Digital signage has been around for a while but many people still put it in a box for what it’s capable of. Some think of digital billboards, some think of menus, and others think of lobbies with company information scrolling by. Network advertising is another use case that’s very interesting. And that’s where the vending marketplace comes in.

Benefits

A common approach is to make the vending machine a digital kiosk. My main focus today is going to be covering the approach of using a digital sign in a vending marketplace for network advertising.

1. Boost Sales and Awareness

As with any sales tactic, the goal of digital signage is to create awareness for your product. Screens are bright, colorful and use movement. With fresh content, it draws attention.

2. Save Materials

Digital signage saves money and materials elsewhere.

Once you have the screens installed, marketing becomes a simpler matter. Rather than pay for printing and distribution costs, you can simply send the ad to your screens. Auditing what’s being shown in each location becomes much easier, too.

And since you aren’t limited by the price of materials, you can create ads more often, which leads to the third benefit of using digital signage.

3. Diverse Marketing

Because all you need for digital signage is a series of connected screens, you have a whole lot of options when it comes to your advertisements.

Digital signage makes it simple to switch between ads, allowing you to have multiple ads on one screen. You can set them to cycle through every few minutes. Or you could set the screen to feature different ads depending on the time of day or popular products.

One of the great things about digital signage is the fact that the information on the screens can be updated or changed instantly and with very little effort.

4. Customer Engagement

Digital signage provides more than just a pretty screen to grab people’s attention. It also gives you the chance to engage with your customers. This can be done in a number of ways.

You can show what people are saying about your product on social media. You can ask a question and encourage customers to chime in with their opinion. Or you can provide a code or a scan option that gives consumers access to more information about the product or special deals.

The main point is to make advertising more of an interaction than it has previously been. Customers want to be involved with the product they buy and the brand it represents. So invite them in.

How to Use It

If you decide to take the plunge and invest in digital signage, you might feel a little lost in regards to actually using it.

The first thing you’ll want to do is find a software or program to run it all that fits your needs. But even those programs don’t make your advertisements for you.

Here are four tips to keep in mind to help you make the most of your screens.

Understated Ads

Screens are, by nature, flashy. Bright lights, loud noises and changing colors are all a part of what they are. And those things catch people’s eye.

So don’t overdo it on your ads.

It’s tempting to fill your ad space with blinking lights, huge capitalized text and bright images, but that can be incredibly overwhelming to consumers.

It’s like you’re shouting at their eyes.

So remember, you ads should be three things.

  • Simple. It’s tempting to fill your ad space with as much information as possible, but less is more. Give the customer only what information is relevant and a way for them to get more if they’re interested. It’s likely your customer will only give the screen a glance in passing, so you need to get the important stuff across quickly or they might miss it.
  • Clear. Give each ad a purpose. You might have a lot of relevant information to give to your customers, but you don’t have to do it all in one advertisement. Make each ad’s message clear and concise. It’s better to pique a person’s interest and leave them wanting more than to inundate them with more information than they needed.
  • Well-designed. Now I know this is a given for any form of advertising, but you have to remember that you’re designing for a screen. Screens are processed differently than paper posters or billboards. Bright colors might be overwhelming. Big images will take away attention from written details. Just because you can use fun things like loud sound effects or flashing lights doesn’t mean you should.

Targeted Ads

Your screens might all be connected, but that doesn’t mean they all have to say the same thing.

I know, I know, I keep talking about the perks of digital signage all being connected, but that doesn’t mean they have to be uniform.

Take advantage of your different locations. Collect data from your various locations and see what’s popular. Then take advantage of it.

Maybe one of your machines see a spike in sales when a certain product is advertised. Advertise it more often.

Or maybe you get more interaction on social media when you feature what people are saying in another location. Look into how you can connect with those customers more.

Building a Brand

Customers are all about branding.

They want more than just a product. They want to buy into an idea, a way of life. And digital signage provides a unique opportunity to do that.

Some of the most effective ways to convey your brand are through videos. You can show testimonies of people who use purchase your product or commercials that embody your brand.

And unlike traditional posters, digital signage can show videos.

You’ll want to keep your videos short. Most people won’t stop and pay attention for long, either because they have somewhere to be or something else will catch their eye.

Branding is another place where your presence on social media is important. It helps you connect with your customers and gives them a place to provide you with feedback. So advertise your social media sites on your screens and show what others are saying about you on those sites.

The vending marketplace still seems to be sitting firmly on the fence between using digital signage and not. I hope I’ve given you a few important points to consider.

So what do you think? Are vending and digital signs a match made in heaven or just a passing fad?