It may seem obvious the value that a professional integrator brings to an AV installation—technical expertise, experience, skills and talent that an end user simply doesn’t have.
But the value of a professional integrator, specifically one that integrates digital signage, goes much deeper than that.
Mike White, an enterprise account manager and director of business development for Unified AV, recently wrote an article titled, “7 Benefits of Working with a Professional Integrator.”
White says, “If the integrator you are working with does not bring you these values then you need to find another integrator with these talents, experiences and skills. Don’t add to your challenges and don’t waste your money or time with someone that just knows enough to be dangerous.”
“If they are not asking you these questions and bringing insight and experience on how to strategically accomplish your goals (the Why), then you need to look further.”
To ensure you are bringing true professional integration value to your clients, read over the following seven values White says professional integrators should always bring to the table.
1. An integrator will help you to first identify the “Why.”
One should never enter into investment of dynamic digital signage without a clear “why.”
The integrator should help you to clearly define the value proposition and metrics of how the “why” will be measured.
The integrator will help you to look past the pilot and plan for a long term, ever increasing value solution.
2. An Integrator will help you to understand “Content Strategies.”
Your integrator must have the experience to help you to identify critical information like viewing distance and dwell times. Your integrator should challenge your resources to make content specific for your digital signs. Your integrator should lead you toward having sticky content.
You want people to look at your signs over and over again, you want them to interact with them by encouraging them to take action on their smart phone and encourage them to be part of your social media world so that your dynamic digital sign gives far more than entertainment.
3. An integrator should have the competency to help you pick the right dynamic digital signage content management software.
With over 600 available, it is imperative that the integrator be capable of interrogating your “why” and matching your long term needs to a CMS (content management system) that will match those needs.
No one CMS is a great fit for every dynamic digital signage project, so if the integrator you are talking with only has one solution, then you’re likely going to have a challenge.
The integrator must be able to present the CMS solution to the end user and the end user must assemble a team that will be using this CMS to make sure you have the right team and the right CMS.
We goes as far as saying, if you are not willing to allow us to complete our thorough digital signage assessment with a demo, then we are not a good fit for your project.
4. An experienced integrator will ask the tough question about budget.
Many end users will interpret this as a sales ploy to see how much they can charge. The reality is that an experienced dynamic digital signage integrator has a real good feel for how much it will take to accomplish the “why”.
The end user will equally benefit by a candid discussion to determine if they can indeed afford the investment that will be required by both short term and long term to accomplish their “why”.
5. An experienced integrator will help you match the right hardware for the right locations.
I no longer suggest that every location for dynamic digital signage has to have the highest-level commercial hardware in place. The realty is that so much parity exists in the world of hardware, that in many cases, some of the pro-summer choices will work.
The real key here is an experienced AV integrator will ask you many questions about your hardware needs and be able to walk you through your options.
6. An integrator should ask do you have other systems that we will need to integrate with?
In other words, databases that already have the updated information and that can be merged into your CMS. Do you have an emergency notification system that we can integrate into your investment?
7. An integrator should ask for you to include your IT/Network team early in the process.
An experienced integrator worth of your investment knows that they must work hand in hand with your IT department and must include them in the earliest of the discussions.