experience

Creating an Integrated Digital Experience

Creating an integrated digital experience is easier than you think. First let's breakdown what we mean by "integrated". Integration can take many different shapes and forms. One of the most common approaches is integrating information from various sources such as news and weather feeds, scheduling systems, and technologies such as sensors and alarms or other Internet of Things (IoT) devices. Here we have an example of what an integrated digital experience might look like for someone in an airport terminal or train station. The Omnivex solution provides a powerful software platform to drive a variety of screens and applications ranging from advertising to interactive wayfinding to real-time scheduling. While the applications of digital signage vary in this transportation example what is constant is the Omnivex platform driving each screen. Another aspect of integration when thinking about digital experience is how it translates across different devices. It is important to create a cohesive digital experience across all of the digital devices and platforms your organization works with ranging from your website to mobile devices to digital screens. For the individual the digital experience should be seamless and personalized. While for the organization it provides an opportunity to leverage creative content and information across multiple digital platforms which has a number of business benefits.

Engaging and interacting with a new generation of students

Engaging and interacting with a generation of students raised surrounded by media is driving significant change amongst schools, colleges and universities. Students today expect and prefer digital communications, and as a result digital signage has become a cost-effective tool for schools to utilize. Dynamic digital signage is enabling schools to improve communications ranging from emergency notifications to wayfinding to events and employee communications. Digital communications in education can: Help schools to cost effectively communicate in real-time with students, staff and visitors Improve school safety by connecting with emergency notification and alarm systems Enhance student, faculty, employee, and visitor experience by creating an engaging and interactive environment Help schools create an environment that is easy to navigate through the use of interactive wayfinding and digital signs Tie into existing systems such as maintenance, inventory and other  administrative systems to provide accurate real-time information to staff and students Be used for a number of applications including digital menu boards, donor walls, emergency notifications, staff/student/visitor communications, and interactive wayfinding An excellent example of a university who is using visual communications and devices like digital signage to communicate with their staff, students, and visitors is the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. The Rotman School of Management is the #1 business school in Canada according to the Financial Times, ranked #1 in the world for intellectual capital by Bloomberg Businessweek, and consistently places in the global top 10 for faculty and research. It has over 1100 Canadian and international students participating in its MBA programs annually and over 2,000 people (staff, professors, students, and guests) in and out of the schools two primary buildings on any given day. The school hosts over 100 events a year in its event spaces including book launches, panels, and speaker series on a wide range of topics. The Rotman School of Management recently doubled in size, expanding into a second building in 2012 with a $93 million dollar expansion. Prior to the construction their digital signage was comprised of 6 screens. With the expansion Rotman wanted to provide engaging and effective navigation in the campus buildings and also keep visitors informed of what was happening that day. They also wanted to update the technology in their original building as part of the project. Special consideration also needed to be given to the location of the signage, housing of the players and running of cables due to limited server room space and other infrastructure such as utilities and elevators. The Rotman School of Management has received overwhelming support for their signage solution. It has helped the school improve building navigation and the communication of relevant information and events to building visitors. "The new digital signage around the school gives us a voice in the physical space and allows us to deliver relevant messaging at the time it’s needed the most,” said Eugene Grichko, Brand Experience and Engagement Specialist with the Marketing Team at Rotman. Read the full case study!  

Smart Transportation

Gone are the days of paper signs and delays in getting updated information out to travellers. We live in a real-time world and travellers expect real-time, relevant information at their fingertips. Digital communications in transportation facilities, using devices like digital signs and interactive kiosks, can enhance passenger experience. They help people get to where they need to go safely, efficiently, and effectively.  Equipping your passengers with the right information, at the right time ensures a positive experience. This is critical in an environment that demands time sensitive information. Digital communications in transportation can: Alleviate perceived wait times Enhance travel experiences Engage passengers with news, weather, emergency broadcasts Deliver real-time location-based information, such as arrival/departure times, cancellations and delays, or service stoppage Improve operations by reducing the workload of employees Keep passengers safe; emergency notifications can interrupt regularly scheduled content Be a “travel guide” through interactive wayfinding kiosks Wayfinding has evolved over the last couple of decades from static paper signage to electronic wayfinding to interactive wayfinding. This is largely the result of new technologies becoming available for airports, stations and terminals to leverage. One technology that has had a significant impact is digital signage. With digital signs transportation organizations can quickly and easily update signage.  This provides travellers with more accurate information on arrival/departure times, cancellations, delays and gate changes. Digital signage has also led to significant improvements in wayfinding in facilities like airports, where there are multiple terminals and large volumes of people that need to be moved through the space quickly. In airports wayfinding encompasses a number of areas including moving travellers between terminals, to gates, through security, and to restaurants and shops. These same screens are often also used to for advertising and to provide news and weather updates. Interactive wayfinding takes traditional wayfinding to an entirely new level of self-service by integrating technologies like touchscreens, RFID, and barcode scanners.  This allows travellers to independently select a destination from a map or list and the system creates a map to the end point factoring things such as multiple floors, multiple regions, and multiple buildings. Additionally, some software solutions use conditional formatting and are able to react to things such as elevator operation times, making the system choose an appropriate route based on current conditions. Read our Columbus International Airport, San Francisco International Airport and Vancouver International Airport case studies to learn how those organizations are leveraging digital communications.  

Podcast - Content Reigns Supreme

In Digital Signage and Today’s Experience Economy, Content Reigns Supreme Rich Archer, Digital Designer at Omnivex, believes a product is equally as important as the manner in which it is displayed. “Content is still king,” he said. “No matter what the size, shape – no matter the technology – your display is only as effective as the content that’s on it.” Archer said digital signage has surpassed websites and print signage as the most effective form of advertising thanks in part to live customer feedback. “The audio-visual is important, but there’s a technical side to it that’s necessary…especially with live information that’s being pulled from the internet.” In terms of brand experience, Archer cited a glass walkway in China that appeared to break when walked upon as a prime example of the impact of live digital signage. He said the ideal visual display leaves the customer with something to remember. “Create something that people are never going to forget,” he said. “Making it memorable like that and actually engaging your customers is one of the keys to having success.” Archer said the creative side will undoubtedly continue to push the technology forward as it becomes widespread.            

Driving Digital Transformation by Communicating with Speed and Scale

With the advantages of digital communications so rampant in today’s modern world, it’s difficult to comprehend why businesses would still rely on outdated modes of communication such as email or printed paper. However, a recent IDG survey revealed that half of the respondents still depend on these antiquated communication methods. In contrast, the same respondents cited that without an effective, reliable communications strategy in place, lags in information dissemination presented security risks, a loss of competitive edge, inefficiencies and lost potential business opportunities for their companies. Not just for billboards anymore, digital signage, as a communication platform, eliminates delays in pushing targeted data to a multitude of screens. From  mobile phones to kiosks to wall displays, digital signage ensures vital information is available in real time. With the ability to improve efficiencies and cost management, enhance productivity, drive revenue growth and empower better decision-making, the right digital solution can easily collect, process and deliver the right information to the right person at the right time. Read more about the IDG digital communications survey and how Omnivex can support your need for improved communication.

DSE 2019: Transforming Experience with Innovation and Disruption

There is no better show to attend to check the pulse of the digital signage industry than the Digital Signage Expo––the world’s only international industry dedicated show. This immersive experience offers attendees a full-scale introduction to every aspect of digital and interactive signage. Transforming Every Experience This year’s theme at DSE is “Transform the _________ experience,” which includes traveler, customer, shopper, restaurant, guest, campus, healthcare, visitor and much more. Digital signage enables brands to create memorable experiences in just about any application you can imagine. There are really no limits to what can be done to transform a user’s experience. With over 4,000 users, system integrators, distributors, installers, and professionals, attendees will have the opportunity to better understand how their industry can use digital signage to communicate and connect with their audiences. Digital signage originated as a simple way to pass along information, often taking the place of static signage. Now, with the innovations of AI, social media, analytics, and mobile technology, digital signage is capable of doing much more. You’ll learn how these areas can merge with digital signage and more throughout the course of the week. Attendees will have the chance to attend 75 unique education sessions, workshops, and panel discussions. Design and Technology: Rethinking Digital Communications in the 21st Century For successful digital comm implementations, both design and technology are necessary. Each is equally important and will continue to be in the future. Digital signage, always a sector committed to innovation, is on the cusp of offering new opportunities to brands. Rethinking the way that digital signage creates experiences is in order. First, digital signage is becoming more affordable. Today, you can purchase a 4K LED TV for about the same price as a color acrylic print. Digital signage adoption, with screens that play animated content, have a much more powerful presence that a static sign, and now it’s no longer cost prohibitive for companies to be all in. Digital signage also doesn’t have to be in a box, literally. New sizes and shapes will soon be the norm allowing you to construct a display wall based on more complex designs. This flexibility is now possible because of new manufacturing processes that allow screens to be cut like paper for any size or shape. Couple this with short-throw laser projections, projection mapping techniques, and electronic ink, and you have the ability to create digital signage on any surface. This could transform signage in general from endcaps at retail stores to large-scale productions in a variety of spaces. Next, is the significant trend of interactivity. Screens can now respond to users and other screens. Voice, gestures, and facial expressions can all be “read” by digital signage, offering haptic communication in response. This technology will become more prevalent as a new way to tell a story—one that the user is a part of. Engaging Audiences with Customized Experiences Engaging audiences with any type of content isn’t easy but making it more dynamic and customized is a start. For a brand to be able to pull this off requires a lot of moving pieces. The message of the brand should remain clear and consistent as well as allow for self-updating content to be included. Your audience will also appreciate real-time, relevant local information, not just the time and weather. For example, Apple stores have a concept called “Today at Apple.” This content is meant to inform and interest viewers without being overly salesy. It gives the customer time to explore the environment and spend more time at the store. This helps creates an emotional connection to the brand and message. To do this right, as Apple has, you have to consider who your audience is and what matters to them in that moment. Digital Signage Disruption: VR and Visual Effects Virtual reality is primed to be a new disruptor to digital signage. There are many ways in which VR and digital signage can completely revolutionize certain situations. When paired with digital signage, it has the capacity to create some of the most immersive experiences ever. Digital signage is actually an extension of VR. Consider some of these possibilities. A real estate agent could take a buyer on a home tour without leaving the office. Museums can use them to create an experience that’s a real game changer, bringing art or displays to life and more accessible to visitors. In retail, using VR and digital signage could be the next step of letting buyers try before they buy. These are just a few examples of the opportunities for these two technologies to work together. Omnivex, a leading software provider for all aspects of digital communications, looks forward to exploring these exciting topics and more at this year’s DSE. We’ll be looking at all the latest trends and inspirations to transform customer experiences across industries. To learn more about digital signage and modern marketing, check out our eBook.

Artifical Intelligence: The Future of Digital Communications

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is enabling organizations to create a more personalized digital communications experience. The AI market is predicted to rise to nearly $60 billion by 2025. AI Will Provide Tremendous Growth Opportunities AI permits machines to learn from data in much the same way as the brain does and then use that knowledge to perform human-like tasks. Artificial intelligence is used in some very exciting applications, including speech recognition, complex problem solving, and voice-enabled digital assistants. Communications and media companies have embraced AI. Accenture Strategy research found that 63 percent of telecommunications executives believe AI deployment will drive additional revenue and growth opportunities. That’s why 72 percent of these same executives identify AI as a Top Three business priority currently or within one year. It’s clear that AI is the future of digital communications. AI Allows Personalization and Segmentation on a Level Never Seen Before Customers expect a personalized experience with information that is relevant to them. AI helps deliver that experience by enabling organizations to draw on the vast amount of historical data they have have collected and leverage it to deliver the targeted content. For example, digital signage can detect that a shopper entering a store is a female with curly hair. Using AI the shopper is shown store items that customers like her have purchased. Artificial Intelligence can also predict other offer aspects, like the quoted price necessary to make a conversion or which clients are more prone to making more than one purchase. Machines have the power to process huge amounts of data, quickly decide which data is most relevant, and then segment appropriately. AI Will Transform Digital Communications AI solutions for digital communications are becoming even more customizable, allowing the optimization of digital advertising and algorithm-generated content. For example, AI can determine which ad to display by interpreting audience engagement levels and comparing them to historical behavior data. In fact, digital signage networks that use AI increase content relevancy by up to 50 percent. As these tools evolve they will reach a point where they are able to surpass human ability. Gartner predicts by 2020 85% of customer interactions will be managed by artificial intelligence. Artificial Intelligence can help improve the productivity, efficiency, and profitability of your digital communications.

AI is changing the face of retail

Digital signage is now a familiar site in the modern world. From displaying menus at restaurants to offering directions in a building, digital signage feeds audiences information in a dynamic way. But how much more valuable could this channel be? Can digital signage take on a role to personalize messages or respond to a situation in real-time? Yes, with help from artificial intelligence (AI) and deep learning. Deep learning turns data into action With deep learning, AI-driven platforms evaluate large data sets, typically in real-time, leading to specific reactions. AI engines have access to huge amounts of data. Data, of course, isn’t any good unless it’s analyzed and delivers an actionable response. AI is all about automation. It doesn’t necessarily “think” for you. What it can do is draw conclusions, find patterns, and react to situations. The platform can “learn” over time, making it an even more valuable tool. So, what does the future of digital signage look like with a boost from AI and deep learning? Personalized Experiences Every customer wants to feel important and have a personalized experience. AI and deep learning are the tools to make it happen. Soon, digital signage platforms, powered by AI and deep learning, could actually recognize customers. Just like local stores once new all their customers’ names, digital signage could act as a greeter. The digital signage could recognize the customer, say hello, and offer them useful information like what’s on sale, based on the customer’s buying history. While an amazing fete of technology, organizations should present this as a way to personalize what you see, becoming a benefit rather than a privacy concern. More Relevant Content In-store shopping continues to decline in favor of online shopping. That means retailers need to create experiences for shoppers who visit their brick-and-mortar stores. Many have already been using digital signage to promote sales or offer customers an in-depth look at products. AI can take it to the next level with personalization. A business already has historical data on its customers and their behaviors. Specific content is already created that plays at certain times or days. That’s the baseline that informs what content these consumers would most want to see. With AI and deep learning, there are two ways to improve content: either by putting the data in context or creating personalized ads. With context, the system is already starting with known behaviors like an increase in purchases of sunglasses after sunny days. But that won’t always be true. Deep learning adds context to this “rule” by capturing and integrating content that informs the situation. Maybe it’s a rainy day, which the system could detect with weather data. Or, the store knows, via sensors, that no one is shopping for sunglasses. This “learning” allows for the signage to “overrule” the sunglasses promo, switching it to items shoppers were currently looking at or umbrellas. Deep learning by an AI platform enables targeting down to the individual. If a male shopper enters a clothing store, digital signage could detect that the shopper was in his 20s wearing hiking boots. The system takes this information then reviews what items are in stock or on sale that men who purchased hiking boots also bought. What it finds could then be communicated to the shopper in almost real-time. Not only is the customer seeing personalized information it will prompt them to look at these items and make more purchases. How Will AI Evolve Your Digital Signage? The investment in digital signage and AI will continue to grow. The global digital signage market is expected to grow to $31.71 billion by 2025. While the AI market is predicted to rise to nearly $60 billion by 2025. These sectors are seeing phenomenal growth, which means organizations all over the world are investing in them to deliver better results. Intelligent digital communications are changing the world. Are you ready to be a part of it?  

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