New research from Capital Networks Limited (CNL), dynamic digital signage software provider, identifies 'Customer Interaction' as the key driver for the digital signage industry in 2010. Companies across a range of industries, including retail, hospitality and grocery, will look at ways to engage dynamically with their customers, to boost sales and customer loyalty. With the average person exposed to thousands of marketing messages a day, only the most engaging content will break through the clutter. To be effective, digital signage must be able to deliver hyper-targeted, dynamic messaging to a specific audience. In the coming year, businesses will explore smarter ways to use their signage networks. The report suggest that increasingly, retail, hospitality and grocery companies will demand better interplay with customers through their signage networks; and that special consumer offers triggered by external events – such as weather changes – will help drive sales.
"Reports suggest that the US economy is beginning to turn a corner, yet it remains unclear whether consumers will resume spending or remain cautious with their money," commented Jim Vair, Vice President of Business Development at Capital Networks Limited. "Companies that we work with are looking ahead to 2010 and identifying ways to ensure customers – old and new – feel they are getting the best value for money. And to do this, they want to interact with their customers, in real-time. Interactive digital signage is the only advertising mechanism that enables companies to immediately promote cost-saving offers when they most appeal to consumers."
Capital Networks research identifies the following trends:
Retailers – Coupons, Vouchers and 'One-Day Sales' are very effective ways of increasing profit, however they have to be organized and advertised days or weeks in advance, which can be time-consuming and costly. By utilizing 'Dynamic Screen Scheduling' shops can program content to interact with current data. For example, if the current conditions are rainy, consumers coming in from the rain or about to go back outside will see content promoting umbrellas, rain hats, etc but if the weather is bright sunshine, content will automatically switch to promote sunglasses, sunscreen, etc.
Sports Bars/Pubs – Establishments showing live sports events can have their signage pre-programmed to offer promotions when the score of a game changes. For example, every time the home team scores, adverts automatically pop up promoting half price nachos for the next ten minutes. Customers will already have their full attention directed at the screens and such offers can encourage long-term customer loyalty, which is just as important as attracting new customers.
Supermarket Wine Boutiques – Interactive applications are very popular with consumers. Touch screen applications are now available that allow shoppers to press a button indicating what they are planning to have for dinner that evening and the signage would display suggested wine pairings based on the store’s current inventory.
Capital Network Limited’s interactive software, Audience, enables companies to schedule or pre-program their digital signage content to interact with any set of data, target audience or environment. Content can be programmed using simple codes, then triggered to play by real-time automated data feeds, such as local weather conditions, essentially delivering the message most relevant to the current environment of the screen. Through this type of 'Dynamic Screen Scheduling', retailers, restaurants and supermarkets can interact with customers in real-time to increase sales, boost footfall and encourage customer loyalty.