Tips & Guides

How to create Digital Signage content

Digital signage content

It's safe to say that digital signage is only as good (or bad) as the digital content that's created for it. In a similar way, it's the same reason why smartphones are the norm nowadays. Similar in size, look and feel to their predecessors, yet game changers because of the amazing content that can be delivered and changed seamlessly, just like digital signage.

Digital signage content ideas

Content is King, and whilst you may well be the next budding Spielberg or Tarantino, with a great project and the most creative ideas, but it's always better to keep things simple, for a start at least. You will probably have a good idea of your target audience, but remember you may only have a few seconds to attract their attention, and a few more to get their interest. Your keywords should always be 'clean and simple'. Start with a colour scheme that's well contrasted with dark text on light backgrounds or conversely light/white-out text on dark backgrounds. For the actual text, it's best to stick to sans-serif fonts unless there is a convincing argument not to or the brand dictates otherwise. There's a reason why Helvetica is the World's most widely used and loved font for design and display, it has a classic look, is simple to read, and appeals to a wide audience. Script style or serif fonts just don't work as well with this medium. When your colour schemes and fonts are decided, make sure you go to your display's location and view the messages to confirm that they can be easily read from near and afar.

Digital signage content numbers

Numbers can be more effective for grabbing attention and getting messages across. Our brains love numbers, they’re quick to absorb and package information into neat little parcels. They also create credibility for your campaigns whilst taking up less valuable space than words.

Tips for using numbers in your digital signage content:

    • Always use Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3, 4…) rather than using the written equivalent.
    • When sharing statistics, use exact data when you can and avoid rounding off to the nearest ten. Odd numbers are more credible than even ones. Think “47% increase in sales” as opposed to “50% increase in sales” – it sounds more accurate and more believable.
    • Use numbers for social validation if your business is strong with online channels. For example, if you ask people to like your page on Instagram, include how many followers your page already has.
Digital signage content - Graphics

Whilst it's still a bit cliché, a picture (and by that we mean graphics) really can be worth a thousand words. The nature of digital signage means that it's important to support your messages and be able to reduce the word count with graphics and pictures where possible. The World of video games, film graphics and CGI has come on in leaps and bounds over the past few years, and with the popularity of 4K format soaring, it's important that your graphics are the best they can possibly be, . Once the header/strap-line and content of your messages are defined, look for ways to highlight and draw the eye to the key message(s). More specifically, you can pair your message(s) with video or animation, which is an especially good idea if you offer a product or service that is more complex. As you’re deciding on which colours to use in your signage, think about the tints used in your company logo or any colour combinations that represent your brand. And finally, colours are known to convey emotions, so try to choose colours that convey the ones you want, red (hunger, passion, urgent), blue (trust, calm, stable, professional), green (growth, natural, organic, eco-friendly), yellow (energy, optimism, warmth) etc.

Digital signage - call to action

It's within the art of the salesperson that they try to close the deal, ask when and how many you would like to order; your digital signage should do no less. You've gained their attention with sublime graphics and their interest with perfect messaging, they're ready to make a quick decision, so ask for action! This can simply be what they need to do next and how you can best help them. With so many different channels to contact companies these days, you should make things easy for both yourself and your targets by showing them the specific way to reach you about a specific message or advert. Ensure the call to action starts with an action verb, to really amplify the urgency that your prospect needs to act as soon as possible.

Digital signage templates
PowerPoint or Google Slides

Whether you like it or not, PowerPoint is the go-to for presentations and is one of the more popular in the Office suite. You can easily use it to create any static digital signage content, from restaurant menus to building directories to daily trivia. Slides may be saved as JPEG or PNG files for upload. Looking for a free equivalent? If you don't use PowerPoint, try Google slides.

Adobe Illustrator

Adobe Illustrator, now a cloud-based solution within the Adobe Creative Cloud, is a much more sophisticated tool than Powerpoint, but still relatively easy to grasp. Because Illustrator is vector-based, it’s great for creating graphics that need to be displayed at different sizes without losing quality. That’s an absolute priority for digital signage content, which may need to be displayed on multiple screens at various dimensions.

Cenareo SaaS Platform

Cenareo has been at the forefront of the digital signage revolution since 2012 and supports it's diverse customer base through market-leading technologies aimed at keeping digital signage content easy to create, mange and deploy. Part of our solution is to provide clients with a great selection of modifiable digital signage templates, both static pictures and moving video. These are provided free.

Digital signage - keep it fresh and exciting

Digital signage is clearly at an advantage to traditional signage with it's ability to run dynamic content. If you’re only displaying static content on your screens, why even use digital signage? Dynamic content captures more attention, and your audience is more likely to keep paying attention when you make an effort to create and share fresh content on a regular basis, rather than show the same display over and over again, which can become annoying, the last thing you want! Examples of dynamic digital signage content are videos, animations, social media or weather feeds. The last two are your best bet for keeping your content as fresh and exciting, and they’re super low maintenance. But remember if you’re displaying your business social media account, make sure that it's updated!

Digital signage social media

Social media has become a huge part of most people's daily routine, so you might as well dove-tail it into your digital signage content. For material that’s too long for a digital signage screen, you can include a call to action to your company’s social profile where genuinely interested people can learn more. YouTube, Vimeo, Twitch, Dailymotion and Flickr can be used for visual content such as news updates, information on new products, how to's and company ethics. Get creative with social media as it's content is already created, an easy win! And never be afraid to ask your employees and/or customers for ideas on how you can maximise the use of social media.

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