“What are the top three questions you should ask when considering digital signage as a communication medium?”
From an end-user standpoint, I would have several questions regarding utilizing digital signage as a communication medium. My top questions would start out with, “Will I receive a Return On my Objective?” I always say, “Just because you can do it, doesn’t mean you have to.” Will the cost of the signage, players, CMS, time, maintenance and connectivity be worth it in the long run? If done correctly, the objective should be achieved if proper planning and research is completed regarding what you want to accomplish on the front end.
My next question would be, “Who is going to own this process?” If utilizing digital signage for communicating with employees or customers, the owner will need to constantly be in touch with all organization stakeholders to determine timing and messaging. Additionally, there will need to be someone with the final say on content. Some owners will find themselves getting pulled in different directions if policies and procedures are not in place regarding what will be displayed. For the initiative to be successful, content will need to be useful, timely and updated frequently. In other words, the owner will need to be an individual that has time and desire to dedicate to the process.
My final question would be, “Where will the display/s be located?” If they can’t see it, they won’t be able to read it. Again, time and research comes into play when determining the location of new screens. Many locations will be obvious due to common traffic patterns of the target audience. Another obvious location is where the target audience congregates. If the obvious isn’t available, I recommend taking the time to observe the proposed display areas at different times of day to determine the appropriate locations and the best lines of sight. I would also ensure that the selected screens are commercial grade. I see so many installations that utilize consumer-grade screens, and I know someone will be very disappointed in about a year when the screen goes down due to overuse. You get what you pay for, and you’ll get many more years out of commercial-grade equipment.