More and more organizations are struggling to handle multiple company-owned digital assets. That’s why digital asset management tools are gaining popularity as a comprehensive solution to this problem. In fact, the Digital Asset Management (DAM) market is growing at an unprecedented rate. It is predicted to amount to nearly $14 billion by 2028.
As the global digitalization of content progresses, chances are your business is in need of a solid DAM solution. But what exactly is DAM? How can you benefit from it? And why should you opt for DAM software? You’ll get answers to these and more questions in our detailed guide on digital asset management.
What Is a Digital Asset?
A digital asset is any piece of media produced and stored digitally and owned by an organization. In other words, whatever content you create for your brand can be a digital asset.
Some of the major types of digital assets are:
- Images: photos, infographics, and other visuals;
- Video: video ads, tutorials, presentations, etc.;
- Audio: sound effects, audio tracks, and podcasts for your brand;
- Web pages: blogs, landing pages, product pages, and other kinds of web locations;
- Documents: documents for public distribution (guides, eBooks, etc.) and internal papers (company strategies, policy documents, etc).
What Is Digital Asset Management (DAM)?
DAM is the practice of storing and using digital assets to sustain business operations and encourage brand growth. DAM is usually part of a bigger system of business process management (BPM).
The more your business grows, the more digital assets you will accumulate. If all these media are scattered around and disorganized, you’ll inevitably face problems. These may be asset loss, time wasted on manual processes, and ultimately a lower ROI. A recent survey shows that over 50% of professionals have experienced the negative effects of inadequate asset management.
This is where digital asset management (DAT) becomes a real game changer. It helps your team handle assets quickly and efficiently.
DAM includes such processes as:
- effective and secure asset storage and maintenance;
- smart asset organization and distribution;
- asset control and management.
DAM vs. CMS: The Differences
Many people confuse DAM with CMS (Content Management System). However, these two systems are not the same.
Both DAM and CMS aim to optimize asset/content management. They are especially useful for digital marketing teams and professionals. However, CMS streamlines website content management, while DAM handles multichannel assets for your entire company.
Benefits of Digital Asset Management
A solid digital asset management system is a valuable addition to your business workflow. It offers numerous advantages within one comprehensive solution:
- Centralized, cloud-based asset storage. It helps you and your team quickly store, source, and locate the necessary assets. The cloud-based technology makes company assets accessible to team members no matter their location. DAM also organizes assets into a well-structured library, which saves employees valuable time. They can use categories and a keyword search to quickly find the assets they need.
- Workflow automation. DAM systems can facilitate and automate many mundane tasks. For example, you can leverage standard document templates or streamline the document approval process. DAM will also allow you to optimize asset distribution.
- Streamlined asset and project management. Use DAM to create project asset folders and locate your media easily. You can conveniently edit, transfer, approve, or reject project files at any stage.
- Better team collaboration. Efficient DAM helps you keep your team in the loop on project progress. This ensures better internal and external collaboration between professionals from different spheres. Your copywriters, designers, marketers, and developers can seamlessly work on asset creation and management. This is also a great solution for companies with hybrid workflows.
- Improved brand image and consistency. Well-organized access to media assets makes it easier for marketers to sustain the brand image. Marketing teams can be sure they are using the approved brand elements in their promotional and communicational efforts.
- Excellent asset security. DAM tools establish a smart access and security system to protect your assets. You can set up various access levels for different users. Besides, modern data security algorithms ensure nobody can taper with or steal your assets.
- Useful analytics. DAM is also a crucial analytical tool. Track data metrics and use this knowledge to improve your asset selection and quality.
Digital Asset Management Software
DAM is a multifaceted practice that covers various steps and processes. That’s why industry professionals choose software solutions to optimize DAM and boost its value for the business.
DAM software is a tool that optimizes and automates asset management. Within one digital process automation platform, you can:
- accumulate, maintain, and distribute digital media;
- build a unique asset taxonomy for your organization;
- ensure fully controlled access to the assets for stakeholders, employees, and clients;
- manage your assets (update, rearrange, approve, etc.);
- reduce asset duplication;
- access and analyze asset metadata;
- aut0mate administrative tasks.
One of the biggest advantages of DAM software is its affordability. Most modern DAM tools are available on a paid subscription plan or as a one-time purchase. You don’t need to invest in any additional tools to streamline your digital asset management. On top of that, you save resources you would otherwise have to invest in organizing in-house IT infrastructure for asset storage. At the same time, DAM platforms allow for scalability and provide swift technical support.
DAM Use Cases
What organizations and departments can benefit from a solid DAM system in place? The truth is, DAM is applicable and valuable for almost any type of business. Let’s take a closer look at some of the most widespread use cases.
HR professionals and departments need to handle massive volumes of paperwork. That’s why they can reap multiple benefits from DAM tools:
- easily manage employee records;
- accumulate, process, and analyze employee requests and complaints;
- sort out payroll receipts;
- collect and categorize candidate data during the hiring and onboarding process, etc.
Sales and Marketing Teams
Sales and marketing professionals operate various digital media types in their work. With a DAM system, they can:
- quickly locate and use brand identity assets;
- accumulate and store user-generated content;
- access such crucial media as sales demos, presentations, case studies, etc.
Research shows that those marketers who habitually use a DAM platform spend 28% less time weekly on locating assets.
Developers (and Designers)
DAM helps these specialists to:
- manage app/web content;
- organize and transfer digital files;
- quickly upload multiple files to the system;
- manage asset variations for A/B testing, etc.
DAM finds its use in other spheres including:
- Finance, etc.
Digital asset management is a must for your business if you want to handle your files effectively. DAM software is a transformative tool to boost your workflows and save resources for high-value tasks.
Don’t hesitate to improve your efficiency with a reliable DAM system. You’re sure to find the right fit for your purposes and budget among the many DAM platforms available in the market.
David Morneau is the co-founder and CEO of inBeat, a hybrid micro-influencer marketing agency that helps brands scale their marketing efforts. He has helped over 200 DTC brands to date.