Quality content is a powerful market differentiator. It can help organizations resonate with consumers, strengthen their brand perception, and ultimately drive revenue. It’s no wonder that demand for outstanding creative work — from photography and graphics to copy and video — is at an all-time high. Organizations seeking to bring velocity to their creative workflows are increasingly turning to digital asset management (DAM) solutions, to store, organize, and manage their content.
DAM technology benefits are often based on different use cases — you can read about how Widen customers are using their DAM system in our case studies. But across the wide range of ways that DAM systems are used, we've found these nine benefits to be universal.
Nine universal benefits of digital asset management
1. Organize content in one system where team members and external partners can find exactly what they need.
The perpetual need for marketing content means new assets are always being created. But having more files can mean it’s easier to misplace them. A centralized location where users can consistently find what they need, when they need it, keeps teams aligned and content accessible. Plus, DAM solutions can eliminate the costs associated with recreating lost materials — once they’re stored in the system, they’re secure and easy to retrieve.
2. Streamline your workflow for sharing proofs, collecting feedback, and getting approvals from each reviewer.
A variety of DAM tools bring efficiency and agility to content creation. Version control, on-the-fly conversions, and workflow approval functionality reduce time spent on manual tasks — like legal approval, brand review, and photoshoot workflows — to expedite and enhance creative production. DAM facilitates cross-team collaboration and reduces the possibility of costly miscommunications.
3. Repurpose your best-performing content to save time and valuable resources.
By providing a complete picture of available content, DAM systems can extend the value of assets through reuse and repurposing. Adapting existing copy, imagery, video, or other creative content for another use isn’t just about reusing content, it’s about reimagining content to serve new purposes. With past and current content easily accessible, teams can evolve past projects giving them new life while saving time, money, and resources by building on assets that already exist.
4. Ensure brand consistency by aligning brand guidelines and content across creators and communicators.
DAM solutions help ensure all team members are using the same, on-brand files. By directing everyone to a single content repository with simple search tools, marketers can curtail the use of outdated or low-quality file versions. This consistent use of the right content helps ensure cohesive brand messaging at every customer touchpoint.
5. Integrate your martech technology (martech) stack so that content is available wherever you need it.
Teams need the flexibility to use the software that helps them do their best work. Often, that results in multiple systems across teams and certainly across the company. But work still needs to come together consistently and efficiently. By integrating tools, teams have secure access to the same content in whatever system they are using. This keeps content and data aligned across teams and channels.
6. Monitor content effectiveness by understanding where and why teammates publish content and measure how well it engages your audience.
DAM systems often include analytics tools that track who is using which assets — when, where, and how. This data can be used to inform system optimization and influence important content strategy decisions. Using data to inform content strategy allows teams to identify opportunities to reuse their best-performing content, ultimately saving time and valuable resources.
7. Minimize the risk of content rights and usage violations.
Governance tools allow DAM administrators to control how different user groups can interact with assets. This allows organizations to restrict access to sensitive content or limit download privileges on certain files. Integrating digital rights management (DRM) technology extends this protection using functionality like digital watermarking and tracking software to monitor files after their distribution as well.
8. Publish brand-approved content for your team members and external partners to use.
DAM platforms have tools that facilitate friction-free content distribution — so stakeholders have the information they need, faster. Internal content collaborators, sales teams, and external partners can all have instant access to materials in a self-serve environment — whether that’s with portals, through a mobile app, or via other tools. Integrations with other martech platforms can further automate and enhance distribution processes, across channels and other systems.
9. Consolidate redundant tools for content storage, file sharing, and collaboration into one system for all team members.
By centralizing their content, organizations often find overlap in tools across teams and departments. This redundancy not only results in unnecessary expenses, but also opportunities for inconsistency in assets and information. Consolidating tools saves money, makes content easier to manage, and helps uphold brand consistency.
At Widen, we call these universal benefits “desired customer outcomes,” or DCOs. And by selecting the ones that align with their business needs, our customers can better define their DAM goals — and the return on their investment.
Find the best DAM software for your team
As the central source of truth for marketing assets, a DAM system streamlines and manages content across it’s lifecycle — from creation to preservation. And it creates workflow efficiencies that help teams expand their productivity in support of larger business goals.
If you’re just starting on your DAM journey, we know there can be a lot to consider. Check out this article for more resources and tips to consider during your selection process.
And when you’re ready, we’ll be here for you. Request a demo of the Widen Collective® to discuss how digital asset management can support your unique business needs.
Note: This article was originally published in January 2011 and is updated yearly to remain current.