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Why DAM Is Critical to Global Organizations

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Two lines and two circles on the left side of a white rectangle and a screenshot of a Widen Collective DAM preview image of a bike on the right.

Getting the right content to the right people at the right time is challenging, especially when you need to meet the unique needs of audiences and teams across the globe. You must create compelling, on-brand content with consistent messaging while flexing to accommodate different language, regional, and cultural demands. 

But, have no fear — DAM is here! In this article, we’ll explore how a digital asset management (DAM) solution, specifically the Widen Collective®, helps global organizations like yours rise above the content chaos to deliver meaningful and powerful digital experiences. Let’s dive in.

1. DAM takes the guesswork out of storytelling

Businesses use content to tell their brand’s story across customer touch points and channels. And all of this content needs a home. If you have videos, images, and marketing materials stored on desktops and buried deep within shared drives, how will dispersed teams know which version is the latest – or even legally safe – to use? 

A DAM solution takes the guesswork out of brand management by providing employees and partners with a content hub, or single source of truth. By giving your stakeholders access to the right assets, you’re protecting your brand and empowering employees to share your story consistently. Plus, the platform’s rich metadata capabilities ensure they can quickly and easily search for and find the assets they need, whenever they need them.

Hootsuite is a global leader in social media marketing and management and, as you'd imagine, they produce a lot of assets. By housing their content in the Collective, they're able to stay on top of brand consistency. “I would say the real central value that Widen brings to the Hootsuite brand is on making the universe of brand material so much smaller. People know where to go and they can have confidence that when they find an asset that it’s been created by the brand team, it’s on brand, and it’s released for use," shared Hootsuite's Senior Editor, Curtis Foreman. 

2. DAM gives you control

When legal needs to pull an asset from circulation, what happens? If that asset was your sales rep’s favorite demo video and it’s saved on their desktop, how can you ensure it’s unavailable? This is a problem. Now picture this happening over and over again, from country to country, and department to department. This kind of asset-sharing is both inefficient and risky.

To protect your brand, you need to control off-brand content and avoid licensing missteps. The Collective offers enterprise-level asset governance tools to manage access to every file in your DAM system. Role-based permissions control the content available to each user group — to view, download, and/or share. And release and expiration dates can be set for time-sensitive assets.

Take for example Widen customer WatchGuard, who provides identity theft protection via a worldwide network of internal teams, external partners, and distributors. The Collective gives all of these stakeholders secure access to just the assets they need. And with version control, no one worries about having the “right” asset.


3. DAM integrates with your other go-to tools

Your marketing, creative, and sales teams use a variety of tools and technologies to organize, scale, and automate their daily activities. And these platforms are even more powerful when they work together. 

The Collective connects the software solutions you use every day, so you can manage your content from a single, central location. For example, you can integrate the Collective with your marketing automation tool so each regional office can quickly embed approved assets into email campaigns. And, since your assets “live” in your DAM solution, any embed codes shared across all web pages will automatically update to the latest version — no republishing required!

WatchGuard uses the Widen API to integrate the Collective with a website they use to share resources with resellers. Synching the content between these two systems not only saves them time but allows teams to pull assets from a single source of truth, safeguarding against the use of incorrect or outdated files.


4. DAM gives you global scale with support for localization

For many global organizations, scaling content efforts across teams that produce materials for local audiences is a huge challenge.

Two apps in the Collective, Templates, and Portals, help facilitate controlled customization and localization at scale. With Templates, teams can modify certain aspects of marketing materials (like sell sheets and brochures) to fit local needs while staying on brand. And with Portals, organizations can easily share curated groups of assets with outside partners or teams, using the right language and messaging.

Zeiss Microscopy, a leading provider of microscopy products, uses both of these apps to support content creation and distribution in 14 different languages and across distinct cultures and business sectors. Each region uses these tools to create an experience that’s appropriate for its local audience or stakeholders.


5. DAM helps you make smarter content decisions 

Producing compelling, high-quality content requires a significant amount of time and money. DAM systems increase the return on this investment by identifying opportunities to reuse your best-performing assets. 

The Insights app provides data on asset activity, including which files are viewed, downloaded, and shared the most. This knowledge informs content strategy decisions, like which assets should be repurposed, retired, updated, or emulated. After all, if you understand what works and what doesn’t, you can get the right content to the right people at the right time!

Insights also capture system usage activity. Hootsuite, WatchGuard, and Zeiss all monitor who is using their system, and how. And Zeiss Microscopy is proud to report that 100% of their regions use the Collective.


What next?

Brand management at a global scale is a complex and dynamic process. But the right digital asset management solution can help. Tools to manage metadata, content creation, and user access across numerous languages and cultures can help regional teams tell a unified brand story. 

At Widen, we build high-performing software that empowers global organizations to create compelling, meaningful, and measurable brand experiences. To learn more about how the Widen Collective can support your international content workflows, request a demo today. 

Note: This article was originally published in April 2018 and has been updated to include additional information.

Topics: DAM

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