Digital Asset Management Best Practices: Focus on Metadata Part II

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What metadata fields will your organization require and use?
Here’s a list of considerations for common metadata fields: 

I.  Asset Type:  What is the file – an image, video, brochure, etc.?  Call it out… somewhere.  Widen digital asset solutions have multiple options for this type of metadata association including metadata fields, categories, portfolios and/or flags. 

II.  Asset Metadata Type:  In the Widen system, each asset has a metadata type.  The key to remember is that different assets can have different metadata fields and this is done with multiple asset metadata types.  Remember: Type warrants the fields available.

III.  Key Dates:  Date file created, data asset uploaded, date asset last updated – these are each required fields.  Pay attention also to rights / release dates for controlling access to assets that are unreleased by designated users (i.e. for future campaigns or product releases).

IV.  Creator / Photographer:  Whether it is someone internal or an agency, it’s helpful to know who created the asset.

V.  Product Model #s / Part #s:  Another “good-to-know” bit of information and tag for all relevant assets with this data whether it be a product shot, lifestyle image or even point-of-sale piece. 

VI.  Product Marketing Names:  Be sure to tag your assets with the most logical and widely-used descriptive terms used to reference the asset and/or product/service the asset represents.  Your administrators may include a template for recommended terms within your DAM metadata guidelines.

VII.  Asset/Product Geographic Availability:  If you have products/services that differ by geographic region, then it’s important their accompanying assets are marked as such.  These can be controlled by the use of Roles&Permissions for users in different geographies.

VIII.  Geographic Use Restrictions:  Related to point VII, this metadata field should reflect the regions where the asset can be used.

IX.  Asset Protection:  Roles and permissions determine what assets can or cannot be accessed by users; however your organization may see it necessary to use metadata features to classify assets as Public, Private, Internal-Only or Confidential/Restricted.  A number of Widen clients also use flags for marking assets as Rights Managed, Protected and/or Unreleased. 

X.  Usage Rights / Restrictions:  Again Widen’s robust roles and permissions features allow you to protect and control asset accessibility, however you may also use metadata to set unreleased or expiration dates.  Additionally, a number of Widen clients require compliance with an End User License Agreement before they can access the asset.  Digital asset tracking and reporting tools will be addressed in later DAM best practices posts.

These are just 10 basic elements to consider when initiating a metadata strategy for your digital asset management program.  There are several other considerations when it comes to metadata.  As you construct your metadata guidelines, be sure to list the name and contact information for the master administrators in case questions arise.  Likewise, Widen DAM SaaS experts would be happy to provide a more in-depth consultation with your organization about metadata strategies.

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