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Outdoor digital signage, the future of digital marketing.

Outdoor digital signage, the future of digital marketing.

With outdoor digital signage becoming a more prevalent method of advertising for a wider range of companies, the technology has to keep up with its popularity.

High outdoor footfall in areas such as bus/train stations, town centres, concert halls/theatres, shop fronts and other outdoor venues means there will always be a place for outdoor signage. Digital signage offers benefits over traditional methods that make it a cost effective solution in many cases and it is only a matter of time before the popularity of this engaging and dynamic digital marketing medium becomes mainstream.

There are many factors to consider when it comes to digital signage in an outdoor environment. The first is temperature, not only must the screen be able to withstand both hot and cold surroundings but it must be able to manage the internal conditions optimising the working temperature. Internal air-conditioning systems can now be tailored to allow the display to work at an optimal level in almost any climate.

Other factors to consider are dust, debris and moisture from the air entering and affecting the performance of the screen. The best new outdoor digital signage products have a mild steel outer case that keeps out all airborne swarf, dust and other particles; broadening the range of possible environments. For the first time locations such as industrial settings and outdoor leisure centres can realise the benefits of digital signage. Being an outdoor product means being exposed to all forms of weather, including rain. This requires outer cases to have IP65 waterproof protection, meaning advertising screens are protected from any wet weather conditions. Investing in signage displays with high quality outer cases results in lower maintenance costs and therefore a higher the return on the investment. Freestanding outdoor advertising screens have the internal space to store a small computer, 3G router or other hardware as required by the customer. As well as having an built in media player, all good quality digital signage displays differ from indoor LCD televisions in that it can be left on constantly whereas standard television screens face problems such as dark patches and uneven colour distribution.

An issue concerning most potential customers for outdoor digital advertising is brightness. Most standard LCD televisions are 300-500 cd/m2, this can give a ‘washed out’ look in direct sunlight. Screens specifically designed for outdoor use overcome this issue through using high brightness, 1500 cd/m2, screens.

Another advantage of this innovative marketing medium is how easily it can be updated. Traditionally outdoor signage was a costly method of advertising as technicians had to change and maintain signs whereas digital signage can be updated easily and remotely if required, lowering running costs further and increasing the return on the investment. The benefits offered by using outdoor digital signage are vast and consequently this vibrant and direct form of advertising has a prosperous future.

Thomas Fraser-Bacon is the Marketing Director for Allsee Technologies. His background is in Digital Signage and Product Design.

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