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Dramatic Digital Signage Growth Right Around the Corner - Retail to Lead the Way, Says New Research

A new report from IMS Research forecasts dramatic growth in digital signage over the next few years thanks to growing acceptance of the medium as a valuable ad delivery mechanism.

Whether your operation is a mom-and-pop store or a highfalutin retailer, take note. Digital signage is expected to see some remarkable growth over the next few years, and much of that growth will come from retail.

A newly released report from IMS Research concludes that after a couple of sluggish years, the worldwide digital signage market will see growth in excess of 40 percent in 2013 to reach a total of $7 billion. And an important component of that market will be in the retail sector.

According to the research firm, which laid out its forecast in "The World Market for Digital Signage, 2011 Edition," an important reason for the growth is that digital signage is now entering the mainstream of media, which are regularly considered and evaluated by ad agencies and marketers for their advertising purchases.

"There is increasing recognition that it is a valuable tool for directly interacting with audiences, and providing a compelling additional dimension to augment overall advertising placements across media," a press release announcing the findings quotes Shane Walker, director of the Consumer Electronics Group at IMS Research, as saying. With that growing recognition of the value of digital signage as an advertising medium, it's not too surprising that IMS Research found strong growth in the retail sector.

The new study shows that of all the vertical markets for digital signage, retail continues to be the largest, accounting for just under 25 percent of all digital signage hardware and software sales. By the end of 2015, IMS Research forecasts retail will remain the dominant sector of the digital signage market, reaching nearly $2 billion.

Long recognized as a fundamental strength of digital signage in retail, the ability to reach shoppers at the point of sale with a message aimed at influencing their final buying decision is likely to benefit from a trend that is in its infancy at home, but soon is likely to become commonplace: TV Everywhere.

Cable, Telco and satellite television providers have been promoting the concept of TV Everywhere for the past year or so. Perhaps you are familiar with the commercials. A TV viewer witnesses a raging battle between two robotic-looking creatures in his kitchen. As one appears to get the upper hand and slams his opponent through the wall, the viewer pauses the action with his remote control and walks into an adjacent room, where he hits the play button and the fight resumes.

Commercials like these are building awareness among television viewers that they are no longer chained to one TV set to watch a show. Rather they now for the ability to not only resume programming they are watching from set to set as they walk through their homes, but also access and resume a program on their laptop computers, smartphones or media tablets that they started to watch on their TVs.

Now extend this "TV Everywhere" concept to the realm of commercial messages and take that every-access notion to the retail store aisle with a digital signage end cap. Imagine how brand awareness campaigns in the home could morph into a product-specific offer at the point of purchase.

As Walker of IMS Research put it in the press release: "The tools are available today to create a consistent campaign that can reach an audience multiple times while in transit through billboards, street furniture, metro displays, video walls and in-store kiosks, all the while becoming more targeted through mobile device interaction. This experience will culminate in the customer reaching a touch-enabled screen at the point-of-sale where inventory can be checked and an order placed."

About the author:
David Little is a charter member of the Digital Screenmedia Association with 20 years of experience helping professionals use technology to effectively communicate their unique marketing messages. For many more helpful digital signage tips, examples and solutions, keep in touch with Keywest Technology:
-Digital Signage Blog
-Digital Signage News

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