We hear it time and again from overburdened marketers faced with the complexity of creating and managing content in the digital world. ‘We’ve got all these digital assets located on different servers, hard drives and CDs in multiple locations,’ they say. ‘There are so many copies of the copy, we’re not even sure which is the original.’
Today’s marketing armoury provides a plethora of process management software – if only there were a technology that would manage the massive quantity of content needed to feed the rapidly burgeoning number of media channels.
Hang on a minute – there is! It’s called digital asset management.
Usually known as DAM, digital asset management is a centralised software platform that enables marketing content to be stored centrally, managed, shared and distributed with maximum efficiency. Most DAM systems are cloud based and so teams anywhere around the world can get hold of the assets they need at any time of day.
So that is going to come as extremely welcome news to any work-weary marketer tasked with distributing assets to different teams within the global business and to external agencies located around the world. Particularly so if he/she is among those marketers who, currently labouring without DAM technology, will be spending 35 per cent of his/her time searching for assets (according to research analyst Gleanster).
Just your type?
There are many types of digital asset management system – some designed to handle huge amounts of archived data, others more specifically tuned to the needs of marketers. The latter tend to include brand management features such as online brand guidelines, tools that enable users to customise or localise frequently used artworks and the ability for different markets to showcase their best campaigns to one another.
However, the single most important feature for any marketer in search of a DAM platform is integration with other marketing software. That way you need only to keep one master of each artwork, which gets pulled through to your marketing platforms from the centralised DAM system. This enhances marketing consistency enormously – because you always deploy the most up-to-date, approved materials from your DAM system in marketing execution. At Brandworkz we describe this as creating the content hub of the marketing ecosystem.
You want to know more?
A good place to start researching digital asset management is the DAM Foundation, the organisation that sets appropriate standards and provides best practice examples for the industry. It has defined ten core attributes of a potent digital asset management system and certified those vendors whose products comply. This definitive list represents the absolute foundation features that a DAM system should offer.
Another excellent resource is Capterra.com. It helps those in search of software solutions to find the companies who can supply them. There’s a category for digital asset management as well as brand management, so it’s well worth a look.
Abigayle Norman is content marketing manager at Brandworkz.