Melissa, a young mother, did not know what to do with her three-year-old when the kid refused to eat the new breakfast cereal. Managing a fussy eater is every mother’s nightmare and being a single parent, Melissa already had too many things on her plate. At her wit’s end, she started looking for help online and came across an organic food website for children that also offered free virtual consultation with lactation specialists and nutritionists. Not only did Melissa learn how to introduce new foods to kids, but she also ended up purchasing a dozen snack packs for her picky eater.
This is an example of how brands are remodeling their go-to-market techniques to engage customers throughout their journey – not just from a purchase standpoint. No wonder Salesforce says that for 84% of customers today, experience is as important as a product or service. The shift in customer behavior and expectations is forcing brand marketers to move the needle on customer experience.
As brands look to build trust, marketers need to realize that merely having a presence is not good enough. A consistent brand image across all digital touchpoints is now a non-negotiable demand – and so is investing in digital asset management (DAM). Delivering the right asset – documents, music, photos, videos, animations, podcasts, and more – at the right moment on the right platform is crucial for customer engagement and enriching the overall consumer experience.
With growing business portfolios and increasing sales channels, managing the sheer volume of digital assets is undoubtedly challenging for any brand marketer. The task becomes even more complex and time-consuming as digital assets are usually housed in siloed systems scattered across organizational applications. According to Gartner, 27% of marketers reveal that their weaknesses in collecting, integrating, and protecting data are the key obstacles in driving personalization.
Eliminating this weakness is possible by streamlining workflows to create, manage, and distribute digital assets across the enterprise. Unlocking the real value of their digital assets begins with organizing and indexing the files so that they can be easily identified in an asset library. Here are seven things you need to consider while arranging your assets:
- Collect and centralize – Siloed and scattered digital assets with poor data quality prevent brands from driving successful digital transformation strategies. As a first step towards laying the foundation for steady growth, you need to collect your digital assets scattered across multiple sources like hard drives, storage servers, shared drives, etc. With a DAM in place, storing and organizing these assets in a single location for providing easy access to all stakeholders is a no-brainer. A DAM system provides a centralized, secure repository to store, organize, and retrieve files to deliver a cohesive brand experience. For example, when premium car brand Audi AG wanted to increase the efficiency of their order process, they used a DAM system to centralize the products of different suppliers on a single platform and ultimately enhanced customer experience.
- Incorporate a powerful search – As asset volumes increase, you need to locate the right digital assets within seconds to ensure that they are delivered in the right place at the right time. As a single source of truth, a DAM solution provides a unified interface with collaboration functionalities to boost the efficiency of sales, marketing, and product management teams. The solution lets you organize digital assets according to asset name, type, format, layout, and design. You can maintain a proper folder structure, delete unused or unpopulated folders, and eliminate content silos to ensure users find what they need.
- Include metadata features – Once you have collected your digital assets, you need to index them properly so that a file or an asset has a unique identifier within the asset inventory. Metadata tags are used to index an asset to provide more information and a detailed description of the asset, including access rights and pricing. It helps in processing, sharing, and deploying assets to deliver targeted content to customers and prospects. Metadata also improves searchability and usability of an asset and ensures faster review and delivery cycles of final assets, thereby reducing the go-to-market time considerably. By investing in a highly scalable DAM solution that supports all media formats, Suzuki created a virtual showroom to offer prospective motorcycle customers a dealer experience. With a robust metadata management capability, the DAM system empowered Suzuki to seamlessly cater to an increasing number of assets and users.
- Create collaborative workflow – For creating collaborative workflows, you need to set your goals, map your current assets’ location, and define usage standards, including protocols for file naming and folder structures, access, and permissions. You must also define what metadata can be applied to your assets to enable searchability. Once your standards are in place, you can create collaborative workflows for uploading, organizing, and sharing assets quickly and effortlessly. Often, an enterprise DAM solution also has to interact with other data management platforms like master data management (MDM), Content Management System (CMS), Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Content Delivery Network (CDN), and more. Once data from multiple sources is processed, the DAM system can help you manage workflows and offer complete visibility into business processes.
- Data sharing abilities – As data assets evolve into the fulcrum behind all things digital, be it marketing, commerce, customer engagement, or brand building, enterprises are doing everything they can to achieve creative automation. Most brands have realized that it is impossible to sustain without a data strategy in today’s digital native world. Brands that can leverage data to understand current market trends, make predictions and produce insights will stay ahead of the curve. For monetizing data effectively, all data silos must be broken, and data must be shared first within the organization and then made available to the outside world. This extends to digital assets as well. Seamless digital asset sharing encourages collaboration between remote teams, partners, and other stakeholders.
- Permissions and authorizations – While organizing digital assets, rules and governance must be applied as part of the system to act as gatekeepers of critical digital assets. This ability is essential for transactions and for safeguarding the intrinsic value of assets with copyrights and trademarks. In order to meet regulatory and compliance demands, organizations must immediately furnish all required licenses, legal documents, and other vital assets. If you are able to organize and retrieve these documents quickly, you can not only reduce liability and avoid penalties but also alleviate the disruption of core business processes and protect your brand’s reputation.
- Asset lifecycle monitoring – Like all other assets, digital assets also have a lifecycle spanning the creation, management, distribution, and archive stages. Asset creation involves developing, designing, tagging, and scanning digital assets. Once created, these assets need to be assigned, reviewed, modified, and approved in order to meet customer demands. This is followed by the distribution phase, in which the assets are published across various consumption channels. After a point, when an asset loses its relevance and becomes outdated, it must be appropriately archived. Having a proper archiving process is essential for maintaining consistent brand messaging and managing brand reputation.
In Conclusion: Once your digital assets are in order, you need to carefully use them to amplify demand generation for your brand. From managing content volume to addressing existing internal needs and implementation requirements to maintenance support—organized and streamlined digital assets can go a long way in carving an effective brand strategy. That’s the reason select a perfect DAM solution can help you create a consistent and engaging brand story to serve your purpose and needs.
(Vandana Singal is Director, Solution Consulting at Pimcore Global Services – A Happiest Minds Company, and the views expressed in this article are her own)