Screens at truck service centers great idea, but a little fumbled on the execution

August 5, 2009 by Dave Haynes

There’s a little piece in Digital Signage Today about some Peterbilt Truck Centers in the US south putting screens in to their parts and service counters and wait lounges. That’s a great way to communicate to customers and potentially upsell on accessories and services, and one of those things that makes a lot of sense.

But digging into the story a little bit, there are two classic mistakes being made yet again.

1 – Look at the image (from DS Today). The screen is up at about 6 1/2 feet from the floor. That’s not stupid high (the screen in Bass Pro Shops in Toronto is up at what looks like 20 feet, for example), but higher than it needs to be given there is nothing below it. Put the darn thing at eye level!!!

2 – “News and weather will be shown.” These are truckers, who spend most of their lives driving and have no end of time to listen to the radio. If ANYONE already knows what the weather will be like and what’s shaking in the news, it’s these guys. There’s no benefit and it just distracts from the main reason the screens are there.

Digital signage screens will not burst into flames if they don’t have a news ticker or weather icons on them. It’s OK to go without them.

This is a solid idea that can generate a defined ROI for the truck center operator, but those little details are going to lessen the impact and therefore the benefit. The screen height thing is a just a common sense issue, but integrators and software guys need to start challenging their clients more and more on why they do things. When a client says they plan to have a news ticker, the vendors need to start asking, “Why?” and a lot of times talk them out of it.   

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