How Can Digital Signage Transform In-Store Advertising for CPG

How Can Digital Signage Transform In-Store Advertising for CPG

Capturing the fleeting attention of shoppers has never been more important—or challenging—for brands operating in the world of consumer-packaged goods (CPG). With the sheer volume of choices and aggressive promotions saturating today's retail environments, conventional printed advertising simply doesn't cut it anymore. But there may just be an answer in the form of digital signage.  

Understanding digital signage 

You've probably encountered digital signage plenty of times without even realizing it. Those bright LCD screens at the mall's food court constantly looping menu videos and promotions? Digital signage in action.  

Or the sleek touchscreen kiosks at your neighborhood Safeway letting you browse recipes and build shopping lists? You guessed it—more digital signage.  

Digital signage refers to networked displays, video walls, wayfinding totems, and other multimedia installations companies use to showcase dynamic advertising content like branded videos, interactive apps, AR experiences, and more.  

Rather than relying on static posters, banners, and printed sale signage that never changes, digital signage solutions enhance CPG brands with software so they can update and control their in-store advertising across unlimited screens. From headquarters, distributed teams have centralized access to: 

  • User-friendly content management with scheduling and rule-building 
  • Interactivity tools enabling touchscreens, augmented reality (AR) activations, and gamification 
  • Campaign analysis dashboards providing real-time performance metrics and audience insights 
  • Easy integrations for automating promotions based on stock, weather, traffic data and more 

Think of it as having a remote control for customizing and refreshing your brand's in-store presence on-demand to match the ebbs and flows of shopper habits.  

The role of digital signage for in-store advertising 

While digital channels like social media, email, and search advertising remain important components of modern marketing, there's still no substituting the make-or-break impact of the in-store experience. After all, a staggering 76% of buying decisions for consumer goods are made at retail locations. It's here where digital signage shines brightest. 

When customers hit the aisles and shelves, they're inundated with an onslaught of choices, promotions, and distractions competing for their attention and dollars. This is where digital displays rise above by capturing focus in ways static printed ads simply can’t. Vibrant animations, videos, and rotating deals command eyes and influence spontaneous purchases. 

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The data backs up digital signage's impact conclusively: 

  • Studies show digital signs influence a massive 19% of unplanned in-store purchases 
  • 80% of customers say they'd be encouraged to purchase a product or service after seeing it advertised on digital signage 
  • Shoppers were 83% more likely to recall and act upon promotions displayed digitally versus basic print methods 

For brands battling relentless competition and razor-thin margins, influencing even a portion of those impulse buyer decisions translates into tremendous sales gains and brand growth opportunities. And as innovators like Hidden Valley Ranch have proven through rollouts of high-tech signage in Walmart stores, the results are impressive. The brand saw sales increase by 66% compared to its printed signage output.  

Benefits of digital signage for CPG brands 

The primary purpose of digital signage for CPG manufacturers centers on reshaping the product browsing experience itself. When done right, there are several upstream benefits. 

Converting shoppers' precious attention into sales  

Let's be honest—getting customers to actually pay attention to advertisements in-store has become an uphill battle in itself. People are scanning more channels daily while being overloaded with stimuli and choices fighting for their time and dollars. 

Digital signage, especially video wall installations, command respect through their sheer size and production quality. Studies show 63% of people claim digital promotions grab their focus more than traditional alternatives while increasing sales by up to 33%. When you have mere split seconds to make an impact, that visual firepower can’t be underestimated. 

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H3: Actionable performance metrics  

Old-school paper displays and signs provide zero meaningful data or audience intelligence to measure campaign performance. It’s a total guessing game. But digital signage software platforms provide CPG field marketers and brand managers with dashboards illuminating: 

  • Play counts and impressions data revealing true reach 
  • Dwell times and attention heat maps revealing resonance 
  • Demographic breakdowns like age or gender for personas 
  • Conversion tracking of purchases and engagement rates. 

At last, real-world proof that advertising efforts resonate with specific targets rather than operating on hunches. In other words, no more wasted investments. 

Elevated visibility and brand control  

With digital signage, CPG brands aren't beholden to limited physical product packaging and labeling to drive awareness and demand. In a few clicks, motion graphics, lifestyle videos, and punchy animations broadcasting captivating brand narratives can travel across distributed networks of in-store digital canvases anywhere. 

This expanded brand real estate ends up heightening product visibility. Rather than competing in a chaotic sea of packages and labels all screaming for shoppers' attention simultaneously, CPG digital signage transforms into an interactive, personalized studio for storytelling and promotions. 

Creating memorable experiences  

Convenience, entertainment, utility. Whatever "experience" shoppers crave most from brands, that's precisely what digital signage unlocks for CPG manufacturers willing to get creative with their deployments and approach. 

Interactive touchscreen demos driving samples and loyalty. Augmented reality try-ons bringing SKUs to life-size scale. Branded mobile games or social activations tied to real-world prizes. The immersive, novelty possibilities extend far beyond looping promotions. 

Take Japanese cosmetics company Shiseido's digital signage “magic mirror” kiosks. Shoppers scan product packaging to launch an augmented reality mirror displaying different virtual makeup looks and recommendations based on their personal AI-detected attributes. Fusing personalization, edutainment, and trial in one seamless experience. 

Implementing digital signage for in-store advertising 

By now, the "why" behind adopting digital signage should be abundantly clear to any CPG brand invested in elevating their in-store advertising game. But implementing the technology the right way is just as vital to reaping its full potential. Here are some tips for a smooth and successful digital signage rollout: 

Choose the right solution  

Not all digital signage solutions are created equal, so doing upfront research is crucial. Cloud-based content management software enabling intuitive design tools with flexible app integrations is a must for seamless omnichannel marketing. User-friendly platforms with AI-powered smart content delivery, uptime monitoring, and enterprise-grade content distribution networks (CDNs) are ideal. 

On the hardware side, long-term total cost of ownership should be the prime consideration versus simply opting for the cheapest commodity displays. Professional digital signage built with bright, energy-efficient, commercial-grade panels will more reliably weather the demands of retail environments. 

Develop a comprehensive content strategy  

While having cutting-edge digital signage technology is impressive, compelling content will always be the biggest determinant of success. Too many brands make the mistake of solely leading with product promotions or simply repurposing existing advertising with no regard for crafting bespoke digital experiences tailored to the shopper journey. 

High-impact videos highlighting product benefits, headlining motion graphics optimized for short attention spans, interactive brand activations putting the customer experience first - these are the types of tailored digital signage content strategies that get results. Be sure to establish documented guidelines upfront for campaign ideation, production, and approval processes with key stakeholders aligned. 

Prioritize strategic placement  

Where digital screens get installed throughout stores or malls plays a pivotal role in determining the effectiveness of in-store advertising campaigns. While large lobby or entrance video walls ooze prestige, key locations capturing shopper attention during those crucial "dwell" moments often prove higher-impact installments. 

For example, grocery stores may see prime placements for digital signage near checkout queues, dairy or frozen food aisles, and produce sections. Retail apparel stores should strategize their digital sign placement by mapping high-traffic areas along the in-store path to purchase. CPGs must closely collaborate with retail operations teams to identify optimal placements catering to their target demographics and shopper mindsets. 


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Future trends in digital signage for CPG 

While digital signage is transforming the in-store experience today, the technology's capabilities are rapidly evolving. Several converging innovations will further revolutionize how CPG manufacturers approach digital advertising in retail settings: 

AI-powered content optimization  

Artificial intelligence and computer vision combined with digital signage represent a powerhouse for ultra-personalized shopper marketing. With the ability to detect demographics like age and gender, digital displays can dynamically serve up content versions resonating most effectively with those specific audience segments. 

Imagine an endcap digital sign recognizing a millennial approaching versus a baby boomer. Using predictive analytics, it could automatically switch between pre-produced videos tailored for each distinct demographic's buying patterns and preferences in real time. 

Immersive AR integrations 

Through augmented reality smartphone integrations, digital signage acts as a launchpad into cutting-edge immersive experiences merging physical and digital realms. Shoppers could use their mobile cameras to "tear" open windows displaying 3D animated product demos hovering over in-store displays. Or scan signs to unlock branded games rewarding participants with digital coupons, product try-ons, and more. 

Bringing elements of gamification and interactivity into digital signage elevates CPG engagements far beyond traditional passive advertising. The possibilities for creatively blending digital and IRL are endless. 

True omnichannel synchronization  

As digital customer journeys become more ubiquitous and non-linear, tomorrow's digital signage strategies from CPG leaders will increasingly sync with adjacent channels. Tailored in-store digital experiences could dynamically evolve based on an individual's browsing history or preceding clickstream data. 

For example, if a shopper demonstrates interest in a particular product category through online ads, digital signage could precisely retarget them with complementary promotions or content. An underwear shopper getting served sock suggestions upon nearing a digital endcap, perhaps. That cohesive handoff consistency strengthens brand relationships while gently cross-selling. 

As the technology matures, digital signage is fast becoming a linchpin enabling harmonized omnichannel experiences for CPG brands wanting to stay top-of-mind regardless of where customers shop next. 

Summary: Digital signage  

In the age of fragmented attention spans, infinite choices, and evolving consumer expectations, traditional printed advertisements simply won't cut it for CPG brands looking to thrive at the point of purchase. Digital signage represents the future of in-store product marketing, empowering manufacturers to capture shopper focus like never before through dynamic, data-driven experiences tailored to any channel or environment.  

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