You may have noticed that businesses and organizations across a wide range of industries and niches have been using digital signage to an increasingly significant extent in recent years. While the COVID-19 pandemic has somewhat contributed to the growing popularity of digital signage (because it can provide customers and employees with various services that would traditionally require direct face-to-face interaction with a human employee), it’s worth noting that the growth of the digital signage market has been a well-documented trend since before the pandemic began.
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It is becoming more commonplace for a number of reasons. Its versatility is just one example. It can serve many purposes.
Some of the ways digital signage is used are fairly standard. For instance, it’s not uncommon to find digital signage at large resorts and shopping malls, where it can provide wayfinding information and services.
However, there are other potential uses of digital signage that are somewhat unique. They illustrate just how powerful this innovative technology can be. Such unique uses of digital signage include the following:
Although some may understandably consider the presence of motivational posters in a workplace to be a “corny” feature of many offices, research has shown that motivational posters actually can yield increased productivity. That said, when an employee sees the same motivational poster each and every day, its returns may end up diminishing.
This is why some employers have used digital signage to display motivational quotes and images. Because it can be easily updated to display new content, after a particular quote or image has been displayed for such a long time that it no longer inspires workers to the same degree that it used to, an employer can simply swap out the existing content for new content, ensuring the sign continues to have a positive impact on employee focus, motivation, and inspiration.
It is a valuable alternative to traditional signage in many ways. For example, because digital signage can be updated to serve a new purpose whenever someone chooses, it can reduce an organization’s need to purchase new signage every time a new type of sign is needed or an existing sign needs to be modified.
In the long run, this can help a company save a lot of money. It can also reduce consumption of resources, which helps a company make the right impression on customers in an age when consumers are prioritizing the importance of sustainability.
On top of that, digital signage can be much more interactive in nature than traditional signs. In some contexts, it may thus be used to offer customers games to play.
“Engagement” has become a very well understood and researched concept in the digital age. Website and app developers have learned that the longer a customer engages with a digital product, the greater the odds they will eventually give their business to the brand associated with said product.
However, the idea of engagement isn’t actually new. Marketers, retailers, and others have long known that brand engagement plays a critical role in the decisions consumers make. For example, the more time a potential customer spends within a given store, the more likely they are to make a purchase.
Thus, it’s important to give customers reasons to spend more time engaging with a brand. Digital signage can help a company achieve this goal. If a digital sign in a store at the mall allows customers to play an entertaining branded game, some customers will spend more of their time in the store instead of heading to other destinations. Once more, this will result in a higher likelihood of said customers buying items.
Additionally, these types of amenities and services are still fairly unique. A customer who finds a fun game at a store on a digital sign may want to let their friends know about it by posting a picture of the game on social media. This can result in what is essentially free advertising for a company.
It isn’t just useful in industries where making a profit is the general goal. It’s also becoming more and more common for educators to make use of digital signage.
This is particularly helpful in an age when students have grown up with access to the Internet, smartphones, and other forms of stimulation. Students are less inclined than ever to pay attention when a teacher elaborates on a lesson by writing or drawing on a chalkboard. They need more dynamic lessons to keep them focused.
Digital signage technology can facilitate such lessons. For example, with digital signage, a teacher of young children could add animations and graphics to lessons, helping those lessons more effectively appeal to children who might otherwise struggle to stay focused.
It actually has the potential to serve a number of purposes in education. A more basic example of its use is as a map on a college campus. Navigating a large campus may be a much less intimidating experience for new students (and prospective students who are visiting for the first time) if they can use an interactive digital sign to help them find their way from Point A to Point B.
Because it can also be updated with ease at virtually any time, it’s also helpful when used for wayfinding, as a college’s administration will not need to purchase new maps every single time new buildings or facilities are added to the campus. Again, over the years, this benefit can help a university reduce spending and optimize conservation.
What’s most important to remember is that digital signage is still a fairly new technology for some. Many types of organizations in many industries and niches are only now beginning to experiment with it.
As such, we will likely continue to discover interesting uses for digital signage in the coming years. These examples represent just a small sampling of the ways digital signage is being put to use already.