When it comes to digital asset management, or ‘DAM’, there are marketing teams that have it, those that think they have it because their system can store and share images, and those that probably know their stuff isn’t up to scratch.
Put simply, DAM is software that helps companies organise their digital content and manage it across the whole content lifecycle. It allows users to store, organise, and distribute digital assets quickly and at scale from a centralised platform.
This doesn’t mean DAM is an expensive Dropbox. Over time, it has evolved to cover a broader spectrum of content management. This includes search capabilities, tighter control over usage and sharing, and improved ability to track asset performance.
DAM has emerged in tandem with the sheer proliferation of assets that a brand will need in its inventory, as well as the growing number of channels to distribute those assets. In 2023, marketers need to be able to create engaging – and often personalised – content for segmented audiences with a moment’s notice. Automation and templating allow businesses to create more content faster, while safeguarding branding consistency and freeing creative teams from repetitive, grunt work.
And DAM continues to mature with us. Companies like Bynder offer strategic digital asset management platforms that help to conquer the chaos of content, touchpoints, and relationships. From experience, Bynder says there are five things every strategic DAM system should have in 2023.
Don’t find yourself checking these boxes? Perhaps it’s time to “re-platform”.
1. Flexible and expandable use cases
Step one involves looking far ahead. Marketers should ask themselves: why have a DAM in the first place? What is the size and scope of their DAM deployment and how might that need to change?
Over time, businesses will find that they’ll want to expand their DAM to other use cases outside of the original implementation. Perhaps this means bringing on teams, new brands, additional external partners or stakeholders, or even new entities inside the larger business.
Everything about the DAM, from its permissions and taxonomy to its services and support, has to make users feel good about its potential to expand in future.
2. Personalisation and localisation at scale with templates
Templates are a super hot topic in content creation right now and will continue to be in 2023.
With branded templates, brands can safely play with variations within their defined parameters. This can also make all content look like it was designed by the creative team (even if it was really Sam from sales!)
With a global DAM deployment and one system of record, teams can push out core assets and content to all markets, agencies, partners, and distributors. Templates allow marketers to scale up their content to make it more relevant for local markets, and it’s especially useful for campaign-specific content.
3. Universal brand guidelines for collaborators
Most DAM platforms will accommodate a basic brand guidelines setup. But in 2023, as platforms consolidate across the enterprise, and collaborator networks get much more complex, a more universal brand guidelines capability is required. But what does that mean?
For many large organisations, it means having all brands in their portfolio under the same guidelines deployment tied to their DAM. And any brand collaborating with the creator economy – which is many in 2023 – will need guidelines to empower individual creators to produce content on their behalf in a way that confidently reflects the brand’s identity.
4. DAM integrations
If you must have only one of the must-haves let it be this: a strategy to integrate your DAM, broader tech ecosystem, and your go-to-market approach.
This goes for all brands. An integration strategy elevates the DAM deployment to the strategic level – ensuring the greatest return on investment (ROI).
Remember to keep in mind: integrations are a strategy and a roadmap, not a checkbox. You need a roadmap that spells out which integrations should occur, in what order, and how exactly each integration will work. Ask yourself what the main goal of each integration is or the direction of the data flow.
The ROI of a well-executed integration strategy comes in the form of less time spent messing around with assets between platforms and more on quality collaboration. This will evolve into a strategic contributor to your business. More content will be at the ready on your customer-facing channels, enhancing the experience, and often directly contributing to more sales.
5. Combine text and visual workflows
Finally, look for a DAM that combines text-based and visual-based content workflows.
Many brands separate the two, which can be detrimental, with context-switching reducing employee productivity. Bynder saves time by allowing users to brief, ideate, comment, and work through text as well as visual content intuitively, in one place.
Armed with these five must-haves, it’s a good time to hunt for a new DAM solution or evaluate the one you have. Bynder’s DAM software comparison guide can help you compare vendors and features so you can see which solution is perfect for you.
Bynder goes far beyond managing digital assets. Our digital asset management platform enables teams to conquer the chaos of proliferating content, touchpoints, and relationships in order to thrive. With powerful and intuitive solutions that embrace the way people want to work, and a richly integrated ecosystem, we are the brand ally that unifies and transforms the creation and sharing of assets, inspiring teams, delighting customers, and elevating businesses.