Narrowcasting

In the age of digitalization, it has never been easier to reach a target group for your own branding. Today, advertisers have numerous sales and advertising tools at their disposal. They enable them to capture the attention of customers at any time and from anywhere in the world.

However, unlimited accessibility has not only positive effects. Competitors can access these tools in the same way and exploit advantages for themselves. At the same time, consumers in the modern world are virtually inundated with advertising. The result is diminishing attention to new products. Against this backdrop, marketers need a game changer. One promising approach is narrowcasting. Learn everything you need to know about narrowcasting in this article.

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What is Narrowcasting?

Narrowcasting, by definition, is radio or television broadcasting that specializes in a narrow audience or restricted area. The narrowcasting definition gained prominence in the late 1960s and was coined by American psychologist and computer scientist C. R. Licklider. The very first offerings of narrowcasting were subscription-based radio programs.

Even at that time, they followed the goal of niche marketing and offered a small group selected contributions about products. Thanks mainly to the Internet distribution since then countless opportunities for customer targeting arose. Today, narrowcasting is also widely used as target marketing.

Narrowcasting vs. Broadcasting – Where is the Difference?

The differences between the broadcasting and narrowcasting definitions are clear. Broadcasting, in contrast to narrowcasting, is oriented toward the broadest possible audience. Narrowcasting, on the other hand, specializes in a select and small group of consumers. A well-known example is the advertising of women's clothing in a shopping mall or sporting goods advertising in a winter sports store.

This involves broadcasting audio and video content of any type through electronic mass communication technology.

Where can Narrowcasting be used?

Digital signage (DS) is an ideal form of specialized advertising for narrowcasting. Advertising on digital displays and wallboards reaches your customers in a highly specific way, both indoors and outdoors. Narrowcasting features many fields of application, especially in niche marketing.

Narrowcasting at the Point of Wait

Thanks to numerous possible applications, we also discover narrowcasting technology in buildings. As a rule, digital displays are used there to inform visitors, customers, or employees about upcoming events, hygiene regulations in force at the location or offers. Waiting areas of hotels, hospitals, banks and large offices are particularly suitable for digital signage installations.

Narrowcasting at the Point of Sale

It is obvious why narrowcasting is popular at the Point of Sales (POS) — the sales and product display zones. There, customers are usually still undecided and are more receptive to product advertising because they are ready to buy.

Retail chains like to use narrowcasting to inform customers about the availability of products or to point out purchase offers. This allows to personalize and improve the customer experience to optimally support consumers in their purchase decision.

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Narrowcasting and DOOH

Digital Out-of-Home (DOOH) includes any form of advertising that we encounter in public spaces. Advertising ranges from a giant digital billboard on a skyscraper facade to an interactive advertising monitor in a shop window. DOOH advertising is a powerful promotional tool for reaching people outdoors with targeted advertising content.

What Advantages Offer Narrowcasting?

Narrowcasting is an effective medium for directly addressing customers and marketing products. Narrowcasting allows you to tailor advertising content to a specific target audience with specific interests and increase product sales. It's no secret that advertising content in narrowcasting format achieves higher conversion rates compared to broad-based advertising campaigns. Other benefits of narrowcasting include:

  • Greater reach through target group-oriented information transfer
  • Increased cost efficiency through direct customer approach
  • Emotional connection through personalized content

Which types of Commercial Screens can be used for Narrowcasting?

All audiovisual content that can be displayed on a digital signage system is also suitable for a narrowcasting monitor. You can display photo, video, illustrations and animated content on it.

Due to advancing progress in media technology, application possibilities are constantly increasing. Today, applications range from LED screens and digital billboards to interactive touch screens and oversized LED display panels.

Narrowcasting software: What matters?

A suitable IT platform is required to ensure that the communication of relevant content to a specific audience works on site. Narrowcasting only achieves its full potential with narrowcasting software and digital signage technology.

The important thing is that narrowcasting software offers the ability to flexibly control and manage content. Modern video marketing software platforms deliver your messages to any display within the network, regardless of location or time.

What Challenges do you encounter when installing Narrowcasting Software?

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Once the system choice has been made, the SW rollout and integration into the network is imminent. You may have to overcome some challenges during the installation. To avoid stumbling blocks in advance, you should rely on the technical expertise of DS providers and get support during the setup.

Centralized DS systems possess high requirements for data security and integrity. In addition, a fail-safe and low-maintenance environment plays a significant role and can already be decisive during software installation. The connectivity of each individual DS device is particularly important to be able to perform SW and firmware updates at all in the future. If a good LAN or Wi-Fi connection is not given, it means only trouble for you as a system administrator.


Gravatar Nikolaos Sagiadinos
Author: Niko Sagiadinos
Digital Signage Software Developer — Co-Founder SmilControl
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