In a day and age where the construction of new stadiums can exceed $1 billion, sports teams across the country are looking for ways to get more bang for their buck. What started as a service to improve the fan experience is quickly turning into a revenue driver, and many stadiums and arenas have upgraded their technology to improve WiFi stability, created branded mobile apps and invested in purpose-built stadium digital signage solutions to not only increase existing sources of income but identify new avenues of growth. Digital signage can be used to improve the guest experience by helping fans find their seats, enhancing security, speeding up concession lines with digital menu boards and so much more.
Some sports fans are so familiar with the stadium that they know all entryways and exits, but this isn’t the norm. The more people find it difficult to navigate a stadium, the more frustrated they’re bound to become. Wayfinding solutions work like a virtual environment of pathways and buildings rendered in three or two-dimensional maps. Smart solutions like Four Winds Interactive’s wayfinding applications can either be configured to allow direct user interaction or positioned as static directional signage. Another sought-after technology, Mobile Wayfinding, works by creating an HTML page that users can interact with in real-time, giving them a static starting location and a target destination. This works by displaying animated paths through turn-by- turn instructions that can be sent via QR code scan, SMS or email.
Many stadiums choose to leverage a combination of those wayfinding solutions because when guests find it easier to locate what they need at a venue, they tend to be more satisfied with their overall experience. Whether they need help finding the nearest bathroom or security checkpoint, the happier a customer is the more likely they will be to return.
Digital menu boards
From the entrance through the concession areas, fan engagement centers and more, any sporting event experience can be enhanced with purpose-built digital signage solutions. Stadium operators can display special offers from fast food stations with digital menu boards. Digital menu boards not only increase the prospect of further improving the customer experience, but they can drive quantifiable increases in revenue. For example, FWI's digital menu boards deployed in MGM generated a total of $100,000 incremental revenue from food and beverage sales. Because digital menu boards can also be displayed in lounges, this allowed MGM to generate 37% more sales.
Digital menu boards work by displaying a multitude of content such as food, beverages and promotional items from multiple sources managed seamlessly through a content management system (CMS). They are also dynamic displays that can be easily changed depending on the time of the day, allowing for better sell-through of specific items.
With thousands of visitors gathered in one spot, stadium managers have to keep themselves prepared for any possibility. Digital signage is a handy tool for managers and security personnel that can play an integral role in crisis mitigation.
Emergency Management Systems can be integrated into FWI’s software, making it easy to automatically trigger alerts and display them on every screen tied into the Visual Communications network. This can include messages for missing children, weather alerts, terror threats and even notifications for closing specific sections of the stadium to facilitate the appropriate response to emergency situations.
Whether stadiums use digital signage solutions to display menu items, prepare for emergency situations or to help sports fans navigate their way around the stadium, at its core, digital signage improves efficiency. In a day and age where sports fans can enjoy a sporting event from the comfort of their own home, without shoddy WiFi, long concession lines and having to search for the nearest bathroom, it’s imperative that stadium authorities offer an unparalleled infrastructure, and digital signage can help.
The value that digital signage can provide to the customers, managers and stadium owners are far-reaching, to say the least. When it comes to filling stadium seats, the competition can be fierce—after all, televised sports broadcasts are improving every day. In order to stay competitive, stadium operators are looking to the newest technology, digital signage included, to keep sporting events running more efficiently than ever before.