The digital signage landscape is rising into the cloud at a dizzying pace, largely because it’s become too ambitious to act as a mere audiovisual tool. Today’s signage is connected, informative, and intelligent - so much so that it’s disrupting the way businesses define their profits. You can’t change buyer behavior or triple sales if your smart signs are glorified media players. If you'd like to dig into all things digital signage including hardware and installation, check out this digital signage section too.
Today's technology reduces perceived wait times at checkouts by 35%. A single on-premise sign can raise revenue by 4.75% and increase recall rates by 83%. That’s a lot of power, so non-connected screens and media players simply won’t do. Contemporary deployments are intelligent and ambitious, requiring an entirely new set of rules. A cloud-based biome is needed to offer scheduling, analytics, and network efficiency, so security needs have risen almost as high as the cloud networks they protect.
Biometric technology was once a futuristic movie fantasy, but today, transport hubs and airports are using it to streamline their systems through smart signage. Wendy’s is using it to create self-ordering kiosks, while Fox Sports uses it for continuously-changing weatherproof displays. To meet those innovations, the smart sign software market has become complex and ranging, with products to meet every vertical market. The industry is teeming with complicated solutions, so you need more than a simple map to find your pathway through it. Not all offerings come with user-friendly APIs, and many don’t integrate with other signage software or hardware. CMS providers often have to rewrite your code to connect every component with other parts of your system. The cloud solves many of those problems.
Cloud-based systems with their own CMSes and operating systems can be deployed faster and networked more thoroughly than Windows-reliant options, but this shift isn't without its challenges. As businesses adopt a more IT-centric strategy, media players, CMS providers, and AV integrators must all evolve alongside them. Each element can no longer advance alone. It must integrate and connect in response to the new paradigm. CMS providers cannot achieve that retroactively.
Digital signage has plenty to offer the rest of your business processes, and cloud-based products can also provide seamless cross-compatibility. Cobbled together tools cost considerably more in the long run and will never achieve full efficiency, no matter how much iterative development you do. Your first goal must be to achieve a secure, functional, holistic system. Once you’ve implemented it, you should be able to focus on strategically leveraging it for profits, not fixing the problems you created by not doing it right the first time. Fortunately, market maturity translates into sophisticated best practices to guide you through the morass.
Digital signage is the core around which other business processes revolve, so it must be purpose-built. A reliable media player and hardware guesswork inspired by insecure consumer markets won't do. You need a dedicated OS that supports a range of media players that can feed data back to your software without requiring new code for every arising need. Media player creators must enable comprehensive functionality to control and manage content from any source to any screen.
AV integrators can deploy signage by:
- Creating user-focused solutions based on their chosen media, screens, and CMS
- Creating their own system using a custom-made CMS.
Both options can achieve more with the right APIs and cloud-based tools.
THE BENEFITS OF THE CLOUD FOR USERS
Well-integrated cloud-based services allow users to:
- Perform remote reboots.
- Control, manage, and interact with their devices more richly.
- Collect real-time performance data.
- Receive subscription notifications.
However, those are bread-and-butter functions in comparison to the cloud’s highest goals. UK retail titan, Argos, recently deployed an interactive digital signage solution that delivers a personalized brand experience to each customer. Tablet-based browsers and video walls display unique content to each department, carrying buyers to their friends through social media sharing screens. The system keeps pricing current, updates with promotions, and offers real-time data support. This is the true face of contemporary digital signage. It can provide real-time playback and give clients a rich and immersive brand experience.
Digital signage has waltzed right into the larger IT space, and this is excellent news for brands across industries. In the past, signage had to squeeze itself into an ill-fitting “suit.” Today, that suit is bespoke and gorgeously tailored to every business. Its ease of use is transforming the cloud-based, IT-centric model into an outbound marketing channel replete with messaging and communications powers. It can create analytics, identify new automation opportunities, and interact in personalized ways. The future holds exciting things for the field, which is projected to be worth $37 billion by 2025. Imagine a world in which artificially intelligent signage can draw its own conclusions, market with industry trends, and send promotions to users as they walk by. We can expect unprecedented levels of innovation in the coming years. To learn more about, contact PTG today.