Today, more businesses see the importance of using digital asset management (DAM) tools, with organizations investing a lot of money in these solutions. In 2020, the global DAM market hit roughly $4.12 billion, highlighting the importance of DAM tools for modern organizations.
Effective digital asset management can help businesses organize, simplify, and optimize access to their digital assets. In this short guide, you will discover the importance of these tools and how they can impact your company.
- A DAM solution helps organizations and businesses organize their digital assets efficiently. This tool is a centralized digital library allowing users to access content safely and efficiently.
- Using DAM platforms, business owners can boost campaign collaborations, maintain brand consistency, and monitor asset return on investment (ROI).
- The most notable benefits of using a DAM platform include improved conversion rate, increased efficiency, more asset transparency, and increased asset value.
Digital Asset Management: What You Need To Know
A DAM tool is software that organizations and businesses use to store, find, organize, and share assets or digital files. This solution provides internal and external stakeholders with quick access to a company’s digital asset library of images, presentations, videos, and documents.
DAM platforms can help teams use digital content to achieve strategic goals and work more efficiently. They streamline asset management and optimize the generation of rich media, particularly within the sales department and marketing teams.
This tool creates a centralized management system for digital assets. Moreover, it enables brand consistency by reinforcing brand guidelines and automating asset updates.
These advantages provide a single source of truth within companies while offering a consistent user experience to audiences.
Modern marketers and digital content management teams also use DAM software to repurpose content, lower unnecessary production costs, and duplicate workstreams.
Most DAM systems have the following significant features:
- Support for multiple devices and file formats - DAM tools offer broad support for various devices, formats, destinations, and consumer types because of the constantly growing range of online content sources. Examples include extensive, unstructured data like scanned documents, multimedia files, electronic forms, and digitized images
- Third-party integration - Users can easily integrate third-party applications, like social networks or content management systems, into a DAM platform. Its open architecture and application programming interface (API) support promote a centralized process through which users can manage and integrate various file types, media, and new and legacy apps
- Support for user roles and asset life cycles - DAM systems can personalize interfaces, automate file routing, and match functionality to specific user roles. Some tools have reporting features that enable business and information technology (IT) managers to improve workflows through activity tracking
- Efficient infrastructure - Powerful infrastructure refers to the DAM tool’s capacity for physical storage and seamless file transfers. These two elements are critical for asset protection and high performance. When looking for a DAM tool, consider scalability, flexibility, reliability, redundancy, and high availability
There can be two types of digital asset managers within an organization: internal and external users. The following examples are internal users:
- Designers and content creators - Writers, photographers, or graphic designers can quickly upload new files and access branded assets using a DAM tool. They can also benefit from integrations with other project management and design solutions, like Adobe Creative Suite
- Legal experts - DAM systems can help legal teams ensure compliance with rules and regulations by automatically classifying and organizing digital assets. For example, lawyers refer to expiration dates on assets to prevent using outdated data
- Salespeople and marketers - A DAM platform encourages faster collaboration among sales representatives and marketers by providing access to a centralized source of materials for pitches and presentations
- IT professionals and site developers - Technical teams require a streamlined path for retrieving assets and asset data while breaking down silos and linking solutions. Robust APIs from DAM systems that they can easily integrate with other critical systems are a tremendous plus
Meanwhile, external users of DAM software include the following:
- Clients - Company clients may need access to digital assets to check project progress or as part of a service
- Contractors - Your business might collaborate with contractors or external partners to strategize, develop products, and implement new advertising campaigns. With a DAM system, you ensure the security of company assets, compliance with standards, and brand consistency even while working with external partners
- Agencies - Agencies can easily access, store, share, edit, and submit files for client review or approval using DAM systems
Since brand assets and marketing materials are highly visible through digital channels like social media, online brands must remain consistent in messaging and imagery to maintain brand authority and generate growth. This e-commerce trend means DAM platforms are becoming critical components of the digital transformation efforts of modern businesses.
Some examples of DAM solutions available today include Adobe Experience Manager, Canto, Bynder, Brandfolder, and Archive, which helps users collect user-generated content (UGC) from social media sites.
To better understand the power of digital asset management tools, let us look at digital assets and what they mean for businesses.
Examples of digital assets
A digital asset refers to any file or media a company has rights to use, store, and manage digitally. The assets are incredibly crucial to small organizations and enterprise companies alike because digital content fuels efforts for growth, including the following:
- Marketing campaigns
- Product launches
- Sales enablement efforts
- Social media activities
Today, brands also use digital assets for content in product sheets, newsletters, and corporate intranets. Most organizations rely on digital content because they are easy to create, edit, collaborate on, find using DAM metadata, and disseminate among various departments and external stakeholders.
Examples of modern digital assets include documents, photos, videos, presentations, and audio files. The following are specific examples of digital marketing assets and their metadata that organizations manage today:
- Images of products, locations, models, and more
- Company guidelines, which include colors, logos, typography, and other brand assets
- Branded content like illustrations from creative teams
- Videos and other media assets for features, products, and company events
- Audio files for customer interviews or podcast features
- PDF and other text-based documents such as blogs, sales decks, reviews, and eBooks
- Raw files from creative projects
- Digital assets like computer-aided design (CAD), three-dimensional (3D) image files, and other rich media
Top Use Cases for Digital Asset Management Systems
Building a business case for DAM solutions starts with understanding its various use cases for your company. This section outlines some of the top DAM use cases and explains how these tools can help improve your workflows.
DAM adds value to all businesses that rely on digital assets for growth and customer retention. If you are ready to invest but still need to convince the stakeholders in your company, check out the use cases for DAM solutions below.
Improving campaign collaboration
A digital asset management solution can foster an environment designed for collaboration. It gives your creative department and its members a file-sharing platform that functions as a single source of truth. This advantage makes it easy for everyone to be on the same page, regardless of their time zone, location, or department.
Digital asset management platforms allow you to define unique user permissions and role hierarchies across all workflows. With this tool, you can ensure each user will have access only to the assets most relevant to them. Moreover, you can automate notifications that tell your team and external stakeholders when they need to take specific actions.
Securing digital content
For most entrepreneurs, keeping assets secure can be as challenging as managing digital assets. Remember that servers can crash and fail, and files can be corrupted and lost due to mismanagement.
Fortunately, managers can reduce and eliminate these risks using a DAM because it can store and secure digital assets in the cloud. Cloud-based DAM solutions include rights management, version control, and data encryption for cloud storage and file transfers.
Other security enhancements include Security Assertion Markup Language (SAML) and single sign-on (SSO) identity management. Users must perform routine application and infrastructure testing to find any security vulnerabilities that could compromise data on the platform.
Monitoring asset ROI
A DAM solution can make it easy for users to gather, manage, and understand data from multiple sources. This feature gives them valuable insights and information on how to maximize the use of your media to support business goals.
Some solutions offer insights such as asset downloads, views, and shares which users can categorize by user, asset collection, or organization.
Maintaining brand consistency
Remember that most customers will be more likely to purchase something from a brand they recognize. This is why Fortune 500 companies actively try to maintain brand consistency in their advertising and marketing campaigns. They want to be the first brand that comes to their target audience’s mind when considering a solution or a service.
Meanwhile, small businesses maintain consistency by improving customer relationships. This strategy can boost sales and provide scaling opportunities.
Maintaining brand consistency can be easier with a DAM platform. Users can restrict access to legacy files and ensure that updated assets are accessible. This tool allows them to develop, manage, share, and work on assets and rich media without deviating from brand guidelines.
They can use this tool to get content from UGC creators on social media platforms like Instagram or TikTok. This way, curating UGC can be automated, which can help save time and money.
Once designers have finished creating an asset, they can streamline production on simple tasks by saving templates. This way, reusing the same design can be easy, and the final output will be consistent.
Why Digital Asset Management Is Crucial
Modern marketers must work hard to get the most out of the DAM platforms to grow their brands. These tools can empower sales teams and share a consistent and purposeful message to their audience.
Remember that an effective digital asset management system can provide much more than a simple library for digital files. It can provide enhanced visibility and serve as a central database for marketers, creatives, brand managers, chief marketing officers (CMOs), and other stakeholders. Read on to understand the importance of DAM software for modern businesses and organizations.
Legal documentation, licenses, archives, and other assets are crucial in meeting governmental regulatory compliance demands and industry-driven regulations.
If your business can organize and share these materials, you can save time and money while avoiding the disruption of critical business processes.
When companies manage content correctly based on the different stages of the buyer journey, they can publish content and marketing materials at the perfect time for their target audiences.
DAM tools enable brands to personalize the customer experience, which helps establish and strengthen relationships. This advantage moves potential and existing customers along the sales pipeline faster and more effectively.
A DAM platform provides users with a comprehensive view of their digital assets, which can do wonders for content planning and execution. This benefit can boost collaboration across various stakeholders while eliminating time-consuming tasks and introducing more impactful work streams.
Increases value of content
Businesses that use a digital asset management solution maximize value across the asset lifecycle and streamline content production.
Teams use DAM systems to quickly organize, search, and repurpose existing assets for content. Since users can instantly access branded content, stakeholders like marketers, sales reps, and external partners can easily share files, generating additional revenue streams and improving brand reach.
Supports video marketing strategy
Video files are usually large and come in various formats, making them challenging to launch and manage. These hurdles make it tough to support video-centric advertising campaigns.
Fortunately, a DAM tool with video capabilities can help users automate the production of video marketing campaigns. With this tool, advertising teams can show the best version of their video at the right time to the right audience.
DAM systems can foster efficiency by saving users time looking for or adjusting digital assets, giving them more time to focus on crucial content creation tasks. The tools make employee collaborations smoother and faster due to the elimination of time-consuming tasks and one-off design requests.
A DAM tool seamlessly aligns the marketing department, digital assets, and the marketing toolkit, which can help save time and money on external partners and internal hiring while leveling up content production.
Moreover, it eliminates busy work so people can focus on mission-critical tasks like asset creation for branded promotions and product launches faster.
Levels up brand management
Digital asset management software can strengthen and protect a company’s brand identity regardless of which teams access, store, and share digital files. Using the tool as a central platform for all digital assets can simplify brand management and ensure consistency across various digital customer experiences.
This solution can ensure consistent messaging, visual representation, positioning, and other means of brand adherence. Moreover, it enables users to easily repurpose creative files and other media assets to gain efficiencies and demonstrate a single truth to their audience.
Centralization of content means users can keep their marketing assets and visual content updated and consistent, leading to consistent quality and styling. It also prevents the use of outdated and unapproved assets.
Using a DAM tool can result in a stronger, more professional, and more harmonious brand image across multiple agencies and systems.
Improves allocation of resources
Centralizing assets within DAM software improves brand consistency and allows businesses to reuse assets, lowering production costs and preventing duplicate workstreams. This advantage enables managers to allocate resources in other business areas like marketing automation efforts or product development.
Supports business growth and customer retention
A new product launch could get delayed if media files are not ready for the announcement.
With content becoming a crucial element in any online business, the ability to manage and access images and videos on time can make or break a campaign. Today, DAM tools have become essential to companies for providing superior customer engagement that can boost customer retention.
Tips for a Successful DAM Software Implementation
Investing in new software can be challenging, but choosing a DAM system can be even more difficult. It can involve time-consuming tasks like researching, checking retailers, and onboarding employees. These processes can leave you feeling confused and overwhelmed.
Once you determine that you need a DAM solution, you must decide which vendor you want as a partner. The process can be lengthy and complex, so use the tips below to get started.
Identify your stakeholders
One crucial tip to remember when implementing a DAM solution is knowing which internal and external partners will be affected. You can ask yourself the following questions to identify what you need:
- Who do you need to be on board from the start?
- What functionalities do they need from a DAM tool?
- How can the tool help them achieve their goals?
Remember to inform all stakeholders about your digital asset management process so they understand how the solution will benefit them. This tip is crucial, especially if there will be an allocated budget for the effort.
When choosing a DAM solution, consider three types of users: creative, technical, and business.
- Creative users
The success of your implementation can depend on the team members of your organization’s creative department. Remember that for this group, speed is one thing that matters above all.
Creative users face production requirements that often stretch them to the edge of their ability. This pressure grows with the increasing content distribution channels that all need tailored content.
Understandably, creatives have no tolerance for unnecessary disruptions to their processes. To avoid this issue, choose a product that minimizes or eliminates any delays creative users may experience.
- Technical users
Remember to align your DAM strategy with your overall technical strategy to streamline implementation, maintenance, and integration. Moreover, this strategy will make it easier for your IT department to adopt the new DAM tool.
Moreover, this alignment streamlines implementation from a security perspective. By involving your IT team early, you can fast-track your implementation and speed-to-value because your IT team can immediately be familiar with the new solution.
- Business users
This group includes marketers, external partners, and salespeople who need to quickly find content for presentations, promotional material, or product briefs. They might not be power users, but they remain crucial DAM stakeholders.
Business users must be able to access any file to concentrate on achieving their goals and meeting deadlines.
Set realistic goals and timelines
Most users still find it challenging to set realistic timelines, especially if they handle multiple departments that want the DAM system set up as soon as possible. This pressure may tempt managers to try to pick the first vendor they see, onboard, and integrate within the next month.
Rushing this process can lead to costly mistakes, so ensure you implement your DAM strategy correctly.
One tactic to try is to separate the implementation into phases. Doing so can relieve some of these pressures because stakeholders will see that the project is progressing rather than constantly wondering when the team will complete the project.
Consider existing applications
If you want to get support from stakeholders, consider existing systems they are already using when implementing new DAM applications. This way, they can be excited about the new solution and have an idea of how the platform will affect their work.
Look for DAM systems that integrate your existing applications to maximize buy-in and spark happiness for potential users.
Determine user permissions
You must consider user permissions after listing who will use the DAM system. You need to figure out which assets they need access to and which assets to restrict.
One of the crucial benefits of a DAM tool is segregation. Users can categorize each user into permission groups to determine what they can do and see while using the platform.
Although it can be easier to make everything accessible to everyone, this approach could pose security risks.
For example, you want your marketing agency to have access to assets like brand logos, stock imagery, and a few headshots. However, it would be unnecessary and harmful for them to have access to any other assets.
When buying a DAM system, you must understand the product’s approach to user permissions and categories. These factors will impact how specific you can get with access levels.
Find a DAM partner
When you narrow your search for vendors of DAM tools who can meet your functional requirements, remember to look at them as a company, not just a product.
Before investing, ask yourself if the company’s direction aligns with your brand’s future goals. You should also determine what type of support they offer after onboarding.
Working with a company that wants to pursue an ongoing relationship is critical. Avoid vendors that you think will onboard you and then forget you.
Pro Tip: The first step of implementing a new DAM solution must always be an internal asset audit. Doing so can help you determine your assets, what you need them for, and how to manage them.
Improve Your Digital Asset Management Strategy With Archive
Digital asset management is crucial for companies that want to boost brand reach without investing too much money. A DAM tool allows users to access, share, and store digital media assets in real-time. These capabilities can reduce costs while giving users more time to focus on other business areas.
If you want a DAM platform to manage UGC, check out Archive today. This tool can function as a content goldmine that automatically detects and curates social media posts relevant to your brand. With Archive, you can collect brand-tagged posts all in one place and filter them for easy access.
Effective digital asset management is necessary for modern brands that want to stay relevant and competitive. Check out Archive today to easily manage UGC from your social media pages.
FAQs on Digital Asset Management Software
What is the best DAM solution for my organization?
First, understand your digital asset management requirements to find the best DAM tool that addresses your needs. Evaluate your current workflows and processes to see how DAM software can improve them.
What are the most crucial elements of an effective digital asset management strategy?
Understanding user needs and managing metadata are the most necessary elements for an effective DAM strategy. If you understand your needs, you can find the right solution and implement them to fill gaps in the processes.
Why do modern brands need digital asset management tools?
Businesses and organizations need DAM tools to centralize sorting, storing, sharing, indexing, and securing digital assets. A DAM solution is also a must to perform crucial business operations like business development, marketing, and branding.