Digital signage for internal communications is the perfect tool to utilize in a corporate office where you have a mix of audiences. Between those who despise opening their email or just simply can’t keep up with the volume they receive. Or, the unique audiences who aren’t always in the office such as outside sales, vendors, partners, or the hybrid remote/office workers. Internal communications teams and efforts are continuing to grow as an industry and shifting employees to remote work has made an impact. Remote or hybrid work from home policies don’t eliminate the need for internal communications, it actually amplifies the need.
Everyone’s company culture was impacted by COVID-19 and the need to suddenly become fully remote/WFH. Most studies we’ve read are a complete mix between employees who want fully remote, a hybrid of office/WFH when needed, and against working remote. It’s safe to say that the sudden change certainly didn’t make the decision as a business easy. Working remotely not only changes the entire culture but it also has a substantial impact on IT teams and resources. Going remote means access to internal networks, storage, VPN’s, etc.. It also means that the digital screens keeping everyone informed at the office is now needing to shift online and accessible to all.
We’ve partnered with a few industry-leading partners to address this sudden change. Freshwater also recognizes there’s a ton of great examples of companies who have always been remote or went partially remote in the last few years. These audiences also need digital signage internal communications content to keep up with the latest information from the company. We wrote a detailed blog of all the usual benefits from internal communications digital signage that you can read here.
Internal Communications can loosely be defined as, effective communication within an organization to all employees and stakeholders. The practice varies significantly from business to business by the number of employees, industry, and locations. However, the objective remains consistent, to inform and engage employees within an organization.
How we’ve addressed this change is to take the proven strategies and content and shift them online, with minor adjustments. One example would be the solution within digital signage platforms that allow those same playlists to stream over a URL. This means you can implement the following tactics:
- Create an internal email marketing campaign calling out the URL to watch. This would apply to the usual marketing strategies where you’re verifying open, click-through, and engagement rates.
- URL usage and engagement can be tracked through the provided analytics.
- Embed the playlist within your internal intranet pages. This could include your app, website portal, or any other medium you use to provide internal communications/HR.
- For hybrid offices that are both remote and in-person, you can take the same playlist that you already have and showcase it through both mediums. Playlists can still remain strategic to particular departments or teams with multiple playlists/URL’s.
Another option is to implement a takeover program on your employee laptops. At first, we were hesitant of this route as it sounded more like a pop-up ad that would just make people angry. You know what we’re talking about, the ones where they hide the ‘X’ and you have to play the scary game of how is this going to corrupt my computer before I find the trick to closing it.
However, an embedded program is a great option as it gives you more flexibility to reach your intended audience without them having to click on links. Which, as marketing professionals, we know that’s always a challenge. It can work identically to how you manage your digital signage playlist but also offer a few additional ways to engage your employees.
- Desktop Alerts – Notify your employees of a major event, town hall, or important company policy changes
- Tickers – Exactly what you think, a news-style ticker of text
- Screensaver/Lock Screen – Takeover their laptop when it’s not in use to turn it into a typical digital signage player
- Wallpaper – Take a typical still image wallpaper and toss some important content on it. This can be seen or hidden from employees.
- Newsletter – Take all that effort you put into a newsletter email campaign and push it directly to employees devices
- Questionnaires – Quick and easy feedback on HR/Internal Comm team initiatives
- Analytics – They key to all marketing communications is data. Data can be pulled and tracked to find out exactly who engaged with the videos, just like you’re used to with email.
Digital signage isn’t always a TV in a retail setting or as digital signage industry professionals would call it, out of home (DOOH). Internal communications are one of our favorite use cases for our industry. Shifting remote, even if temporary, doesn’t have to mean stopping internal comm efforts and it certainly shouldn’t be complicated. Take the easy first steps and try out this new medium.
Authors: Jon Dodge and Ben Kaluski