Ask the Board – April 23, 2018 | STEVE “CHEWIE” STAVAR


“What should be considered when planning advertising on exterior-facing window displays?”

There are a few main things that come to mind when I think about an exterior-facing window display. The brightness of the display, the reflectance of the glass the display is behind, the exterior area around the display and local regulations for exterior-facing window displays all enter in.

Researching the local regulations is the first thing you need to do. Many areas have guidelines on size, brightness, relative brightness, location and amount and types of movement you are allowed on your exterior-facing display, especially when a road is in a certain proximity to your digital display. There are also considerations to what the penalties are if these guidelines and regulations are not met. Will you have to pay a fine, pay to retrofit your install or completely remove your installation if you don’t follow the local regulations? Once you overcome the box you are confined to for your installation, the physical display is probably the next most important thing to consider.

If your outward-facing display is into an indoor space, the brightness of the display may not be as critical as if the display faces out into a sunlit area. The other thing to be considerate of is the reflectance of the glass of the display and the window the display is behind. If those surfaces are too reflective, it could make it impossible to see the content on the screen.

The area around the display is very important as well when planning for you outward-facing display. If there is not enough space for someone to stop if they are attracted to your sign, you may be better off putting a traditional print piece in the space. If there is a lot of space, do you look to put something in that is interactive and that can draw a crowd?

One last thing to consider when planning to install an exterior-facing window display is what is the back of the display going to look like on the inside of your space? Will it just be a mount and the back of a monitor? How much additional spending will be needed to make the backside of the display look as appealing as the exterior-facing part of your installation?


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Digital Signage Specialist
West Virginia University

End User Council

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