The Worst Advice We’ve Heard About Digital Signage

We’ve been in the digital signage game for a number of years now. Before it was even an industry, we were tinkering and experimenting with signage, content, and visuals, seeing how they could play synergistically in a physical space.

No easy task for an industry that didn’t exist up until recently.

As you can imagine, throughout the years, we’ve heard great advice from industry veterans and trailblazers, but we’ve also heard some really horrible advice as well from the common Joe that thinks it’s as easy as “sticking it up on the wall.”

As we begin to gear up for a monumental DSE this year in Las Vegas, let’s take a look at the past 13 years and read some of the worst advice we’ve ever heard about digital signage.

1. “Just stick it on the wall, it’ll be fine”
You have to appreciate this approach. I’m sure the Romans thought the same thing as they were constructing their aqueducts “Just put the stone on top, it’ll work fine”. NO! Be smart in your approach and deliberate in your methodology. “Sticking it on the wall” does not constitute a digital signage strategy. It shows a lack of brand pride.

2. “Content is King”
Yes, we all know that by now! Please provide a better explanation instead of just saying “you need great content” It’s an overused term. Think about your signage program from the eyes of the consumer. Curate content that is thought-provoking, insightful and one that sparks an action.

3. “Content Development is Easy!”
“The software does most of the work” is one of our favorites. Right. The software is is creating content specifically for your customers as soon as you plug it in. Think again. Content development is hard work. You have to know who you are talking to and what motivates them to perform an action. You need to figure out a way to tell the stories you want to tell. You have to constantly be one step ahead, ensuring your strategy is proactive. It takes an experienced group to truly craft and deliver great content, don’t be fooled.

4. “We Got This”
When first starting out as an agency, we were naive ourselves. We had clients that would say to us: “we can handle the day to day operations ourselves” and our answer was always “sure.” Sure is an interesting word because in one aspect, we were allowing them to move forward with day-to-day management, but on the other hand, “sure” was used in a “you’ll be back” kind of way. Usually, they did come back because day-to-day management of a digital signage program takes a collection of true professionals because you are dealing with hardware, software and content creation & management. Now, we don’t even engage if we cannot handle the day-to-day because we have seen too many horror stories in our career.

5. The design is good enough!
We love good design. It inspires us to create for our clients and provides an outlet for us all in our downtime. But when designing for digital signage, good design only isn’t going to cut it. It has to be designed not only within the brand guidelines, but it must be rooted in strategy meant to produce an ROI.

And there it is. Some of the worst advice we’ve ever heard about digital signage.

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