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5 Pro AV and Digital Signage Marketing Trends You'll See in 2016

March 07, 2017

It's been said that marketing is a contest for people's attention. Back in the Pleistocene era, most marketing was done by word of mouth, which meant that a product was only as good as people in localized communities thought it was.

But as technology continues to transform all forms of marketing and social media, brands are continually trying to identify the ideal marketing mix that will translate to the best possible return on ad spending or marketing investment.

Today's customers are much more connected to their environment through the electronic devices they carry around with them and through what they see in the public places they congregate in.

And marketers have taken note how to best leverage societal technology trends with pro AV and digital signage?so much so that the industry is forecast to be worth almost $24 billion by 2020.

The best way for value-added resellers (VARs) to offer valuable services and products to your clients is to keep on top of this rapidly evolving industry.

Here's a look at five of the pro AV and digital signage marketing trends you'll see in 2016:

1. Gamification

Gamification is a technique to drive a set of specific desired behaviors incorporating challenges, points, badges, and/or leader boards in order to encourage brand loyalty. A gamified branding strategy could include a mobile game, social contest, or customer loyalty program.

The concept is not new?contests and giveaways have been around forever?but what is new is the integration of gamification marketing with interactive digital signage. Look for this trend to pick up steam as marketers target Millennials and other video-game-centric demographic segments.

2. Big data grows bigger

With the rise of big data, Internet marketers have access to huge amount of information about consumer preferences, interests, and spending habits. For marketers, customer satisfaction data, customer service data, and data usage behavior are potential gold mines for leveraging pro AV and digital signage to great effect.

According to the Big Data and Advanced Analytics Survey 2015, 38 percent of all big data and advanced analytics apps are in use for marketing and sales purposes for just about every vertical that deploys pro AV and digital signage marketing solutions. Expect analytics to be more tied into digital signage campaigns as marketers become better at sorting through the chaff and reaching out to customers with more targeted messaging.

3. Location-Based NFC

One way to create an interactive experience is to target users at the point of engagement. Location-based marketing technologies like iBeacons and RFID help make this possible. iBeacons are small, inexpensive transmitters that use Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology to detect nearby devices like digital signs and point-of-sale displays. Radio-frequency identification (RFID) is the use of a small electronic device that contains a chip and an antenna, providing a unique identifier for that tag.

According to one recent study, almost 40 percent of U.S. Millennial moms already actively use beacon-enabled shopping apps. And that number will surely tick upward once these devices are deployed at more locations.

More interactivity

The increased adoption of interactive displays for digital marketing solutions should continue in popularity through 2016. And why not? Interactive displays enable users to have a highly engaging experience while being intuitive and easy to use.

They are already being used in kiosks across just about every marketing vertical, including retail, hospitality, and transportation. Because these displays are coming down in price and produce respectable ROI, the market for them is forecast to see a compound annual growth rate of 11.9 percent between 2015 and 2020 in North America and 14.3 percent between 2015 and 2020 in the Pacific Rim.

Factors that are driving the interactive display market include reduced cost, assured ROI from interactive display products, increasing panel sizes, and more customer engagement with the interactive displays. The increasing usage of interactive displays in the healthcare and entertainment applications is expected to create several opportunities for growth in the market.

5. Content and the Internet of Things

As marketers continue to develop more engaging, targeted content and we move further into the era of the Internet of Things, VARs can expect 2016 to be a year where marketing trends become more custom-tailored to an increasingly mobile society and where growth in the pro AV and digital marketing industry continues to provide new opportunity and challenges.