Professional digital signage services cost a pretty penny, but you can create a professional looking ad with just PowerPoint and a little creativity. This article will teach you the basics of creating an effective digital signage in PowerPoint to attract potential customers and boost your revenue.
Create your own example
Have a look at this sample ad we created in 30 minutes.
Here’s how you can do it.
Find out the screen resolution of the monitor on which you want to show the digital signage on. Select the slides orientation and adjust the slide size accordingly.
Choose the colors for your presentation. Here we went with a shade of orange and pitch black. There is no consistent background on the slides; each of them has pictures of dishes serving as a background image.
Insert your brand’s name and logo. The first slide is ideal for introducing your shop/business to potential clients. We decided to put the name, the logo of our imaginary cafe and some contact information there. We kept it simple avoiding any kind of animation.
The following slides show the promos of our imaginary cafe. As you can see, every slide has a different number of dishes advertised. If the screen on which you want to show the digital signage is not big, we recommend that you stick with one or two advertised goods per slide, but essentially it is up to you.
The font we used is Open Sans in Italic; while the number of lines and words per line on some of the slides might seem to be quite big, — we needed to include the ingredients. Again, keep in mind the goods you are advertising and decide accordingly.
Choose the transitions for you slides. We went with the Blinds option for each of them.
Tip: you can select all slides by clicking on a thumbnail and using ctrl + A shortcut on your keyboard. Then apply transition and it will be applied to all slides.
Select all slides and make them advance automatically by checking the checkbox next to After and the time duration on the Transitions tab.Enter the slide advance time. Five seconds is enough for a passer-by to read through the lines and get familiar with the promo. If your slide has more text, increase the time accordingly.
Save your presentation. Here you have two options: you can either play it from your computer or you can use a TV.
- You can save it as a standard .ppt file and play it from your computer. In this case you will need a VGA, DVI or HDMI cable depending on your computer and your TV. Also, your computer has to be somewhere near the TV so you can easily control it. After you set everything up, just put your presentation on loop and enjoy.
- Save your presentation as an .mp4 video file. For example, use iSpring Suite. Besides converting your presentation into a video, this app can save it as an HTML5 or a flash file, customize the video resolution, keep the effects and triggers without decreasing the image and video quality. Transfer your video to a flash drive, connect it to the USB port of your TV and start the video. Set the repeat mode on your TV to play it on loop.
Alternatively, if you have a TV with Internet connection, you can do the following: publish your presentation to HTML5 format (you can do it with iSpring Suite as well), upload it to the web and open the Internet page with the digital signage on your TV.
Digital signage design tips
First things first, you need to keep your presentation simple, clean and clear. Be consistent throughout the whole thing: same color scheme, same fonts, same overall style.
Select a color scheme
If you want to build a color scheme that really works, use one of the color scheme designing web tools. The most popular ones are Paletton and Adobe Color CC. It would be smart to stick with two colors for creating a good eye-catching contrast. Choose your brand colors or your logo colors if available.
Get your text right
If you need to include text in one of the slides, cut it down as much as possible, no more than 3 words in a line, no more than 5 lines per slide. Use no more than 2 fonts, both belonging to the same font family.
Play with sizes and make the most important information bold.
Create a contrast
Make sure the background and the images do not overshadow the text on your slides since the text conveys the message aimed at potential customers, which is the most important thing here.
Insert some images
If you want to incorporate some images into your presentation, use a royalty free image site. Do not overpower your images with animation. Fade, fly in/out, float in/out, split and wipe usually work best. You should still feel free to check out all the others and see how they work specifically for your content.
Get smooth slide transitions
Transition between slides should also be the same throughout; here you should probably choose Fade or any other eye-pleasing transition.
Creating a universal template
It would be a really smart decision if you ask a professional, for example, you brand manager, to design a template for you. Once it is done, you can just change the content of your digital signage while the background and the overall design remain the same.
Conclusion & taking things further
As you can see, digital signage is easy to create and update regularly. Here are some ideas on how to bring your digital signage-making skills to the next level:
- If you want to make a presentation for a vertically mounted TV, you can design it by setting a portrait slide orientation in PowerPoint.
- You can replace your computer monitor or your TV with a digital video projector for bigger digital signage.
- If you are confident enough with PowerPoint and have a touch screen display, you can make an interactive presentation using hyperlinks and trigger. In this case you need to upload your digital signage to a website and launch it from there.
Have you ever used PowerPoint to create digital signage? Share your experience in the comment section.