What are some ways to localize content on a large-scale digital signage network?”
One option is to use automated localized content like weather, sports, news, community events, radar, traffic, local health conditions, flight boards etc. to create a deeper engagement with your audience about the things that are especially relevant to them. These and other content options are available from providers like Screenfeed at a small per player, per month rate. Configuring the content is very easy: add a zip code/latitude longitude/city, country code, select language, configure screen or zone resolution and copy the URL in to your playlist. Once the content is in your playlist, the screens will continue to push hyper-relevant localized content to your screens every day, with no additional effort.
Another option to create more relevant custom messages and ads is to set up user roles within your scheduling software (if your software supports it). The assumption is that it is nearly impossible for a central software/content management team to create localized content for every screen in a decent size network. Templates and systems have to be created, and responsibility for content creation needs to be dispersed amongst approved stakeholders. User roles allow for local shop/site owners to control all or certain content in the playlist for the screens at their location only. With this option, each site owner has the control to push custom messages that speak to their particular audience but not to every audience in the network. For a local retail branch, it might be a point of sale message for an overstocked item recently discounted in hopes to create more shelf space as soon as possible. Or, a single corporate office owner might be putting together an office Christmas party that is completely irrelevant to every other office in the network.
I have also heard of some networks creating separate web portals (outside of the digital signage software but syncing with it) for local site owners or departments. From the simple web interface, these site owners don’t have to design anything or learn complex software to upload an image with a title and description. The content is then published to a small set of preconfigured HTML5 templates. The other advantage is that this method mitigates the potential network security risk. Solutions like this require a bit of upfront work/costs, but the long-term benefits are significant.