DAM 101: 5 Ways Digital Asset Management Can Help You

Digital Asset Management (DAM) is a booming industry in our age of endless content. The solution combines cutting-edge software and high-touch personalized services to help companies completely organize and manage every piece of digital content they possess (from documents and photos to videos and music). It is gaining traction with all businesses worldwide because everyone now uses an abundance of high quality (aka: space-eating) content for their marketing initiatives, and many brands are realizing they can’t track, tidy and manage it all.

Destination Marketing Organizations (DMOs) in particular, have been early adopters of DAM software and services because their business, more than others, relies heavily on images, videos and digital content to sell their destinations. More importantly, they need strong security and user access control to ensure the consistency of their materials and brand image.

So, whether you have a cluttered desktop full of photos for your latest social media blitz, or can’t find the final cut of video footage for your upcoming Youtube campaign, DAM services can help you. To the novice user, however, they can sound intimidating, which is why we’ve put together this list of simple yet critical functions they perform for every type of business and marketing department.

 

  1. Keep Your Content Organized

Everyone is busy and has a billion tasks to finish by the end of the day. The last thing you want to do is spend an hour cleaning your desktop or digging through multiple computers, hard drives and file folders trying to find the most up-to-date materials. Even if you like that sort of thing, you probably have more pressing work to do (which is always the case isn’t it?) meaning that the big clean never will happen for you or your colleagues.

Digital Asset Management not only automatically organizes all your files and folders, but continues to manage and tidy the content after the initial sweep. This is a huge load off of every employee’s mind, because it leaves them with more time to tackle the bigger projects that really matter, while ensuring that all company databases and hard drives stay tidy and easy-to-use throughout the year.

 

  1. Leave Management to the Professionals

The word ‘Management’ in the acronym D.A.M. is not just a clever use of the letter M. The main function of DAM services and software is to automatically manage content as soon as it is loaded to the system.  This ensures employees don’t have to stress while searching endlessly for the newly uploaded files, and it also makes sure what has been cleaned, stays clean.

DAMs aren’t sold as stand alone software solutions because real people need to assess and categorize content based on your brand’s specific requirements. This human element safeguards against the misplacement or deletion of work, while also holding high standards of integrity and individualization based on the demands of the company. It also enables all employees to get personal assistance, while managers get to be part of the implementation and structuring process.

 

  1. Save Time, Reduce Digital Clutter, Avoid Stress

Type-A, super organized individuals might look at DAM upon first glance and think, “Nah, I can do that on my own.” But they are wrong. Sure, anyone can organize files, but there are many caveats to doing it as a one-person job. For instance:

  • It is time consuming, and depending on the size and breadth of your assets, can take weeks or months.
  • Unless you have worked for the company since inception, you likely won’t know where every file lives or whether the material is essential, up-to-date or relevant. Chasing people down to find the answers can be irritating and exhausting for all parties involved.
  • Even if you do manage to organize your entire digital database, making sure all employees follow your system of organization is akin to being the ‘file police.’ In other words, you will spend much of your time training colleagues, hounding them for not following protocol, or fixing their mistakes.
  • While extremely necessary for most brands, digital asset organization is never a full-time position, and it usually falls on the shoulders of someone who is paid to do other work. Taking it on is like taking on another job.

 

  1. Control Who Has Access to All Files

Not every person in your company should have access to all content. Without a proper system overseeing every asset, different departments can get a hold of sensitive content and damage, lose, overwrite, edit or *gasp* publicly share it when they shouldn’t. Again, it rarely is ever someone’s job to oversee the user access of files, and when delegated, often eats into their ‘real’ job.

Companies like DMOs also have the added need to monitor outside use of their photos and videos. For instance, they often get requests for branded images of their destination, but cannot control the downloading of all files with proper copyright and attribution protocol. Having a DAM solution makes sure you don’t have to worry about controlling external usage of your content.

 

  1. Get Everyone Connected, Keep Branding Consistent

Most computers in most offices have a plethora of different content on them. Sure, there is one major database that connects them all, but whatever is lying around on people’s desktops isn’t making its way to the right file location. Even when employees attempt to do this, they frequently misplace the files in the wrong area, or improperly label them so others cannot find them when the time is necessary. Having a cloud-based DAM helps eliminate all this confusion, and connects every person and department to one location where all the materials they need are accessible right away.

Moreover, any duplicate, outdated or broken assets are weeded out by DAM teams, and all necessary ones are placed in easy-to-find folders in any format requested. The return on investment is exponential because you save countless work hours, and establish a streamlined workflow of maximum efficiency.

 

Is your curiosity piqued? Learn more about the inner workings of the Barberstock DAM, here.