Canto digital asset management helps unlock your team and unleash your brand. Organize images, videos, presentations and other media in a central location so they can easily be found and shared.

San Francisco, United States
Founded: 1991
Staff: 115


Digital Asset Management
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Travel & Hospitality

New World Symphony Aligns Teams and Highlights Illustrious History With Canto

Founded in 1987, New World Symphony (NWS) is the first orchestral academy in the U.S. that trains highly-gifted young musicians for careers in classical music.

Marci Falvey, senior director of communications, and Joe Monticello, the archivist on her team, have the exciting challenge of telling NWS’s unique story in a way that resonates with the public, donors and patrons.

Goal: “Breathing New Life” Into Historical Assets

The communications team uses photos and documents from the institution’s archives in almost all aspects of their work, which includes creating digital materials, such as blog and social media posts, as well as print materials, such as ticket brochures, brochures about their community engagement programs and the annual report, which showcases what the institution has accomplished and how it’s evolved over the past year.

Because NWS’ historical assets are so instrumental in showcasing the organization’s illustrious history, the team needed a digital asset management solution to organize their archive and make it easily accessible.

“I want to make sure that we breathe new life into where we’ve been and who’s helped us get here. That means presenting our collection to the public as often as possible. It can be really compelling for multiple uses throughout the institution,” says Joe.

Before Canto, NWS was storing their assets on shared drives. This system made it extremely time-consuming to find assets and posed additional challenges for Marci, the only remote employee at NWS. Marci and Joe decided that they needed a modern DAM solution that could ease workflows and support their future growth.

“A lot of similar organizations have taken more outdated DAMs with less functionality and retrofitted them to work, but I didn’t want that,” says Joe. “I knew that we should have a system in place that we could grow into, not the other way around.”

“When Joe brought Canto to me, we both immediately thought that this would check all the right boxes in terms of what we were looking for,” says Marci. “Then, it was just a matter of showing that Canto was going to benefit multiple teams and be worth the investment.”

Enter Canto: “Love at First Upload”

As of today, New World Symphony has over 25,000 assets in Canto – just from their past three seasons – and counting.

“It was love at first upload,” says Joe.

Having a centralized library enables the team to easily grab any asset they need and collaborate in real-time. They use assets stored in Canto for all of their marketing and communications materials.

Aligning a Distributed Team

As the only remote employee, Marci especially values how a cloud-based library helps her team align and work together seamlessly despite the distance.

“Having to access a shared drive on a server that was half a country away – that lag time was really hard on my work. I would have to lean on team members who were onsite and ask them, ‘Hey, can you find me this photo? I think it’d be a good fit, but I just can’t quickly load these high-res assets from this far away,’” says Marci.

“Canto has really been a game changer for us. It diminishes the cons of not being in the building and takes away the distance. We’re all looking at the same assets at the same time.”

Enabling Meaningful Collaboration

Marci and Joe love using Canto’s workspace feature to simplify collaboration.

“Joe and I use Canto workspaces a lot for various blog posts or stories that I’m writing. We’re able to easily access all the assets for a project in real time and go through them together,” says Marci. “It’s really helpful when we’re working on multiple projects, and I can just go to one place for a specific project and everything I need is there.”

“Canto has been really great for not only internally viewing what assets we have, but also for sharing those assets with people outside of our institution. Everyone can open the same link and view the same assets.”

Saving Time With Facial Recognition

As the team handles a recent influx of asset requests from the media, Canto’s facial recognition has been a major lifesaver.

“There have been a lot of projects that we didn’t necessarily see coming that required us to find specific assets for one person very quickly. For example, our co-founder Michael Tilson Thomas was honored at the Kennedy Center and a lot of media outlets needed photos of him from all points in NWS history. We’ve had to dig deep into our archives in a way that we haven’t really done before,” says Marci.

“With Canto’s facial recognition, finding the right assets is just a matter of running a search. We can get these projects done much more quickly.”

Customer Success That Cares

The team also appreciates that their dedicated customer success team has been by their side as they realize the benefits of Canto!

“Anytime I had a question, it was answered. There’s something so refreshing about having a customer support team that’s obviously very passionate about their own product. It reflects the passion that we put into what we create here at NWS,” says Joe.

Results: Achieving Team Alignment With “an Additional Team Member”

With their archives at their fingertips, the NWS communications team is able to use the best assets to make their content shine.

“Since implementing Canto, our materials have really come alive because we’re able to use all of these assets that were previously sitting untouched in shared drives,” says Marci.

Canto has also helped the team work more quickly and tackle difficult, time-consuming projects with ease.

“Canto has been really helpful for unexpected projects that we might not otherwise have the resources or the time to complete. It’s almost been like an additional team member in helping us execute large projects very quickly,” says Marci.

As a manager who works remotely from her team, Marci loves that Canto brings the distributed communications team closer together by enabling real-time collaboration.

“The communications team is working hand-in-hand on lots of different things all at the same time, so it’s important that we’re all aligned and working towards the same goal even with team members outside my scope. Canto has certainly helped us with that,” says Marci.


Digital Asset Management


New World Symphony