Going by the historical point of view, marketing has been reliant on advertisements of various forms. Depending on the nature of business, advertising can take up to 50% of the revenue. For any company, this is a huge amount and even a slight reduction in this expenditure can be greatly beneficial.
The universal appeal of posters, play card and roadside banners can be seen as a cue to the essence of advertising in promotion. Any industry needs to update and change its stance to create a competitive strategy in accordance with the needs of time. Historical approaches of print and outdoor space still are relevant. But the digital space creates a huge vacuum that has only been partially tapped.
The realm of digital signage system
Current scenarios require quick dispensing of information. That is where digital signage system is so useful. It allows easy controls allowing operators to reduce operational costs due to logistic delay. Digital signage system involves two principle setups, the hardware and software. The hardware is the LEDs and LCDs. In a common environment, these are mostly visible in retail outlets. The sets are connected to a mainframe network.
The other piece of the puzzle is the software department that comes into the picture once the screens and the network has been put into place. The screens can be operated from a control centre far away.
There are some pretty big players on either segments of digital signage. Many electronics companies are redefining their stance towards electronically operated sign boards. Existing advertising giants such as 3M are refocusing on creating display screens for outdoor display. China seems to be pretty ahead in terms of digital business. A firm by the name of Focus Media Holding operates 120000 screens catering across the globe. Screenvision has over 14000 screens in the US alone.
What a company stands to gain by introducing digital signage system
- Cost: Initial setup may be high for digital signage system but subsequent expenditures are negligible. Further, digital media can provide more targeted niche advertising, thereby eliminating unrequited costs.
- Versatility: Digital signage system makes it easier for a company to change the content and in short span of time. This absence of logistic delay alone can be a substantial cost saver for the firm.
- Licensing: Digital advertisement allows greater control on licensing and addressing copyright concerns.
Typical IT spending of a company approximates around 10%. This cost can be aligned with the existing media advertisements.
The Indian Context
Unlike other advanced nations like Japan, where traditionally high importance has been given to digital signage, India advertising space is still at an infantile stage. The Indian advertising industry has been placed at $10 billion. 29% of this amount is constituted by display advertising. However, the penetration of digital signage systems is still paltry and conventional displays predominate.
Despite this situation, India is considered to be a driver of growth of the digital signage industry. The size of this industry was placed at Rs. 560 crores. The average growth of year to year revenue was placed at 25%. More and more firms are shifting towards the digital marketing modes to provide a versatile interface for addressing the masses.
The digital space is an expanse of unconquered territory. Besides, the growth has been restricted in a few urban niches.