Guest Post: David Kaszycki, Aerva
Most convention centers around the world have installed some form of digital signage throughout their facilities. From large LED signs out front to information displays inside meeting rooms, convention centers are quickly becoming a category leader in the digital signage industry. Although many convention centers currently utilize digital signage, they may not be taking full advantage of all that signage can offer for their venue and events.
1. Generate Revenue – Convention center visitors are a targeted group that advertisers will pay to be in front of. Show sponsors and exhibitors are always looking for ways to drive traffic to their booth and in-event advertising is a great way to do it. Exhibitors aren’t the only ones interested in advertising either. Local businesses, like restaurants, bars, and entertainment venues who want to entice event attendees to visit them, will jump at the chance to promote themselves to this out-of-town audience.
With digital signage, it’s easy to help advertisers better target their audience. Companies can advertise during specific events and only at times of day that are relevant to their customers, meaning that they can more effectively utilize their marketing dollars. If you are a convention center and are not selling media space on your digital screens, then you are missing out on a large revenue potential opportunity.
2. Continually-Updated Convention Schedules – Expo schedules can be complex. Often times there are multiple events taking place at a single convention center on any given day. This makes it challenging for visitors to get to where they need to go as they try to work their way through massive convention centers.
With digital signage, convention centers can display timely information to all visitors for every event taking place throughout the center. Since each screen can be programmed independently with custom content, the convention center staff can better target messaging based on the schedule in that area, while also offering directions to other events talking place in different parts of the building. These up-to-the-minute schedules and directions streamline the visitor experience and limit the number of staff required to direct individuals and distribute printed event schedules.
3. Emergency Notifications – If there is an emergency in the convention center, you need a reliable and immediate way to convey information to visitors. The best digital signage software offers immediate content override capabilities so that the event staff can alert attendees of an emergency and the actions they should take. Although you hope this messaging system is never required, it’s an important tool that all convention centers need in order to keep their visitors and staff safe in emergency situations.
4. Social Media and Mobile Audience Engagement – Everyone loves to tweet, Instagram and Facebook their event experience, showing the coolest booth or sharing the next ground-breaking technology. Event exhibitors also use social media to announce product launches and provide their booth information to visitors.
With the right digital signage platform, all of this social data can be captured and displayed on the digital screens. Moderation tools can be put in place to prevent inappropriate content so that the event staff never has to worry about what is being shown on the screens. As new events come to the convention center, the social media streams can be seamlessly switched over to the next set of social feeds that match up with the upcoming event.
5. Live Streaming Event Content – To increase the visitors at keynote speaker events, many convention center signage networks are beginning to live-stream events on their digital screen network. Exhibitors love this capability as they can now reach individuals who do not know that the keynote is going on.
For large convention halls, visitors may even just sit and watch the keynote from a comfortable quiet location rather than going to the keynote itself. Large organizations that come to your convention center to host their events will love having this functionality as an offering.
6. Transit and Traffic Information – Many expo visitors leave straight from the center to catch their flight, train or ride. The best-of-breed digital signage allows convention centers to integrate live data feeds for flight, train, and subway schedules to give visitors an easy place to quickly see how they are doing on time. Also, up-to-the-minute traffic can be shown on the screen to make sure that visitors don’t miss their flight due to an accident or road work if they need to take a cab to the airport.
7. Enhanced Offerings to Exhibitors – When industry organizations and companies look for convention centers to host their events, they look for more than just a space large enough to fit their attendees. In the competitive market for events, a strong digital signage program can enhance the convention center’s offering.
Being able to deliver timely and relevant messaging to event attendees is extremely important and can help the event not only run smoother, but also give event sponsors more opportunities to display their messaging. The right management and presentation of the digital signage program can help the sales staff close more deals and bring more events to your convention center.
This post first appeared on Aerva’s blog.