Playing with Digital Signs in the Library

I’ve always been very interested in how libraries advertise their programs.  Before I worked in libraries, I spent my time at Media Play (one of those giant music/movies/books/video games stores) as part of the team that worked on setting up the monthly layout of the store.  My time here influenced how I looked at advertising programs to teens.  I realized that

At the Cape May County Library I adopted a template for my teen advertising (which you can see collected here).  Looking back on the template, it looks a bit clunky but I am happy that there was at least consistency in the design.  The one problem I never did solve was how to display the signs.  We had so many programs going on for all age groups  that the walls where we put our signs became a horrible mess of clutter.  This was not something that made the library look awesome.

One of the great joys in coming to work here at the Portland Public Library was that as part of the renovation the library completed the library adopted digital signage.  We use the Carousel Digital Signage system on 6 large digital signs throughout the library building (one of which is housed in the teen lounge).  I found their sign editing software to be rather clunky and not user friendly so I started playing around with how I could best use the signs to advertise programs and more.

The fix that I found most helpful was to use Microsoft Powerpoint to create my slides.  I use just one slide to create my flyer and then export that slide as a JPEG.  Then I upload those slides into the Carousel program, set them for the screens I wish for them to be shown on and everything fits perfectly.  I use a standard white background with Two Cen MT Condensed Extra Bold font and one or two images.  I also always try to add the library logo into the slide as well as any logos of any partners we are working with for the program.

I’ve also found that Tumblr works amazingly well with our digital signs.  It allows me to reblog neat images and news clips and plug those directly into the Carousel system as “interactive content”.  It’s a misleading title because all that I’m doing is copying and pasting the URL of the post into the system.  It looks something like this:

I find that it makes the digital signs a bit more interesting…I’m able to reblog something, copy the URL, and share neat stuff with my patrons easily.


Are you using digital signage in your library?  If so, what are your experiences?  What have you found out that you can do from playing around with the digital signs?


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