The Advisory Board of the Digital Signage Association agreed to the merger on April 6. The Self-Service & Kiosk Association Advisory Board voted in favor of merger during its meeting this morning, held in conjunction with KioskCom and The Digital Signage Show.
The Digital Signage Association, which in March announced its decision to incorporate as an independent 501(c)(6) non-profit organization, and the Self-Service & Kiosk Association had formed a merger discussion task force comprising members from both groups to deal with the many details involved before making the recommendation to its respective advisory boards.
With the approvals of both Advisory Boards, the new organization was filed with the state of Illinois as a non-profit trade association called Digital Screenmedia Association.
In addition to addressing the needs of the digital signage and self-service industries, the new association will look for ways to serve users, deployers, vendors, integrators, agencies and network operators in all areas of digital technology applied to audience engagement, including mobile services.
"Companies within the industry and end-users have continuously said that digital signage, while regarded as a powerful communications technology, is one component of an overall out-of-home digital media strategy," said Stuart Armstrong, president of EnQii North America and president of the Digital Signage Association. "As the leading industry association, it is our responsibility to pave the road ahead to enhance the success of our member companies and help educate and articulate an integrated value proposition. Replacing signage with â€˜screenmedia' to form Digital Screenmedia Association is a major step in that direction. Couple that with bringing the strength of the SSKA under the same association and you have a tremendously powerful voice of 600-plus member companies to drive industry education, advocacy and networking."
Armstrong will serve as president of the Digital Screenmedia Association. Janet L. Webster, president of Creative Solutions Consulting and president of the Self-Service & Kiosk Association, will serve as an executive vice president in the new association.
"As an industry consultant focused in the area of strategic planning for self-service, I often have customers ask about solutions, not technology," said Webster. "My clients are focused on the customer experience and business outcomes. And, so, with a focus on an integrated view of digital screen media solutions, the new DSA will give members easy and comprehensive access to a broad spectrum of industry professionals, users/deployers, as well as an extensive range of self-service solutions providers."
"What's interesting is that board members from the two associations, independent of each another, made the suggestion that we consider a merger," said David Drain, who serves as executive director for both associations. "Once we brought members from each association together on a task force, things moved really quickly with general agreement after the first meeting that it made a lot of sense to merge the two groups to better serve the marketplace and speak with a stronger voice."
"Since I thrive on innovation, I was excited to hear about the launch the new Digital Screenmedia Association," commented Alex Richardson, managing director of Selling Machine Partners. "In my cross-channel practice for worldwide retailers, I recommend, purchase and install hundreds of digital screens, kiosks and mobility solutions for their stores and wholesale partners. The merger of the DSA and SSKA simplifies my life by offering an easier way for me to find relevant best practices and a single source of suppliers for my global projects."
Brian Ardinger, SVP and chief marketing officer for Nanonation, said: "We are excited to be an active participant in the new Digital Screenmedia Association. The convergence of technologies from digital signage to kiosks to mobile are driving today's customer experiences. It's important to have an industry association that's dedicated to addressing these multifaceted needs and one that can bring together the leadership, tools, training, and insights required to help businesses thrive in a challenging and ever-changing marketing landscape."
"The creation of the Digital Screenmedia Association makes a lot of sense to our company," said Scott Falso, director of OEM marketing for Seneca Data. "We see many similarities in the technologies utilized in what I now refer to as â€˜screen media' markets. Rich-media content, dynamic messaging and interactivity, including mobile applications, are extremely influential methods to engage customers. The Digital Screenmedia Association umbrella allows experts in each of these areas to come together."
"The merger of the Self-Service & Kiosk Association and the Digital Signage Association is the right move at the right time," said Cortlandt Johnson, kiosk services sales leader of IBM Global Services. "Users are now looking for solutions that address digital signage, interactive kiosks and mobile devices and need an integrated digital screen media strategy. The new Digital Screenmedia Association will be a larger, more influential association that will be a stronger force in driving market growth for everyone involved."
NetWorld Alliance, publisher of this website, founded the organizations and has managed them until now.
Dick Good, CEO of NetWorld, said, "We are very proud of the growth of the associations, and have been thrilled to play a part in their maturation. We look forward to supporting their continued success in whatever way we can."
The group plans to complete the merger process by June 1. The Web address is www.digitalscreenmedia.org.