The marketing team at Alliance Laundry Systems supports a range of international departments and distribution partners.
Their previous digital asset management (DAM) system lacked the functionality needed to power their global content operations. Their Creative Services Leader, Nick Polcyn, shared, “It was slow, and it didn’t work in different time zones properly.” He said that the search features and upload tools were so limited, that “you would finish a project and you wouldn’t want to upload it to the DAM [system].”
In addition, this platform’s security infrastructure didn’t align with requirements in the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). “The straw that broke the camel’s back was GDPR actually,” said Nick. “Being a global company, we had to be compliant with the EU’s GDPR rule.” So they began a search for a new DAM solution.
Support global workflows
Provide access to assets from anywhere in the world, anytime
Ensure only on-brand content is used at every customer touchpoint
Give all stakeholders self-serve access to the content they need
Alliance knew they needed a system with advanced content management functionality — including search and sharing tools, upload options, data analytics, and security features — that could scale with their business growth. “We had researched five other DAM providers and went through the demos and everything, and Widen came out as the clear winner,” Nick shared.
Effective content distribution
“We knew we needed to serve our distribution network in a better way,” Nick shared. “And Portals was the obvious choice for that.” With portals, their partners have easy access to curated groups of current project images, location images, and logos. They built roughly 20 portals to organize this content by brand, market segment, and location, and linked them to their company extranet.
Alliance uses embed codes for assets in the Collective to streamline how they publish content online. “Every image that’s on our website, it’s not hosted by the website but...on the DAM [system], and published out. Same with our literature.” If a new version of an asset is uploaded to the Collective, it’s automatically updated everywhere it’s embedded on the web. This strategy is known as COPE, or create once, publish everywhere, and allows Alliance to publish assets across multiple websites and channels by maintaining a connection with the master file in the Collective. It creates time-saving efficiencies and helps ensure a consistent, up-to-date brand presence across digital touchpoints.
Because Alliance was disappointed with the minimal implementation and technology support from their previous DAM provider, customer service was a top priority in their search for a new vendor. “With Widen, they had a structured onboarding process. They had a coach, and we met every week or a couple times a week to make sure we planned properly,” said Nick. They’ve also used the support resources on the Widen website, including the chat feature. “Just to be able to message them with a quick question has been super helpful,” he shared. “The customer service has been terrific.”
“I’m 100% confident we went with Widen for the right reasons.”
Creative Services Leader
at Alliance Laundry Systems
Coordinated global workflows
With the Collective, Alliance is able to give remote teams, distributors, partner agencies, and other stakeholders across the globe access to the content they need. Image requests that used to be routed through Nick’s team — and often take days to fulfill — have been eliminated.
“We have users in South America, North America, Europe, Asia...this works as a platform across the globe for all of our international partners.”
The Collective is now the company’s central source of truth for current, brand-approved content, as well as their brand guidelines. “We just developed brand guidelines for Alliance as our parent company and then all five brands underneath,” said Nick. “We created a portal that lives on our company intranet site that has all of our letterhead, our PowerPoint templates, the logos, and the brand guidelines to make sure everyone has access to these core assets.”
Streamlined access to these resources helps ensure a consistent, global brand experience. “The DAM has been instrumental in providing proper brand look and feel,” Nick shared.
Informed content decisions
The data analytics tools in the Collective’s Insights app helps Alliance understand how their content is being used, and who is using the DAM system. “We have 27,000 downloads only through [the first] few months. That’s amazing. That’s telling us our distribution partners wanted those images or logo files to make other creative assets they needed,” Nick said. And he’ll use this data to inform future content strategy and spending priorities.
Clear return on investment (ROI)
When asked what their most immediate return on their DAM investment is, Nick responded, “It’s very clear. It’s time. Everyone realizes I’m saving time — I can search this so much more quickly, I can find exactly what I’m looking for and download just that asset.” He continued, “A process for an image or logo request would take two or three days, and if it was international in a different time zone that would be even longer. Now, they’re finding it themselves.”
“I know there’s other viable solutions out there because I tested them, but...I’m 100% confident we went with Widen for the right reasons,” Nick said. “They want to make sure they are giving you success.”