Digital signage was a major step forward from traditional signs. Thanks to the rapid evolution of all things digital, these days, it’s interactive signage that takes performance to the next level. While digital signage enabled brands to capture attention and generate awareness, the modern consumer now demands an omnichannel, immersive experience that they can control.
That’s where interactive digital signage steps in.
By integrating hardware such as kiosks and touchscreens with modern software, interactive digital signage creates immersive experiences and allows audiences to become educated and familiarized with products.
When successfully deployed, interactivity not only attracts the attention of customers, but it gives them the ability to personalize the experience as they navigate messaging finding the information most valuable and important to them.
To help illustrate successful interactive digital signage, let’s turn to some of the uses we’ve seen in 2017.
Roughly eight in 10 Americans have made an online purchase at least once. However, despite the retail crisis that’s plagued brick-and-mortar stores for the past few years, the beauty business is thriving. As of February, 2017, prestige beauty sales in the U.S. had risen 6 percent over the previous 12 months, tallying $17 billion. Part of this is due to success stories like Sephora, the leading beauty retailer in the world.
Sephora has embraced technology and implemented interactive campaigns that cater to the modern consumer.
For example, customers can use an augmented-reality (AR) mobile app, known as Sephora Visual Artist, that scans their faces to get a Color IQ, a reference number that matches products to skin tones. Customers can also use in-store digital workstations to take classes in makeup application. Sephora even has a touchscreen equipped with a fan that lets visitors smell the scents of most fragrances.
Not only do these interactive campaigns educate consumers about Sephora products, but they put them in the driver’s seat. By providing a digital experience in a physical location, Sephora is driving brand awareness and sales.
2. New York & Company
Specialty apparel retailer New York & Company is also leveraging interactive, digital experiences to reach a generation of social-media-savvy young women. For starters, in 2015, the company promoted a new line of jeans using a rich media campaign featuring former American Idol finalist Jennifer Hudson. By encouraging customers to create social media posts using the #itjustfits hashtag, the company combined celebrity endorsement, social media, and active user-engagement methodologies.
The retailer took things a step further in 2016, when it rolled out internet-enabled kiosks that allow shoppers to buy online while they’re in the store. The kiosks serve as a “virtual aisle” for consumers, offering them access to all sizes, assortments, and colors. Like Sephora, New York & Company’s campaign combines immersive digital signage with a traditional, in-store experience, enabling customers to control their shopping experience.
3. Looking to the Future: IKEA and Apple
In June 2017, it was announced that Apple and IKEA were teaming up for an AR furniture app. The AR experience will allow consumers to try out how furniture will look in their home before purchasing. “It will become the biggest AR platform in the world overnight,” says Michael Valdsgaard, Leader of Digital Transformation at IKEA. “It’s super interesting to us.”
The partnership comes on the heels of Apple’s announcement that the tech giant is working on several AR products, including digital spectacles that will connect to the iPhone and provide content such as movies and maps directly to the wearer. The try-before-you-buy furniture app could impact how consumers shop for furniture. The app is scheduled to launch in fall 2017. Be sure to stay tuned for our follow-up!
Customers prefer interactive technology—it’s up to a brand to provide them with a well-crafted experience. These companies are a shining example of how to provide consumers with a winning interactive digital experience in an otherwise stagnant retail market.
Do you have any other examples of brands that are engaging their customers with similar campaigns? Let us know in the comments below!