The Catalyst to Your Marketing Plan – PRI’s Journal of Retail Analytics

By November 11, 2013 No Comments

Understanding Digital Signage Solutions:
the Catalyst to Your Marketing Plan

By Amy Savidge, Retail Enterprise Account Manager, Scala, Inc.

Published in PRI’s Journal of Retail Analytics

This may sound familiar, too familiar: A customer walks into a store, her
item list locked and loaded, and her mind is set on what she wants. More
time is spent in the checkout line than in the aisles. Before the cashier can
even utter a “thank you,” she’s already out the door. There’s no chance for
promotion, communication, or adherence. It’s another missed opportunity.
Thanks to the steady advancement of technology, customers are becoming
more knowledgeable, more capable, and more independent. This creates a
less personal experience that is efficiently breaking the bond between the
customer and the brand. So, how are retail stores supposed to reinvigorate
their relationships?

Scala digital signage solutions provide an effective way to target customers
and increase sales by engaging them with a personalized shopping
experience. Implementing data-driven digital signage into a retailer’s marketing
strategy bridges the gap between traditional media and online marketing.
Scala Advanced Analytics provides powerful insights, enhances digital content
and selects the best possible message to increase a retailer’s chances of
making a sale. When retailers use messaging that matters to their customers,
they establish loyalty, trust, and understanding – characteristics that bring more

Catch them in the moment
When customers are most receptive to a message, there’s a greater chance of
converting sales. Scala retail digital signage helps drive a consistent brand
image, promote at the point-of-sale, and even reach customers on their mobile
devices. Scala digital signage solutions help create a visually attractive
environment that customers have come to expect.

Predict the next move
It’s tough communicating with customers when you don’t know what they want.
With Scala Advanced Analytics, retailers can command attention by making
their messages actionable. By combining historical market data with live third party
data, Advanced Analytics helps retailers craft messages that resonate
with their customers, generate positive responses, and ultimately increase their
sales. Messaging can be adjusted automatically to reflect customer trends
based on pricing changes, basket data, the weather, time of day, and more.
The automated learning feedback system analyzes customer patterns and
utilizes these insights for greater optimization. By displaying live, dynamic,
targeted messages, salespeople have an easier time initiating conversations.

Simple, stable, and successful
Retailers need tools that are not only effective, but also easily integrated into
their marketing strategy. Digital signage powered by Scala provides a stable
platform for retailers to easily design, schedule, and manage interactive
content over a wide range of media formats from any computer with an Internet
connection. There are four key features that make digital signage solutions run
smoothly and on schedule:

1. Easy to Use
• Build messages from scratch or integrate existing materials using
intuitive interfaces.
• Effortlessly pull in dynamic content or integrate with multiple data
sources including POS and loyalty program systems.
• Command attention using stimulating animation, video, interactive
content, even lighting, scent, and sound.

2. Dependable
• Scala signage networks have 24/7 reliability and don’t require constant
supervision and maintenance.
• Never draw a blank – if a network connection goes down, network
owners can trust that their content keeps playing using store and
forward technology.
• Digital signage operates reliably in any retail setting: indoors, outdoors,
hardwired into the Internet, linked by satellite, in the big city or in rural
locations, using equipment from countless different manufacturers.

3. Custom fit
• Modify how a message is delivered to vary by location, time of day,
season and audience.
• Control any item in a playlist so that it reacts dynamically to conditions
at the playback location.
• Enhance the experience by adding engaging features that create
interactivity for viewers.

4. Scalability
• Grow and expand your business with the latest technology, as well as
your changing needs.
• Power and connect anything from one screen to a global network of
• Allow additional people to create content and control displays on a
local, regional, or global level, with powerful group and user role

Connect with your customers
Mobile devices including smartphones, tablets, and PDAs have become an
essential part of our lives. We take them with us everywhere we go and use
them in combination with social networking to keep in touch and stay updated
on current events. Digital signage programs help a brand jump into the
conversation and build a relationship with its customers, even when they aren’t
in the store. These are some examples of how social media and mobile device
connections may be used to mine valuable customer information:

• Implement QR codes on your displays so customers can zap directly to
product information, instant coupons, and other promotions or social
sites. They can even control on-screen content directly from their
• Promote a brand’s Facebook page and have customers express their
support to the world.
• Display up-to-the-second Twitter feeds and other social media buzz on
displays, encouraging customers to spread the word.
• Integrate a brand’s Instagram feed to keep in touch with the viral visual
world, sharing creative snapshots about the brand from users all over
the world.
• Share who has been to a store location via Foursquare and gain a new
audience from the broad reach of this social network.
• Integration meets interactivity with Scala Fling: A salesperson or
customer can share content from their tablets to any screen with just
the flick of a finger.

According to a recent report from Juniper Research, an estimated one in five
smartphones will have Near Field Communication (NFC) functionality by 2014.
With NFC, retailers can read user preferences from their device and customize
messages to deliver a personalized experience for shoppers. NFC technology
enables devices to act as loyalty cards, location “check-in” devices, payment
methods, coupons, tickets, and secure keys to access cars, hotel rooms,
buildings, computers and more. NFC also allows customers to purchase
through in-store display, participate in promotions and get more information on
products and services. Combining NFC with geo-location marketing will
increase a retailer’s targeting parameters and strengthen segmented
messaging. All of a sudden, the line between online and traditional retail
becomes blurred.