You may not have realized this, but digital signage is already all around you. Just take a look alongside the highway while you’re driving, or outside of a local restaurant. In essence, digital signage is any form of commercial message that appears on a screen of some kind. That could be LCD, LED, even on simple televisions – if it’s up on a screen, and it’s selling something, it’s digital signage. It’s so prevalent that you may well have simply ignored it as a form of advertising, seeing it instead as part of the landscape – but it can be a highly effective form of promotion for small and medium sized businesses. Let’s find out how.
The effectiveness of outdoor advertising
While some digital signage is used indoors, in stores and other such places, the vast majority is located outdoors. Some businesses dismiss outdoor advertising as something that’s either too expensive or ineffective. However, quite the contrary is true – at least for the latter suggestion. Multiple studies into the effectiveness of outdoor advertising have proven that advertising outdoors translates into a direct uplift in sales figures. That means that if you’re a small or medium sized business, it may be time to consider digital signage as a viable option for advertising. This is especially true for businesses in the service industry: restaurants, retail stores, and so on.
The key uses of digital signage
One pertinent question that may cross your mind is ‘why use digital signage?’ Well, it’s a valid concern. Let’s make an assumption about the potential uplift in sales that we’ve already discussed. On top of that, though, there are plenty of other benefits. For example, there’s a reason that supermarkets and banks use digital signage in their premises – and that is that these signs can actually lower perceived wait times. People waiting in line will actually check their watches less frequently when they have something to look at which is dynamic and changing. Mounted screens with scrolling advertisements (of any kind) can be a very effective way to improve the mood of queuing customers.
An alternative to renovation
Digital signage is also useful for shops and premises that may require some form of renovation, but don’t have the funds available. Digital signs can add a touch of modern style and a fresh look to a shop – without the costs involved in renovation. This has another benefit, in that your small business insurance premiums will be unaffected. If you’ve already got a business insurance policy in place, there’s a good chance that altering the layout, structural elements, and fittings of your shop or premises will increase your premiums. Digital signage is a good solution to this issue; giving your premises a new look without the huge renovation bills and associated lift in business insurance.
Digital signage as an income stream
While digital signs are a great way to promote your own products and services, they can be used in a different way. You can actually invite a third-party digital signage provider to install the signs into your premises, and have them provide content for the signs (via 3G networks or Wi-Fi connections). This can actually profit you directly, because you’ll receive a commission of sorts based on the volume of people you can expose the advertising to. Obviously this type of income generation won’t be for all businesses (you don’t want your competitors advertising in your store), but for the right type of company – dental waiting rooms, car mechanics, and so on – it can be a real money spinner.
So there’s your quick introduction to digital signage: it can be used to promote you, or promote others. Either way, it can be a great way to boost your profitability. Whether your digital signage is placed in a parking lot to be seen by passing cars, or in the lobby of your office building, both are highly effective. Being able to place advertising in front of people who are waiting in line, or looking for anything to focus on, can be a great way to get your message across. So don’t assume that just because you’re a small or medium sized business, digital signage is not for you – and now might just be the time to try it out.
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