An LED Sign is very visible (hence the common "Vegas-flash" fears of a community). This is a good thing. Imagine if that LED Sign were linked to the iPAWS (Integrated Public Alert and Warning System) so communities were alerted through the sign (in addition to their phones, radio, and TV) about upcoming dangers and what to do. Communities could also use time on displays to promote events to bring the community together (i.e. festivals, fairs, BBQs, field-days, etc.). By giving up a little time on the sign (even 1 out of every 10 messages makes a difference), the community can see the LED Sign and/or interior DS solutions as a great addition to their lives.
Sharing time on an LED sign seems to be a hard decision at first. The business owner sees a massive investment in DS (anywhere from a "low" of $8,000 to upwards of $500,000+ for an LED display). The business owner (rightly) wants to see a return on that investment. Content should be about the organization and what it brings to the community. The sign should promote goods and services and help grow income. Just as communities get stuck in a rut of what DS "takes" from the community, many business owners are so focused on ROI (Return On Investment) that they forget to deliver the ROO (Return On Objective). Business owners (not all, but many) forget there are BIG returns to be gained by reaching out to the community and that new (or existing) LED sign can help bring the community together in new and fun ways.
DS isn't perceived as a form of communication to the broader public. They see it as another, newer (and intrusive) form of commercial advertising. By a simple addition of community-based content, DS can turn from being viewed as only a commercial form to being more; it becomes a communication form for businesses and organizations to reach out to the community and for the community to reach out to itself.
Share the road. It means giving up a little space (sometimes that space crosses over into your comfort zone), but the returns will be well worth the time! There's room on the DS road for all to be happy and win.
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