Reference no: EM13767925
The U.S. Digital Signage Industry 2010: An Industry Analysis
The analysis seeks to fulfill several objectives relevant to management and marketing strategy courses where analysis of the external environment of a firm is important. 1. Model for students the relevant content to include in an industry analysis. 2. Increase student understanding of the applications and use of the analytical tools of strategy and how to synthesize information from multiple sources into a comprehensive picture of an industry. 3. Provide an overview of the dynamics and near-term future of this industry. 4. Use industry analysis to explore an emerging medium in the U.S. advertising and messaging industry.
This industry note is part of a series of case studies that were written on Daktronics Incorporated, and is intended to be used in conjunction with those cases to prepare and inform students about the U.S. digital signage industry before they complete the discipline-specific cases on Daktronics.
Synopsis of the Case
The billboard, sign, and outdoor advertising industry in the U.S. is almost as old as the Colonies. Lighted billboards, roadside signs, neon, and other forms of display are part of our everyday environment. The newest segment of the industry, digital signage, is driven by 21st century technologies in computers, peripherals, graphics, and new sources of light -- liquid crystal display (LCD), light emitting diodes (LED), and others. Less than twenty years old, the digital segment (sales of $2.14 billion) was estimated to be 17.8 percent of the outdoor signage industry in 2008. The digital out-of-home (DOOH) segment of the advertising industry grew from $5.5 billion to $7.5 billion from 2003-2008. Expenditures from 2009-2013 for out-of-home advertising are expected to grow 6.6 percent from $7.5 billion to $10.3 billion. It is the fastest growing segment of the advertising industry.
This note reviews the digital signage industry and explores the forces that are driving this emerging segment of the advertising, messaging, and sign industry.
The industry note can serve as an excellent illustration for teaching external environmental analysis in marketing or management. Essentially, the approach would be to assign the note as advanced reading prior to the class period in which analysis of the external environment will be taught. Teach the class from a tools perspective, using examples from the note (as well as others) to illustrate how one approaches analyzing the competitive environment of an industry using five forces analysis, value chain analysis, strategic group maps, and political-environmental-social-technological analysis. Finally, assign the questions to student teams as follow-on homework to embed the lessons from the lecture.
The industry note has been field-tested twice in an MBA-level strategic management course with good results. It served as the basis for four assignments:
1.PEST and Five Forces analysis;
2. Key Factors identification and construction of the industry's Value Chain;
3. Development of a Competitor Profile Matrix and construction of competitor profiles; and
4. Analysis of industry structure and the Strategic Group Map. Students were quite able to conduct all forms of analysis based on information in the industry note.
As may be apparent from the documentation, this specific industry segment is the nexus between two traditional industries as defined by IBISWorld reports: 33995 (Billboard & Sign Manufacturing in the United States) and 54185 (Billboard & Outdoor Display Advertising in the United States). As a newly-emerging industry segment that integrates both hardware manufacturing and multiple types of content, the analysis illustrates well how industries transform themselves in response to technological change. The typical response from students when asked their responses to the industry is, "Well, I've seen lots of these digital signs but I never thought about it as an industry."
As noted in the Case Objectives and Use section above, this industry analysis is linked to a series of discipline-specific cases (marketing, lean manufacturing, finance, human resources, and strategy) written about Daktronics, one of the leaders in the digital signage industry. As such, this industry note provides the broad context for understanding the industry and its competitive environment. All of the cases were written in the same time frame as this note. Together, they represent an integrative approach seeking to more fully illustrate the linkages between firm-specific challenges and the industry in which the firm competes.
Student Questions for Preparation
1. Examine the external environment that shapes competitiveness in this industry. What are the political, economic, social and technological forces shaping the industry? Construct a PEST analysis that reflects your findings.
2. Using Porter's five forces framework, analyze the forces that are shaping competitiveness in the digital signage industry. (See Exhibit One)
3. What were the key factors to success in the DOOH market in 2009 - 2010?
4. In this complex industry, identify and discuss how value is created. How might a value chain for the industry be structured? (See Exhibit Two)
5. Construct a Strategic Group Map for the industry using the companies identified in the industry note. How does a firm compete in this industry? (See Exhibits Three and Five.)
6. Consider the future of the digital signage industry. What do you project as the best case and worst-case scenarios for the industry over the next five years? What key assumptions underlie your scenarios? What data and other elements will need to be tracked to monitor the unfolding of each scenario? What other scenarios might emerge?
7. Drawing upon the analyses completed, construct a summary of the state of the digital signage industry in 2010. How might your observations influence Daktronics - the industry leader - as management positions the company for the coming five years?
8. Consider the possibility that a possible future assignment you may receive as a manager is to compile a major analysis of a prospective industry that your firm seeks to enter. What can you learn from this industry note about how to approach this assignment? What questions are you seeking to answer to guide management's decision? What are the major elements to include? What source material is available to you? What documentation will you need to compile?