interactive displays, across retailers throughout the country.

Eight out of 10 customers entered a store for the first time due to a digital sign catching their eye, according to a recent survey.

Moreover, the digital signage hardware and software markets are growing quite quickly. Digital signage revenue in the United States today, in terms of equipment, software, and services plus digital signage media revenue, is about a $20 billion market opportunity using estimates based on publicly available data. This number is likely to rise to just over $25 billion by 2019.

That $20 billion includes about $7 billion of media revenue. Taking the media revenue out of the equation leaves roughly $13 billion for equipment, software and services.

Expanding Reach and Falling Costs

More broadly, digital media on screens in public venues reaches more customers than videos on the Internet. It is a powerful statement of the size and scale of digital billboards and digital screens.

Furthermore, the cost of rolling out a digital signage network continues to fall annually by more than 10 percent, and signage penetration across physical locations increases.

In addition to costs coming down, the number of use cases has increased.

Digital menu boards in physical locations, such as quick-service restaurants or coffee shops, are all being converted to digital screens. Menu boards are becoming digital menu boards. Even buffet table displays or paper tags at café food stations are becoming digital screens.

Cruise ships and hotel buffet displays are well positioned for digital, which are huge market opportunities.

Many coffee shops and retail stores want to roll out massive screens right in the entry of their stores to create experiences and shopping environments in the store that level the playing field with online shopping.

This is why more spectacular displays are being rolled out, especially as technology costs to deploy digital signage and retail tech in general are going down.

Many big cities will one day look just like Times Square.

Changing Customer Behavior

What is starting to happen in most retail stores, especially with young people, is that they are tuning out non-digital screens. They are so used to the digital screen in their pocket, and the ability to interact with those screens, that if they do not find that screen experience in a public store, they may not even walk in or feel comfortable shopping there.

This dynamic is dramatically influencing how shopping malls and stores think and react.

Within retail stores now, whether their products are clothes hanging on the wall or displays of food, there are typically digital screens around or above them. These digital screens showcase products, provide information, provide interactivity and can even take the place of a salesperson to provide supplementary information.

With interactive digital screens, you can determine if retailers have your size, the color you want, and/or make a request to have your choice brought to you.

Contextually Relevant Content to Drive Sales

Digital signage is driving sales and engaging customers, and the more you can engage with somebody at the point of sale and provide them with an improved shopping experience, the more likely you are to see increased brand awareness, as well as growth in sales.

More retail stores are deciding to spend money to roll out networks because it is no longer cost-prohibitive for them to do so. They also realize that networks are critical to create the experiential environment in the store necessary to provide a competitive advantage.

It is imperative to remember that digital signage must deliver more than just content; it must also deliver context.

From a consumer’s first impression at a store entrance through the entire retail experience, digital signage has the ability to turn the person who is merely browsing into your newest customer.

 

 

July 24, 2018

Berkeley Heights, NJ Has New Digital Signage

 


BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - There’s something new and shiny in downtown Berkeley Heights, at the corner of Springfield and Plainfield avenues - a digital sign.

Township Administrator John Bussiculo asked residents to check out the sign during the June 12 council meeting. It was running the sample program, which provided a preview of what residents might see on the sign.

A donation from the Jim Reilly family, in memory of Jim Reilly made this digital sign possible. The sign will be remotely controlled, which means Tom Barton won't need to go out in all kinds of weather to hang the letters on the old sign, said Bussiculo. Now all the messages will be created in a warm office.


 

July 17, 2018

Untapped Potential for Digital Signs


A Gallup Study has shown that over half of employees are not actively engaged in the workplace.  With millennials making up a large portion of the workforce, it is hard to keep them engage in their current job since they have only been their for a short period of time.  Their is a growing demand for employees to be engaged with their employer, but how can an employer accomplish this?

The answer: digital signage

By utilizing digital signs in the workplace, employees have access to relevant and important information in real-time.  These messages can loop through so that every employee sees the information and gets a chance to access the message.  This could include incentives, performance results or shout-outs for a job well done.

How can you utilize digital signs at the office to incentivize and engage employees?

Contact BLR for a brainstorming session!

June 12, 2018

Know Your Audience & Goals

2 Key items you need to remember while deploying your digital signage for the rest of 2018:

Know Your Target Audience. An effective marketing campaign starts with knowing your audience and providing content that appeals to your audience. With the influx of advertisements and messages we all encounter on a daily basis, it is important to remember that hearing/seeing a message once is not effective. Messaging has to be appealing, engaging and relevant to your audience for them to begin to pay attention.

Know Your Goals. There are a multitude of ways that your audience could engage with your business/brand; so, having a clear goal is essential to measure effectiveness. Is your goal to engage your audience on your facebook page, fill out a form on your website, pick up the phone and call or make a purchase on your site? Metrics are your go-to-source for determining if your message is working for the intended audience.


June 5, 2018

3 Reasons Your School Should Use Digital Signs

It’s that time of year again when schools are reviewing their budgets and making plans for the up-coming school year. BLR Sign Systems would like to provide you with 3 reasons your school should consider going digital with your outdoor signage this year.

Quick and Easy to Update

Outdoor static signs only provide schools with a one-time application to provide information, which usually consists of the school name and contact information. Digital signs allow for the school to quickly, and easily, update your signs with important information (see ‘Keep Parents Up-To-Date’ section!) without the additional costs.

Keep Parents Up-To-Date

It is important to utilize every opportunity to communicate with parents. Sometimes an email or a phone call can get lost in the shuffle as parents juggle work, school and activities. With digital outdoor signs, all your important information can be displayed as it is happening. Digital signs are a great way to communicate upcoming deadlines, reports are coming out, vacation dates and so much more. This allows your school to have technology work for you with minimal effort and maximum returns!

Motivate Students

By using outdoor digital displays, your school has a platform to publicly announce how great your students, teams and activities are. For example, if the debate team wins an important award the digital display can shout out their success for all to see. Also, honor roll students’ names can be displayed for all their hard work and dedication. The options are endless!

Contact BLR today to get a FREE quote for your digital signage budget and needs.


May 15, 2018

Digital signage making a difference for White Rose Credit Union

Original posted on www.cujournal.com |  Written by Michael Bartlett |  Published April 30 2018, 8:45am EDT

 

When $73 million White Rose Credit Union decided to relocate its branch in Red Lion, Pa., to nearby Dallastown, Pa., two years ago, it knew it needed something special to draw attention to the “new kid on the block.”

Jen Swanner, marketing vice president for the York, Pa.-based CU, chose to install a digital sign within a distinctive, 18-foot-high pylon. The credit union previously had worked with W.J. Strickler Signs, a company that has served the mid-Atlantic region since 1972, on static signs for some of its other branches. Strickler designed a sign with the White Rose Credit Union logo and name illuminated on top, and incorporated a full-color, LED display from Watchfire Signs that could be used to create messages directly from Swanner’s desktop.

“I knew immediately we needed a digital sign when putting in a brand new branch,” Swanner recalled. “I did some price comparisons and after contacting several companies, it was clear Strickler offered the best bang for the buck.

“Being able to change the message on the Watchfire sign in-house and not having to outsource it was very important,” she added.

The immediate challenge was Dallastown is home to just 4,000 people. Swanner said Dallastown is surrounded by a semi-metro area, so while the town is small, the area to be served by the credit union is much larger.

The CU already had four other locations in York and Adams counties at the time of the move to Dallastown. To maximize the impact in the new location, Swanner used the digital sign’s capabilities as a “community bulletin board.” It rotates marketing pitches for loans and the CU’s financial products with messages supporting students at the middle school and high school down the street, reminders of community events, and even road closure alerts.

The result: Swanner says the return on investment for the LED sign is “improving daily” and she is delighted that a number of students, parents and teachers from the two schools have become members of the credit union.

Several accounts have been opened on behalf of school clubs and organizations, she noted.

“We know the ROI is constantly improving because we have members and non-members come into the branch and say ‘we saw the sign and are interested in the special’ that the sign was promoting,” she explained. “Promotion results have been fantastic. We hear responses and we see the influx of loan applications and membership applications from people coming in off the street as a result of messaging center. The Dallastown branch has been up and running for two-plus years. We are building momentum and constantly improving viewership of the Watchfire digital sign and we continue to get improving personal feedback from people.”

More than 6.5 million exposures per year

The credit union estimates its sign draws 6.57 million exposures per year. Swanner rotates approximately eight phrases at a time, with marketing promotions and information changed out each month. In between, she is able to upload individual community messages in less than five minutes.

When the board was new, Swanner said, “we were ginger with our messaging,” but as time has gone on the CU has become “more bold.”

“We changed our strategy and now include a call to action. It is working,” she asserted.

White Rose Credit Union is considering relocating some of its branches contingent on changes in the local economy, Swanner continued. She said there is a large hospital being built and the management team is considering establish a branch near the location.

“We have discussed it and we hope when we reach that next stage we will bring in digital signs for those branches, as well,” she said.