Why are DAM systems on everyone's radar these days? Because we live in the age of content!
Early vendors called their systems Content Management Systems. To avoid confusion with Web CMS'es, the industry invented and adopted the term Digital Asset Management. Content is still king - enabling companies to manage and succeed with their content marketing strategies.
What does a DAM do for your content?
- It ensures content is safely stored - dramatically lowering the risk that content is lost forever or resources wasted on recreating content that already exists.
- It helps you easily reuse content. A DAM helps you logically organize your content, and lets users find, browse, preview, share, create derivatives, and republish content to new channels.
- It works with weird file types, very large files, and immensely large collections of content.
- It helps you transform content. Your designers are skilled in Adobe products, and your techies can do wonders with XML, JSON and APIs. A DAM hides that complexity from your regular users, so that they can work effectively with all kinds of content without expensive specialty software tools that require license and training investments.
- Content creation is expensive and difficult. A DAM helps you manage the process, so that you create quality content and ensure appropriate processes are followed, e.g. ensuring all content is proof-read, adheres to brand guidelines, is checked by legal, and approved by all the right stakeholders.
- It manages your originals. While CMS systems are great at presenting content, DAMs are great at preserving content. See the difference? When you want to replace your Web CMS, your DAM will help you repopulate the new website easily.
- It helps you lower the cost of publishing to many channels. Think websites, landing pages, microsites, web banners, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn ads.
- It helps you manage rights information, so that your employees know what content they can use, when, where, and how. It manages license agreements associated with your content, model and property releases, and lets you know when a license expires. It tracks where content is used, so that you can take action when your licensing agreements change.
Conclusion - do YOU need a DAM?
If your company has a vibrant content marketing strategy, it will take only a few weeks before you start realizing that traditional folder systems like Dropbox don't give you sufficient overview or provide enough features. If you haven't yet felt this pain, you probably have a very small team or small amounts of content, and you're not ready for a DAM.
If a file is safely stored in someone's Dropbox, but nobody can find it, does it really exist?
Once you experience the irritation of not finding stuff you know you have, or the feeling that you do the same job over and over again in Photoshop, you're ready, and should sign up and try a DAM to see how it can make wonders with your content.