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ISE 2024 Experience: Takeaways From A Record-Breaking Event

Published: 2024-02-26

Hot off the press: Dynamic, visual, immersive experiences are here! Earlier this year, the industry wrapped up ISE 2024 in Barcelona. For all the recent talk of a return to in-person experiences — and physical and digital worlds colliding — this was wonderful to see. Tens of thousands of AV, display and signage professionals attended the show for days of conversation, innovation and action to drive the future of the industry.

Off the top, beyond the chance to catch up with the industry’s best and brightest, what stood out was a strengthened vigor around partnerships and collaboration. Any professional in our industry knows we do not — and cannot — work in siloes. And, according to Accenture, more than 90% of executives say that customers’ lifestyles are shifting faster than they can keep pace. To make the extraordinary possible takes teamwork, from solution providers and content management systems to creative minds,  innovative customers and brands, and beyond.

Reflecting on ISE 2024, here are a few takeaways about the experience worth keeping in mind as the year progresses.

Top Takeaways from ISE 2024

[I] Immersive, Interactive, Intelligent.

Interactive demos stole the show. McKinsey says that the global immersive reality market will exceed one trillion dollars by 2035; and that approximately one-third of customers who are active in the metaverse have purchased real-world items there. The display and digital signage industries (and the foundational systems they run on) have evolved over recent years — and are in a position to start benefiting from a new world of intelligent technologies. Previously, with outdated or cumbersome systems, the power, precision and reliability may not have been there to deliver new, engaging experiences. That has now changed.

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So, how do you pull customers in and how do you make that interactive? A great technology base that lets you deliver impact from AI, sensor, touch, and AR/VR technologies. Brands are thinking bigger. For example, to be able to showcase a product in a retail environment, then track inventories online and instore and show them to shoppers live, and create a dynamic shopping experience for the customer. We are talking “active” technologies – a term which we will hear a lot more about this year.

[S] Spaces, Screens and Sensors

Each year, screens get bigger, sensors get more intuitive, and spaces take on new shapes and sizes. All in the name of better experiences. Some of the most interesting conversations at the show talked about the “in-person experiences of today and tomorrow” following a tricky period navigating change. Talking to those in the trenches, you’ll find a lot more optimism than might be expected from the outside looking in.

We are social beings. We crave engagement. And we live in a hybrid world from our workplace to our retailers, and from our education to our entertainment. Not to mention mission-critical environments where the importance of signage and displays takes on new meaning (such as in healthcare training or the military).

What does this mean? It means that brands across almost every market are investing in experiences. And, at the heart of many of these experiences are digital signage and immersive display technologies. In 2024, spaces, screens and sensors hold the key to solving customer engagement challenges. They are the gateways to making hybrid, personalized, and immersive experiences a reality.

[E] Ecosystems Exude Excitement

There was incredible dialogue around strengthening, selling and supporting full technology ecosystem solutions at the show. The concept of ecosystems is nothing new in the world of enterprise technology. However, for the digital signage and display industry, it represents something fresh. Something exciting. It represents possibility. Technology is moving so fast around us, and 67% of global consumers expect companies to address their changing needs in new ways. Every touchpoint is critical when it comes to maintaining these moments. To keep pace, we cannot work alone.

These partnerships are important. And, to that point, don’t forget the people, technologies and teams that make experiences function. According to Deloitte, eighty percent of the customer moments that make up your brand happen in the sales and service experience. And, as my colleague, Jeff Hastings recently stated, IT groups now have a much bigger seat at the table as they take on a large part of maintaining technology-supported experiences. Moral of the story: a winning solution doesn’t just achieve a desired experience here or there. It has to work, be simple to maintain and deliver added value (such as data intelligence) to solve business challenges.

2024 promises to be an exciting year for our industry. On the heels of a record-breaking ISE 2024 experience, the months ahead look primed to deliver. I challenge us to think a little bigger; be a little bolder; and be a little braver when it comes to reimaging dynamic experiences.

Together, we’ll find that the solution is more attainable than we might think.


Brian Rowley headshot.

Photo courtesy: Brian Rowley.

Brian Rowley is the chief marketing officer at BrightSign.

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