Digital Signage: How Digital Signage Can Make Brands Memorable
Digital signage appears to be everywhere these days. It's undeniably eye-catching. It gives new life to a tired medium, the static billboard. It appeals to advertisers, who suddenly see their name (and brand) in lights. It's manna for media companies, who can multiply the number of advertisers on a single platform. And digital signage can be an effective means of attracting and engaging consumers. Can be, that is. For digital signage to work, above all, it must leave a memorable impression.
Regrettably, when stripped of the glitz and the novelty, today's digital signage isn't all that far removed from yesterday's static billboards. Youthful as this new medium is, digital signage hasn't come close to achieving its full potential, and it's not yet serving the advertising community or consumers.
What's the problem? Figuratively speaking, digital signage is playing with one hand tied behind its back. To be engaging and effective, digital signage must be interactive. Anything less and advertisers could do just as well splashing their messages on the side of a bus. Most digital signage is flat and uninspiring; it doesn't make a visceral or emotional connection with viewers.
Ironically, what was initially compelling about digital signage – color and movement – is losing whatever impact it had the more pervasive the technology becomes. One-way communication simply doesn't cut it any more. The industry needs to move from monologue to dialogue, and give consumers something back. Multisensory experiences are within reach for consumers, and there's no reason why digital signage should be tethered to a 2-D, 20th century model.
Moving From 2-D to 3-D Displays
What does technology in the service of interactivity look like? For starters, engagement should begin with the consumer's sense of touch via touchscreens and multitouch displays. When someone's fingers do the "talking," interactivity becomes a given and watching quickly morphs into experiencing. Touch-sensitive surfaces can be applied to a vast array of materials, and touch-enabled displays can serve as gateways to a wealth of customized information.