You’re likely reading this post because you’ve been thinking about investing in digital signage, and maybe you never knew it was possible to measure your digital signage return on investment (ROI).

You know that Company A has seen a decent return on investment, yet you’re not so sure Company B was as lucky. Company C has also been able to pay for the move to digital signage with flying colors…

But will it be different for you?

Various industries across the board are using digital signage technology to train employees, engage potential customers, integrate the Internet of Things, and interact with clients in ways we never thought possible.

From kiosks in restaurants to interactive signage in lobbies, the integration of digital signage in your business is limitless.

As limitless as it is, you do want to make sure you’re making the move with the right campaign. After all, digital signage is changing the way people do business. You need to know it can change for you, too.

Your concerns are valid. You have legitimate questions you need answered before you ditch the posters and scotch tape to go digital.

We’re going to answer those questions, and then some. We want you to have the scoop so you can make the right decisions and invest in products that work best for you and your company.

1. How Do I Measure Digital Signage ROI?

If you run a business, you want to know what your ROI (return on investment) is at every turn.

With digital signage, you need to consider three things after investing in digital signage:
Total Revenue Cash generated.
Gross Profit Revenue minus cost.
Net Profit Gross minus expenses.

To measure these three elements, you’ve got to ask yourself some key questions that will not only help you determine your ROI in the first months as a digital signage owner, but will also continue to lead you in the right direction as things change in your industry.

Let’s dig into those key questions so that by the time you’re done reading, you feel more confident with your direction.

2. What is Your Why?  

We always have a reason for what we do.

Why did we buy a car?
To get us places.

Why did we buy a house?
To keep us warm and safe and have a place to sleep at night.

When we start in business, we have to ask ourselves the same thing:
Why are we doing this? Why are we creating this product or service?

When you know why you do what you do, then you can focus more on who you serve and why you serve them. Your why is the heart of your business. And once you determine what that why is, you find the fire and drive to get up every day and give your best like never before.

You also begin to discover who your customers are. You discover what their wants and needs are, and are able to further build your products and services around those wants and needs.

Skykit has a Why: we are problem solvers at heart. We chose to start a business based on need. Consumers needed a simple, yet powerful entirely cloud-based digital signage solution, one that wasn’t confusing or overwhelming.

So we created that solution.

Because of our why, we know what our unique goals are when it comes to serving our customers.

Knowing your why can give you a direct indication of what it is you want to accomplish with a digital signage campaign.

3. What Do You Need?

Determining what software and hardware you need for your digital signage campaign is the next step in determining your ROI. 

For example, many restaurants now use digital menus or self-service kiosks.

The kiosks replace paid workers, reducing payroll and insurance costs.

Digital menus give restaurants the ability to create promotions and offer upsells that rotate regularly, giving the establishment opportunity to generate more money at specific times.

Colleges or other institutions often use digital signage for Wayfinding purposes. Interactive maps can minimize costs related to the printing of traditional maps and signs.

This alone can reduce employee time dedicated to creating those products, as well as the time spent providing direction assistance.

In healthcare and other businesses, digital signs are used in lobbies to guide patients to the room of a loved one or to the office of a doctor they need to see.

In remote conference rooms, they replace workers who would otherwise spend hours training new employees on basic policies or new concepts.

Consider how you would use digital signage to enhance revenue, engage customers, and overall improve the movement of your business.

By determining what you need, you can then determine the best digital signage campaign for your business.

4. What Are Customers Saying? 

Customer feedback is a sure-fire way to find out what’s working and what isn’t in your business.

It also can help you discover the impact of your investment and whether or not it’s meeting your goals.

Get feedback from guests before your digital signage campaign begins:

  • What do they like about what’s working now?
  • How does it serve them?
  • How can the process be improved to better serve them?

Get feedback after the digital signage campaign begins:

  • Again, what do they like about what’s working now?
  • How long do they spend in front of the sign?
  • Is their time at the sign followed by the purchase of anything?

According to a 2010 study by Arbitron, 70% of Americans can recall seeing a digital video display in recent weeks. 47% specifically remember it being an ad of some kind.

That’s the kind of impact digital signage makes.

Feedback can help you determine the impact of the investment and if it is meeting your objectives.

5. Does Total Cost Ownership Play a Role?

The estimation of expenses associated with purchasing, launching, and using the signage should be taken into account. This is called Total Cost Ownership (TCO), and it can vary, based on your needs.

For the most part, digital signage should be looked at as a long-term investment, which is why TCO is important to consider when measuring ROI.

This is most often a point of resistance for potential sign owners, as they want an immediate return on investment.

Nonetheless, a new digital sign owner should track how long the technology has been owned before it has paid for itself.

At the same time, new sign owners must also consider the amount of time and man hours spared without an employee or two writing, printing, and sending out updated posters and other disposable signage.

With a digital signage network, sales, price changes, and specials can be updated with real-time information, saving thousands of dollars on printing costs, and plenty of manpower hours each month.

6. What is the Internet of Things Saying? 

The Internet of Things is a sassy, technological phrase that describes how the world today is connected digitally.

Handheld devices can talk to alarm systems or ovens on one end of the spectrum, while computers can talk to digital signs or kiosks to update pricing or change an image on the other end of the spectrum.

By integrating The Internet of Things and digital signs, a whole new world of possibility can be brought before you.

For example, by integrating the Internet of Things with digital signage touch screen applications, you can measure the performance of a sign and evaluate its effectiveness.

You can’t do that with a static poster on a wall.

By tracking the number of swipes and interactions on your digital signage, you can immediately determine the effectiveness of the signage.

Like Google analytics measures the number of clicks to a website, touchscreen applications measure the number of swipes and clicks on any given sign.

Measuring this activity is invaluable, as it further helps you determine the wants and needs of your customer.

7. Will ROI Improve my Brand Perception?

Lastly, but certainly not least, enhancing your brand perception can help generate a broader sense of who you are, ultimately bringing more people to you.

Digital signage can provide a platform for your business to help you achieve this. When more people become aware of who you are and what you do, more people will buy.

How’s that for simple analytics? 

Because the signs can be changed at the drop of a dime, your brand content can be customized to suit a target demographic. By doing this, your brand can reach different people at different times, churning sales that may not have been able to happen before with standard, traditional poster advertising.

NASCAR is a great example of this.

In 2013, they upped the anti to increase their brand awareness by building a “multimedia mission control center” called the Fan & Media Engagement Center in Charlotte, N.C.

The center was designed to help teams and sponsors track data on fan and media reaction. By following social media conversations, tracking impressions, and gauging the effectiveness of ticket promotions, NASCAR is able to zero in on the wants and needs of their fans and create more interactive sales and concepts to keep them engaged.

That’s the kind of race I’d like to win. Wouldn’t you?

Conclusion

Entrepreneur and investor Robert Arnott said, “ “In investing, what is comfortable is rarely profitable.”

No truer words have ever been spoken.

For your business to thrive in the digital age, you have to be willing to step out of your comfort zone to get there.

Decide what digital campaign works best for your business. Look at what other businesses are doing and how they are benefiting.

Take a close look at your WHY and how you serve your customers and employees. This will help you determine what software and features you need.

In the end, you’ll save time and money by stepping out of your comfort zone and into the modern-day software that is simple to use and powerful to share. With the right choices, you’ll begin seeing a return on investment almost immediately.

What is your current ROI? How will investing in digital signage change that?