I found what I consider a cool trick in Tabletop Simulator that wouldn't be possible in IRL life.
It looks like two icons/tiles on the board, an eye with an arrow and a door with an arrow. For my sample game, events are triggered when a character enters line of sight of the first one or enters the space of the second one. The tricky thing is these are cards. If I hover my hand over it and press Shift-Alt, the other side of the card is displayed, just to me, with the full information.
The back of the cards have a transparent background, so only the icon and a very faint outline of the card can be seen. The front has a normal white background, so it appears like a regular card when that side is viewed. Below is what the cards might look like in Photoshop.
So there you have a larger area for informational text but only a small-footprint icon displayed on the board. Maybe this will come in handy for your game.