Here’s your chance to gather pro tips from Digital Signage Expo veterans! For the past few years, we’ve reached out to our Advisory Board to ask them about their most valued aspects of the conference and how to make the most of attending each year. The board, comprised of experts from a wide range of companies and disciplines, is split into councils that answer an industry-specific question each month through the lens of procuring/creating content, AV integration, consultation, advertising, network management, or being an end user. To better prepare you for 2020’s experience as well as the state of the industry itself, here are some of the best anecdotes and advice from our valued end users and largest advisory board council:
Len Dudis (CIO of Grupo Vidante): First, I would advise first-time attendees to check in at the Digital Signage Federation booth at the show. The Digital Signage Federation (DSF) is an independent, not-for-profit industry association that is focused on providing education and support for anyone navigating the digital signage industry. At the DSF booth, representatives of the Federation can help you put together a plan for the show and introduce you to other members who have had some previous experience with the show.
Douglas Anderson (Senior Director of IT at LA Metro Transit): Make two passes through the Exhibit Hall. First, stroll up and down every aisle to acclimate yourself with the various booths of interest and hopefully discover new products and services you might not have even been aware of. Technology changes fast these days! Jot down the booth numbers as you progress. Then, on the second pass, take your time visiting the booths you marked to gather additional information.
Spencer Graham (Business Development Manager at Real Digital Media): Wear comfortable shoes to walk the showroom floor. It will be a long day on your feet. Also, consider a small backpack to carry any literature or takeaways you might pick up during the time at the conference. And, carry some bottled water. Las Vegas can be dry and arid even in late winter and early spring. Stay hydrated.
Penny Carter (Digital Signage Lead at Lockheed Martin): We were entertaining the idea of replacing our CMS and content creation software platform. We found several vendors at DSE that looked promising in fulfilling all our requirements. In addition, one of the sessions that I attended gave very good, precise information on how to create an RFP (Request for Proposal), which will be needed before any testing of a new platform can take place. A point was made emphasizing the inclusion of the contract with the RFP, which should significantly reduce the amount of time needed for the RFP to be returned. Since returning from DSE, we have sent our RFP to several vendors with hopes that we will have a new platform installed before the end of the year.
Lawrence Chang (Director of IT at Calgary TELUS Convention Centre): Don’t focus on the hardware. There is a lot of amazing technology at DSE, and while important, it is only important in the sense of accomplishing your goal using digital signage. Focus instead on your end goal, what you want to accomplish and how you want to get there. Find out what capabilities are in of the content management software packages to ensure a proper fit. Then fit the hardware to your requirements.
Gary Harris (Digital Video Engineer at Notre Dame): For anyone doing digital signage of any kind, you should very seriously consider going on the guided installation tour on Tuesday around Vegas. It’s a “must” at least once. Also, have a couple of goals for information that you want to find. The amount of information available is overwhelming, so try to have a specific focus of what you need to learn.