BYOD Digital Signage for Mobile Marketing

Not only are more people connected to the web than ever before, but more and more of them are connected with mobile devices – smartphones, tablets, laptops, and wearable computing such as smartwatches. That means there are lots of additional screens being looked at around your organization. Each of these can be part of a BYOD digital signage system, no matter who your audience is.

Recent studies show a huge increase in the use of mobile computing devices:

  • 68% of American adults now own a smartphone and 45% have tablets
  • Mobile devices are now being used more often than desktop computers
  • 60% of people worldwide use their mobile device as their primary internet access
  • Over half of all e-commerce traffic comes from mobiles devices
  • 76% of Millennials (people between 18 and 34) own a smartphone, and 87% of them say they always have their devices within arm’s reach
  • 20% of adults say they would rather give up their computer for one week than their smartphone (21% would give up their shoes and 22% would give up their toothbrush)

These numbers are all expected to rise considerably in the next few years. So how can you increase your digital real estate to get your messages onto these mobile devices?

Drive to the Web

Publish your digital signage messages on a webpage, so people can get your content even when they aren’t physically in your space (like when they’re working from home). Advertise this feature frequently on your displays, and give your webpage an easy-to-remember name or short URL.

QR codes on your in-house messages can encourage people to go out to your webpage, or a separate dedicated URL that offers further information on the topic or event (this also helps you track ROI for specific messages.) People can then reference the information they saw even when they’re not in your facility.

Encourage Interaction

Some of your digital signage content will be changing quickly, so create a simple app that allows people to interact with your messages. For example, you may be running out of certain dishes that are popular at your cafeteria on a given day. You can tie in basic database information on digital signs, and people who use your app on their own device can see which dishes are still available on your screens, and then use an app to order them. This can work with any offers that are of limited duration or number – available workstations, books at the library or bookshop, contests and drives with deadlines, etc.

If you’ve integrated social media into your digital signage, for example with Facebook or Twitter boards, people can react immediately to things you post on big screens on their smartphones, and see their responses on digital signs throughout the office or campus.

Creating apps that allow people to interact with your organization as they move through it can also get much more personalized. Bluetooth-enabled devices can automatically trigger content being pushed to their mobile devices just by walking past a sensor. Wayfinding apps can send directions directly to someone’s smartphone or tablet, with turn-by-turn directions and pictures of landmarks to help guide them on their way. A geofence can send a prompt to download the app for first time visitors, or automatically activate the app on a device that already has it.

Reinforce with SMS

Sending out reminders about content you’ve already shown on digital signs is a good idea, but most people would rather get a text than an email. In fact, only 22% of emails get read today, compared with 98% of SMS texts. To put that another way, 76% of people surveyed by SAP say they are more likely to read an SMS from an organization than an email, and 70% said they think SMS is a good way for an organization to get their attention (64% said that business should use SMS more). And texts encourage more interaction with the content as well – 19% of URL links in texts get clicked, compared with only 4% in emails.

We’re not talking about spamming your audience, but a few targeted reminders, especially about things that have a deadline, through SMS texts or app notifications might be a good way to reinforce your digital signage messaging. But be sure to make this option easy to opt in and out of.

Have a BYOD Policy

People appreciate being able to use their own devices. They already check email, surf the web, follow social media, make reservations, and check schedules and times with them, so adding your digital signage messages is just one more layer for them to interact with.

If you’re going to give your audience the option of getting additional content on their mobile devices, publish a simple, clear policy.

Make sure their access is password protected, with a password they choose themselves. Require a strong password (minimum six characters with numbers and upper- and lower-case letters). Consider requiring passwords to be changed every 90 days, to keep things secure.

If you’re allowing access to social media for your organization, you should also have some clear policies in place for that. No posting about specific individuals, no vulgar or offensive language or pictures – basically the online world should be seen as an extension of the real world, with the same rules of conduct that apply throughout your organization.

With just a little planning, you can extend your digital signage and the content your show to include your audience’s mobile devices. It would be a shame to let all that extra screen space go to waste, wouldn’t it?


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