By Yvonne Dick
Although they may be more popular in the ‘burbs and big cities, digital signs are coming to a neighbourhood near you. Some are exactly as you may imagine – lit up neon for sale signs. Others are subtler and offer user-enhanced interfaces for potential buyers and street traffic. The need to find the most durable, marketable sign for a real estate property is not a new battle. Using a bit of modern technology, salespeople can choose options other than waxed cardboard that flies away in the wind, or thick wooden signs that take up a lot of space and weight in the trunk of a car.
The use of multiple photos and videos in real estate listings has become commonplace. Digital signs elevate that to a new level. According to digital sign manufacturers and sellers, careful application of technology and materials are making the signs more affordable for every type of listing from the small fixer-upper house to a multi-unit complex or grand scale home.
Signboard pioneer firm Cody Live, based in Australia, calls them storyboards and encourages their use as a marketing tool to provide more information than is currently possible with existing models of on-property signage.
“Because the content is digital, and the boards are connected to the 4G network, the boards can be updated at any time with changed images, headings, inspect times, “SOLD” and more,” says Cody Live. “Sold properties can proudly and simply promote the selling agent’s success. It’s powerful stuff!”
Digital signs provide a variety of uses inside brokerage offices as well. They offer event calendars and directory displays along with streaming social media walls. The signs can be managed by the salesperson directly using website dashboards to get the custom and up-to-date information displayed as soon as it is available.
Canadian companies involved in LED real estate signage include Direct LED in Calgary, NetVisual in Toronto, Lucinda in Ottawa and Media Resources in Vancouver and other cities. With many choices may come questions. Knowing a bit about what is available as you look into digital signs may help you select the best one for your office.
Some digital sign boards may offer touch screens and other interactive concepts such as Bluetooth input in order for the signs to interact with passersby. It is common for digital signs to have 4G wireless connectivity that can be used both ways – to send information to those who request it, as well as updating the signs themselves. The signs can be wired into existing structures or come with battery supplies and solar charging backup sources. A computer screen takes far less power than a traditional CRT screen. This equates to less energy consumed by the digital signs as they use LED and other modern technology to display their information.
The signs you choose should act as a pleasing addition rather than electronic flashing light that annoys the neighbours and turns off prospective buyers. Some municipalities have strict rules on the size of signs that may be displayed on or near a property for sale.
Is your sign protected against threats from the internet? This question is important when choosing a digital sign company. Anything hooked up wirelessly is a risk unless it has protection.
Consider weather changes too – if buying a sign online and having it shipped, make sure that it can withstand temperature changes and extremes before investing in it.