It has been two years now, well two years and a month to be exact, but to this day probably twice a week my mind goes to that tweet that we all saw on a buzzy DC Monday: “The monitors at Union Station just started playing adult…. Horrifying, isn’t it? Especially for those of us running DOOH networks. The CEO of the Union Station Redevelopment Corp. then told Washington Post reporter the Monday “surprise” was to be blamed on “the downside with new technology and the many risks it comes with”.
Wasn’t really that convincing of an explanation as digital out-of-home in May of 2017 in Washington DC was not really that new of technology, and simply investing in a professional digital signage soft thus creating a healthy level of security would have made this porn debacle a preventable one, but, let’s leave it at that: in my DOOH nightmares, twice a week.
Mistakes made by those of us operating retail digital signage networks might not make the headlines in The WP, but they can be very devastating for a business, so, let’s go through our list of 5 mistakes to be avoided in retail digital out-of-home.
Mistake #1: Making poor choices while picking your digital signage soft
To quote our president, this mistake falls under the category of “Huge”. Best digital signage software is hard to find, and the search takes a lot of time and effort. Our DS quest was mainly based on three main requirements: integration with other tech, especially our CRM system, beautiful professional designs and the ability to use our Apple TV’s to run the network. Say what you will, but Apple products always provide an additional layer of safety and the story I’ve started with proves that we need all the safety and security we can get.
Additionally, we looked for our impeccable retail DOOH app, the capability to use main media formats and we also needed to run interactive content and AR. We had found exactly what we were looking for, and, if advanced tech, eye-catching digital signage and network safety are also at the top of your list give Kitcast DS soft a try. Their signage gave us all of the tools and techniques for creating unforgettable content, we’ve successfully integrated many other techs for advertising, customer engagement, data collection, analysis, etc., plus, we seem to have forgotten how it really is to run retail DOOH network with constant glitches and errors. Hallelujah for Kitcast. Look for a company that will eliminate all of your mistakes with their soft.
Mistake #2: Purchasing hardware willy-nilly
This one is a mistake made very often and you need to stay on point and not get distracted by the appearance of the products, the endless deals, and sales. Store owners often invest in digital displays and media players before laying down a detailed plan, putting a strategy together or at least thinking over what they need, considering how screens are to be used, if there is a way to install them or even considering what software will be used.
Retail has been transformed by DOOH completely, in-store and outside displays have different purposes and you need to know all of your retail needs first before you start spending money on hardware.
Just as an example: if you need to increase foot traffic you might want to invest in the window display or a few portable screens that you can place in the mall to guide customers to your store.
For those looking for a sales boost – a point-of-purchase displays are the perfect solution with a proven success rate. If there is a need to engage customers and to drive greater revenue the investment should go into technification the store buying smart shelving, wayfinding screens and FAQ displays, investing in tablets with a quick internet excess for the employees, etc. So, gather info, analyze and plan ahead for success.
Mistake #3: Ignoring innovative technologies
Ignoring new tech innovations is a mistake that no retailer can afford to make in 2019. From dynamic displays and AI for retail, AR technology, and digital search – you really need to get on board with all of the new tech. The good news is – all of your investments in technology will ultimately pay off. Digital signage will help you to understand your customers and you will be able to market to them based precisely on their preferences.
Augmented reality in retail has huge potential to attract and engage customers, not to mention, significantly boost sales, moreover, people prefer shopping in stores that already have AR technology. If you are still on the fence about investing into new technology just have a look around: there isn’t a big brand that doesn’t offer visual search, AR, VR, interactive DOOH or personalized shopping.
Mistake #4: Forgetting to incorporate DOOH into your Omnichannel strategy.
Again, this is the best chance for retail to build something great, to interact with their customers in a meaningful way across all of the available media services. By developing a seamless Omnichannel experience and creating something that engages across devices you can easily increase awareness for your retail products and, of course, generate actual purchases.
It is all about completely focusing on the customer and delivering consistent and highly satisfying experiences. And the proof, as they say, is in the pudding, or in our case – in statistics: brands that have embraced the omnichannel strategies retain an average of 89% of their customers and those who didn’t retain only 39% (“The State of Omnichannel Shopping – Statistics and Trends”).
Mistake #5: Missing the benefits of traffic jams for the retail DOOH
This one has been heavily tested and it works, so don’t make a mistake of not benefiting from gridlocks. Digital out-of-home and traffic are a match made in heaven. In April of this year, New Your Post has published the latest stats on the time we all spend in traffic.
According to new research, it is an astonishing 19 full work days a year that we spend trapped in our cars having absolutely nothing to do, just staring aimlessly at the empty space. Fill that space up with your retail DOOH. Companies use billboards, real-time data to display targeted creative ads to those stuck in traffic. Programmatic DOOH will help you secure your place and time in the commuter traffic for precise targeting.
We have witnessed a lot of very successful traffic-based creative DOOH over the years, so take a page out of their book. Advertise your store on a billboard nearby, promote sales or coupons, and display products of interest by incorporating mobile tech and beacons with your digital out-of-home. It’s a great DOOH opportunity that should be advantageous to everyone in retail.