Digital signages: Too much of a good thing?

digital signage

As more digital signages are popping up in almost every corners of the city, you will start to wonder when will it be too much for one to handle. Could we reach a stage when they become excessive or even harmful?


Traffic Safety Concerns

City authorities are particularly concerned about traffic safety as they believe digital signage can be a big distraction to drivers. However, in the age of ever-shortening attention spans, digital signage cannot be treated solely as the main cause for any traffic disturbance.

Plus, there are many other factors involved such as the weather, road conditions, or even the drivers' mental conditions and their state of minds, which could well be the reasons causing all the distractions. Hence, digital signage can only be considered as a minor safety concern for road users. 

But there is a dilemma here - marketers goes all out to display the most attention grabbing campaign on the street, and trying their best to get consumers attention even for a few seconds. This small window of attention serve as the ultimate holy grail for all marketers. However, this becomes a distraction for road users, created some level of traffic safety concerns.

We need a break-even point, where the marketers intends are achieved and public safety is not compromised.


Visual Clutter

Digital signage can be a visual blight on the surrounding community by some people. With the increasing numbers of digital signage installations, city authorities are concerned about how it could damage the city's image.

However, digital signage will only be a nuisance when the number is too high or installments are unorganised. This can be prevented by introducing some control over the number of deployment within certain locations. This limitation can help control the over-exposure of digital displays within the controlled environment.

However, with this limitation, advertisers will need to work harder to prove that their ads are worth displaying. Advertisers need to take initiative by improving the quality of their ad messages through personalisation, customisation and better engagement. From here, the perception of digital signage will improve as people will start to appreciate the value of the campaigns they see. With higher qualities campaigns executed, the perspective of digital signage will also improve from a mere clutter to an informative and engaging channel for interaction.


Impair privacy

Interestingly, a lot of people still believe that digital signage technologies are able to collect their private data. We need to educate the people that digital signage only uses facial detection technology in which their privacy is not breached.

Facial recognition and facial detection are two very distinct technologies:

Facial recognition involves face-analysis which helps the technology to identify the audiences as individuals. Biometrics are used to identify and authenticate a person using a set of recognisable and verifiable data unique and specific to that particular person only. For example, the iPhone X has been using face recognition technology to unlock their iPhone.

Facial detection, on the other hand, is only able to establish the demographics of the audiences in a way such as detecting the gender, age and their behaviour patterns when they stand in front of the digital signage. Facial detection does not involve any collection of private data but it collects information anonymously and used them to advertise to targeted audiences. In outdoor advertising realm, we only use facial detection to get better consumer insights in order to deliver a more targeted and personalised campaign.


What Actions Should We Take?

We are seeing an increasing numbers of cities limiting or even banning digital signage installation, however, any large-scale city ban would be unlikely to happen anytime soon. Nevertheless, we have to ask ourselves whether our effort in managing outdoor advertising is enough to create a better connection to the society we live in.

Everyone had a role to play:

Marketers need more quality contents with the correct messages or ad, personalised to the correct audiences.

Media owners too, need to be more vigilance in selecting the correct locations for installation, as well as the types of contents allowed in these respective locations.

We at Moving Walls are committed to make a difference on how the consumers view outdoor digital signages, and how with the enrichment of location data, will provide a better consumer engagement with your digital signages.


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