So your condo has made the decision to replace cork bulletin boards with digital signage, or digital notice boards as they tend to be called in Condoland. Great news! You’ll save reams of paper, post numerous messages at a time and finally take the first step towards real communication with your resident population. That digital signage affords a “captive audience” that does not need to be relied upon to open emails, click links etc. will make an even bigger impact when it comes to improving your condo’s bottom line.
Okay, so the last post saw us deal with the hardware – the first of 7 elements in a successful digital signage installation in your condo. Before taking that leap from “cork media” (as my pal Murray coined it), let’s take a (quick) peek at the software side.
Now, for most of the board directors and property managers that I have met, a discussion about software is about as exciting as a chat about elevator rope grippers, so I’ll be brief. If your goal is to improve communication in your condo plus reduce admin costs, simply watch for the following:
Scheduling: Will your provider allow for scheduling in advance? If you know the date of your alarm testing, pool maintenance, etc, you need to be able to enter it NOW, and schedule both a start and end date.
Rotation: – Can you rotate “fun content” with important messages and intersperse as needed? The usual content is all well and good, but make sure that when your AGM comes up, you can input AGM messages at a saturation (trust me – it’s an important concept from advertising world) that will meet your communication goals. What about emergency messages? When that water gets shut off, as you know it will, you’ll want the emergency message to supersede all else. Residents would rather know about when they should expect a cold shower than what they should not be shoving down the garbage chute.
Graphics – Too many software packages are focused on the needs of advertising clients, and merely provide the condo with a small space for messages. And many of those screen allotments only allow for text! This astounds me. Make SURE your provider’s software will allow you to post a big, powerful, jpeg or png or similar, that will get your message across in pictures. YouTube and Instagram posts number in the mega millions per day. If you think your message will have any sort of impact without a picture that computes to the viewer in 4 seconds or less, well, I respectfully suggest that you reconsider your decision to go digital in the first place 🙂
Content: – You’re all set to get started… you understand the power of a visual image, and your service provider’s software allows for the addition of your own jpegs or pngs… now what? Who is making all this wonderful content that will have such a positive impact on the communication in your condo? Do you have access to big colour background templates? Are you able to type in your desired text, click save and voila, the message goes to the screen? Are you required to mess about with clip art, Photoshop, or is it simple enough for a child to use? “Content is King”; without it you’re wasting your time, so it’s critical to make sure that this is taken care of. I have seen too many condos with the same old thing playing over and over and over again. No content, no audience. It’s as simple as that. But I’ll have more on that in another post, so I won’t say any more … for now!
In the end, be sure you know what you are getting, before you buy. Screens purchased from suppliers who usually offer other services, (be they advertising space or elevator parts) might work for you, or they might not. Explore the software component and be sure it gives you both the guts and the support, that you will need to implement successful digital signage communication in your condo.