Enhancing Digital Signage Communications through Storytelling

When designing digital signage communications, you don’t have to stick to one-off announcements. In fact, viewers often prefer a campaign, or story, to relate and reinforce your message.

Storytelling is…

“…the art in which a teller conveys a message, truths, information, knowledge, or wisdom to an audience – often subliminally – in an entertaining way, using whatever skills (musical, artistic, creative) or props he chooses, to enhance the audience’s enjoyment, retention and understanding of the message conveyed”. – Berice Dudley, NSW, Australian Storytelling

Just as you’d plan a new product roll-out campaign, internal contest, advertising series or any other continuous narrative, you can do the same with digital signage.

The Art of the Story

The traditional story format usually follows this pattern:

  • Normal life
  • Call to adventure
  • Life after the call

Your story’s format will need to appeal to your audience and either educate them or motivate them to action:

  • What is life like now?
  • What action should be taken to change things?
  • What will life be like after taking action?

Develop Your Story

When planning your digital signage messages as a story, you’ll want to:

  1. Simplify the complex
  2. Create a storyboard
  3. Design your content

Make sure the style of each of your story elements fit together. You don’t have to stay with one medium – feel free to mix messages with video, graphics, QR tags leading to associated web pages, and more – just make sure the audience can tell at a glance that they are all part of the same story.

Like any good story, you’ll want to have a clear moral, outcome or action at the end. Although you may want to start with teasers to get people interested, you’ll want to make the throughline and any action items clear. Don’t rely on just one message to get this across – repetition is key.