Digital signage is the up-and-coming trend sure to revitalize in-store experiences for customers, employees, and marketers alike. Like audio programs, visuals can get customers’ attention and create a specific mood for the in-store experience, but digital signage has much stronger potential to engage and inform customers, especially those in the connected generation.

Here’s a brief go-to guide of different possible in-store visuals and what they can do:

Marketing Signage

This category includes screens dedicated to communicating the business’s events, promotions, and featured products to customers. While it sounds pretty simple, this technology can do some pretty cool things. It is easily updatable, great for limited-time promotions and changes in product offering. Smart marketers can even set the signage to change according to outside stimuli – for example, automatically advertising milkshakes when it’s hot or specialty coffee when it’s cold.

Hybrid Television Programs

Hybrid TV uses multiple resources and media types to entertain and inform customers. This form of signage is especially effective in auto repair shops, medical offices, and other businesses with well-used waiting rooms, and has actually been shown to reduce perceived wait times. No surprise there… a blank wall doesn’t occupy your mind much and being stuck with a broadcast TV that’s showing reruns of “Jerry Springer” is downright intolerable.

Hybrid TV programs can include:

• 3-5 minute clips of popular TV shows – known as short-form television
• Current news clips
• Lifestyle content (such as tips for dental hygiene or car maintenance)
• Up-to-the-minute RSS feeds of news, sports, stocks, etc.
• Advertisement from your business, including special promotions and upcoming events
• No competitor ads (unlike broadcast TV)

Artistic Visuals

Artistic or aesthetic content is digital signage that doesn’t include any marketing. It’s purely conceptual and for decoration. It can be a single screen, solid video wall, or creative mosaic shape with custom-designed art. Artistic visuals can enhance the mood of any commercial location, especially when the graphics are matched to atmospheric music. The digital art is also easy to change up so the business stays fresh and modern.

Social Media Dashboards

Some well-connected companies are tracking social media posts and displaying them in-store, and customers love it. Through a customizable template, stores can set dashboards to track specific hashtags, Twitter handles, or other online shout-outs from customers and display them on screen in real time. Since the connected generation can nearly always access their social media platforms, dashboards are a perfect way to get customers excited to interact with the brand and promote it online, just because they want to see their post appear on screen in the store.

So don’t ignore this trend in Experience Design, and don’t restrict your own digital signage to just in-store commercials. There’s a whole range of possibilities for in-store video and graphics, and in the end the only limit is your marketing ingenuity.

– Submitted by Samantha Knowlton, Marketing