Digital signage should replace self-siloing with interconnectedness, as well as embracing a focus on content and seeing technology as a means toward audience engagement rather than an end to itself, as argued by Stephen and Brandy. They talk about how inclusion is becoming a priority for businesses.
The author is on a book tour. There is something provided.
Normally, we focus on the technical side of digital signage and marketing, so it's a real treat when we get to go broad in our space and have a more free-range discussion with experts about the intersection of technology and society. Stephen and Brandy sat down with Digital Signage Today to discuss some of the major pain points and opportunities as the industry prepares for a new year.
In addition to being a writer, speaker, and consultant, Dorsey is also known for his work in promoting diversity and inclusion in businesses. His memoir, 'Black & White,' lays out his journey as a biracial business leader in the U.S. Brandy is based in California and works at a marketing agency. She was the chair of the AVIXA Women's Council and received an award for her work.
'Content is king'
Digital signage was integrated into marketing strategy early on. He chuckled over the first North American digital signage convention where wayfinding consisted of a cardboard sign, and reminisced about the projects where he introduced major brands like Starbucks and Hollister.
In the early 2000s, I shared my belief that the industry should be talking about the audience experience and less about technology. Audience engagement is all about delivering experiences. The industry can be distracted by gadgets and shiny hardware at the expense of remembering to focus on content, the human touch, and customers.
"I was perplexed as to why so much energy was invested in telling the world we were a different industry - setting ourselves apart from the broader and much larger digital ecosystems dominated by mobile and the internet," said Dorsey. Out-of- home focused organizations have solutions for differentiated applications that are becoming digital. The technology should be used to facilitate the experience.
Content panels are usually a small part of industry events. The assumption is that technology drives the content. One of my clients told me that tech content is not important. What is that? I thought, "you're right, you all say the same thing, 'Where do we fit in this industry?'"
"One of the things that I learned early on was that, no matter how great the content you produced, if it didn't serve the strategy, it was wasted money and effort." When a strategy is being developed, content experiences should be considered upstream.
For example, an industry show shouldn't just be about screens on walls, it should be about interconnectedness. "shows focused on out of home innovation should be attracting mobile developers, those specializing in artificial intelligence, interactive content creators, and more." I heard that the new show organizers were trying to create a more integrated digital experience show, even though I didn't attend the show.
Diversity and inclusion are two other targets. In the year of 2014, Alvarado- Miranda began her career. She noticed that the majority of men were women. One of my male co-workers said it was a predominantly male industry. Why is it that way? This is not attractive to women.
The AVIXA Women's Council was co-founding and chaired by Alvarado- Miranda. It's become a passion project since then, because we represent a small portion of the industry, and currently 9% based on a recent study. Many women have left the industry during the Pandemic to care for their families or for other jobs. There are definitely other minority groups and people of color that face biases in the industry, whether it be sexual, race, or other aspects of your identity. I believe we can acknowledge those differences.
In his book, "Black & White," he shared his experience as a biracial business leader in Canada and the U.S. His work focuses on facts and data over opinion in order to start conversations and raise consciousness. "I wrote 'Black and White' in order to bridge the divides of understanding and to hopefully raise awareness about systemic racism for those still not understanding what it was and the negative impacts it continues to have on our society." My book calls for all of us to do better so that we can eventually all live better together. Being better is a desire for greater awareness of the issues of systemic inequality.
He thinks his efforts are making a difference. It's positive that some change is occurring. "Maybe not as fast and maybe not as much as we want." He mentioned Wes Hall, a Jamaican-born Canadian business leader and philanthropist known widely for his role on the Dragons Den television series. The Black North Initiative was formed by Hall in order to increase representation of Black professionals in C-suites and on boards in Canada, a nation where the Black population is estimated at 3% but where business leadership roles only show 1% representation.
The conversation should start with facts and data. Being bridge builders as opposed to accusers is the second part of the plan. Words mean something. I changed the title of my book to "white advantage" because I realized that when I mentioned white privilege, they got defensive. I heard comments like "What are you talking about?" I grew up on a small farm in Ohio and built everything I have for myself. I started my own business after graduating from university.
"I wouldn't reply, that's not what we're talking about," he said. You have an advantage because you are white. You could be unaware of it. This explanation allowed us to have a deeper discussion about the negative realities faced by people in traditionally marginalized communities. Sharing with everyone in an inclusive way is what achieving equality is all about. Some people are viewing it in a different way because they're afraid of the other. He said that they were not just talking about equality for black people. Black people, people of color, Indigenous people, people with disabilities are some of the groups we are talking about. It's not possible to have some people being better than others.
There are some starting points in the industry. Equal pay and bias towards women are included. The pay scale is going to be acknowledged in the post when someone posts a job in California. You are more than likely going to get less than a male if you go in for a job interview. Performance bias is based on assumptions about how women and men are perceived differently.
Both experts agree that ethics and success are related. Not recruiting the best candidates due to a lack of diversity equates to a "war on talent" in both Canada and the US. "To make real change happen, organizations must truly align the values of their organization, their brand... around demonstrable action that will attract and retain top talent - professionals who, more often than not today, place greater importance on aligning their personal values to their professional career decisions." "Dorian said that." You are going to lose out in the long run if you don't do it now.
Audience engagement is also extended. You have to be relevant to the audience to engage them. You should make your branding and marketing appealing in a genuine way. They are aligned to the values of the organization.
Data shows that organizations that embrace diversity and inclusion are more valued in the open market. Diversity and inclusion should be a priority for corporate leaders.
State of progress
Since the murder of George Floyd, there has been a greater awareness of the issues related to systemic racism and inequality. We have seen a lot of progress. I like to work in communities where a lot of change is needed. He said that the historical truths about discrimination and marginalization and the continuing realities of systemic inequality exist in our public and private institutions.
Dorsey has found success in various business and community projects by applying his principles of communication and empathy. How does that occur? You have to bridge build with other people who can make it happen and you have to bring them together around facts and ideas for tangible action. There needs to be on-ramps for different people who have different levels of understanding. When we achieve that, we need to get to the truth, reconcile, and then take collective action.
Daniel Brown is a journalist. He created knowledge base content for a major university's computing services department. He has experience in IT project management and technical support. He is usually found in a coffee shop.