Redefining automated retailing part 4: Streaming video to play a role

| by Michael Kasavana
Redefining automated retailing part 4: Streaming video to play a role

Photo courtesy of iStock.

Streaming video is an evolving technology that allows kiosks to tap into one of the most dynamic and fastest growing mediums to enter the marketing arena. 

In part 3 of our series on redefining the automated retailing experience, we noted that digital signage, also referred to a dynamic signage, is a specialized form of multimedia messaging. In part 4, we will consider streaming video technology, a type of digital signage that can provide highly targeted, engaging content.

Digital media carrying properly crafted messages can entice consumers to take specific actions, such as purchasing products.

As new content becomes available, it can be automatically downloaded from a remote location to digital screens.

The application programming interface, widely known by its acronym, API, describes the instructions necessary for an automated digital system to display digital content on a screen. Industry technology suppliers are working to extend the roadmap for digital media by developing application software, hardware and netware using interactive architecture. 

According to Advertising Week, digital advertising is significantly outpacing traditional advertising. Digital ad spending will increase 15.9 percent this year (totaling $83 billion) compared to 5.2 percent for total U.S. advertising. Close to half of all U.S. media spending is now digital.

Digital video advertising will also increase 15.9 percent this year, totaling $13.2 billion.

Last year, records were set for live streaming video viewership, according to DaCast, a streaming services platform. In 2017, bandwidth dedicated to video traffic is expected to make up 74 percent of internet use. 

Facebook Live also launched last year, allowing people share live video with their Facebook followers.

Many product manufacturers are creating streaming video content for their digital advertising networks, which are expanding.

Kiosks will play a role

No doubt, kiosks will become part of the expanding digital advertising networks. They will become valuable pieces of real estate, or “inventory,” for marketers, and provide incremental advertising opportunities for the kiosks’ owners.

While there is no doubt that streaming video and digital media in general are on the rise, there is much to know about this rapidly expanding media channel. Producing high quality videos is not something you teach yourself in your spare time. As with any other type of media, it is necessary to tap the services of professionals.

Kiosk deployers need to consider what type of video content will benefit their kiosks. The content must be targeted to the audience, and it has to take into consideration how much time the viewer has to view the video.

The advertising needs to be short, repetitive, and entertaining. The viewer can choose to ignore the content if dissatisfied.

Why content matters

Hubspot, an inbound marketing and sales software company, recently reported the following statistics about video content retention that speak to the importance of proper video content:
•    The top 5 percent of videos retain an average 77 percent of viewers to the last second. 
•    Videos under 90 seconds in length claim an average viewer retention rate of 53 percent.
•    The average viewer retention rate of “personalized” videos is 35 percent higher than non-personalized videos.

As digital advertising networks expand, kiosks that become part of these advertising networks will have an opportunity to earn incremental income. But that is not the only opportunity digital video offers kiosks.

For kiosks that dispense merchandise, digital video will provide an important point-of-sale marketing tool. The viewer is in proximity to make a purchase and has an interest in relevant video content.

Besides promoting products at the point of sale, a digital video screen can also provide beneficial product information. In the case of kiosks offering food, the content can include ingredient and nutrient information.  

Streaming video is just one of several opportunities that have become available to automated retail kiosks.

In part 5 of our series on redefining the automated retailing experience, we’ll explore yet another digital media opportunity, wayfinding.

Topics: Customer Experience, Digital Signage, Retail Digital Media

Michael Kasavana

Michael Kasavana, Ph.D., is the National Automatic Merchandising Association endowed professor emeritus. Dr. Kasavana has authored or co-authored six books and a host of academic and industry journal articles. In addition, he has also created a series of online instructional materials and software products. He has been inducted into the HFTP International Technology Hall of Fame and was the first recipient of a Distinguished Achievements Award from FS/TEC.

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