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DAM Best Practices

Best Practices for Equipping New DAM Users for Success

Ben Owen

By Ben Owen | Aug 07, 2023


People like adventure movies. Beautiful, exotic locations. Thrilling chases. A treasure worth risking their lives for. People don’t like it when their job becomes an adventure movie. No one wants to have to solve a complex puzzle, look for hidden clues, or go from place to place to find what they need to get their work done.

In adventure movies, the dashing adventurer makes it up as they go along. They take guesses that always turn out to be correct. They connect dots that no regular person would connect. They find what they're looking for at just the right moment for the film to stay compelling.

In the business world, on the other hand, making it up as you go along is a recipe for disaster. At work, employees need a map. “X” needs to mark the spot. They need all the steps carefully laid out to eliminate any guesswork when executing their tasks.

While this may mean Hollywood will never base an adventure epic on your organization, it ensures that your employees can easily find what they need when they need it. By removing the need for guesswork, they’ll use the systems you worked hard to develop and build to perform their work efficiently and effectively. Maintaining and growing an organized working method instead of chasing random clues becomes possible.

So, what does “employees need a map” mean in the real world, and how does it apply to digital asset management (DAM)? In this article, we’ll answer those questions to help ensure that the adventures on the big screen don’t appear in your professional life.

Setting the Scene - Educating New Users on the Basics of DAM

In every movie, there’s what’s called an “exposition dump.” Basically, it’s a scene where the audience learns the rules of the world they’ll inhabit for the next two-plus hours. Everything they must know to understand subsequent events is carefully explained in a way that engages them. Any training program, especially for DAM, requires some type of preliminary “exposition dump” to be successful.

The first step in training new users is to introduce them to the core concepts of DAM, emphasizing how it streamlines workflows, boosts collaboration, and enhances brand consistency. Like a good movie, maintaining their engagement with the information is crucial. You can do this by building documentation and providing in-person training and hands-on learning opportunities.

Below is a list of DAM basics Stacks recommends covering as part of this initial training step:

Getting Specific - Personalized Training Materials & Courses

Now, the plot thickens. The foundational information has been communicated and understood, and real action can begin. Once your new users understand the basics of digital asset management and how it applies to your organization, they can begin learning the specifics of how the DAM program impacts them.

To effectively engage with users at this stage, all training materials, courses, and sessions have to feel personalized. Cookie-cutter webinars for the entire organization won’t cut it. All users need to understand how their specific role, their team, and the workflows and assets they use daily are impacted. One helpful way to do this is to group them based on their experience with DAM and how they'll interact with the DAM program. What do they need from it? You can read more about segmenting user groups here.

Creating training materials is much easier if you begin thinking about these issues before implementing a DAM program or rebuilding or improving an existing one. If you're just getting started on any of these projects, take a step back and outline what kinds of training your users will need before you proceed further.

Below is a list of recommended topics as well as the best practices for delivering them:

Recurring Characters - Ongoing Support for Troubleshooting & Questions

Adventure movies and series are at their best when the cast of characters feel like old friends. When a character from a past film or episode appears on screen, it always generates a wave of excitement among the audience. Similarly, the support your users receive during the training process should continue even after they've successfully completed their onboarding.

Users should consistently feel like the support they need is readily available to them. To ensure this, you should regularly follow up with them and provide tools for their use. This requires setting up knowledge bases and resource folders that users can access easily.

As new features and tools are made available, hold webinars or share resources from your platform vendor with your team so they stay up-to-date. Bi-annually, hold feedback sessions to unearth what your users are struggling with and develop resources to fill those gaps.


If your users aren’t properly trained, it will quickly become apparent that they aren’t Indiana Jones. They don’t have the time or expertise to make it up as they go along and get the results they want. After a while frustration will likely cause them to quit using the DAM system altogether.

To avoid this, equip your team to find the treasure (the perfect digital asset) quickly, develop a training program that lays the foundation, educates on specifics, and follows up regularly. If you need help, contact Stacks today! We work with brands to create confidence and buy-in around their DAM programs, ensuring that their investment pays off.

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