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SGIA

Specialty Graphic Imaging Association

The 7 Elements of Digital Signage

Introduction

The main benefit of digital signage technology is simple: It gains its value through its inherent ability to change. Where static signage is changed infrequently, dynamic signage can be changed whenever it is needed. This allows retailers and others using display technology to adjust messages as needed to reflect the needs and interests of the various business sectors and their respective viewing audiences.

Hardware: This includes all of the necessary computer equipment, sign players, mounting systems, display panels and peripherals that form the core of a digital signage network. 

Software: Digital sign software allows business owners, digital content creators and IT professionals the ability to remotely manage an unlimited number of networked display screens. Software also is used to create the content, timing, feeds and position of the elements within a digital sign. 

Connectivity: This refers to the communication method used to address a particular digital display or network. This could be using a standard Ethernet cable, the Internet, a wireless system or by cellular telephone carrier. 

Content: The substance of any sign is the message that is being relayed to an intended audience. In the case of digital display signage, it’s all about what is showing on the screen. 

Content can range from still images to dynamic videos, flash animations, news feeds, static text or any combination together. Content can be customized for use in many business sectors, from customer service messages to factory floors, sports venues, hospitality, transportation systems, corporate communications, healthcare, government and education, retail merchandising, out-of-home advertising, banking or financial services. 

Operations: You need a plan to install, operate and maintain a digital signage unit or network. Who will install the system? How will you provide for maintenance if there are network issues or monitor outages? Who will control the screens, and from where? 

Design: This aspect of the signage network speaks to the purpose of the sign(s). Where is it situated (environment), what size will it need to be, will it be ceiling mounted, wall mounted or kiosk? How many are required for the intended purpose? 

Business Planning: How you project the cost and revenue stream is one of the most important parts of the business plan. Development of a system requires up front preparation, incorporating models for return on investment (ROI) or return on objectives (ROO). You can do it yourself, hire a consultant or join in partnerships to achieve your goals.

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