If you're stuck in traffic it probably helps to have company — even better if it's funny company, someone who'll crack jokes and keep you amused or at least bemused instead of yelling at other drivers.
A smart campaign for Sprite provided the company earlier this year with a joke-telling digital billboard in a busy intersection in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi, "Bill the Billboard."
Bill's gotten a lot of attention lately, including mentions by AdWeek and Ads of the World, but it appears to have run sometime in the last year, given that it took Silver in the Loerie Awards for agency Ogilvy & Mather Africa - Nairobi last month at the Cape Town International Convention Centre in Cape Town, South Africa. The Loeries go to the best campaigns in South Africa and the region, according to Cape Town Magazine.
And while Bill's jokes were genuinely groan-worthy — one has him telling a therapist, "You know who raised me? A crane." — they are worth an occasional chuckle..
Here are two videos showing Bill the Billboard in all his glory:
Yesterday marked the opening of one of the biggest, if not the biggest, sporting events on the planet, and digital signage was there in an un-missable way.
The 2014 FIFA World Cup kicked off with a giant LED digital signage globe that flashed welcoming greetings in the languages of the 32 participating countries before opening like a flower and transforming into a stage on which performers Jennifer Lopez, Pitbull and Cláudia Leitte sang this World Cup's anthem, "We Are One (Ole Ola)."
Clearly, some watchers didn't know quite what to make of the globe ...
... but it was certainly part of the spectacle.
So now most of the world has seen just one more of the innumerable ways digital signage can be used creatively. The next time someone ask you, "What's digital signage?" you can point them to this.
"If you don't know where you are going, you'll end up someplace else." – Lawrence Peter "Yogi" Berra
The famed philosopher and Hall of Fame Yankees catcher Yogi Berra was right: If you want to get where you want to go, you'd better know where it is.
But how do you know where you're going?
The most intractable problem in any industry is planning for the future. Who knows what it holds? How can you plan for the unknown?
Well, you can ask a lot of people what they're planning to do in the future, and go from there. And that's exactly what we're doing – and we could use your help. (And you might just help yourself while you're at it.)
We're putting together the latest version of our Digital Signage Future Trends report, in which we'll combine the results of our far-reaching, responsive survey about end-users' future digital signage plans with commentaries from industry leaders about what they see coming down the digital signage pike in the next few years.
We're already over the 700-response mark for the survey, with a healthy mix of end-users, potential end-users and solution providers. If you're one of the above, and you haven't already, you should fill it out.
And if you're a member of the digital signage industry, whether it's in hardware, software or something else, you should be asking your clients and potential clients to take it too.
The more information we can get about what's coming, the better off we'll all be. After all, "Knowing is half the battle."
So take a few minutes and head here to take the survey (or paste https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/DSTFT_2014 into your favorite browser). Or tweet it out. Or send it to your favorite clients. Participants will get different questions based on their responses. For example, a hotelier will see and respond to different survey questions than a restaurateur or a college dean. And we'll be putting out a report soon that takes all that information and compares it to the growing body of historical data we have fromm previous surveys.
Heck, if you fill it out you might even win a new iPad mini.
There's a reason we have living rooms and dens and man caves.
You can't set up your TV outside; if it gets rained on, it's goodbye to the set.
The same can be said for most electronics components, including most digital signage: They need to be inside, in a controlled environment.
If you want to take your electronic devices — and your digital signage — outside, you need to take certain precautions and certain factors into account. It's not as simple as just setting up a display and a Web-connected media player on the endcap at your local Walmart.
It gets wet outside. And hot. And cold. And dusty. And windy.
Most digital signage components aren't big fans of any of those things. So if you're going to set up your displays outside, you have to take into account some special considerations and take some specific precautions.
But the benefits of taking your digital signage outside could far outweigh the extra work and extra cost, replacing static advertising or wayfinding with a dynamic medium that should deliver a significant uptick in engagement and a healthy ROI.
Scroll on down to the infographic below (sponsored by Manufacturing Resources International) to see some of the specific considerations end-users should be sure to take into account when setting up outdoor digital signage. And, as usual, feel free to use the embed code below the infographic to publish it on your own website or blog.
Beating the Elements with Outdoor Digital Signage [Infographic]
Compliments of Digital Signage Today
Learn more at DigitalSignageToday.com/Outdoor
Download a PDF of this infographic
EMBED THIS INFOGRAPHIC ON YOUR SITE
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<a href="http://www.digitalsignagetoday.com/blog/11359/Beating-the-Elements-with-Outdoor-Digital-Signage-infographic?rb=false"><img border="0" alt="Beating the Elements with Outdoor Digital Signage [Infographic]"width="500" src="http://www.digitalsignagetoday.com/images/Outdoor-Digital-Signage-infographic.png"/></a><br/><a href="http://www.digitalsignagetoday.com/blog/11359/Beating-the-Elements-with-Outdoor-Digital-Signage-infographic?rb=false">Beating the Elements with Outdoor Digital Signage [Infographic]</a><br/></a>Compliments of <a href="http://www.digitalsignagetoday.com">Digital Signage Today</a><br/></a>Learn more at <a href="http://www.digitalsignagetoday.com/outdoor">DigitalSignageToday.com/Outdoor</a>
It's the screen so bad it has its own name, and you never want to see it on your computer screen or even worse on your digital signage displays: The Blue Screen of Death.
There's a grocery store that will remain nameless near me that had a BSOD not once but twice recently. (And for all I know, it could've had the dreaded BSOD up and running the entire week and a half between my visits. But let's hope they're not that incompetent there.)
But here's the thing: Even if the screen is running properly, it's pretty much useless anyway just because of its poorly thought out placement.
1) It's placed on the wall at the very front of the store; y'know, the wall customers never look at until they're already at the checkout counter and not very likely to leave the line and go pick up something else, no matter how cleverly promoted on the sign.
2) The sign is too darn high. Really, people are looking ahead, not up; place signs in your customers' lines of sight. (And yes, I understand sometimes that line of sight is or has to be raised up a bit. Not that high.) And the other screen, the one with the lotto numbers, that might be even higher.
Speaking of raised digital signage that's still in your sight line, and in a place where it might encourage shoppers to buy something, let's take a trip to the neighborhood Walmart.
Now, while it pains me to admit I was at the local Walmart the other day, I was — and boy, have they digital signage'd the heck out of that place.
The minute you walk in the door, there's a passle of digital signage screens trying to sell you something. It's reassuring, like I'm actually in a place that actually wants me to buy something from it.
Of course, there's an argument that could be made that Walmart has maybe gone a little *too far* with its digital signage, in part because so many of their signs include audio and are a touch on the annoying side if it's quiet in the store. But seriously, how often is it quiet in a Walmart? Late at night when journalists and other scary people are out, so, really, who cares?
And annoying as it might have been, I still remember Sharon Osbourne squawking at me from an endcap digital sign, so it must be working.
The landscape of the quick service and fast casual restaurant industries is about to undergo a seismic shift, with federal menu labeling laws expected to take effect sometime this year – but digital signage stands at the ready to lend a hand.
With more than 200,000 restaurants under the gun for compliance in displaying the nutrition information of food items on their menus, restaurants are scrambling to get ready. With already crowded menu boards, many restaurant operators are considering putting in an order for digital menu boards to save the day.
In an April survey of quick-service and fast casual restaurateurs, operators who've already rolled out digital identified the 12 biggest benefits of digital menu boards in the restaurant. Our handy-dandy infographic lays them out, value-menu style, below. Right at the top is the ability to centralize control of what's being displayed on restaurant menu boards, followed closely by better pricing flexibility and reduced costs in making changes to menu boards in-store.
The initial cost of transitioning to digital tends to be the biggest obstacle to adoption, so we also took a look at ROI and the time it takes to recoup that initial investment.
Now that we've whet your appetite for digital menu boards, scroll down to view the infographic. And feel free to use the embed code below the infographic to publish it on your website or blog.
Top 12 Benefits of Digital Menu Boards [Infographic]
Compliments of Digital Signage Today
Whether you call it digital signage, digital place-based media, digital out-of-home or simply DOOH, the media is all around us. Trouble is, most consumers—as well as many ad buyers and potential deployers—don't even realize it. People see it every day without grasping its presence and power.
Because sometimes a picture really is worth a thousand words, we developed an infographic that shows, in a simple, easy-to-follow way, how digital signage really is everywhere, and how it can touch the average consumer multiple times throughout the course of her day. For instance, one Arbitron study shows that 70 percent of Americans are exposed to place-based video screens every month, and 52 percent are every week.
Click to see the full-size digital signage infographic and grab the code to post it on your website. Show it to your clients and prospects, or take it straight to the CFO who has to buy into it. We believe the graphic will help explain how pervasive and powerful digital signage really is.
Digital Signage: It's all around us [Infographic] compliments of
Yesterday, someone forwarded me a link to a curious video on YouTube, one that purports to show someone hacking the feeds to the digital signage displays in New York City's Times Square.
If the video were real, it could set display, media player and media companies scrambling to better protect their displays and the content streams playing on them.
Of course, it pretty clearly has to be faked, but it is drawing some outside media attention to the signs and how they work — or perhaps more accurately, not how they actually work. (The video even appears on SportsIllustrated.com.)
So take a look. What do you think?
And then, of course, there's already an "expert" going on YouTube to explain exactly why the video's fake, but not fake. Or not fake the way everybody thinks. Eh, I'm not so sure this guy knows what he's talking about, as far as altering the video footage, but he does point out some interesting facets of the original video, like what seems to be the supposedly "hacked-in" video feed apparently showing up on another screen before it's supposed to.
So, while this is likely all much ado about nothing, it'll be curious to see what, if anything, is really behind all this tomfoolery.
Let us know what you think about either or both of these videos in the comments section below.