Skip to main content

Digital Signage & Environmental Design: The Art of Techorating

Digital Signage & Environmental Design: The Art of Techorating

[Editor's note: As a member of the Digital Signage Federation (DSF), author Hussain Ali will be a panelist on the DSF’s April “Hangout” discussion entitled, “Digital Signage and Environmental Design,” on Wednesday, April 13 at 2pm EST. More information on this and other DSF events can be found on the DSF website.]

The world of home and business decor is ever-changing, constantly evolving and adapting to new developments in modern style. One of the newer trends in spatial decor is the fusion of technology and decorating, or 'techorating,' a term coined by popular TLC designer, Doug Wilson, who laid the groundwork for techorating in homes.

  • Hussain Ali
  • This digital age decorating method is no longer restricted to home use, but instead thrives as one of the most attractive trends in commercial decorating, serving a dual purpose as both adornment and advertising tool. The combination of beauty and practically is what allows a techorated space to be a functional marketing and advertising tool deliberately designed to embellish professional spaces while attracting consumers. And, as with all embellishments, it is important to consider certain things such as the location of the technological display and the décor that will surround it. Size, color and finish of technology hardware such as digital displays should determine the surrounding traditional decor.
  • Traditional home techorating might consist of hiding technology components such as speakers in plain sight among indoor plants or bookshelves, but techorating in the business place is more about using technology to accentuate the beauty of the space and serve as an attention-grabbing tool. Digital signage is meant to set businesses apart from their competition. Video walls, interactive touch screens, digital menu boards and other digital displays are on the rise among food and retail establishments because of their ability to sell, entertain, engage and add to the aesthetics of the space. It is human nature to gravitate towards movement and color, which makes digital signage the best technological medium for informative and effective techorating.
  • Focusing on one strong focal point could be the difference between having a techorated space that appears sleek and sophisticated and one that appears sloppy and unsystematic. With the ability to mount digital displays on just about any surface, there are ample techorating options and the opportunities to impress and dazzle guests are endless. Store ambiance is often a top priority in retail, so following a few simple guidelines for keeping the clutter away is essential. The common "less is more" approach works best for most spaces. High-end retailers benefit most from this technique as the polished look of digital screens sets the tone for a sophisticated shopping experience.

Temporary Signage with Digital Totem
Most advantageous are the business opportunities that are available. Making the most of digital screens used for techorating means using business hours to advertise, inform and market the brand throughout the entire day. It means taking advantage of the chance to tap into human desires and emotions by illustrating why certain products are necessary. Using visual communications to connect with an audience onsite has provided a new window of opportunity opened only recently by the dawn of the digital age, and made stylish by the practice of techorating.

HD2 See Thru Kiosk: Retail Showcase with Transparent LCD being used in Smartphone stores.
With increased sales and no lack of new distributors, the digital signage industry is undeniably booming. According to a study conducted by Mood Media Corporation, digital signage installations will be increasing by 40% each year through 2020, and four out of five brands are already seeing a 33% increase in sales after switching from print media and static signage to digital displays. Cutting print costs and scheduled message changing options are indisputable benefits of digital displays, but as mass visual communication outlets such as Facebook and Instagram continue to dominate and dictate what the world sees every second of the day via viral messaging, aesthetics will triumph. The look of restaurants, retail establishments and other places of business will be under the spotlight. Reputation and audience perception is everything, so screens, once thought of as a simple message boards, are now becoming attractive centerpieces – the work of art on display – through techorating.

Design-centric technology holds exciting potential for those who choose to delve into that creative world for the benefit and betterment of their brand. While traditional digital flat screens are the common technology of choice, there are many other display options that look stunning and work wonderfully for techorating. Touchscreen kiosks, for instance, make exquisite focal points, attractive area dividers, entertainment stops, and information dissemination tools – all things perfect for techoration. Video walls are another inviting possibility. The sheer size potential makes them an enticing choice; the only thing limiting the magnitude of a video wall installation is the size of the mounting wall itself.

Deciding to techorate is not only a business decision, but an artistic one as well. With countless technology options and decorating trends to choose from, creating an inviting ambiance with techorating just takes a bit of creativity and good taste. This decorating movement has introduced digital technology and hardware to not only a new user base, but an entire audience that will lead to tremendous growth in technology and interior design in the coming years.

Emerus Emergency Care Waiting Area

As a member of the Digital Signage Federation (DSF), author Hussain Ali will be a panelist on the DSF’s April “Hangout” discussion entitled, “Digital Signage and Environmental Design,” on Wednesday, April 13 at 2pm EST. More information on this and other DSF events can be found on the DSF website. Both DSF members and non-members may join this or any of the DSF’s scheduled Hangout discussions for free – but registration is required and can be accessed on the DSF website at Ali, Principal of Houston Dynamic Displays (HD2) is a seasoned Information Technology veteran whose passion for digital signage has led to award winning architectural lighting designs among other large projects. His primary focus is turn-key custom digital signage integration and consulting through HD2 while hoping to impact the digital signage industry by thinking beyond the box of digital signage software and implementing customized, efficient and user-friendly digital signage solutions that have not been seen before.