Digital Asset Management: 7 Things You Need to Know

An effective Digital Asset Management (DAM) system can be the single source of truth for your assets. Proper organization, management, and governance are the keys to success.

Whether you?re just setting up a DAM or thinking about how you can evolve what you?re already using, there?s always something to learn.

Here are seven important factors that can help you make the most of your DAM.

1. When is it time for a DAM System? 

If you don?t have a true DAM solution, think about how you currently manage your assets.

  • Are they stored in multiple locations?
  • Do multiple teams own different assets? 
  • Is it always easy to find what you need?
  • Does your team have rules in place for asset management?
  • Have you ever created the same or similar assets more than once?
  • Are you confident that you?re staying compliant with any asset management or distribution regulations within your industry?  

Implementing a DAM solution isn?t just a way to store files. It can help you work more efficiently and ultimately help you drive your business forward.

2. When should you consider a change? 

If you currently have a DAM in place and are considering upgrading or evolving your current set- up, ask yourself the following:

  • Have you outgrown the capabilities of your DAM?
  • Does your current DAM provide reporting on asset performance such as Return on Effort, and Adoption and Usage Rates?
  • Has your DAM vendor provided comprehensive service every step of the way?
  • Do you know whether you?re compliant with asset management and distribution regulations in your industry? 
  • Are you confident your team is effectively using the DAM you have in place?

If you?re considering a new DAM solution, start with your business requirements, then list out what you?re missing and where you want to go. This will help you ask the right questions and make better-informed decisions as you weigh your options.

3. It?s not rocket science. At least it shouldn?t be.

Implementing or replacing a digital asset management solution isn?t as complicated as it might seem. A modern DAM should be flexible and allow you to get started quickly, even at a high level. It?s also the perfect time to clean up your assets and simplify your structure to make management and use easier and more efficient.

Perhaps the most important factor in implementing a DAM is taking the right steps from the beginning: 

  • Determine and document your goals and primary purpose
  • Assign an owner, team, a ?librarian?, and ?contributors?
  • As DAM solutions have become more turnkey, ownership and administration responsibilities have moved from IT to the business owners of the assets
  • Plan for education and change management within your organization
  • Consider how you and the team will set up your structure and how you?ll maintain it
  • Gather information from stakeholders and users
  • Research industry standards
  • Choose a taxonomy and metadata structure
  • NOTE: There?s a balance to building a taxonomy and the metadata you use. If it becomes too complex, it defeats the purpose of assets being findable. Find the balance of ?just enough? by starting simple and only adding what your team will actually use to find your assets and what is required by the business.
  • Review with stakeholders
  • Test, review, and validate
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4. AI is a gamechanger.

There?s so much promise when it comes to AI, and with modern DAM solutions it?s already here. In the past, tasks like tagging assets for a DAM were all done manually. Today, some DAM solutions incorporate AI that auto-tag assets thanks to image recognition, speech-to-text transcription, and optical character recognition. This eliminates the need to input every data point when tagging, which saves serious time. It also makes assets easier to find and use.

5. Governance can make or break your DAM.

A governance plan is a simple set of rules for adding, organizing, and managing assets within your DAM. It keeps your DAM organized and facilitates consistent use and management. As team members come and go and your organization grows, your governance plan will hold your DAM together and allow for optimal scalability. If you already have a DAM in place, you know how important this is. If your team doesn?t adhere to your plan, your DAM system will fall apart, no matter how strong your solution may be.

When you?re setting up your DAM, be sure to consult with your DAM provider on best practices. They should be able to educate and assist you with your governance plan.

6. Working with an expert can save you time, money, and headaches.

Working with experts is the best way to make the most of your DAM. Chances are, they?ve worked with businesses like yours and they?ll provide a wealth of knowledge as you get started. Not only will you be set up for success right from the outset, but you?ll also learn about all of the great functionality of your solution and how it can help your business.

7. The right DAM solution is key.

Choosing the right DAM solution for your operation could save as much as several months of set up time. Many solutions come with templates designed for various industries and business types that should be able to plug into your CMS and offer features like rights-access control. Rights-access control is incredibly important in any industry that has regulations on the assets you?re using, such as packaging and legal info like disclaimers and claims.

Perhaps the most important factor when selecting a DAM solution provider is service. Make sure you?re confident you?re working with experts. Some DAM solutions companies are with you to help you get set up and then hand you off to a managed service provider. A strong DAM provider is with you every step of the way. They?ll do thorough up-front work with you using tools like workshops and workbooks to make sure you have a solution that truly meets your needs. Once you?re up and running they?ll be your point of contact for questions and service.

We?re here to help.

DAM vendors with a strong reputation are providing solutions with more robust functionality every year, just look at the latest Forrester Wave report. Whatever DAM solution you choose, make sure it grows and scales with your needs. This way, you can continually improve your content management and the experience you deliver in your market.

To see how Aprimo can help you make the most of your time and assets, contact us or check out a quick demo of our solution.


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