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The Digital Transformation of Retail: Creating Immersive Digital Advertising Experiences Through Projection & Display Technology

Digital Advertising Experiences have become a key to retail businesses. While the past year has encouraged many retailers to invest in new ways of engaging customers through online and social media marketing, there’s something to be said for the power of creating digitized in-person experiences. Whether it’s incorporating engaging digital advertising into outdoor storefront displays to intrigue those passing by or creating an innovative in-store display, these types of digital activations are key in establishing meaningful brand experiences and building lasting connections with customers. Projection and digital signage technology can play a critical role in these types of campaigns, helping retailers reimagine their marketing efforts by digitizing the in-person customer experience. 

Taking Digital Advertising Experiences to New Heights

Engaging Customers Through Digital Visuals 

Retail marketing poses its unique challenges, as brands must appeal to various audiences from loyal customers to one-time and entirely new ones. Therefore, it’s critical that brands incorporate a digital strategy into their in-person marketing efforts to foster meaningful connections with multiple parties. 

When it comes to external displays, digital advertisements in storefronts offer a way for retailers to attract new customers. FrontRunner Technologies, for instance, was founded on the principle of transforming the Digital Out of Home (DOOH), commercial real estate, and retail industries by leveraging projection technology to deliver real-time content to street-level windows of vacant retail spaces.

At its early stages, the company was committed to pioneering this new frontier for advertising by generating revenue in a digital way that’s more engaging and accessible for their customers versus a traditional billboard. Now, the company is experimenting with new ways to use QR codes and touchless technology. 

Beyond vacant storefronts, retail marketers can also take advantage of projection and display technology in their physical stores to create unique, engaging experiences that differ from online shopping. 

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Projections offer the opportunity to enhance the ambiance of a store. For instance, a store selling ski equipment could project a live stream of a popular slope to create a more immersive environment that lets customers be part of the action. 

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PREDICTIONS-SERIES-2022Implementing digital signage displays can help retailers highlight new products and discounts in a way that’s not only clearer and more exciting than paper signs, but also more efficient and cost-effective. Instead of printing new signs and replacing them manually, digital signage increases flexibility by enabling retailers to easily swap out ads and update content to keep up with the latest trends and changing seasons. Deploying video walls can help stores highlight products and give customers a better sense of how the offerings could suit their everyday needs. In addition to educating customers on product details, equipping digital signage solutions with AI software allows stores to identify customer demographics to customize content and measure impressions and dwell time.

Using stand-alone digital signage displays as a social distancing technique alongside QR codes and wayfinding solutions can help retailers facilitate safe interactions within a store. Many retailers are also deploying self-serve kiosks for e-commerce purposes, allowing customers to browse online catalogs and place orders on the spot, while minimizing face-to-face contact with store associates. 

Ultimately, in-person interactions will still play a critical role in helping retail marketers engage existing and new customers, and projection and display technology will be key to modernizing these activations for a digital world. 

Key Factors to Consider for Delivering an Immersive Retail Marketing Campaign 

Digital advertising displays can revolutionize not only the shopping experience, but the relationship between retailers and their customer base. Careful execution is critical to fully immerse and engage customers, as blurred visuals and glares will minimize effectiveness of the content being presented. Keeping the following factors in mind will help ensure a smooth execution: 

  • Align Projections with the Architecture of Your Space: To achieve maximum visual appeal and fully engage audiences, the visual must be proportional to the space. That’s where choosing the right type of projector becomes critical. Some models are designed specifically for large venues, while others are intended for smaller spaces. It is important to select a projector that provides adequate brightness to accommodate the ambient lighting conditions of the environment. The texture of a surface will also impact how a visual appears, so it’s important to choose a model with geometric correction to easily adjust any of these abnormalities. Projecting onto a tall surface can also lead to distortions and may require two projectors stacked on top of each other for a seamlessly blended image. Ultimately, aligning your projection technology with the architecture of your space will create an exciting visual experience.  
  • Pay Close Attention to Projected Color & Light Quality: Color and light also play a key role in creating realistic visuals to capture customers’ full attention. Given you may adjust your visuals on a monthly or quarterly basis, you’ll need to purchase a projector with strong and efficient color matching and color reproduction capabilities to ensure all types of visuals, whether they are black and white or feature an assortment of colors, look crisp, vibrant and engaging. Visuals that incorporate color contrast are often most visually pleasing, but you’ll need to ensure that ambient lighting within the store won’t interfere. As marketers know, color is a critical component of any advertisement and it has even more nuances when creating in-person digital campaigns.
  • Ensure Flexibility in Your Digital Signage Displays: When it comes to implementing a digital signage display, it all comes down to the display technology you leverage. Flexibility is critical, as you want the displays to be able to work with any orientation position, whether the content is portrait or landscape, and in any type of space whether it’s indoors or outdoors. To that point, displays should be durable enough to handle the elements if outside of a store. Image quality is also important. Displays should be able to deliver clear, sharp visuals in any type of lighting whether it’s direct sunlight or overhead fluorescent lighting. Finally, it’s important to ensure compatibility between your displays and other devices for data sharing and displaying complex images.

Connecting with Customers Through Digitized In-Person Experiences

The past year has encouraged retail brands to re-think the ways they connect and interact with their customers. While online advertising platforms have experienced tremendous growth, it’s important to still engage customers through in-person modes. That’s where projection and display technology can play a key role in facilitating these immersive experiences, giving retail marketers the power to foster more meaningful brand connections.

[To share your insights with us, please write to sghosh@martechseries.com]

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