Why You NEED a Digital Signage Content Strategy (& Tips for Creating One)

Digital signage is one of the most versatile and effective weapons in a company’s arsenal. But truth be told, the success of digital signage—like any other media—ultimately comes down to the quality of content. Uninspired content just won’t cut it. As a result, companies hoping to get the most out of Visual Communications should devote the necessary time and resources to build a digital signage content strategy that is engaging, relevant and up-to-date.

But you might be wondering: why is high-quality content the foundation of a digital signage campaign? The answer is simple. Stale or boring content will be largely ignored and, in turn, your investment in a Visual Communications network won’t yield the best results. Digital signage content done right, on the other hand, is a game-changer and can accomplish many valuable things for your company, such as:

Designing an effective digital signage campaign isn’t a simple task. If you want to reap its numerous benefits, the first step is acknowledging the types of content that already work on other digital platforms.

We know consumers are captivated by images, video and original graphics much more than text. We know that interactivity equals engagement. We know that personalized content drives consumer loyalty. And we know that consumers have short attention spans. Your digital signage content should reflect these facts. Not doing so is a surefire way of ignoring your digital signage network’s massive potential to reach consumers in meaningful ways.

So, what are the fundamental steps you should take to create a successful digital signage content strategy?

Have a Defined Set of Goals

The very first step you should take is to identify the goals of your digital signage campaign. Knowing your objectives will help determine nearly every aspect of your digital signage content. But to know your goal, you must first know your audience and their expectations. Who are they? What are their needs and motivations?

Once you’ve constructed a representative profile of your audience using all the available data, the next step is to tailor your Visual Communications network’s messaging to build consumer trust, engagement and satisfaction. Is your goal to entertain visitors while they wait? To boost sales by showcasing products and services? Or to simply help them find their way around your building? Or is your target audience internal because you have a focus on improving employee communications and performance management? Your goals and audience are your roadmap. Follow it.

Choose the Right Content

Your audience should inform every decision when it comes to your digital signage content strategy. And this is especially true for the type of content you push. For instance, if Millennials are a significant part of your audience, your content should speak to them in their preferred language—whether it be through short videos or social media. Other content choices that need to be carefully considered are interactive vs. static, font, audio and the type of visuals you will use. Again, these should all be dictated by your audience and objectives.

Think Like an Architect

Consumers want things when and where they need them—we are all creatures of convenience, after all, and recent technologies have spoiled us. Therefore, any successful digital signage content strategy should give the most relevant information to consumers at the most relevant time—anything else will most likely just turn them off. This means observing your available geometry and space and designing a proper layout for your screens and video walls to display important messaging at the perfect place.

On top of this, when it comes to digital signage content design, timing is everything. It’s important to carefully consider content length. The last thing you want to do is display a 10-minute video in a place where people will wait for one minute or a one-minute looping video in a place where people will be waiting for 10 minutes. In general, short, straight-to-the-point videos in high foot traffic areas work best—especially when it comes to boosting sales.

Avoid These Common Mistakes

Pitfalls are a reality when it comes to creating content for your Visual Communications network. But the best defense against these hang-ups is to simply be aware of the most common ones. Don’t let your message get lost in the noise of too many images, text blocks or graphics. Although less is more is generally a good rule of thumb in the world of digital signage, don’t make your content too simple to where it comes off as boring. Unique, colorful and eye-catching content still wins. Last and most importantly, don’t forget your purpose. This means motivating your audience to take action, typically through calls-to-action (CTAs). Create strong but not overbearing content, and without a doubt, your audience will be more active and engaged.

Choose the right Content Management System (CMS)

Finally, choosing the right CMS can save hundreds of work hours and thousands of headaches. The key features to look for in a CMS are top-notch scheduling capabilities, a user-friendly interface, cloud-based mobility and universally supported content. Four Winds Interactive’s Content Manager comes with all of the above as well as a drag-and-drop interface, pre-built content, industry-proven apps and advanced data integration capabilities.

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