Attention is in short supply nowadays, and is one of the most important currencies for any business. After all, if you can’t draw your audience’s attention, how are they ever going to see your message?

Luckily, digital signage is advancing by leaps and bounds, allowing companies to draw the attention of their prospects and customers in increasingly creative ways. So, if you too want to stand out from the crowd and get your ad noticed, read on for some tips and tricks.


1. Ads in Motion

Traditionally, OOH (Out of Home Advertising) was a static medium, and this also seems to be a bit of a trend even with digital screens that can do so much more. Moving images attract people’s attention much more easily than the sexiest static design on the planet.

This doesn’t mean you need to spend a fortune on a complex video ad. Something as small as zooming in on your product or scrolling images will do wonders to attract your audience’s attention. And if your ad is surrounded by many others which are all static, you can be certain that everyone will have their eyes glued to yours.

Moving copy and images helps to break up the monotony of what people see around them, and helps you draw that initial interest. This means you can better tailor your message to actually be impactful on your audience, instead of focusing solely on drawing their attention.

A little motion goes a long way to add interest and draw people’s eyes to your advertisement, allowing you to focus on sending a message that will create a better connection between your brand and your audience.


*You can explore using a video creation tool like Magisto.


2. Engage as Many Senses as Possible


Most OOH ads focus on one sense, namely eyesight. Thus, people see the ads and that’s about it. However, you can take it to the next level by engaging more than one sense.

Now, which other senses you engage will depend largely on the location and screens you will be using for your campaign. For example, with a large billboard at a distance, engaging other senses might be complicated.

However, street furniture and indoor screens lend themselves to increased sensory engagement. For example, Cheetos ran an ad campaign in Colombia where they used smell to draw the attention of their audience. They were advertising their new Cheetos Popcorn and installed scent diffusers in bus shelters alongside their display ads that pumped out the cheesy popcorn smell.

You can be certain that this approach definitely drew the attention of their audience. Instead of ignoring the ad as another one of many, the scent drew them in and had them salivating over the new product.

Of course, using scent to attract customers is nothing new. Stores and restaurants have been using it for ages, but it was a more subtle approach, trying to take advantage of consumer psychology – i.e. using the smell of burgers to entice people to walk into a Burger King or McDonald’s but without it being an overt ad.

Nowadays, though, using scent can be a great approach to ensuring your ad stands out from the crowd. And it doesn’t have to be limited to food products. Any product can benefit from the addition of a distinctive scent to draw attention.

For example, an ad for a car can use that new car smell people absolutely love. Perfumes, lotions, and other cosmetics can use their own scent to attract customers, while a travel agency can use the smell of the ocean. A little creativity can do wonders to draw eyeballs… and noses… to your ad.

3. Go Interactive


Interactivity is becoming the name of the game as it has been proven repeatedly that an interactive approach to anything will not only engage people more but also make the experience more memorable.

For example, at conferences, lectures, and other educational events, interactivity has been shown to improve information retention.

So, if you go for an interactive approach, not only will you draw more attention and increase audience engagement, but they’ll also remember your brand better and for longer.

A great example of an interactive DOOH (Digital Out of Home) campaign that drew a lot of attention was the Batman v Superman campaign in Denmark, the Netherlands and Australia. Thus, interactive screens were installed in bus shelters and people could use the screens to become their favorite superhero.



The screens used augmented reality to show the individual wearing their costume of choice. The system even resized the costume to make the final effect as realistic as possible. The result was nearly 9,000 interactions with the campaign appealing to kids as much as adults.

4. Be Smart and Dynamic


Advancements in technology allow for smart and dynamic content that will more easily draw attention than any static ad. You can use incoming data, from the weather to the demographics of people passing by, to tailor your message.

For example, a large retailer might advertise barbeques when it’s sunny, and video games or other products for indoor entertainment when it’s raining out.

British Airways used GPRS so every time one of their planes flew over Trafalgar Square, the little boy in the ad would get up, point at the plane and identify it, telling people the flight number and where it was coming from.

Another great example of using surrounding information to create an impactful message was a campaign run by a youth cancer charity in Sweden. Barncancer Fonden had screens in subway stations showing the effects of cancer on a young woman.

When the train arrived, a camera would recognize it and the wind would blow her hair on the screen, and it would then fly off. As you can imagine, the ad had a significant emotional impact.

5. Be Helpful


Never discount the power of being helpful. Instead of just delivering your message, try to help your audience with various announcements and essential information. Providing information during amber alerts, natural disasters, and other emergencies is definitely one way of showing your audience they are important to you.

But you don’t have to wait for a natural disaster to take advantage. You can display sports  scores, concert times, movie schedules and much more, depending on your audience. Remember, helping your audience shows them you are putting them first, and your novel approach will definitely draw attention as people check scores, times, or traffic information.

Regardless of the approach you take, remember that the key element of any successful campaign is the audience. Getting to know your audience – really understanding them – will make it much easier for you to devise a campaign that will draw their attention and keep them coming back for more.



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Digital signage is no longer the domain of science fiction movies and has gone mainstream. In fact, some consider it to be an essential element in any business’ marketing strategy. This, in large part, has to do with the significant improvement in technology. So, here’s what we can expect in the digital signage world this year.


1.The Digital Signage Market Will Grow


In 2016, the global digital signage market was valued at over $19 billion, but it is expected to reach $32.84 billion in 2023, coming close to doubling in size. And we will definitely see some of that growth this year.

Some of the elements that will contribute to this growth include:

  • More widespread adoption of programmatic digital out-of-home advertising, which will further put this form of advertising in the spotlight for media planners
  • Digital signage is impactful, a fact that media agencies are starting to acknowledge, meaning they will be spending more marketing dollars in this space;
  • Combined with mobile, it’s one of the most effective forms of advertising allowing businesses to reach consumers with the right message, but also at the right time and in the right place.



2.Video Walls Will Become More Popular


A bigger market means a higher demand, so we’ll definitely be seeing many more screens. However, we’ll also see a significant increase in the number of video walls. Video walls offer a wide range of benefits, not least of which is the additional surface area advertisers have to work with as well as the fact that their potential for interactivity is higher than other digital signage approaches.


3. Content Will Become More Interactive


In all mediums, interactivity generates engagement. So, the more interactive the content is, the more engaged consumers will be.

In terms of digital signage, interactivity is becoming a necessary element of a campaign for it to succeed. And interactivity isn’t just limited to touch, as now things like voice recognition and behavior based on the data the unit is recording are also on the table.  

Content will also become more personalized thanks to sensors and data feeds from computers and the internet allowing for adjustments based on real-world situations. For example, if the weather is sunny, ads for swimwear and outdoor activities will be shown, whereas if it’s snowing, ads for skis and the local ice rink might be displayed instead. Thus, content will no longer be shown on a set schedule, but when it makes the most sense to do so.


4. Messages Will Be Longer

The shift towards storytelling and building relationships is happening in all areas of business. And, to this end, campaigns will focus more on long-form, story-driven content to build relationships, which will cut through the information overload created by the one-shot messages that are so popular at the moment.

Research shows that consumers are shifting away from direct marketing, with Millennials actively disliking it. Instead, they prefer stories and narratives that include a subtle sales message, and for campaigns to see success in the future, they will have to listen to what the market wants.


5. More Focus Will Be Placed on Security

One of the biggest issues in the digital advertising industry in recent years has been security and trust. The supply chain is complex and opaque, from an advertiser’s viewpoint, which is why it is essential for ad agencies to be transparent with their clients if digital signage is to continue to grow.

Furthermore, security is even more important when one considers the public nature of digital signage networks. All it takes is one slightly more industrious hacker with a slightly skewed sense of humor or a desire to do harm breaking into the network and displaying inappropriate content to cause a lot of trouble.

This is why it is essential that the entire network is controlled and well-secured, from the hardware to the apps being used. It’s also vital that everyone involved is also on board. It doesn’t matter how secure the system is if someone’s password into the system is password.



6. The Real World Will Become More Digital

People spend a lot of time in the digital world, and this will only increase as time goes on. In fact, the digital world will bleed into the real world more and more, a trend that we will see a lot of this year.

Thus, displays won’t just be used to advertise events, but will become key components of those events. Geofencing and beacons will gain more traction and consumers will receive prompts to install apps in particular areas that will allow them to interact with the digital world around them.

And this will, of course, impact digital signage as screens become more prevalent and not just for advertising purposes, but to enable brands to interact with their customers more effectively.



7. Technology Will Continue to Advance by Leaps and Bounds

Screens are growing in surface area but becoming slimmer than ever, with narrower bezels. But that’s not the really interesting news. Technology in the reflective display field has made incredible advances. In other words, it’s not going to be long before we have screens that are micrometers thick and can be rolled up for easy transportation. These screens can be seen from both sides, and will be excellent for engagement when placed in store windows. At the moment, the refresh rates don’t allow these screens to play rich video, but it won’t be long before that happens.

In the meantime, this year a 42-inch black and white reflective screen – also referred to as e-paper – is expected to hit the market. And these screens are cheap to purchase and use, as well as being incredibly mobile, which will enable a wide range of applications.

Other things we can expect to see include higher resolutions for LCD screens, and even more colors with the switch to BT.2020 from sRGB.

Digital signage will only continue to grow as technology advances and our real and digital worlds mesh more and more. In the end, though, displays are only a tool, and everything should be done with the customer experience front and center.

A business that can relate to consumers as human beings will find more success than those that see their customers as nothing more than walking dollar signs.

Pepsi Max surprise commuters with an ‘unbelievable’ augmented reality experience at a bus shelter on New Oxford Street in London. Watch their reactions as unbelievable scenarios unfold before their very eyes; from a giant robot crashing through the street to a passer by being abducted by flying saucers.



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