So aren’t there already big screens at the cinema? Absolutely! But we want to talk about how cinema digital signage outside and in the foyer is changing the game.
Classic movie posters are quickly being replaced in cinemas with digital screen displays. But are cinema owners taking full advantage of the technology?
On the 17th of May 2021 cinemas in England were allowed to reopen at 50% capacity following a lengthy COVID-based hiatus. Cinemas are now looking for more ways to increase attendance, return customers, and selling food and drink.
In this blog, we take you through how cinema managers and owners can make the of cinema digital signage. So grab some popcorn and learn how digital signage can supercharge your cinema.
What Is Cinema Digital Signage?
It is where cinemas use digital screens to deploy messages to staff and visitors around the cinema. Digital signage can be found in the lobby, outside the cinema, or behind the tills. There are many types of digital signage found in cinemas including standard screens, digital kiosks, and interactive displays. We’ll go through how these can be used later.
Some cinemas are large places boasting over a dozen screens, multiple floors, foyers, and social areas. At these sites, cinemas found fast, efficient communication challenging. Having to update large poster networks, static signage, and traditional menu boards comes at a large cost in time and money. Through a digital solution, cinemas can update content for a large network of screens in seconds from any location. For example, if a cinema’s head office was based in London, an employee could update all the digital movie posters in seconds around the UK. In the past, teams would have to travel to each location to remove and replace each poster manually.
Promote Current Upcoming Films With Digital Posters And Trailers
Cinema digital signage encompasses both digital posters and screens or video walls. The former is a superior replacement to the traditional static poster for a number of reasons. Firstly, one digital poster serves the function of infinite traditional ones as full-display images can be rotated on a playlist. This can be a great space-saving investment for smaller independent theatres in particular.
From a cost and environmental perspective, cinemas no longer need to source and discard a constant stream of marketing collateral that quickly becomes outdated as films cycle out. Receiving digital files that can be uploaded instantly, rather than installed on-site via digital posters, enhances every aspect of marketing distribution. The centrepiece of an increasing number of cinemas is a video wall, often split to show a variety of trailers. At peak times when ticketing and concessions queues are long, engaging cinema-goers with the latest trailers are the most effective way to maintain customer satisfaction.
Foyer trailers are also helpful to customers deciding on a backup film choice should the movie they originally have come to see be sold out.
Trailers are obviously invaluable at building hype around upcoming films and enticing future ticket sales. One cinema marketing challenge, however, is the number of people who arrive too late to their showing and miss the pre-roll trailers. This is overcome by showing trailers on screens strategically placed to face customers as they leave the theatre.
A significant proportion of a cinema’s revenue comes from its concessions stand. A great way to drive sales is through digital menu boards or full-screen ads interspersed on other screens in-between media. Eye-catching imagery and enticing videos can be the difference between a cinema-goer walking into the theatre empty-handed or cradling a hotdog, bag of popcorn, and drink.
Deals such as upgrading to a combo can be displayed prominently to maximise the value of each sale. Cinemas might even want to utilise QR codes on screen that can be scanned for discounts at the till. This kind of engagement can be recorded to better inform concession stand staff about pricing and demand.
Promote Cinema Passes And Gift Cards
Cinema passes or subscriptions are becoming increasingly popular. While many choose to sign up online, cinema-goers might not realise they are readily available along with gift cards at the till. Cinemas can use their digital signage network to promote these products where they cannot be missed. There is no better time to plant the idea of investing in a cinema pass in someone’s head than when they have just finished watching a great film. Likewise, anyone visiting the cinema and seeing gift cards advertised might think of an upcoming friend or relative’s birthday.
Special Events And Showings
In order to combat the popularity of online movie services like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video, more and more cinemas are looking at ways to deliver an experience that cannot be replicated at home. This is often taking the form of special events, whether for new movie premieres or re-showings of icon classics. Events such as midnight showings can be a great way to drive the hype around films and fill theatres at times when they otherwise might be quiet.
Cinema digital signage equips cinema managers with a platform to spread the word about these events. Special showings might have their own promotional advert within a playlist on the digital posters. This can be a great way to increase attendance and revenue.
Making effective use of your cinema’s windows is a great way to catch the attention of passers-by and increase cinema attendance. A high brightness display in the window can be utilised to show new film releases, promote films nights, and promotions.
When embarking on a window display you need to ensure you choose the right screen, especially the brightness. If your cinema window is south-facing or experiences a large amount of glare, you’ll need a high brightness screen. These screens are purpose-built and keep your content visible and looking great even on the brightest of days. If you were to place a normal TV screen in one of these windows your content will likely disappear when the sun comes out.
Encourage Good, Consistent Hygiene
As cinemas begin the process of returning to normal operations, safety measures are being put in place to reduce the spread of germs and viruses. Especially COVID-19. Some of these measures include face coverings, distanced seating, and social distancing. It is vital that cinemas maintain these safety measures to help keep cases low and stay open.
To ensure these safety measures are being followed employees and customers can be politely reminded. There are a few ways this can be achieved such as vocal employee reminders upon entry, on the cinema screen before and after the film, or on digital signage. Cinemas can display safety reminders in-between their other screen content. Customers will see these reminders when they are looking at what new movies are out, or when they are buying food and drink and will be more likely to follow them.
Digital Wayfinding For Cinemas
For large cinemas working out how to get to your screening room can be tricky! When multiple screens, floors, and areas are involved you can feel a bit lost.
Enter digital wayfinding for cinemas. By utilising interactive displays, a customer can search their film and the interactive display will serve up a tailored route right to where the customer needs to be. Alternatively, the customer can browse and interactive map to see where the toilets or food court are.
Digital wayfinding is a fast growing trend across all industries and we expect to see more cinemas adopting the technology soon.
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