Social media posts, images, photos, video, creative files, blog content and documents have become part of the daily business environment for the majority of the Western world. These digital assets serve as the backbone of most sales and marketing teams—but they can also number in the hundreds of thousands to the billions, making managing them an unwieldy and complicated endeavor. Let’s take a look at the challenge and the software solutions that can help your business manage its digital assets.
Your typical home computer may have millions of files on it. For the sake of simple math, let’s use 1 million and assume that one-quarter of those files are digital assets in the form of original text, images and Web design. That gives you 250,000 individual assets.
Now take the same numbers and apply them to a small business with 10 employees working separately. That gives you 2.5 million assets to sift through. A large, asset-heavy establishment like a library or media outlet can have billions of files in storage. It’s imperative your business provide efficient and controlled access to these files to its employees, clients, contractors and other key stakeholders. That’s where a digital asset management (DAM) system comes in—it’s software that uses sophisticated algorithms to index files for easy accessibility.
DAM and Brand
DAM plays a dual role in brand reputation and sales, acting as a clearinghouse for all of a company’s brand documentation. Nothing derails a salesperson’s pitch like having to pause to search for a file. Prepackaging your team’s sales portfolio is a good idea, but runs the risk of letting your sales team go rogue with brand image. The use of DAM allows the company to stay in control of its brand. By creating a centralized and accessible database of the company’s digital footprint, it gives sales representatives a bird’s-eye view of the marketing message and how it is integrated across channels.
Defining Integrated Assets
Like putting together an antique china set, having all of the assets together increases the value in a way that the total is greater than the sum of its parts. Deciding what constitutes an asset and how it fits with other assets and stakeholder needs is a huge challenge. This is what the United Parcel Service (UPS) had to overcome in 2010. UPS generates a huge amount of data each day, but not all of the data is useful to every person. Operations cares about the flow of packages, while an end user only wants to know about delivery. The marketing team solely needs information about shipping decisions. UPS implemented a DAM system that gives each department easy access to the data it needs in real time.
Take Out the Guesswork
This ability to data mine without special training is the key to DAM functionality. For sales people, it gives them the ability to narrow the sales funnel quickly, going from abstract leads to deliverables within the framework of one integrated marketing message. By managing their digital assets, a company manages the whole marketing and sales structure, hence taking the guesswork out of the system.