Being in the digital signage arena, I am not always the most objective eye when it comes to catchy displays. I am often kinder to the medium than most consumers. That is, I will look at any digital signage no matter what is on it. I have this uncontrollable need to evaluate DOOH content wherever and whenever I see it.
This morning, I’m standing in line at the dry cleaners. I’m looking around and I see this sign behind the counter – Clean Your Bed Spread, $29.99. Behind the cash register is a screen with a news channel playing. So I’m thinking, why does he have news on when he obviously has something he is trying to sell me? (He wants me to have my bedspread cleaned for $29.99.) I get to the front of the line and the owner, Ralph, is there. Now, I’ve known Ralph for about fifteen years, so I say, “Ralph, come here.” I put my arm around his shoulder and continue:
I’m standing in line three minutes. I’m looking at the news, which I don’t care; I’ve already seen the news today. And I look over here and I see this sign, that I think your granddaughter made, that says bring in your bedspread to be cleaned for $29.99. Now, obviously you want me to bring my bedspread in. Tell me why. You have up to three minutes to tell me why (dwell time). (Ralphie goes into a dissertation on why I need him to dry clean my bedspread.) Ralphie, that makes perfect sense. You just motivated me to spend $30 with you. Now, take that screen (with the news) and get some guys that know how to create content. Tell the “story” you just told me to everybody else standing here on why they should bring their bedspreads in for dry cleaning.
All stories are the same, whether they are 30 minutes, 90 minutes, or 45 seconds. They all have three parts – a beginning, a middle, and an end. Fine arts majors call it three acts. But the objective in this case is to motivate me to get my bedspread cleaned. If you can tell me a story that arrives at a logical conclusion, then by the time I arrive at the counter, Ralph has picked up thirty bucks. Now if you tell that story to every guy standing in line today, that could equate to lot of bedspreads and a lot of $30 bills. Motivating content leads to increased services and that means a lot of extra cash.
Let’s take that a step further. If Ralph puts up three stories – each a minute to a minute and a half, a customer is going to see at least one story. The customer is going to be pitched at least one service. How hard is that?