How to Create an Effective Digital Signage Marketing Strategy
Creating an effective digital signage marketing strategy shares many similarities to strategies for other types of marketing strategies, such as social media marketing, traditional advertising, word of mouth marketing, and many others.
Of course, digital signage has its own set of capabilities that can be used to great advantage if implemented correctly. In this article, we will talk about some of the particulars of digital signage as they pertain to marketing, and we will also outline how you can come up with an effective digital signage marketing plan that utilises these particulars.
What is Digital Signage?
Digital signage involves using a screen, whether it be a TV, a LED screen, or a LCD screen along with digital signage software or hardware to project various types of content.
The type of content that you can display on a digital sign (with the right digital signage solution, of coure) is seemingly endless: product Images, digital menu boards, branding material like logos and personas, real-time social media walls, video walls with endless video content, animations, interactive displays and apps, calls to action, business information, wayfinding directions, and so much more.
Moreover, since you have so many options for displaying your digital signage, from billboards to tablets, you can strategically put your digital display in many different locations both inside and outside your store: in lobbies, healthcare waiting rooms, display windows, various places in restaurants, on the walls of your retail stores, in front of your kiosk, and…well, we could keep going but you likely get the point.
All of this makes digital signage a dynamic marketing tool that, if used strategically and in accordance with a good digital signage marketing plan, can have incredibly beneficial effects for your business, whether it is a small business or a large one.
The Unique Features of Digital Signage to Consider for Your Marketing Plan
1) Eye-catching and Interactive displays
Dynamic displays can create a “wow factor” for your audience when done right. You want your customers to remember your brand and talk about it with their friends and families, but this won’t happen unless you develop great digital content to display on your digital signs.
2) Promoting Products and Services
By implementing a product display strategy, you can use digital screens to recommend products and services to your customers when they need them the most. Or, show customer testimonials on your digital signage display and let the customers recommend your products to potential customers for you.
3) In-Store Promotions
Customers love these; they probably love your products already, which is why they are in your store. But at the same time, they want to get a good deal, and there’s no better way to persuade them to buy your product than in-store promotions. In store promotions are also great for highlighting new products and directing your customers to the best sales.
4) Interactive Catalogues
Instead of using boring and non-interactive physical catalogues, which engender minimal customer engagement, use digital signage with which you can create attractive catalogues that your customers can interact with, learning about the benefits your products offer in an intuitive and visually appealing way.
5) Develop an Alternative Revenue Stream with Advertisements
On of the great things about digital signage is that is not only a great marketing tool to drive sales and improve customer experience, but it is also a way that you can make an additional source of revenue on top of the increased revenue your marketing gets you in sales.
How To Develop an Effective Digital Signage Marketing Strategy
As we said before, effective digital signage marketing and effective forms of other marketing require similar methods of planning. Typically, a marketing strategy requires you to pinpoint your goals, understand your audience and what channels they use, and tailor your messaging based on their interests.
When marketing with digital signs and digital signage solutions you will have to follow the same steps, while paying special attention to the unique capabilities of digital signage that might differ from other marketing strategies to make sure that your marketing efforts get the best results. Below, we go through the steps for developing an effective marketing plan.
1) Set Goals for Your Digital Signage Marketing Campaign
Targeting specific goals is an essential step in crafting your marketing strategy. Without clear goals, you won’t be able to define your KPIs (Key Performance Indicators), and without these metrics, deciding whether your marketing campaign is going in the right direction or not would be challenging.
You need to ask yourself what your marketing objective is. For instance, is it increasing brand awareness or driving more sales? Are you preparing for a major storewide sale, or are you trying to increase customer loyalty by offering some after-sale services? These are all critical questions to keep in mind to define your marketing objective.
2) Define Your Target Audience and Tailor Your Marketing to Them
Tailoring your marketing efforts based on your target persona’s needs, interests, and pain points can be an excellent way to increase brand awareness and boost sales. If you aren’t familiar with the term “target persona”, you can think of it as a virtual profile, like a linkedin profile, of your ideal customer.
When companies create products or services, they do so based on the belief that some demographic of people will be interested in paying for that product or service. The target persona is like the posterchild of that demographic, and your marketing decisions should be made with this persona in mind.
There’s one critical factor to keep in mind, though: You should not define your target audience based on assumptions or unreliable data. The ideal way to define your target audience is to perform case studies and interviews with potential customers to develop a more realistic profile of your target persona.
Additionally, there are some important questions that you should ask yourself:
- Who are my customers?
- Who do they trust?
- What are their challenges, problems, desires, and aspirations?
- How can I help them or improve their quality of life?
After you have analyzed the data from the case studies and answered those questions, you are well on your way to defining your target audience and moving on to the next stage in the process.
3) Decide What Type of Content You Will Show
When you are deciding what type of digital content you will show on your displays, you will want to keep both your marketing goals and your target audience in mind. Digital signage allows for so many different types of digital content that it can be overwhelming, but the fact is, only some of the content will be relevant to your type of business, your marketing goals, and your target audience. Those that are relevant are the building blocks of your content strategy.
Here's an example:
If you are a restaurant that targets beer lovers in the young to mid adult age range, then you might have a digital sign outside featuring a high resolution video of beer ice cold beer being poured into a cup until it froths at the top. Right next to the cup sits a juicy burger and hand cut fries. This would surely catch someone’s attention much better than an ordinary sign.
Additionally, you might want a digital menu board for your beer separate from the digital menu board for your food. On this board, you could features not only the name and type of the beer, but what brewery and what region or country the beer is from. Additionally, you might want to highlight with a graphic a new seasonal beer that you are trying to promote.
If you really wanted to step up your game, you could have interactive digital menus with touch screen capabilities at your tables. People could tap on a beer that sounds good, and get all sorts of information about the beer: the beers origin story, the history of this type of beer, and whatever else they want to know. You could also have a digital social media wall, highlighting a real-time feed of people who have tagged your business in social media posts.
Just think of how much fun it would be for a customer to take a picture of your food, post it to their instagram feed and instantly see their post pop up on a screen on the wall.
Now it may seem like we have gotten a little of topic since restaurants, especially those specializing in craft beers, are just a small portion of the vast array of businesses that can benefit from digital signage. The reason for doing so was to use this example to highlight some of the creative uses of digital signage that are available to all businesses.
4) Create a Schedule
It is likely that you will want to show different content at different times of the day or on different days of the week. Additionally, think long term so that you can plan accordingly. You may know a year in advance that you will want specific content for christmas. It is important to have a micro schedule for each day of the week and the content to be shown at the time intervals on these days and also have a macro schedule which could range anywhere from a month to a year.
5) Decide How You Will Measure the Success of Your Marketing Strategy
Measuring the success of your digital signage marketing strategies is essential to get a better idea of where you stand and what you need to change or improve to reach your digital signage goals faster or more efficiently. For example, if your goal is to drive sales and generate a positive ROI (Return on Investment), then your job is easy. You need to evaluate your sales performance to measure the effectiveness of your campaign.
6) Test and Review Your Content Strategies and Make Necessary Tweaks and Improvements
In addition to measuring the success of your marketing strategy, it is important to experiment with different methods to try and see which work best. For example, you might find that your marketing strategy did drive sales, but could another strategy have been even more effective. The need for experimentation is more obvious for those who find that their marketing strategy is not achieving their goals.
One way to experiment with your digital signage content is to create a simple A/B test by displaying 2 different versions of your ads in the exact location for the same periods. All you have to do is change one variable that you think will have the most significant impact on the content’s performance. For example, you can run two versions of your ads with different typefaces. Then, after analysing the performance of the ads, you can run the ad that yielded better results.
It’s also vital that you adjust your digital signage content based on your product portfolio updates. After all, it wouldn’t make sense to advertise an outdated product for your customers while your new product goes unnoticed on the shelf. Additionally, it is important to stay updated with the current trends in your industry, and think about how you can match your digital signage content with it.
Time to Start Planning for Your Digital Signage Campaign
Digital signage is such a versatile and effective marketing tool that it is no surprise at all that both big businesses and small business are waking up to the world of marketing with digital displays. Of course, digital signage will not magically help you reach your business goals. As with any marketing medium or platform, an effective digital signage marketing campaign requires coming up with a good strategy.
While the steps for coming up with a good digital signage marketing strategy are much like those for many other marketing channels, it is important to recognize how digital signage differs from other marketing mediums so that you can make the most of this incredible tool.