Insteo’s Mobile-Digital Signage Mash-Up Drives Live Event Traffic At NAB

April 19, 2012 by Dave Haynes

The guys at Insteo just wrapped up the National Association of Broadcasters show in Las Vegas, having put together an intriguing mobile-digital screen execution for the broadcast and photo gear supply firm Vitec, which has one of the biggest booths at the annual show.

“Vitec hired us to help with their Live Event area,” says Insteo’s Jim Nista. “We had two screens for that area, and six overall serving other purposes for other Vitec business units. All were running SignageLive.”

“We were running our HTML5 based Digital Signage content which generates a mobile microsite. The microsite contains a few additional pages we don’t show on the Digital Signs which allow people to register for a session. We pass an additional code through SignageLive to format the graphics slightly differently on the Digital Sign vs. the smartphone, but effectively one URL creates the entire microsite and content for the digital sign. The Insteo Display API feeds content and the ‘skin’ to the screens.”

These were the sorts of scheduled events within booths where people crowd in and hear a speaker do, say, 30 minutes on setting up awesome lighting. You could get the schedule on your phone by keying in the URL or, more easily, scanning the QR code on the screen. The phone version let users drill down to each speaker to find out more, and tap a submit button, which opened a form.

“Registering for the event captures the user data and immediately feeds the client’s email marketing solution via an API call. We’re using our own API which handles rewards and give-aways to send a reminder email 30 minutes before the session they signed up for – effectively tweaking our API to make everyone a winner.”

Nista says some knucklehead liberated him of the 4G internet cards being used to get broadband, so they were abruptly without internet. “It was great to see how SignageLive handled that, effectively showing cached web based content until we could get new cards installed. None of the attendees knew we were offline, and because everything is cloud based the mobile site remained live.”

Insteo used Google Analytics real-time tracking codes based off the mobile URL to get a sense of actual usage. “We saw up to six people using the screens at one time throughout the day, which reinforces the idea that this technology improves over touch-screens. Also surprising was that we had repeat visitors, often several hours later, which showed how people bookmarked the site and returned later.”

The HTML5 (it’s not really an app because there is no app to download, just web pages) also showed a product catalog at the booth.

Nice. I love to see real-world, evidently success examples of a bridge being created both ways between phones and digital screens. There is no end of talk about the importance of that now and in the future, and everyone listening tends to agree, but I am steadily looking for use cases that are more than just games or fun social media tie-ins. Filling in a form on a smartphone can be a bit cumbersome, but you could imagine how if this sort of thing grows common a phone could have an auto fill-in feature (my laptop has that).


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