The digital revolution has brought with it many changes, one of which isthe widespread use of electronic signage. Gone are the days of hand-painted signboards. Today every sector has its own version and use for the digital signage. Even educational institutions are making use of these signs to spread relevant messages and achieve specific goals. At the same time, businesses, both big and small, are also using digital signage for a number of purposes. Let us try to examine how these two crucial user segments utilize digital signage to meet their requirements.
Comparing the application of digital signs in educational institutes and business:
- Dissemination of Information
It is a standard use of digital signage for schools and collegesas well as enterprises. The schools and colleges can use it to convey information about classes, canteens, competitions, admissions and anything else related to its daily operations. Both studentsand visitors can benefit from relevant information displayed on these boards. Businesses also are increasingly using digital signage to for marketing purposes. Brands are now using them to reach out to their customers to educate them about a new product or service.
- Use for Advertising
Businesses are using digital signage for advertising in a big way. Whether it is the point of sale section of a retail outlet or the company’s very own offices, factories, retail outlets or warehouse, digital signage can find its place anywhere. Businesses that place their ads on digital signs receive more engagement with the audience. Such instances of advertising are less in the education sector, but the application of digital signs for advertising is slowly catching popularity.
- Timetables and Schedules
It is one area where schools and colleges are far ahead than businesses. Since educational institutes work around a set schedule, it pays them well to have these periodically changing schedules on a digital board. Not just students, even visitors can benefit from having access to this information. On the other hand, a business would want to display schedules and plans for new product launches.
- Use of Social Media Feeds
That is where businesses are much more active than schools or colleges. This feature of digital signage allows businesses to directly link the display to the different social media profilesof the company such as Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn. It serves two purposes – to share the latest information about the company on the digital signage displays as soon as they are flashed on their social media feeds, and second is to let people know about their social media presence in real-time. However, when it comes to schools and colleges, these institutions are slowly starting to take benefit of social media marketing. Therefore, it may not be long before we get to see these institutes do the same.
- Display of Achievements
Nothing makes an educational institution look better than the achievements of its students or alumni. That is one reason why the use of digital signage has caught on when it comes to highlighting announcements of specific accomplishments of individual students or teachers. Businesses have a slightly different approach because they tend to emphasize the overall achievements of the company more than those of the individual employees. Companies usually highlight individual contributions when it comes to announcing titles such as “employee of the month” or “salesperson of the month.” They may also display great examples of customer service or devotion to duty showed by their employees.
- What are the common elements of digital signage?
Whether it is a school or college or a business, there are some elements of a digital signage that are common. Let us see what some of these important elements are.
The utility of digital signage is enhanced if it is connected to the other elements in the school or business where it is used. For example, if the library inventory list of a school is connected to a network of all the displays, then real time notification of new book arrivals or book reading programs that are coming up can easily be shared with students and teachers without having to create new content. Seamless connectivity can be ensured in a variety of ways depending on the particular setup that is used. Internet, wireless, Ethernet or cellular phone networks are all popular choices.
The hardware needed for a complete digital signage setup would depend on the size of the school, college or business, and the particular locations where such displays will be placed. Depending on the plan, the required hardware could include any or all of basic computer hardware including sign players along with display panels (LED or otherwise) and mounting systems that will help in putting up the boards.
It is the most critical element which would allow the seamless integration of several input sources into the signage. Software can also help with creation and collection of relevant content. Once the content has been locked in, the correct software can be used to manage this content in the background to keep it dynamic. Editing and updating the content also becomes possible using these tools.
The effectiveness and utility of a digital signage depends on how well the content is designed, and how frequently it is updated to keep it useful. Depending on the audience and the message, content could be a mix of text, graphics, animation, videos or even social media feeds.
Whether for education or business, the smart use of digital signage can give myriad benefits, which is the reason it is being adopted increasingly in both the education sector and by small and big businesses. The critical elements of digital signage need to be kept in mind while designing a program for introducing it for various uses in different industries. The expected audience, the purpose of the communication, and the layout of the premises would dictate the choice of elements such as software, hardware and content.
Author Bio: Karen is a Business Tech Analyst. She is very responsible towards her job. She loves to share her knowledge and experience with her friends and colleagues.