One pitfall of digital media signage for companies is not knowing or understanding all of the elements that go together to make up the overall system. There are several elements that are present in all digital signage systems. Any one of them can become a weak spot in the complete system if it isn’t known and understood on some level. You must understand each element on it’s own, and then understand how it works within the complete system.
The elements that are present in every digital signage system are hardware, connectivity, content, operations, design and business. Granted, they are present in different size and color on every system, but they ARE all there.
The hardware elements aren’t limited to the media players and what physical space they will occupy. Yes, it includes that as well as the displays, mounts and enclosures. However, components required for getting the AV and data signals to the players and screens are part of this category.
Software is a big element. Will it be a service solution? Hosted? A single-purchase software application that is licensed and loaded on a player or is it part of the player hardware already?
What will your connectivity look like? Will it be a dedicated connection? Will the cabling connection be used to reach the screens over a network? Will that connection be shared with other applications? Actual media signage performance is driven, to a large degree, by the answer to this question. Part of connectivity can include extensions or network switching equipment. You may have to integrate video or data from another source. There is a lot more to connectivity, but you get the point.
Probably one of the most overlooked elements in the beginning of the planning stage is content. It can be outsourced to a marketing or advertising agency, or will you do it yourself? Perhaps some of both would work well.
Then there are operations. This element includes everything you need to do to get your digital media signage up and running, then KEEP it running so you get the most value from your investment. Decide at the outset who will be responsible for what and who else from other areas of your organization need to be brought in. Also make sure you know from the start how you will provide backup for the system.
The design element is another part of your signage system. Have a clear idea of what it will do and whom it will reach. How will that be implemented? Will your signage be in multiple locations? Should you start small and experiment with various methods of presentation to find the one that works best for you? Will the entire system go live at once?
Finally, what do you want your digital signage to do for your business? How should it affect your bottom line or your numbers or what ever it is you want to accomplish with digital signage? Analyze how it will help you save time, be more efficient, boost sales, and so on. What is your strategy to accomplish this? Are there partners who will participate, and if so, what will their responsibilities be?
As stated, it is important for the success of your digital signage campaign to know and understand all of the pieces that will make up the puzzle.