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Implementing DAM Across Brands – Lauren Castellanos

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Implementing DAM Across Brands – Lauren Castellanos | Widen Podcast

“I think if you can dedicate a specific person to be the admin that’s one of the best things in terms of success that you can do.” – Lauren Castellanos, Shiseido

As the Executive Director of Global Architecture at Shiseido,  Lauren Castellanos oversees the company’s martech stack. And not only is she a champion of digital asset management (DAM), but she is also a DAM admin advocate. She would like to have not just one full-time admin for their DAM site — but six! One for each of their brands. Read on to learn why.

Listen to the full interview with Lauren Castellanos. Episode topics include:

Sharing assets the slow way

Lauren said that before Shiseido implemented the Widen Collective®, “All of the assets were being managed via Box or email. So it was really hard to track who was receiving what, where the final assets were, or if the assets final...because they were just sitting in the file folders with no metadata attached to them.” Lauren knew that digital asset management offered a more efficient way to store and share assets, so she and a team of colleagues researched DAM platforms and selected the Collective.

How does a DAM implementation begin?

Lauren said that their implementation process included three key steps:

  1. Get people excited. Through meetings and employee communications Lauren and her team clearly explained how this new technology platform was going to make their creative workflows more efficient and enjoyable.

  2. Build the metadata taxonomy. Lauren had each team shore up the assets that they felt were critical to migrate to the DAM system, and then think about how they should be tagged.

  3. Configure the site. Because this process was time consuming, each brand team had an implementation lead to manage their portion of the system build-out.

Lauren shared that they found metadata creation was particularly challenging because each creative team used product terminology that is unique to their brand. The implementation leads coordinated their efforts to arrive at a structure that worked for everyone.

Finding success through teamwork

“We really tried to be inclusive up front of all the people that would be using this on a regular basis, to make sure that we understood the requirements…so we could implement a tool that would be widely used,” Lauren said. The creative and e-commerce leads for each brand had a particularly important role in decision making.

How did they know they were ready to launch? “With something like this you could probably feel like you are never ready!” Lauren said. But once their essential assets were loaded and tagged, and they completed their user testing, they felt they were ready enough.

“We just took a chance and rolled it out! It’s always scary – you hope that you’ve done all the work you could possibly do to find any issues that might arise, but it’s been a great experience, and we’ve had a lot of good feedback as we’ve begun to roll it out to the different teams and various regions across the globe.”

The value of a dedicated admin

The implementation leads across Shiseido brands morphed into DAM admins once the site was launched. Some of these individuals are dedicated full-time to the DAM, but others are not. And Lauren said that their availability impacted the scope of their portion of the DAM system. She said the full-time implementation leads “were able to really dive in, understand the DAM...and get collections set up, get all assets loaded, and all the assets tagged with metadata, and so they were able to launch more quickly.”

And post implementation, Laruen said that the value of a full-time admin is even greater because, “it’s just such a powerful tool and there’s so much that can be done with it.” The full-time admins are better able to leverage the value of Insights, and make continual refinements that provide the best experience for their users. Further, these admins will play a role in exploring ways that the Collective can be integrated across the Shiseido technology stack, including their website and social listening tool. Lauren said that from her perspective, a full-time DAM admin in every brand, “is a must have.”

Ongoing efforts to build user engagement

At the beginning of their implementation, Laruren said, “I think our biggest fear was adoption…we really wanted to make sure that it would be something that our brands would be excited to adopt.”

Fortunately, not only are their users thrilled with their new DAM tool, but the implementation process was smooth. Lauren said, “The hands-on approach that Widen took in taking us through everything step-by-step in getting set up and migrating all of our assets and setting up permissions I think really alleviated any concerns that the teams had – certainly my concerns. And then we’ve had nothing but positive feedback as the tool has been rolled out to teams in each brand. So it’s been exciting!”

Future DAM goals include expanding the DAM system to additional teams and growing user engagement. “A lot of these things...I actually learned about at the Widen Summit this year. A lot of great ideas came from some of the other customers that were in attendance, and how to get users excited about the tool and using it.”

In fact, Lauren said that she would encourage anyone approaching a DAM implementation to attend Widen events, especially the Summit. “I wasn’t really sure what to expect, and I was completely blown away...I absolutely would recommend that anyone that has not been to go, because I think it’s a great experience.”

About the Widen Implementation Podcast

The Widen Implementation podcast is about helping customers prepare for and execute their DAM roll out. Each episode will involve conversations with people who have implemented the Widen DAM solution. It's our hope that each episode will help future Widen customers by giving them a few tips regarding the implementation process.

About our guest

In this Widen Implementation interview, we hear from Lauren Castellanos, Executive Director of Global Architecture within Shiseido's Digital Center of Excellence. She has over 15 years of experience managing and implementing digital and marketing solutions, to drive revenue and meet critical business needs. Shiseido is one of the leading cosmetics companies in the world with a rich portfolio of international brands across 120 countries and regions.

About our host

Bill Banham is a marketing and publishing professional based in Toronto. He is the founder of the HR Gazette and Iceni Marketing as well as the co-founder of the WorkingTech show and the InnovateWork event series. Bill hosts several CPSA podcast shows on topics including social selling and tech, business strategy, and sales strategy.

Topics: Widen Podcast, DAM Implementation

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