Everyone knows digital signage should be eye-catching and impactful – but how do you get creative to achieve just that?

Here are some of the imaginative solutions I’ve seen in the industry to help you gain inspiration for your next digital signage installation.

3D Projection Mapping

3D projection mapping is a real game changer because it allows you to take over the space you’re in. I’ve seen examples where the outside ground or the wall of a building was transformed into a stunning 3D animation. Here’s an example of ways you can bring a building to life using 3D animation:

 

There are a ton of examples you can find online, but the coolest one I’ve seen recently was at the Quicken Loans Arena during a Cleveland Cavaliers game. All they needed to do this was dimming down the house lights and using four projectors at probably 20,000 amps. The resulting projection gave the audience an incredible experience that just has to be seen:

Video Walls

When I was at DSE 2014. Video wall solutions really caught my attention. Video walls that stream content are really starting to challenge the ways that we are able to deliver content. Implementing different-sized monitors set at different angles that stream content is more visually impactful than placing displays in a traditional landscape or portrait view. The result is an immersive experience that can highlight the ambiance of a location.

One of the biggest challenges to using these types of video walls is the additional time spent on developing the creative content for streaming. The creative team has to map out each digital signage displays’ space and size, including the bezel and wall mount.

For video walls, a Special Purpose Video Wall Mount such as our DS-VWM770 is a good solution since you can attach displays in 15° intervals. Video walls with displays varying in angle are more likely to catch the eye. The content must be perfectly spaced across multiple screens and angles, especially if the content features copy.

Augmented Reality

I feel that augmented reality can be the most impactful, yet least challenging, artistic digital signage solution to integrate. Augmented reality can be put just about anywhere and is relatively cost effective. It could potentially give you the most for your money.

A great example of augmented reality being applied in the field came from a London bus stop. Pepsi Max UK took over the bus stop by putting a large format display on the inside panel while onlookers thought they were looking through the glass to the outside. There was a camera set up to map the exact view they’d see from the inside, but the augmented reality bit kicked in and showed various creatures seemingly attacking pedestrians.

From the looks of it, this project was not a very expensive or difficult one to put together from an integration perspective, as it used equipment that can be found in game systems such as the PS4 and Xbox One. The real challenge comes in when it comes in installing the equipment without people being around and getting the proper permits to implement augmented reality in a public space.

There are nearly 6 million views on Pepsi Max UK’s YouTube video, proving that this application of augmented reality was a viral success. This marketing campaign gave Pepsi Max UK a lot of attention and made customers more likely to buy a Pepsi over a Coke. There have been several companies who have used augmented reality to increase brand recognition and improve sales.

Over the next 2-3 years, 3D projection mapping, video walls and augmented reality will become, well, for lack of a better term, our reality. Another trend that goes hand-in-hand with all of these is the emergence of 4K, which is four times clearer than 1080p. Higher-end retail spaces are already starting to investigate using 4K displays to enhance the experience of guests visiting their stores by providing more information and subconsciously influencing their buying decision.

One possible application that uses 4K video would simulate a flight above the NYC skyline. Onlookers will feel as though they are soaring through Manhattan as they rush past the iconic buildings.

One barrier that presents itself with a 4K application is bandwidth allocation. Streaming 4K video requires a lot of power. You have to understand the graphic output that’s needed to power one or multiple screens simultaneously. The end result will be complete clarity, but it takes the right mix of time and technology.

What’s the most creative and artistic use of digital signage you’ve seen? Let me know in the comments below!