Intro to AEF and Best Practices in TemplatesHD

In this article, we will review how to Structure a Template using the Audience Engagement Framework (AEF) and Digital Signage Best Practices.

A Template is really just a Background you use to build a foundation for your content. You want to add in Secondary Pieces of content that not only round out your message, but add simple information that will engage your audience.

Three of the four Design Tenets within the AEF that are most important at the Template level are Motion, Two or More Assets in Playback, and Color. We’ll cover each briefly, while detailing how each relates to a Template, in this article.

Motion

Motion is one of the main pieces that help Digital Signage separate itself from other forms of communication. Innately we are drawn to motion, so having any motion is useful.

Now that's not to say you should settle for the least amount of motion for your content. Using the follow examples, we can study how a layout can change when using an additional asset with motion.

In this first example, we see a Template that uses Dynamic Text at the bottom to add motion to playback. On a larger screen, the Scrolling Ticker is helpful, but may not be enough to engage more than a handful of your audience.

In the second example, we see a Template that uses Dynamic Text, but an HTML asset has been added as the main point of motion for the background. The HTML is enough to animate the Template, but not obtrusive to take away from the Primary Assets added in CampaignsHD.

An important thought to remember when adding motion to a Template: be mindful of how much motion is too much. The example above gives us an idea of motion in moderation. Templates should accentuate and add depth to Campaigns, not steal attention from the main content and messaging in playback.

Two or More Assets

Next, is making sure you have Two or More Assets in Playback on a Slide

To start with, Primary Assets will always be added on your Slide in CampaignsHD, and we’ll dive into Primary Assets more in an article related to the Slide Editor. 

On a Template, you want to add pieces of content that are Secondary Assets. These are assets that add depth to your Slides, create a consistent look that engages multiple audiences, and builds habits to draw eyes to the screen. 

A Weather, Date, and Time Sidebar is a perfect example of an asset that people constantly look at. It is a relatable, uniform message that all people connect with. Adding an RSS Ticker at the bottom not only brings motion, but gives valid information that is quickly digestible for someone walking by the screens. 

Adding this Sidebar and Scrolling Text starts us at two assets on the Template. So by the time we get into the Slide Editor in CampaignsHD, we can focus solely on the Primary Content that will overlay our Template.

Color

Color is important to all digital and print media. Companies use Color Theory every day to determine branding and communication standards for their organization. 

With that being said, there is no reason to over analyze each and every color you designate within your signage. As a best practice, most organizations tend to stick to their Branding Guidelines when it comes to creating a consistent look and feel for their content. 

However, if you are looking to create content outside of your standard messaging you’ll want to use colors that illicit strong emotions to engage your audience. Using Alerts as an example, you’ll want to choose a color that creates a sense of urgency and awareness, like Red or Orange

Now if your branding Colors include Red or Orange, then you’ll want to look at other contrasting colors that are able to garner your audience's attention, so your message doesn’t drown out.

Establishing Color, Motion, and Multiple Assets on a Template is really the first step in preparing your communication. That way, you set yourself up for success moving forward when you start creating your Primary Messaging in CampaignsHD.

We’ll continue to discuss the Audience Engagement Framework and Digital Signage Best Practices in CampaignsHD and ChannelsHD, so please look out for those articles as you progress through your training.

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