Blog: Lyle Bunn 
Lyle Bunn (bio)
Strategy Architect
Thursday, 09 October 2008
The word concomitance means "co-existing" or "affecting while simultaneously effected by." As such, the word is an apt descriptor for the expanding relationship between digital signage and cellular technology.

The positioning of out-of-home digital signage has this concomitance generating keen interest, indicated by the planning and spending of ad agencies, brand managers, network operators and wireless carriers.
With one billion mobile devices being shipped annually, they constitute the largest segment of the consumer electronics device market, according to Stuart Carlaw, vice president and research director of ABI Research. That means cellular and other wireless merits consideration by the digital signage industry.
The benefits of triggering a download or mobile transaction provide brands with the high levels of engagement that accelerate brand-building. Communicators are catching onto this fast.

Mobile: the future of advertising
Jupiter Research reported the North American mobile commerce revenue in 2007 to be $505 million and forecasts it to grow to $1.9 billion in 2010. This is fueled by increased adoption of mobile Internet.
Comscore TKG projects growth to 92 million users in 2012 from 32 million in 2007, with highest usage, at 45 percent, being the Millenials demographic of hard-to-reach 18-24-year-olds. The next group, 27-40-year-old Gen X-ers, represents 27 percent of users, and 41-50-year-old “Baby Boomers” represent 17 percent. 
The IBM Institute for Business Value Analysis reported that the highest compound annual growth rates (CAGR) for global advertising spending are being realized in mobile advertising at 41 percent, followed by 20 percent for Internet and 19 percent for each of interactive TV and in-game advertising.   
Wireless carriers are taking note of the high value that they can bring to digital signage while it simultaneously returns the favor. Concomitance of the two media means a co-existing "win" for every part of the supply chain, from network suppliers to operators to advertisers to viewers.
"Cellular and mobile broadband use for media networks leverages the network reach, reliability and security built into networks, like the Nationwide Sprint network, that successfully carry millions of digital transmissions daily," said Steve Rowley, director of indirect distribution for Sprint. "Digital signage will increasingly take advantage of what cellular offers."
Walsh Wireless, a Sprint reseller, is one provider that is looking specifically at optimizing and using cellular technology to enhance digital signage.
"End users of digital signage want to focus on their core business of retail, hospitality or services, and benefit from the ease and confidence that gaining a complete, turnkey display network can provide," said Chick Walsh, chief strategy officer of Walsh Wireless.
Three benefits of cellular/digital signage concomitance
There are three benefits for carriers seeking more average revenue per user (ARPR) from digital signage-cellular integration.
1. Taking advantage of cellular networks. The first key benefit is using cellular networks to connect digital signs. Using cellular connectivity offers speed and ease to deploy, location flexibility and a lower cost of operating a network.
Companies such as MediaTile, Adshift and NEC are providing cellular-enabled "digital-signage-in-a-box" products, and system integrators such as Walsh Wireless are bringing the two technologies together. 
"The use of cellular connectivity for digital signage underpins the rapid path toward more flexible deployment and lower costs of operations," said Keith Kelsen, chief executive of MediaTile.
2. Using screens for a mobile call to action. A second benefit is found in mobile phone downloads that can be triggered by digital signage content. The words "text to download" provide viewer engagement and dramatically extend the value of digital signage.
The download could be a schedule, procedure, information, coupon, wallpaper or ringtone. Reference has been made to digital signage being a "middle media" that explains this communications supply-chain positioning of digital signage. 
3. Digital signage as a mobile merchandising tool. The third benefit is in the mobile Internet browsing sessions and mobile transactions that can be triggered by digital signage. 
Optinion Research Corp. said that one out of three U.S. mobile users are currently accessing the Web with their mobiles, and 50 percent of those people are doing so three or more times per week. 
Hossein Mousavi, EVP & co-founder of mporia, an m-commerce provider, reports that merchants of all sizes are moving to mobile Web to enable mobile commerce, with a 300-percent adoption rate of merchant subscriptions per quarter.
Communications supply chains are a continuously growing and optimizing entity. As digital signage is increasingly geared toward information provisioning, cellular and other forms of wireless, such as WiFi, Bluetooth, WiMax and satellite, will optimize the application while reducing deployment and operating complexity and cost. Cellular will both offer and enjoy benefits – "concomitance."

Lyle Bunn is the principal and strategy architect of Bunn Co. and a noted authority in the digital signage industry.

Posted by: Lyle Bunn AT 01:28 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  
Friday, 18 July 2008

It should be no surprise that the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) would sponsor one of the first books to explain the business of digital signage. Out-of-home digital displays offer a powerful extension of or a cost-effective alternative to television advertising.
The great benefit is in the degree to which “Digital Signage: Software, Networks, Advertising, and Displays: A Primer for Understanding the Business” (NAB Executive Technology Briefings) by Jimmy Schaeffler, describes digital signage. Also beneficial are explanations on how it fits into the marketing and communications mix, and what to consider when investing, deploying or using this medium.
No matter what it is called — dynamic display, retail TV, narrowcasting or electronic signage — digital signage has accelerating momentum as a powerful marketing, staff and patron communications instrument.
While I am pleased to have been one of the people mentioned, the book includes references to many, many of the people, suppliers, networks, advertisers and organizations that comprise the billion-dollar industry.
Digital signage is described in a holistic perspective. Schaeffler describes the medium as a business and business-enabler in communications industries such as broadcast, print publishing and Internet.
It describes various business models for digital signage in a wide range of applications including retail, transportation, hospitality, banking, education, automotive, houses of worship, medical, consumer services and staff, visitor and patron communications. It also references deployments around the world with a focus on North America, Asia, Europe and South America.
The history and emergence of digital signage are addressed by reflecting on the use of videotape runway shows used by New York fashion houses in the late 70’s. The current state of deployments and ad spending presented in the early chapters help to clarify the megatrend toward out-of-home dynamic display.
The characteristics and inherent capabilities of digital signage are well articulated, along with trends and key reasons that are driving the exponential growth of digital signage.
Ways in which digital signage fits naturally into communications campaigns are presented in case studies. Numerous examples of digital signage are provided, including the Mayo Clinic, emebaVet, Gas Station TV, Clear Channel Outdoor and others. These examples point to areas of unique value provided in the planning of networks.
The technology infrastructure and key considerations for network design, integration and deployment are explained implicitly, but the focus is on describing the business of digital signage, the “what” and “why,” rather than the “how.”

As digital signage grows, system integrators, content producers and network operators are getting on the bandwagon. This book is a “must read” for such companies and those seeking to leverage existing offerings, organization or infrastructure to serve or diversify into this new market.
The book is well-written for and applicable to brand managers, communications professionals, advertising agencies, media planners and media buyers for whom digital media and display are part of their future.
“Digital Signage: Software, Networks, Advertising, and Displays: A Primer for Understanding the Business” (NAB Executive Briefing Series) by Jimmy Schaeffler is published by Focal Press. It can be purchased by clicking here.

Lyle Bunn, Principal & Strategy Architect of Bunn Co., is a noted authority on the digital signage industry.

Posted by: Lyle Bunn AT 01:29 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  
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