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Digital Asset Management: What is it and Why You Need it?

Digital transformation has already changed a lot in our lives and is continuing to change further, bringing new opportunities and introducing new terms like digital assets and the systems to manage them. What is digital asset management and why is it important? These are the notions we are going to explain in this blog post.

What Are Digital Assets?

The digital asset definition differs from source to source and keeps changing as more things go digital. Most often the term refers to media content like photos, videos, and other things that represent a brand. We would also use a digital asset to describe file-based knowledge (books, guidelines, training courses for new employees), software, documents, and many more things that have value for a particular company. Summing up a range of definitions, digital assets are valuable files of different formats that state the right to use them. Here are some examples of digital assets: photos and videos, audio files, text documents, graphics, slide decks, spreadsheets, patents, PDF files, etc. The asset can not only be digital from the beginning but also to get digitalized: for example, with the help of digital publishing software, books and newspapers are turned into digital files.

What Is Digital Asset Management?

Let us now define digital asset management. It is a combination of a software solution and an approach to a workflow that allows organizing digital assets as well as the process of their creation, ensures effective distribution, and many more. A good DAM (digital asset management) solution integrates with other systems used within the company in order to seamlessly fit the existing workflow.

In order to implement such a solution, it is crucial to thoughtfully plan taxonomy — the system of keywords and metadata that will be used to tag files in order to organize them effectively and find faster and simpler. It should be created considering the tasks of all the company’s departments and specialists that will use this DAM.

Why Is Digital Asset Management Important?

If your company has digital assets (we bet that it has), you definitely need a DAM system to improve management and reap benefits. Here are the core advantages of a digital asset management system:

Accelerated processes

DAM system cuts down the time employees spend on searching for the required asset and eliminates the need for additional work. In case a file cannot be found, someone will have to either create the new one or upload it once more. That will steal working time and create a duplicate file in the system. Utilizing a digital asset management solution, all the assets are found fast and easy.

Better collaboration

DAM facilitates fast and smooth data distribution and provides tools for managing tasks (setting up deadlines and assigning them to a particular person). This helps to outline the responsibility area for everyone and improve communication between teams and colleagues regardless of their location.

Faster time-to-market

Combining the two previous benefits, we get the acceleration of the release of new products, ad campaigns, updates, etc. This can help to leave the competitors behind as well as improve the product faster based on customers’ feedback.

Stronger security

Security is one of the core digital asset management system features. Along with the mechanisms of keeping data protected, secure digital asset management software allows providing users (company’s employees) with different levels of access so everyone sees only the information he or she really needs to complete tasks.

Enhanced analytics

With the help of the DAM system, it is easier to collect, manage, and interpret the data from various sources. That allows the business to empower its analytics, make predictions more accurate, and streamline decision-making.

Simplified license-compliance

Having all the assets right in front of your eyes together with the necessary information about each of them, it is easy to track compliance with the licenses that might have changed or got expired. This option eliminates the risks of missing the moment to renew the required documents.

Brand consistency

Digital asset management systems are often used by marketing departments and companies specialized in content production. Sharing the same materials between all the involved specialists (both in-house and contractors like agencies or freelancers) ensures maintaining brand style and consistency across all the channels brand uses for communication.

Types of Digital Asset Management Systems

There are two main types of digital asset management solutions: on-premise and SaaS. Here are the differences:

On-premise

This type of DAM is deployed on your company’s servers, fully managed by your IT department, and relies on your network. While providing more customization opportunities and control over the data, it makes you handle such things as security, support, updates, and upgrades as well as ensure the required infrastructure.

SaaS

SaaS (software as a service) digital asset management systems are cloud-based and managed by the vendor. This type allows less flexibility but it provides a number of significant benefits: global access, short deployment time, lower cost, and delegating main support and management responsibilities to your vendor.

Table of types of digital asset management systems

Hybrid

There is also an option combining the advantages of both previous DAM solutions — the hybrid one. It implies having one digital asset management system that uses clouds and on-premise servers to provide easy global distribution of SaaS solutions along with the control and customization levels of hosted solutions.

Digital Asset Management Tools

If your business is not large as well as does not have any specific and strict requirements, most like you will find an appropriate DAM system among the existing solutions. Here are some of the popular digital asset management examples:

Adobe Experience Manager Assets

A solution from Adobe focused on improving the process of content creation and distribution as well as enhancing communication between engaged departments and individuals.

Canto

A well-designed and easy-to-use tool with a user-friendly interface and an accent on visual content and productive teamwork.

Cloudinary

A digital asset management system empowered by AI that helps you with tagging. It allows adopting and implementing new media requirements as fast as possible.

MediaValet

MediaValet allows uploading files up to 5TB as well as working on content in native apps like Photoshop or Sketch.

Widen

Having more than 70 years of experience in marketing, Wides provides a DAM solution that controls the enterprise governance and converts files automatically.

How To Choose A Digital Asset Management System

In order to choose the most suitable variant of DAM provided on the digital asset management market, a lot should be considered. Here is a list of steps to follow:

How to choose a digital asset management system

The Bottom Line

Having relevant expertise and experience, our software development team can help you either customize and improve the existing DAM solutions or build a new one that will perfectly meet your company’s requirements and goals. In case of any questions, feel free to contact us!

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