The Big Picture - April 2014 - (Page 14)
By Beth Osborne
lthough the prevalence of dynamic signage in retail
environments has greatly increased, hesitation to adopt
this technology is still persistent among many clients and
prospects. Their objections can range from concerns of
costs to fears of technology.
There's often a need to convince customers that, despite
their concerns, dynamic signage can yield results. Understanding their most common challenges and providing
context - as well as the answers to their questions - can
appease business owners, and increase the likelihood that
you will land the deal.
Here, we'll look at the four most common roadblocks
that customers tend to come up with in protest to dynamic
signage, and how you can address these.
The do-it-yourself challenge
Yes, anybody can put a flat screen on the wall and plug in
a USB, but this is not dynamic signage. So to remove the
challenge and convince businesses to re-think that trip to a
big box store, talk specifications.
First, hardware used for dynamic signage must be
commercial-grade, not off-the-shelf. Commercial-grade
equipment is the only equipment that retains its warranty
in a business setting. Manufacturers will void any warranty
associated with non-commercial equipment that's used
commercially. These higher-grade monitors are also built
for constant use and emit less heat; newer model monitors
in this category also have the ability to reduce burn-in. In
BETH OsBORnE is a dynamic-signage
consultant based in Charlotte, North Carolina,
and the former director of marketing for
Visual impressions, a print and dynamicsignage company headquartered in Charlotte.
A long-time advocate of dynamic signage, she
currently works as a marketing strategist in
the professional-services industry. Contact her
THE BIG PICTURE April 2014
addition to monitors, mounts should be specific to commercial use as well.
You will also want to educate your buyer that certain
states and cities - as well as certain industries - have codes
related to monitor/display installation. For example, there
are specific codes about distance between the bottom of the
screen and sneeze guards in food service. Customers who
are under the impression they can simply screw a mount
into the wall and hang a screen will appreciate your insight
and realize the importance of compliance.
Second, retailers should utilize software that provides
an intuitive interface and easily allows for updates and
scheduling. I highly recommend a Cloud-based software,
allowing users to log in from anywhere. The software
becomes even more important when looking at scale: For
multi-unit businesses, users need to be able to deploy content changes en masse rather than making changes at the
local level. Without software, the only type of content that
can be displayed is an image file, which would need to be
edited, saved, and then reloaded (a very inefficient process).
Finally, your customers need to understand that a
monitor and a USB cause what I refer to as "rolling blackouts." This phenomenon occurs when a USB is plugged
into a screen with no software. Image files are displayed,
often stretched or pixilated, in rotation; and in between
each file is a flash of black screen. Any customer attempting to read these screens will notice these "blackouts"
- they can dramatically impact the customer experience
and, hence, greatly reduce the effectiveness of dynamic
signage. I've seen billion-dollar brands commit this travesty, and if they really understood the impact, they would
quickly make a change.
The how-much challenge
The biggest barrier you have to overcome is typically cost.
Regardless of your customer's size or volume, it's hard for
them to reconcile the investment. Luckily, data and results
are heavily documented in the industry. Use industry
resources such as whitepapers, case studies, and data
from trusted subject-matter experts and industry >48
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Big Picture - April 2014
The Big Picture - April 2014
Graphics on the Go
Go Big or Go Home
RIP Chord: Creating a Harmonious Workflow
Weighing in on the RIP
The Ups and Downs of an Escalator Wrap
The Big Picture - April 2014