Outdoor Digital Signage: Industry Trends for 2015

Interactive. It’s a word that very few of us used ten years ago, and its meaning has changed significantly in the digital age. Nowhere is the trend toward interactive media more intriguing than in outdoor digital signage. 2015 promises to be a year of increased interactive marketing.

Here are some trends demonstrating how digital signage has literally energized the static display. Interactive marketing will take digital displays to the next level—making outdoor LED signage a great choice for interacting with customers:

• Wireless data. The same type of Internet connection that powers smart phones is on trend to ease the programming of LED signs and message centers. And it can be done from practically anywhere.  Wireless data plans like Watchfire’s exclusive offering gives outdoor digital displays the power of a high-speed, secure internet connection—just like the one on a tablet or smartphone.

• 10 mm takes outdoor by storm. Pixel pitch for outdoor digital LED displays continues to get tighter, which means higher resolution and spectacular, dynamic displays.

• Speaking of dynamic content, breaking down the demographics of targeted consumers and understanding how best to reach them is even easier as technology for sign programming becomes more detailed. Programming options for LED displays are becoming more customizable. Campaigns can be targeted to the demographics of traffic passing by and marketed to dynamic factors like weather conditions, inventory fluctuations, and events on the calendar.

• Consumers are trending toward immediacy in unprecedented ways. Faster responsiveness is a consumer expectation. Outdoor LED signs are the perfect medium for dynamic content and fresh updates that follow last-minute or unexpected occurrences. (Remember Oreo’s response to the Super Bowl black out? Oreo Wins The Superbowl) Businesses worried about technology’s depersonalizing effects can take heart in responsiveness that provides the advantage of fostering loyalty, giving customers what they want faster than a competitor. Think of it as having a live greeter in the parking lot who helps everyone find just what they need.

• Proximity selling is already part of the DNA of an LED digital sign, but interactive trends take it to the next level. Digital outdoor signs can combine interactivity and proximity through visible and vibrant content. With LED digital capabilities, businesses will be able to promote loyalty clubs or on the spot coupons and promotions. Combine digital signs with a proximity marketing tool and deliver exclusive content to a smart phone the minute a customer steps inside. In this green marketing option, there are no coupons to remember and no wasted delivery costs.

• Better yet, reach consumers while they’re still in their cars in proximity of a business. Marketing solutions company, Cheil Worldwide recently developed a concept for CJ Entertainment in South Korea, where consumers get exclusive content when they are in proximity of a Wi-Fi poster (Cheil Worldwide Wi-Fi Posters). That technology is on the horizon, but right now outdoor digital signs are ideal for location-based advertising. It’s a unique way to bring consumers from the traffic light out front inside to shop. An IBM study suggests that up to 72 percent of consumers respond to an interactive message received if they’re in sight of the related retail location.

The era of technology driving society is changing. With newer applications and readily available tech, we will continue to harness its power to personalize our lives, ease day-to-day decisions, and give consumers the knowledge to streamline their lives. Interactive marketing is actually less intrusive because, compared to traditional marketing, it is tailored to customers’ needs and daily routines, making technology serve society in unprecedented ways.

—Sarah Robison, Marketing Communications Specialist with Watchfire Signs