When it comes to project management in digital signage, there are a number of obvious “rules of thumb,” “best practices” or whatever other buzzword or catchphrase you prefer to use. Frankly, there are also a lot of things that don’t matter as much. Take, for instance, the software or hardware you decide to use in your installation. Sure, being penny wise and pound foolish is more expensive than a true investment in a robust system, but once you get above a required quality threshold, the rest doesn’t really matter.
I’ve read numerous guest articles written by industry “experts” touting the need for this or that features in their digital signage software package. Shoot, I’m as guilty as those to whom I point the finger. But, the fact of the matter remains, as long as you system has the listed and required features, is tested and works on thousands of devices and doesn’t have cheap hardware that is going to go out tomorrow, you’re basically set. Once you get into the enterprise space, there are rarely features that make the “must-have” list brought to you by upper-management that would a.) not be included in most enterprise systems or b.) matter enough to spend more time and effort trying to find how to do some far-flung thing that is outside of the mainstream.
Here are a few things you should be spending time worrying, stressing and making sure you nail.
First, you’ve got to nail the content. Don’t go cheap on it. Find out who the audience is, what their dwell time and know what messages you want to tell them and then reverse engineer your content to fit their needs. If it’s a 35 year old mother of three whole be juggling children and will only be viewing the display for a brief 10 seconds, you better get it right. An 80 year-old man in a waiting room may require less attention to detail, but my point here is that the message matters more than the medium of delivery.
Along with the content, you’ll need to think about the content schedule, including content updating and playback on your signage player. The schedule is of vital importance and you have to know key components of each location to ensure the schedule meets the needs of the particular audience your targeting.
I’m not saying a new digital signage network needs to find the cheapest solution on the market, nor am I touting the need to use a particular software package. My point here is that there are things that matter–far and above others. Most of the industry-written dribble focuses on features and price points and best practices that matter much less, even if it comes forth as a shout. When you start heading down rat holes, you start petting the sweaty stuff.