The familiar phrase “What gets measured gets done” could not be truer, but let’s take it a step further. Typically, you measure those things of value. If they prove their worth, they will have a budget next year. Digital signage is one of those things you must constantly re-evaluate.  The investment in a Digital Signage program should include time for evaluation of effectiveness. Without a regular assessment of your metrics, your Digital Signage investment may fall short of intended impact or become irrelevant in your space.  So, whether you have a retail network or a corporate communication network, establishing evaluation metrics and reviewing those metrics are important!

Steps for Measuring Your Digital Signage Program’s Effectiveness.

First, we must define success. It is hard to measure something without knowing what success is. What is a successful digital signage program? For every digital signage network, this may look a little different. For the outward facing digital signage (like retail signage) success may be measured in sales lift. However, inward-facing digital signage (like corporate communications) measures success from a completely distinct perspective, like company morale. One common oversight is measuring only one metric. You should choose several factors to measure success so you can get the bigger picture. These become your Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s).

Tools to Measure Your Digital Signage Program

QR Code Tracking Your Digital Signage ProgramNext, we must come up with ways to measure these KPI’s. We are in luck because this continues to become easier every year as new digital signage assessment tools become available. For example, 6-8 years ago it would have been somewhat cost prohibitive to use a camera to count how many people walk by your digital signage display and view your ad for jeans on sale for more than 10 seconds. Now, it is affordable to rent one of these solutions for a period of several months and measure this metric in several stores. (Tip: Always measure several locations at once because you need perspective for more than just one store/location.)

What other tools are there? Today there is everything from heat mapping technology to phone tracking technology based on Wi-Fi and/or Bluetooth and everything in between.

Ok, so it is easy to picture how you could create metrics around measuring KPI’s for retail. What about corporate communications? Yes, this can be harder but is still very doable.  The effects of these communications may be less tangible but are still just as important.

Consider using a signage message to point people to a survey that asks them about whether they feel the digital signage is keeping them informed if that is one of your KPI’s.  If one of your KPI’s is how many people have signed up for an event, you could easily provide a QR code to point them to a unique webpage. Then you can count how many people in your organization sign up for the event. Sometimes you must get creative, but if you do not measure your success then how can you prove you should continue investing in this important communication tool next year? Even more importantly if you are not measuring, how can you improve?

What to Do with The Resulting Data

Improvement Process for Your Digital Signage ProgramFinally, you must take the data from your metrics and come up with plans on how to improve. Digital signage can be a game of testing different strategies to see which one works best. Your results could mean moving a display to a higher traffic area or changing your content strategy. Whatever you do, don’t stay stagnant and expect better results!  You know what you are aiming for if you have defined your KPI’s!

Unified Technology Systems has an experienced Digital Signage team ready to help you define your digital signage strategy. We stand ready to make sure you have all the proper pieces in place to have an effective digital signage program.

Robert White

Author Robert White

In the AV industry and designing, installing, and supporting digital signage installs for more than 15 years. He is a certified 'Digital Signage Expert' and has written articles for 'Sound & Communication Magazine', 'Rave Publications,' and 'Sound & Video Contractor.' Robert has also been a featured speaker for Digital Signage Expo's Integrator Track, and the Infocomm Webinar "Digital Signage: Where's the Easy Button?"

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