With over 4.6 billion pieces of content produced daily, odds are, you and your organization are creating more than you can manage. From email marketing to social media posts, brands rely on quality content to keep consumers engaged. Without a content management methodology in place, however, it can be difficult for them to consistently deliver new and engaging media. Whether it’s the time it takes to find a digital asset, the endless back and forth in the approval process, or trying to send bulky files over email, there are many problems with their creative workflows. Implementing a digital asset management (DAM) system can help. A DAM allows organizations to scale their content creation efforts by using various out-of-the-box and customized features. The tools these systems offer like AI tagging, workflow and task management, easy file sharing, and continuous file syncing can automate many of the tedious and manual tasks slowing their creative teams down.
To help you determine how implementing a DAM system can improve your creative workflows, we’ve outlined some key features included on many platforms that can bring new efficiencies to your organization and give you more time to produce new content. With a DAM system that fits your brand’s unique needs, you can fix the problems with your workflows long-term, save time and money, and bring order to all your content.
Streamlined File Sharing
Organizations often over-rely on email or project management software to manage their creative workflows — from comments, to approvals, to file sharing and more. But searching through endless threads or boards and deciphering between various subject lines is inefficient and, frankly, annoying. Searching for that one comment from that one person on that one day can cause us to skip steps and miss valuable information. And if we’re digging for comments, we’re probably also trying to send large files along with them, hoping they’re small enough to send, but knowing they aren’t. These platforms weren’t designed to send large files and create unnecessary chaos in the workflow process when we expect it to. By moving assets to a DAM platform with many file-sharing features, you’ll no longer have to rely on them to complete bulky tasks. Through public collections, instant download, one-click sharing to social media channels, and embedded codes for websites, sharing is controlled and secure.
If you’ve been relying on email or project management tools to send files, you’ve probably also depended on them to store comments, revision notes, and edits to assets. Shuffling through different threads and relying on your provider’s search engine is painful, time-consuming, and inefficient. Cloud-based collaboration on a DAM system allows for comments, edits, and approvals all in one easily accessible place, tied directly to your assets. This centralized place for all asset-related communication removes the hassle of email, as well as provides updates and notifications when comments or changes are made.
Effective search requires enriched metadata.
One of the most important features of a DAM system is the search function. A searchable DAM can replace a day’s long search of going from person to person and email to email and return results in seconds.
But this doesn’t happen in a vacuum. To make the most of a DAM’s search features, essential metadata must be applied to every asset. With this key information in place, as well as control and standards around it, assets are searchable and also include the necessary content and context to provide valuable information to end-users.
Here are a few tips to enhance your metadata and improve your search results:
- Consider the Content, Context, and Structure of your digital assets. Assessing your assets, determining their primary uses, and the who, what, where, and why of each asset will help you decide what metadata fields are relevant and define values for each.
- Create or Use a Metadata Schema. Once you’ve determined what metadata needs to be applied to your assets, create or use a schema to organize it. Schemas are simply ways of organizing and categorizing metadata based on the type of information it contains and what property it is organized within.
- Create a Controlled Vocabulary. To take your metadata one step further, consider creating a controlled vocabulary. By using predefined terminology unique to your organization and assets, metadata application will be standardized and controlled and greatly simplify the search process
- Implement Required Fields. Determine the minimum amount of metadata needed to search for an asset. Even 2-3 required fields can enhance your bare assets and make them searchable.
- Create a DAM team. Designating a team within your organization to enforce metadata standards, quality control your DAM system, and update standards as needed is crucial to making sure your metadata is correct and up-to-date.
- Consider Built-in Tools. Depending on the types of assets you use, AI tagging can automatically add obvious information such as facial and athletic jersey number recognition. AI is continually improving and automating more and more metadata activities.
With key information applied directly to your assets, end-users can quickly understand the content, context, and structure of every asset when searching for what they need.
Learn more about how you can get the most out of your metadata here.
Connecting a DAM system to the tools your organization uses daily can increase your productivity and provide seamless transitions in your workflow. Whether it’s creative manipulation software, project management tools, a CRM (customer relationship management system), or a CMS (content management system), various platforms offer a wide range of connectors to link your assets directly to your DAM, allowing for faster file syncing and sharing. And no matter what tools you use, most systems have open APIs that allow for custom-built integrations to match your organization’s unique requirements and workflows.
On paper, your workflow might appear seamless. You’ve defined each step and have the processes to back it up. In reality, however, there are many problems that can cause significant errors or delays. Integrating a DAM platform into your workflow can solve these issues and scale your efforts with out-of-the-box and custom functionalities. Different tools and integrations can automate and simplify tedious but essential steps. By spending less time searching for assets, emailing back and forth, and downloading and reuploading, creative teams can get back to doing what they do best: making new content.
If you need help selecting and implementing a DAM system or learning how to use your existing one more effectively, contact Stacks! We’ve worked with brands in all kinds of industries and situations to improve their creative workflows and save both time and money.