Cellular Sales is the largest Verizon retailer in the United States with more than 560 stores in 28 states. The company is embracing digital signage on two fronts –in hundreds of its retail locations, and in its Knoxville, TN headquarters.
Legacy signage in each of its retail locations consisted of printed and backlit signage encased in modular light boxes. The only dynamic in-store content was fed by thousands of DVD players connected to wall-mounted TVs. Every content update required new DVDs to be shipped or driven to each location –a costly and time-consuming process.
Led by a talented team of in-house tech personnel, Cellular Sales embarked on a mission to modernize each store with compelling, dynamic digital signage. A team of 14 field techs worked tirelessly for eight months to update the retail locations with nearly 3,000 BrightSign HD, XD and 4K digital signage media players driving displays throughout each store. Eight channels of content are managed from the Knoxville headquarters via BrightSign’s cloud-based networking service, with future plans to customize content based on each store’s regional location. BrightSign Network enables the company to update signage content quickly –a necessity in the fiercely competitive mobile communications marketplace. Digital signage now makes it possible for Cellular Sales’ retail locations to align with all Verizon promotions. For example, when Verizon rolls out a new short-notice promotion, Cellular Sales can update its signage to reflect that promotion instantly, whereas in the past the store would not have been able to produce and ship materials in time to support the promotion.
“With such a geographically dispersed network of retail locations across the country, we needed a solution that would not only refresh the look of our stores with new signage, but also give us the ability to update content on a dime –BrightSign’s solution fit the bill perfectly,” said Chris Dotson, multimedia engineer at Cellular Sales. “And considering the substantial recurring costs of updating our legacy signage with printed materials and new lightboxinserts, going digital will save the company a considerable amount of money in the long run.”
Beyond Cellular Sales’ retail operation, the company installed more than 50 displays in its corporate headquarters in Knoxville, TN. The massive facility – which houses approximately 300 employees – doubles as a test facility to refine and troubleshoot signage that will ultimately find its way into the company’s retail locations. Displays are strategically located throughout the campus, displaying information about news, events, cafeteria menus and weather. Other displays feature aggregate sales data updated every 90 seconds, offering an insightful glimpse into field sales from across the country. And the lobby houses displays that cycle through interesting factoids about the company, and about the local Knoxville area.
Deploying digital signage at corporate headquarters and in retail locations across the country has proven very successful for Cellular Sales. Eliminating printed signage and DVD-based video offset the cost of installing the new digital signage network, and the ability to update content remotely now makes it easy for all retail locations to keep current and present a fresh face to each customer who walks in the door. While the signage is currently used only for customer-facing purposes, Cellular Sales is exploring ways to utilize the signage during off-hours for employee training and other corporate communications needs.
Cellular Sales remains in steady growth mode, with plans to open 30 new stores by the end of 2016, and another 50 stores in 2017. And now that the company has transitioned to BrightSign, outfitting new stores with digital signage is a turnkey operation. Boxes arrive clearly labeled, and installation & set-up can be easily administered by the field techs responsible for setting up the rest of the store’s tech infrastructure.
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