Your Ultimate Guide to Digital Asset Management (DAM)

What is DAM Software?

Digital Asset Management System is an organized network of information for organizations, brands, and businesses. This system helps to create a network that is extended from the foundations, principles, and messaging of the brand. 

DAM systems provide systematic solutions to the creation, optimization, storage, management, retrieval, and deployment of content for brands. These systems ensure that information which includes; photos, creative files, videos, audio, documents, animations, clips, presentations, and more, are deployed across users and marketing channels.

A good Digital Asset Management System does not end in deployment. It creates room for improvement which makes content management insightful and less overwhelming for businesses. Managing digital assets with DAM systems will ensure that content resources are in the right place, ready at the right time, used to their maximum value, or repurposed to save time and resources.

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What Are The Challenges Associated with Digital Asset Management Systems and What Are The Solutions?

Challenges associated with DAM and solutions

Even with Digital Asset Management systems, it can be a hassle to efficiently manage and deploy content for businesses. No brand owner wants to be among the 50%+ of businesses that have problems with storage, lose files regularly, struggle with a mish-mash of unorganized content, and, even worse, spend valuable time and money on recreation and on legal copyright issues. 

A good Digital Asset Management System considers the following;

1. The File Types

Businesses should be able to work with different file formats that make up their content network. Some agencies and B2B enterprises should factor in the possibility that other businesses they work with may use other file types like video, image, audio, InDesign, etc., different from theirs. A DAM system offers availability, version control, and format options for the different files to accommodate changing brand needs.


2. Storage, Asset Protection, and Accessibility

Most DAM systems offer a cloud-based solution. But often, the problem with some systems is in the rate of synchrony of files to ensure that changes are not lost. This is important, especially when making notable changes to files. DAM systems also should offer security and controlled access to digital assets.


3. Collaboration and Connectivity

Despite providing a network to manage content assets, DAM systems ensure ease of access and safely share assets from a central location. This will help to strengthen the workflow of brands and efficiently bring internal and external teams together on different projects. Businesses should always go for DAM systems that make locating an asset in the network easy, organized, and monitored. This will help reduce the wasted time spent on mislabeled assets.


What Are The Major Features of The DAM System?

Important features a Digital Asset Management should have

There is a rapid evolution of processes that involve managing digital assets. All around, there is a need to ensure lesser complexities with each workflow. Digital asset management systems are modeled to meet the increasing demands of brands that need to create and deploy content efficiently. The advantages of digital asset management depend greatly on its features and functions, which include;

1. Complete Customization Specific to the Needs of a Business

Every business has a defined system of people and protocols, different levels of accessibility, and specific needs. The content they deal with can range from images to highly sensitive and dated documents. Also, their content system’s permission levels can vary for internal team members, organizational functions, and external members such as contractors, clients, and even peers. Hence, Digital Asset Management Systems should be able to offer multi-level access and permissions that allow businesses to tailor the system according to their needs. Businesses should opt in for a DAM system that serves their individual business needs while safeguarding their brand reputation.


2. Create a Unified and Centralized Branding Experience Without a Steep Learning Curve

Brands work with themes, colors, font types, and content types. Agencies that work with several brands also need a DAM system that enables them to create different theme collections for brands and marketing campaigns for different channels. Working from one centralized repository of assets will enable a seamless workflow for different teams to efficiently carry out their tasks with less back and forth on project briefing.


3. Simple Uploading and Organization

This is the freedom of having all your files in a centralized location and, at the same time, organized to make sense to you and your team. With a customizable DAM system, you can upload and organize files in such a way that everyone on the team knows how to find and access them when needed. DAM systems that are optimized to support fast upload speed are no-brainers. The external uploading feature is also ideal since it does not necessitate new clients, freelancers, and partners to have logins before they can upload a document.


4. Automatic Indexing for Search and Easy Retrieval

Despite knowing what you are looking for, finding an asset is a time-consuming aspect of managing digital assets. Having a DAM system can solve this problem because of its ability to index and store your files using keywords, phrases, or brand names. They can also narrow down your search by using the attributes of the documents for retrieval with Intelligent search. Features that allow saving files in structured collections will also help you find files easily through multi-level folders.


5. Downloading and Automatic File Conversion

Part of maximizing the use of digital assets is permission for multiple downloads. Digital Asset Management Systems should allow simple download processes. They should allow multiple formats for files and ensure download quality. Features should also allow control over download permissions and the ability to convert the uploaded file into another format? For example, a JPG file can be downloaded into a PNG file or PDF. One can easily meet the sizing and format requirements of different social media platforms without the need to redesign from scratch because the DAM solution makes it easy to resize and reformat with a click.


6. Ease of Sharing

Brand assets are often shared for review processes between partners, freelancers, agencies, and team members. An advantage of a Digital Asset Management system is the ease of sharing your assets securely. You can share assets with different levels of permissions to ensure your asset is not compromised. Users also have the ability to share using links or through emails.


7. Version Control

Next to sharing is version control. DAM solution should allow every user to have an updated version of edited files. More importantly, they should allow a level of revision just in case you need to go back to a previous version. Version control also offers information about users who made edits, viewed, and shared a brand’s assets.


8. Accessibility and Control

This is a key identifying feature of DAM systems – the ability to manage permissions despite having centralized storage. DAM allows you to create different collections as well as user groups. These groups will have access to view, upload, download, or share assets depending on your brand’s workflow and protocols.


9. Integration

DAM systems have proven to improve team efficiency and have saved businesses a lot of costs. Most business owners make DAM centralized for their businesses and take steps to integrate them into already existing platforms. DAM solution should include all integrations with other tools to make workflow seamless, especially when it comes to scheduling and publishing.


What Are the Benefits of Using DAM in Different Industries?

Digital Asset Management is for all industries

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1. Saves Time and Resources

The time and money spent looking for files or recreating lost files can be recovered if you choose the right Digital Asset Management Software for your business. When your DAM solution is customizable, you can set up a workspace that makes it easy to properly channel marketing efforts across all channels instead of spending time looking for them. Access to search features through metadata information, tags, and keywords, organizations ensure easy access to different versions of assets.


2. Low Setup Time

Creating campaigns and scheduling marketing posts with the help of social media scheduler becomes easier and faster, especially when you work with digital asset management systems that have the right integrations, plugins, and tools.


3. Protect the Privacy and Safety of Assets

While eliminating the risks of exposing sensitive, confidential files with good accessibility control, you are also assured of safe, centralized storage. A good DAM system will require little usage of external storage devices that may corrupt or get lost.


4. Tailored to Bring Team Members and New Hires Up to Speed on Brand Messaging and Design

With centralized storage for all your assets, you can bring your teams together across different countries, departments and brands. Despite their diversity, you are able to maintain a consistent brand identity. Consistency can be difficult because of the varying demands of different marketing channels. For agency owners who work with assets of multiple brands, it is easy to get confused about the different needs of each brand. Creating collections with different logos, theme colors, and multi-level categories takes off that confusion by keeping team members up to speed. These collections bring them up to speed on what is required of them for a specific brand.


5. Control to Access for Accountability

Digital Asset Management System will help you manage access and improve accountability since business owners can choose when to make assets available to selected team members. At all times, team members can work with up-to-date content and track insights with changes made. Access control lets you create a sample template or collection for a client and have them make suggestions without losing changes.


6. Creates Opportunity to Improve Digital Assets

DAM systems can let agencies and business owners determine the kind of content templates that work across different marketing channels. Team members can always refer back to collections of content that perform best. This advantage of Digital Management Systems creates an opportunity for improvement because businesses will understand content collections that need to be recreated, remodeled, or improved.


7. Repurposing

Creating multiple collections makes it easy for agencies to effectively manage or modify already existing templates to fit new clients. This will cut the downtime needed to create content assets from scratch, especially when there are proven content types.


8. Increase Productivity 

DAM solution helps you to organize assets and keep tabs on multiple creative teams. Managing digital assets in a centralized system with ease of sharing cuts out confusion. Managers will have no difficulties keeping tabs on content management. DAM will also help admins ensure proper attention is placed on the right clients and campaigns to avoid missing deadlines.


How Does the DAM Solution Automate Workflow?

Automate Workflow with DAM

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In an IDC research on the value of DAM systems specifically for digital marketers and creative teams. The research discovered that 85% of marketers are always under pressure to dish out assets. Also, with a 10X demand for managing digital assets compared to a few years ago, you need a streamlined process to avoid burnout. Without coding requirements, here are ways DAM systems can streamline and automate your workflow.

1. Increased Transparency Over Assets

Lack of transparency has its downsides, especially for creatives in organizations. Increased inconsistency due to the lack of an efficient process can confuse team members, and frustration can limit creativity. Cloud-Based Digital Management Systems provide a long-lasting solution to these problems by standardizing workflows and creating a more automated process of updating every stakeholder with the latest version of assets.


2. Notifying Users About Permissions and New Assets

An advantage of digital asset management systems is the flexibility of notifications that can be sent by team members on what to do, when to do it, and who is responsible for assets at different stages. The timely updates eliminate issues involved in keeping track of several manually sent emails. 


3. Speeding Up Approval Processes

Since assets are uploaded and edited, and every team member is updated in split seconds, approval processes become more efficient. This prevents slow delivery time or lost content.


4. Protect Organization From Copyright Infringement

Organizations are liable for making copyright mistakes that can cost them legally. Manually, managing digital assets that are copyrighted is near impossible because of the volume of digital assets managed between team members. DAM solution makes it easy to track assets at every stage of the workflow and how they are used. 


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