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Understanding the Present and Future Advantages of Cloud-Based DAM Platforms

Ben Owen

By Ben Owen | Mar 17, 2023

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More than ever before, brands are relying on their marketing communications efforts to achieve their revenue goals year over year. This means that more employees need more creative assets to use on more channels more quickly. Many organizations find it challenging to manage this ever-increasing volume of digital assets.

A cloud-based digital asset management (DAM) platform can help an organization manage its creative assets effectively. DAM platforms offer a centralized solution for organizations to store, organize, and distribute their digital assets efficiently, whether their employees work remotely or in an office. Cloud-based DAM platforms, in contrast with traditional on-premise server-based platforms, are hosted, managed, and secured by a third-party software provider. This means that users pay a service provider to access their technology through the internet.

In this article, we'll discuss the advantages of using cloud-based DAM platforms, how to shift from a server-based DAM platform to a cloud-based one, and what the future of these systems looks like.

Advantages of Cloud-Based DAM Platforms

Due to the challenges inherent in faster creative workflows, the increased importance of using assets across many channels, and more users working from home, cloud-based DAM platforms are becoming increasingly popular. These systems are well-suited to meet the challenges most affecting the working world today. Their strengths include:

Accessibility: Cloud-based DAM platforms are accessible from anywhere with an internet connection, which means people can work together more efficiently, regardless of their location. Given the rise of remote work during the COVID-19 pandemic and its continued popularity in our post-COVID era, this strength has become the number one reason for the continued growth of cloud-based services.

Scalability: Cloud-based DAM platforms can easily scale up or down depending on the needs of the organization, making it easy to adapt them to changes in demand. Because a software-as-a-service (SaaS) provider often manages these platforms and their features, users don’t need to worry about custom development for every new integration, road mapping new features on their own, or manually implementing increased storage.

Security: Cloud-based DAM platforms typically offer robust security measures, including encryption and backups, to keep digital assets safe from theft, damage, or loss. These security features extend “upstream” to processes like upload, approval, and work-in-progress workflows, and “downstream” to platform integrations and file-sharing features. This means that every part of your digital asset lifecycle is safe.

Shifting from Server-Based DAM Platforms to Cloud-Based Ones

If your organization currently uses a server-based DAM platform, shifting to a cloud-based one may seem daunting, but it doesn't have to be. Here are some steps you can take to make the transition smoother:

1. Evaluate your Current DAM Program

Not all your digital assets need to be accessible to your employees all the time. They also don’t all have the same value. This means that your current workflows may need some slight tweaks to run smoothly within a new system. Take a step back and determine which assets need to move into the cloud. Evaluate and collect feedback from your end-users on your current way of doing things. Tune and adjust DAM standards like metadata taxonomy to align with the new features of a cloud-based system. Make sure you understand what you need from a new system before you begin to search for one.

2. Choose a Cloud-Based DAM Platform

It’s true in love and it’s true about DAM platforms: there's a lot of fish in the sea. A quick Google search will reveal just how many options you have when it comes to selecting a cloud-based DAM platform. While many of these options are great, they each have their own strengths and weaknesses. Research and compare different platforms to find the one that’s the best fit for your organization. If you need help doing this, contact Stacks today!

3. Set Up Right the First Time

Once you've chosen a cloud-based DAM platform, it's time to implement it and migrate your assets. This process can be time-consuming, but most cloud-based DAM platforms offer tools and/or partnerships with DAM consultants to make it easier. Before ingesting assets, ensure the DAM program surrounding your new platform is properly configured. Is the metadata that makes assets accessible attached to assets already? Is your permissions hierarchy set up? Do you have training materials to help onboard users?

The Future of Cloud-Based DAM Platforms

As more organizations move towards digital transformation, the demand for cloud-based DAM platforms is likely to grow. In the future, we can expect these platforms to become more sophisticated, offering features like artificial intelligence and machine learning to improve asset management and organization. We may also see more integration with other cloud-based tools and platforms, making it easier for teams to collaborate and work more efficiently across their entire tech stack.

These same investments and innovations aren’t being made for on-premise DAM solutions. While you need to consider your unique requirements before switching DAM platforms, also bear in mind that the earlier you make the move, the fewer assets you’ll have to migrate and the fewer features your end-users will have to learn.

Cloud-based DAM platforms offer numerous advantages over server-based ones, including accessibility, scalability, and security. While shifting from a server-based DAM platform to a cloud-based one may seem daunting, the process can be made smoother by evaluating your current DAM program, choosing the right cloud-based platform, and migrating your assets. If any of these steps seem daunting, contact Stacks today! We support teams across the entire DAM lifecycle.

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