You’ll hear this notation time and time again in the Digital Signage world – content is king!
Having a stable and reliable digital signage system in place provides a you with a solid foundation to deliver your digital signage, however the final piece of the puzzle is one of the most important parts… delivering the right content.
Gone are the days of ‘PowerPoint’ digital signage – it simply doesn’t cut it anymore. As digital signage becomes more prevalent in our day to day lives, users expect to be able to do more with it and viewers expect to be captivated by it. Digital signage platforms such as the ONELAN solution we offer, allows users to deliver multiple media types, in multi-zone layouts including HTML5, CSS3, jQuery, Images, Movies, RSS, Text and Audio. With these tools at your disposal it opens a whole world of creativity and allows you to experiment with new content ideas to see what works with your audience. Below we have outlined a few key areas that we feel contribute to generating exciting and interesting digital signage:
Graphically Layered Digital Signage
You’ve got all the right kit to deliver your engaging digital signage content but all you do is slap a few scrolling text fields on the screen with solid background colours. This is still going to deliver your message, however as with all design, it pays to spend a bit of time graphically designing your layouts. Using professional designers, either in house or from agencies such as ourselves, you can design elements of your digital signage (image / movie format) and layer them to bring your digital signage content to life.
By thinking about what information you want to display on your digital signage layout and sketching some ideas on to a piece of paper before you start, can really help refine your content before you even begin to build it. Once you have a sketched version of your layout, then you can start to think about the best way to graphically bring this to life and begin to layer content at the design stage to maximise the impact.
The CAE digital signage content example to the right, shows how you can bring simple information to life by incorporating different design elements into digital signage. The background is a movie file of clouds moving through the sky, the world clocks and simulator status table is designed in a digital flight board style, image borders are used to enclose the live TV and live traffic map data, a solid blue block to define the RSS feed and transparent backgrounds are used for the text fields so they sit on top of the animated background.
Integrate External Data to your Digital Signage
Being able to use HTML5, CSS3 and jQuery content on ONELAN digital signage means it is possible to use some of the latest web design techniques to display content. ONELAN also offer a software program known as Data Collection Engine (DCE), which allows external sources such as Excel, Outlook Calendars, XML and SQL to automatically send data to the digital signage media players. Using these tools it is possible to take external data sources such as latest sales data or pricing information and convert it into a glossy interactive piece of content for your digital signage.
Below are some examples of how Eclipse Digital Media have used these tools to extract external data through DCE and delivered to digital signage in a dynamic and professional way, using a graphically layered design, HTML5, CSS3 and jQuery:
Scheduled & Location based Digital Signage Content
Delivering your content to the right audience in the right location at the right time… an imperative part of digital signage communications. Scheduling content to appear on certain days and certain times of the day is nothing new but it is an essential part of delivering the right digital signage content. By using functions on your digital signage, you can segment you content and target messages effectively, which can help increase sales in retail environments and provide informative messages to your target audience when it will have maximum impact.
Taking scheduling of content a step further, by having the ability deliver messages per location allows you to segment your digital signage content even further. This can be very useful for digital signage networks where the core content & design remain the same however certain content is only applicable to certain locations. Using something called Player Local Information (PLI) on the ONELAN digital signage media players it is possible to ‘tag’ each media player and then specify content to only play if a relevant tag is recognised.
Going back to HTML and web techniques, it is also possible to deliver digital signage content based on location through things like the weather or indeed the temperature of a location. Below is an example Eclipse Digital Media have specifically developed to use on ONELAN digital signage. It allows users to input the postcode of a location and then set rules to activate different content based on the temperature for that location.
To conclude, we cannot stress enough how important it is to get your content right on your digital signage. Spend extra time on the design elements and think about what you can do to enhance your content to both captivated your audience, while still delivering your key objective.
If you would like any further information about any of the digital signage content design services Eclipse Digital Media offer, please do not hesitate to contact us.