Technology in the digital signage industry continues to change at a rapid pace so retailers and marketers need to make sure they are keeping their eye on the proverbial ball. According to Chris Day, Managing Director of Moving Tactics, South Africa’s leading digital signage solutions company, retailers and marketing professionals need to keep up-to-date with what’s new in the industry and what will work best for their brands and customers.
“We often see that Retail and Quick-Service Restaurant (QSR) chains are focused on the bottom line but it is crucial that you have the key building blocks in place so that your digital technology solutions deliver operationally on your KPIs”. Day highlights five digital signage technology must-haves for 2019 that will yield operational efficiency and an enhanced customer experience.
- In-store Music and Podcasts
The impact of music on consumer behaviour is well-known with research demonstrating that consumers shop for longer, spend more money and have an enhanced shopping experience if they’re exposed to music. Many local and international retail and restaurant brands are implementing bespoke in-store music and audio solutions to create a more engaging and brand-specific experience.
One such solution that Moving Tactics has introduced within a retail environment is a tailored and regionalised radio service with live podcasting. The radio service can also be linked to staff training as and when it’s required by downloading podcasts.
Stores are also able to link back to past content and replay the podcasts whenever needed. Technology allows for customers to generate in-store content via social media by sending voice notes, which can be edited and added to the in-store audio solution. This gives the impression of ‘live’ radio that can be carefully orchestrated according to the brand image.
- Weather-based Menu Boards
Moving Tactics has been working with leading QSRs over the last several months to trial weather-based content for digital menu boards. Weather-based digital menu boards will change the menu items being displayed in the restaurant based on the actual weather being experienced outside, in real time. So if it’s a cooler day, warmer and heartier menu items will be promoted and displayed in place of frozen drinks and salads on the menu boards.
Over and above menu items being promoted and highlighted based on the time of day (day-parting for breakfast, lunch, etc), the weather-based menu boards give customers more choice as well as more practical and relevant food options.
- Streaming Staff Training
Early morning in-store training for staff has progressed with the latest technology advancements and can be scheduled in a similar way to promotional content. Staff training no longer needs to be done live or scheduled weeks ahead of time. With the latest technologies, staff are able to stream or download podcasts of the most recent training that needs to be undertaken via the corporate network. Using the digital audio and visual network in-store, makes training as easy as 1, 2, 3.
- Virtual Queueing
More and more retailers are utilising virtual queue technologies to better manage the wait for service in an increasingly digital world. There’s nothing more off-putting to shoppers and detrimental to sales than long queues in your store, so retailers are using virtual queuing systems to enable customers to check in, maintain their place in the virtual line, and be notified when it’s their turn for service.
And to top it off, the right queuing software can help retailers better understand their own businesses and iron out any kinks in customer service. “From an analytics perspective, we can provide our client with data retrieved from the Virtual Queue solution relating to footfall, wait times and service times. The retailer can use this information to analyse trends and monitor individual stores or benchmark their brand’s performance”.
- Refresh your Network
Technology is ever-evolving and it is recommended to refresh your digital signage network every three years to keep equipment compatible with the latest software. Obsolete equipment negates the reasons why retailers and QSRs initially install the equipment to engage with their customers and promote products, services and specials to add value to their bottom lines.
This can be a costly exercise, so Moving Tactics has launched a Rental Finance division to provide businesses with financial flexibility. Over and above the explicit advantage of effective cash flow management, the fact that you have up-to-date technology that is always under warranty and replaced every three years provides peace of mind. “It really is a new way of doing business for the digital signage industry here in South Africa,” adds Day.