How to Use Google Slides to Create Digital Signage Content
Digital signage usually comes with a media player. However, you may need digital signage editing software to generate your content and presentations for your digital signage.
The perfect content for digital signage includes high-end videos, images, or advertising on digital signs. The content typically includes live recording and intricate post-production work with Adobe software or other programs.
Most business owners can't afford such pricey processing and equipment. They still need to convey a message or advertise a product to their audience. They need to use digital signage to improve the customer experience.
Then, all that is required is a set of slides with text, images, and some animations to make it appealing. But did you know that you can use Google Slides to make digital signage?
What is Google Slides?
Google Slides is a cloud-based tool part of the Google Drive suite, alongside Google Docs, Sheets, Forms, and others. It can be accessed from any web browser, allowing you to collaborate with colleagues in real time.
Although it's usually associated with creating slideshow presentations, Google Slides can also be used as a design tool. Plus, it's free of charge! Slideshow apps like Google Slides are ideal for creating engaging digital signage. With a few tweaks, you can transform your slides into stunning digital menu boards that capture your customers’ attention.
In this article, we'll show you how to take your existing slides and turn them into dynamic digital signage that can take your business to the next level.
You will learn how to upload the slides to your digital signage. We’ll also provide tips on how to bring life to presentations that have already bored your colleagues. With the right tools and know-how, you can create digital signage that will leave a lasting impression.
Using Google Slides for Digital Signage
If you want to learn how to create stunning digital signage content, you've come to the right place.
This guide will show you how to take a regular Google Slide presentation and transform it into an effective digital sign that can be displayed on any screen. You'll be able to create captivating digital signage to help you reach your target audience.
If you are looking for a quick, easy, and cost-effective way to keep your audience informed, using your existing Google Slides presentations as digital signage will save you a lot of money.
It can be set up in seconds and requires no technical expertise. Not only will this save you money and time, but it also contributes to creating an environmentally friendly workplace.
Why Use Google Slides for Digital Signage?
Google Slides has all the tools you need to produce engaging presentations or content for digital signage across various use cases. Google Slides is versatile enough to fulfil the demands of various industries, including fast-food restaurants, lobbies, schools, hospitals, and airports.
Here are five reasons why Google Slides is the best tool for producing material for digital signage:
1. Completely Free to Use
Google Slides is accessible to everyone with a Google account. You don’t have to pay anything to use it.
Instead of purchasing a licence for the signage tools and software, design your presentations in Google Slides and use the export options to create licence-free media. You can export to images like JPG and PNG, or as PDF documents, or choose to export to the universal MP4 video format.
2. Fast and Easy Content Creation
Most people have used or seen Google Slides, like Google Docs and Sheets. If you have used PowerPoint, you don’t need additional training to use Google Slides.
With a bit of creativity, you can leverage Google Slides to quickly create professional digital signage content. It simplifies the process on so many levels.
3. Tons of Features and Templates
Google Slides has various colors, text fonts, page transition effects, and templates. You can import images you have created from Canva. You can learn how to create stunning videos and images with Canva for free.
You can access free or low-cost templates online to create digital signage presentations. If you need unique content, customize Google Slides templates to meet your needs.
You can also work on HD videos, graphic images, and audio with Google Slides. You can use Google Slides to create multi-page signage with landscape or portrait orientations.
4. Flexible Updating and Distribution
Google Slides files are small and editable. It automatically saves to the cloud as you work, and you can render and save or simply share. This makes it easier to update content with new data.
With Google Slides, it is easy to edit your content. Open the slides, make the changes you want, and save them. This way, you can quickly and easily update your content without creating a whole new presentation.
5. Great Transitions and Animations
Google Slides is an ideal digital signage tool due to its built-in transitions, object animation, and page transition effects, such as fade, fly or float in/out, split, and more. These effects can be used to animate text and images to create engaging and eye-catching content.
It is highly cost-effective and has a variety of low-cost templates, colors, and effects, allowing you to unleash your creativity. With Google Slides, you have all the tools you need to create interactive presentations and make an impact.
How to Design Digital Signage with Google Slides
Digital signage is a visual communication method that uses symbols, images, videos, and text on TV screens and monitors to convey messages to a specific target audience. The purpose of digital signage depends on the desired outcome or goal of the project.
Before beginning the design process, it's essential to set clear objectives, create measurable metrics, and determine the number of slides for the content. When creating attractive, engaging digital signage slides with Google Slides, focus on the following seven design elements:
1. Eye-Catching Visuals
Use visuals such as images, videos, and animations to grab the viewer’s attention. For commercials and promotions, showcasing a visual representation of the advertised product or service is essential.
When providing directions or way-finding signs, include a map. It is wise to use a warning or warning sign to accompany an important safety message for safety and security.
To prove this point, try this: when you display a yellow or orange safety helmet on the screen, do you need to read the text that employees must wear safety helmets at all times?
Keep the slide simple with minimal text; don’t overcomplicate the design. You can simply add more slides for each announcement or product you want to promote.
Each slide should include all relevant information, such as pictures and prices. Once you are happy with the content, you can easily duplicate the slide and make any needed changes. You can control how long each slide is displayed - slides with more text should have a longer display time.
Use colors that stand out and evoke the desired emotion. Ensure to be consistent. One hack is to use your logo or brand color throughout the presentation. For example, Pepsi does not need to include its logo on every slide if they use the same blue, red and white and their usual font.
That is an example of solid brand recognition. If your logo features blue and yellow, you should use those same colors in your slides. You can use the Eyedropper tool in Google Slides to get the exact color. After importing your logo, write the text you want. Go to Text Colour.
Click on the eyedropper icon and hover over a pixel of your logo, and Google Slides will detect that same color and apply it to your shapes and texts.
Prioritize what you want the viewers to focus on through the use of headings and subheadings.
Use a layout that draws the viewers’ attention to the most crucial part of the slide. This is important because putting the critical message in portrait mode can be off-putting if your digital signage is in a landscape.
Choose fonts that are easy to read and appropriate for the message. As you design your Slides digital signage presentation, it is essential to consider the targeted screen, resolution, and viewing distance.
For example, you may be designing your presentation on a 13" laptop with a resolution of 1440 x 900 pixels, but you may be projecting it onto a large 60" 4K OLED television with a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels or a video wall.
The viewing distance from the audience to the screen can vary greatly - screens in wide lobbies require different font sizes than those in narrow corridors.
You should think about the audience - a screen in an elderly home may require larger fonts than one in a school. To ensure readability, you can ask your audience to evaluate the screens after they have been set up and adjust the font size based on their feedback.
7. Transitions & Animations
For a more attractive and polished look, apply a smooth and visually pleasing transition to your slides, such as a fade, push, or wipe. You can extend the duration of the transition beyond the default value for a more dramatic effect.
Avoid using overused and cliched transitions, such as the Airplane or Curtains transition, since these can be distracting and become tiresome if used too frequently.
When it comes to animations, avoid using the same animation or the same typical animation, such as the Bounce animation, too often. Instead, opt for smoother animations - such as Appear, Fade, or Fly In - to make your presentation stand out.
Don't stick to the default duration of the animation; be creative and explore longer durations to make your presentation more unique and varied.
Considering these design elements, you can create stunning Google Slides digital signage slides that effectively communicate your message.
How to Create Digital Signage with Google Slides
This guide will help you properly configure Google Slides to create engaging digital signage that encourages people to take action. With this guide, you can quickly and easily transform your slideshow into effective signage that stands out.
Step 1. Prepare Your Document
The first thing you must do is open Google Slides in your browser and sign in. Next, prepare the slide page. You will get a blank canvas by default. But as we explained, you need to set it to the perfect layout that fits your display. Nobody wants to look at square content playing on a widescreen TV.
How to change your slide size:
Navigate to File > Page Setup.
You will get options for the size you want. What you choose will vary depending on what displays you have. If you have a TV, you may want to pick the “Widescreen (16:9)” option. Most TVs display a 16:9 aspect ratio. You can set a custom size if you don't find a perfect size for your display.
Step 2. Start Designing Your Signage
You get at least two blank boxes as you start. You can delete these boxes, or you can use a theme that is on the sidebar.
To delete a text box, simply select it and press the backspace or delete key on your keyboard. This will remove the text box from the page, allowing you to start fresh with a new text box or other content.
To add a background image, go to Insert > Image. Here you can upload an image from your computer, search the web, or select one from your Google Drive files. You can create a good image on Canva and upload it into the document as the background.
You can use the Format Options feature in Google Slides to customize your background image. To access these options, select the image and click “Format options” in the top toolbox.
On the right-hand side, you will see Adjustments and No Recolor options. Under Adjustments, you can adjust the image's transparency, brightness, or contrast, while under No Recolor, you can apply a filter. However, for this tutorial, we will leave the image as is.
You can add text and format it as you want. It is very easy to fix and customize the features in Google Slides. You cannot directly add music or audio in Google Slides like PowerPoint. This is a downside to the application.
Here is a hack: Use a video file containing your audio or music. Insert the file into your presentation by going to Insert > Add video. Once you have added the video, right-click and choose Format options > Video playback, then tick the box that says Autoplay when presenting. Then you can cover the video with an image.
Step 3. Export Your Files
Now it's time to take your Google Slideshow and turn it into an engaging, actionable digital signage display. Before you begin, ensure your slideshow is complete.
Navigate to File > Download. Select your desired file format for your digital signage assets in the menu, and the slide will be downloaded automatically. Alternatively, you can manually download each slide as an individual image file or use a third-party add-on or application to export your entire presentation as image files quickly.
How Do I Show Google Slides On My TV?
If you have digital signage software, ensure the file format you choose is compatible with your software. Most digital signage content management systems (CMS) will accept common image and video files.
However, if you are using a non-smart TV, you can connect your PC to the TVs in the lobby or your business space. You can export the presentation as MP4 and play it directly on your PC to show it on your business TV.
You can also forget all this hard work and work with Loop TV, a free service that provides over 200 channels of music and videos that work with digital signage. Loop's simple interface allows you to display all types of digital signage throughout the day, timed to your business' schedule. The signage appears on the screen alone, or alongside Loop's library of music and non-music content.