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Michael Waldron

The Definitive Guide to DAM Adoption

By Blog

If you’re launching a digital asset management system (DAM), you know that technology isn’t your only challenge—sometimes people are. You can have the best DAM in the industry and processes to match, but if your users don’t adhere to naming conventions or don’t categorize assets correctly, the project can devolve into a DAM quagmire. So, how do you get all the users of your DAM—from designers and partners to agencies and entire teams—to come along on your DAM adventure from the start? Your journey will involve mapping out your terrain, building your guild of allies, consulting your DAM wizards, and choosing the path to your DAM legacy.

This article will be your definitive guide to DAM adoption from the beginning. We’ll explain the process of getting users involved in selecting and rolling out your DAM, as well as the strategies you can use to ensure widespread adoption and ongoing equilibrium.

DAM User Adoption

If you already have a DAM, the steps below are perfect for rethinking your adoption strategy. It’s easy for users to fall off the adoption wagon, so your strategies should be evolving to keep up. You’ll determine where to improve your engagement with your users, strengthen your desired norms, and encourage better user behaviors. From mapping out your DAM journey to setting yourself up for a legacy of success—let’s talk about how to achieve optimal DAM adoption.

1. Map out the terrain—user influence and resistance

The (not so secret) secret to DAM adoption is identifying and engaging your stakeholders early in the process. For those without a DAM (or replacing your existing DAM), it means prioritizing the needs of those who will use the DAM inside and outside your organization. 

Start with a stakeholder mapping exercise—sit down and brainstorm everyone who will be using your DAM or involved in the success of implementing it. Write each name on a sticky note—from the illustrators uploading new assets, to the IT manager who will deal with support tickets. Then sort those stakeholders into quadrants: 

This exercise will help you determine which stakeholders should focus your energy and support on throughout the DAM adoption process. 

It’s also important to conduct resistance planning. To manage resistance, you should brainstorm all the potential reasons your stakeholders might resist your new DAM—make a thoughtful, comprehensive list. Executives may lack awareness of why a change is needed. Creative teams may fear the unknown that comes along with this change. IT may resist because they anticipate a lack of support once the DAM is implemented. In this stage, you should consider your users’ concerns carefully, making note of potential blockages will help you gather their feedback and develop a communications plan that effectively addresses their concerns. 

For organizations that have already implemented their DAM, it’s never too late to map your stakeholders and consider their needs. Resistance can happen at any point in the journey. Investigate how your DAM is performing with a survey, DAM usage data, or user interviews at regular intervals. You may not be able to implement a new system, but it’s never too late to revisit your users’ needs and consider why they may be resisting your processes.

2. Build your guild—recruit your DAMbassadors

After you’ve determined which users have the most influence and interest in your DAM, you should identify who among them could be your allies. Who is likely to adopt new norms quickly? Who can assist you and offer insight into team morale? Who is most invested in the DAM planning process and its success?

Determine who among your internal (and even external partners) would be willing to offer ongoing feedback and engage with the DAM process. These are your DAMbassadors and they will help you disseminate information, encourage excitement in your engagement campaigns, and uphold the norms and processes you’ll put in place.

Recruiting them could be as easy as taking the ‘high interest/high influence’ users from your stakeholder mapping and asking if they’d be interested in taking on an advisory role. It could be for a limited time as the DAM is selected and implemented, or if your DAM is already in place, you could ask them to give feedback on an ad hoc basis. Consider incentivizing this role—people are more likely to feel appreciated if they gain something from their insights. Bonus points if some of your champions are executive-level leaders—their buy-in will be important to secure budget and support across the organization.

Learn pro-tips on managing change and boosting user adoption of your DAM

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3. Consult your wizards—plan your processes and collect feedback

It’s never too early to start thinking about governance, or how your DAM will be managed. As a part of governance, you must define processes related to users, assets, metadata, and uploads. 

You will need to answer questions like: 

  • Will assets be uploaded manually through the DAM, via an integration, or both?
  • Are you managing web assets? Video assets? Something else? How does that change your DAM needs? 
  • What are your file naming conventions? And where are these documented, and how are they communicated and enforced?
  • Which users/groups will be permitted to edit metadata?
  • Who will be responsible for archiving and expiring files?
  • Who will provide DAM access to external users? Who will be responsible for training them?
  • What are the different levels of access/permissions for different users and groups? How will access change if the users are external agencies, vendors, or retail partners?

Building and documenting these norms early on allows you to run them by your DAMbassadors and important stakeholders to ensure you’re considering complex user or asset challenges that may come up when choosing, implementing, or managing your DAM.

And remember that feedback shouldn’t stop at the planning stage or after you’ve implemented your DAM—continue seeking ongoing feedback from your internal stakeholders and external DAM users. Nothing halts adoption more than users feeling like their feedback and suggestions don’t matter. Consider how you can collect feedback throughout the DAM process and follow up if user feedback influenced a decision—this builds their trust.

4. Pick your path—select the best DAM for your needs

Once you’ve determined your DAMbassadors, your unique governance idiosyncrasies, and sought the feedback of your internal and external users, you’ll be ready to select your DAM. 

Picking the right DAM can often feel endlessly complicated—the time spent gathering requirements, researching applications, and reaching out to platforms can leave you feeling exhausted by the options. Narrow your focus on the top features that your organization cannot function without—based on your stakeholder feedback, of course. If you’ve done Steps 1-3 thoroughly, your organization’s ideal DAM should check off all your most important boxes. 

If you’ve made your case to your executive-level leadership, done your research, and considered user feedback, your choice of DAM should set you up for the ideal user adoption scenario.  

5. The rallying cry—develop and execute a communications plan

Communication plans can make or break DAM implementation. A clear comms plan will ensure everyone knows how the DAM will help them achieve their goals (i.e. what they can expect from the DAM) and how they’re involved in the implementation and management of the DAM (i.e. what’s expected of users). Use face-to-face meetings, town halls, forums, and Q&A sessions to communicate with stakeholders.

The key message is simple: If the DAM works as intended and users adopt it as directed, everyone’s lives become easier. This plan defines the philosophy of the DAM, how it will be used, and how success will be measured for all users. It should include a timeline for implementation and onboarding and where users can go for ongoing DAM best practices, support, and training. You may choose to include how your organization plans to work with the DAM vendor and how the transition from the current asset system to the DAM will take place. The more clear and thoughtful your comms plan is, the more likely you’ll be to reduce friction post-launch and improve adoption.

6. Create a legacy—make onboarding and ongoing training impossible to ignore

Your DAM adventure has begun. It’s filled to the brim with users accessing your DAM for many reasons—approval workflows, sharing assets, archiving past campaigns. How do you manage to keep all those users following your carefully curated governance rules and norms? You create onboarding and training tools that are tailored-made to teach. Here are 3 DAM onboarding and training ideas to keep your journey of asset management smooth: 

  • Launch a frequently asked questions (FAQ) video series in your DAM

Take a page out of Webflow University’s book and make a library of quick videos to onboard users, answer common questions, and reiterate helpful governance norms. Host your FAQ library in your DAM and link its location to the dashboard of every user. Each video can be casual and even funny—the point is to make learning and relearning DAM conventions accessible and impossible to ignore.

  • Create a DAM help desk

Sometimes users don’t know where to get their questions answered. Creating a DAM help desk, either in person or virtually, gives them a predetermined window to come to you with questions and feedback on the DAM. Have your DAM managers, IT staff, or DAMbassadors cycle through ‘office hours’—they can be on standby until a user reaches out with a question. This also works great asynchronously as a Slack or Teams channel.

  • Build a governance document 

Remember the governance planning you did in Step 3? Consider creating a governance resource that users can refer back to. Create an artfully designed landing page—an internal search engine that points people to common solutions to their problems. Give clear guidance on how to use common metadata terms, manage metadata, and upload assets. Include anything else that users may forget or make mistakes from time to time.

You may notice that this resource and your video FAQ library will have some overlap—it’s important to have resources available in multiple formats and places. The more accessible, interesting, and valuable this information is, the more likely your users are to adopt it.

Your DAM adoption journey begins with a single step

User adoption is the single defining characteristic of a successful DAM implementation. Are your users accessing the DAM as intended? Is it working for them as intended? In your DAM adventure, user adoption is an ongoing process—a never-ending story. But, if you can map out your desired digital asset system, bring along the right users to see it through, plan and communicate your processes, and keep people engaged—widespread adoption is possible. 

 

For organizations with entrenched DAMs (and tired DAM managers), it’s never too late to address user adoption. There’s always the opportunity to seek feedback on how to improve your DAM processes, make training easier to access, or develop a comms plan that revitalizes users’ desire to make the DAM better. 

After all, a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Your adventure awaits.

Is your DAM offering motivating, actionable metrics?

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DAM for Video Asset Management

6 Features You Need In Your DAM For Video Asset Management

By Blog

Searching for the right digital asset management system (DAM) for video can feel like stumbling around in the dark. The time spent gathering requirements, researching applications, and reaching out to platforms can leave you more confused than before you began.

What should you actually be looking for in a DAM for video? Is a DAM even the right tool for managing your media? How can you ensure your video assets are stored and managed in a way that will optimize their usability across multiple channels and partners?

We’ll be the first to admit, there is no DAM that’s going to replace your media asset management (MAM) system for video production (though when it comes to the final asset, we’ve got you covered). But if you’re looking for instant video playback, automated metadata, and shareable portals and collections for your external partners, you’re in the right place.

DAM for Video Asset Management

In this article, we’ll set expectations for what features you should be looking for in a DAM for video assets. Make note of which features touch on your organization’s needs—it should become increasingly clear whether a DAM is right for you. Once we cover the basics, we’ll highlight why there’s so much opportunity in the future of DAM video functionality.

DAMs are made to manage your pre-distribution video assets

DAMs are ideal for managing completed video assets. The sweet spot for uploading videos to  DAMs is after post-production and before marketing distribution. In this space, DAMs are essential for tracking asset usage, adding helpful metadata, and sharing assets across global teams. The best DAMs offer a suite of features that support the video’s lifecycle after publishing. But overall, you should expect most of the same functionality in DAMs for video as managing print or web assets.

Six DAM for video features you need

There is an overwhelming number of options for DAMs, each offering its own suite of features. But what do you actually need to ensure you’re getting the best DAM for video? Below is a list of the essential features every DAM should have if you’re managing video assets.

  • Interoperability with existing video software

Since one platform can’t solve all your video needs, you should be looking for a DAM that seamlessly connects to your current video production or management software. Creating video is notoriously complex, but managing video in DAM shouldn’t be.

Look for a DAM that integrates your existing applications and repositories to maintain the integrity of content and data when transferring video between systems. Just because assets move, doesn’t mean you should experience any data loss or lack of transparency. Good DAMs for video will connect using updated APIs with creative suites, product information management systems (PIMs), content delivery networks (CDNs), and content management systems (CMSs).

  • Instant global video management

World-class enterprise DAMs have no excuse for slow video playback speeds or a lack of video thumbnails. Many DAM platforms have implemented built-in CDNs to ensure you can play, share, download, and publish videos with little lag.

Your DAM should be built on cloud-based architecture that allows for uninterrupted global access to the platform for all users. This ensures your DAM is regularly updated with new video functionality without impacting your workflows or security.

  • Review and workflow management

The best DAMs for video should be able to streamline the creative review and proofing process. Look for a DAM that can ingest your video assets and pull them into automated review workflows.

Using your DAM for reviews, annotations, and approvals will enhance productivity and keep your projects on track. This saves you time and money on third-party software and endless email threads. Internal and external teams get real-time visibility and notifications, ensuring everyone is in sync and aware as your video assets are approved.

  • AI or automated tagging and metadata creation

AI and machine learning are phenomenally helpful when it comes to managing video assets. DAMs using AI offer features like auto-tagging and automatic speech-to-text transcripts in multiple languages. Instead of searching for a specific video in endless folders, it only takes a few clicks to discover and share subtitled videos.

In fact, machine learning can automatically scan video assets and assign tags related to the products, people, and objects within your videos. Supplement that metadata by integrating your product information management (PIM) system to improve insights and discovery. All this data makes searching and managing video assets a breeze.

  • Role-based interfaces, collections, and portals

When choosing a DAM for video assets, personalizing each user’s experience—whether through role-based interfaces, branded portals, or sharable collections—helps you access and share your videos without interruption. Ensure any DAM you choose allows you to create secure, branded portals without worrying about size limits or other technical restrictions.

Similarly, many DAMs have ‘collections’ or role-based features which ensure only the right teams, partners, and agencies view and edit certain content. With a combination of role-based dashboards, portals, and collections, you can ensure all rights management and intellectual property rules are dynamically adhered to and everyone has the videos they need.

  • Customizable and scalable rights and security

Last but certainly not least, your videos need to be secure and easily shareable with those who need them. As opposed to MAMs, which may only host up to 20 users, DAMs can host thousands of users signing in from anywhere in the world. If you’re looking for a DAM with scalable features, prioritize platforms with clear and customizable controls—you should be able to edit rights and access based on campaigns, teams, brands, geographies, and more. It’s also wise to explore if your DAM can automate security and rights notifications, so you can get alerted if licenses are about to expire or need renewal.

Additionally, check if your DAM tracks how your content is being shared and by who. Good DAMs will have alert features that trigger users to when there are spikes in usage or unusual behavior.

What is the future of DAM for video assets?

In the future, DAM features will evolve to do even more. We’re already seeing features like AI-assisted subtitles and dynamic resizing for social channels. More innovators in the DAM space are tracking video watch data in DAM—feeding that data back into the asset lifecycle to create a closed loop of continual content improvement.

In the end, if these six features address your organization’s needs, a DAM might be right for you. Features like interoperability, workflow management, rights management, and instant global playback will set you up for DAM for video success. Don’t forget to add them to your wishlist!

Is your DAM offering motivating, actionable metrics?

If your current data management system leaves something to be desired, learn more about Tenovos’ data-first digital asset management platform. Eliminate complexity so your storytellers can focus on what they do best: reaching your customers and growing your brand.

Book a demo to see it in action

The MACH Alliance: Why you want a best-of-breed enterprise technology ecosystem

By Blog

There was a time when buying enterprise software suites – monolithic platforms that could do it all across teams and departments – was the thing to do.

You’d only need to worry about one vendor. You only had one bill to pay (although it was usually huge), and everyone you talked to outside of your organization was either using the same suite, or one of two or three other competitors.

But times have changed, and so has the technology space.

Today, innovation is happening at a rapid pace, and large-scale enterprise suites simply can’t keep up to their best-of-breed software counterparts when it comes to performance, flexibility and development.

Tenovos DAM integrations

Often these suites are built through software acquisition. This leads to questions about software quality (not all software is built, or integrated, equally), and the parent company’s ability to support and develop a product they aren’t as familiar with.

Still, many organizations are locked in with these software giants and are paying the price: siloed enterprise tech stacks, long development cycles, and high costs for little return.

That’s why more and more companies are moving away from enterprise suites and embracing a new way of building their tech ecosystem.

What is the MACH Alliance?

The MACH Alliance is a non-profit organization on a mission to “future proof enterprise technology and propel current and future digital experiences.” The group advocates for an open and best-of-breed enterprise technology ecosystem, one that is “agile, nimble and always up to date.”

The idea is relatively straightforward. According to its website, MACH technologies are:

  • Microservices based: Software built with ‘modular’ services or functionalities to increase flexibility, rather than large code blocks with sometimes unnecessary features.
  • API-first: Software that focuses on its core purpose, while providing ways to connect to other essential tools in the tech stack.
  • Cloud-native: SaaS that leverages the cloud, beyond storage and hosting, including elastic scaling and automatically updating.
  • Headless: Software that does not have a front end, and can be integrated with other technologies into a front-end application in order to create a custom system.

Single vendor technology platforms are committed to doing one thing, and doing it very well. They pour all their resources and innovation into that one solution in order to maximize its value to the buyer.

On the other hand, enterprise software suites, which are a collection of many different solutions rolled into a single product, simply can’t do the same. They’ll often focus resources into their top-selling module, for example, and leave the less popular, but still essential, modules to fade into obsolescence. Or, they’ll be loaded with features you don’t really need. Often, it’s both.

The principles of the MACH framework also address the oft-quoted benefit of the enterprise suite: having a single connected collection of solutions. By building technology that is API-first, it allows for connectivity between platforms, enabling a truly integrated tech stack that leverages only best-in-breed technologies – and gives you the flexibility to swap out any one technology for an alternative without impacting the rest of the organization.

And of course, these MACH tech stacks are able to stay on the leading edge of innovation because the technologies are cloud-native, meaning they can be updated easily and frequently without interruption of service.

By advocating for the MACH framework, the Alliance is raising awareness of these technology platforms as desirable alternatives to inflexible and dated enterprise software suites.

Data is a foundational element of DAM success. Learn how to set up your DAM to deliver key insights in our webinar DAM Data 101.

Watch it here

Tenovos and the MACH framework

Traditional digital asset management platforms act as a content repository or library, storing assets in perpetuity and hoping users find them when they’re needed. This is an outdated approach to DAM. There are exciting, innovative developments happening in the space, but these large vendors, where DAM is only one small part of their larger software suite, are spending their resources elsewhere.

At Tenovos, we recognize that brand teams are looking for a cohesive suite of marketing technologies, of which DAM platforms are foundational, that allow them to manage the entire asset lifecycle, from ideation to distribution. These technologies must be intimately connected to allow for assets, content, and data to flow effortlessly between them. That’s why we’ve built our platform firmly upon the MACH framework.

In line with The MACH Alliance, our innovative approach to DAM calls for an integrated, flexible technology ecosystem. 

  • We leverage microservices to develop, deliver, and update the functionalities our users need. 
  • Our platform is cloud-native, allowing us not only to leverage cloud technology to maximize performance, but also to deploy frequent updates as our team adds more innovative functionality into the product.
  • And lastly, we are an API-first technology that seamlessly integrates with enterprise tech stacks to feed essential assets and data into the tech ecosystem.

The future of enterprise technology

Whether you’re evaluating a new DAM platform, or trying to sort out what a tech ecosystem might look like at your organization, remember the future is changing every day. Companies like Tenovos are committed to innovation, and we focus on delivering the best-in-breed technology our clients need to perform in this rapidly changing business landscape.

The MACH Alliance, and companies like Tenovos who are committed to their principles, promise the delivery of a future-proof, innovative, modern and interconnected enterprise technology ecosystem. No enterprise suite can say the same.

Learn more at www.tenovos.com/integrations.

Is your DAM offering motivating, actionable metrics?

If your current data management system leaves something to be desired, learn more about Tenovos’ data-first digital asset management platform. Eliminate complexity so your storytellers can focus on what they do best: reaching your customers and growing your brand.

Book a demo to see it in action
DAM data cycle

What data should I track?

By Blog

Sometimes making sense of your DAM’s data can feel like taming a tornado. Even if your creative team loves DAM data, and you know what metrics to pull, you’ll often find one important piece of the puzzle missing—things go dark once an asset leaves your system.

Those silos of data block you from accessing your metrics in one place, like in your DAM. Now, this may seem aspirational, but modern DAMs (like Tenovos) are innovating cyclical approaches to data. The question is, what do you do if your DAM isn’t there yet?

Performance data

In this article, we’ll reveal how to think about DAM data within a virtuous cycle, so you can begin to connect all stages of an asset’s journey. We’ll also offer some examples of how this cycle can transform your siloed metrics into valuable insights—improving the creation process, the management of assets, and the measurement of performance.

The virtuous DAM data cycle

The traditional asset cycle isn’t really a cycle, is it? An asset is created, stored in the DAM, and then distributed. Three steps, often disconnected, which constitute three data silos in that asset’s journey.

In an ideal cycle, you’d tie those three stages together in a feedback loop. And view the data on the full cycle in one place. This would help you really understand the full story of your DAM and your assets. And give you the ability to use data from any stage to improve another.

Here’s what that ideal cycle might look like:

  • Creation—partners, creative teams, and agencies working to ideate, approve, and review assets. In a good DAM, approval workflows can be completed and optimized from within the system. Data to capture here: activity (assets created), productivity (time per asset, time per asset class), and outcome (value of assets, value versus investment).
  • Management—the bread and butter of legacy DAMs. Storage, organization, sharing, and management of assets. Data to capture here: number of users, search terms, and approval workflows.
  • Performance—the missing piece of the cycle and most difficult to track. Once assets are published to channels like social, websites, and print, most DAM managers lose all ability to track those assets in the DAM. In a virtuous DAM data cycle, all asset performance data would remain in the DAM, even after the asset is shared—meaning you can more easily share performance data from all channels for a closed feedback loop.
DAM Data Cycle

This cycle may seem out of reach for some, but many innovative DAMs are already creating features that include this type of cyclical approach to data. In the meantime, viewing your DAM data through the lens of a virtuous cycle will help you find unexpected insights and suggest helpful improvements.

Data is a foundational element of DAM success. Learn how to set up your DAM to deliver key insights in our webinar DAM Data 101.

Watch it here

An non-exhaustive list of data you should be tracking

Common (siloed) metrics

Users

  • Uploads, downloads, and searches by brand, project, or campaign
  • Number of users
  • Assets created and updated
  • Session length

Search

  • Number of searches broken down by brand, project, or campaign
  • Success metric on searches – e.g. did someone download after a search?
  • Search where there are no returns
  • Keyword report under search
  • Google keyword searches vs. DAM metadata

Geography

  • Activity by city and region
  • Uploads and downloads by country

Views and Downloads

  • Least and most downloaded assets, by brand and by type
  • Asset views within the DAM

Common metrics through the lens of a virtuous data cycle

Now imagine you’re collecting data from the management and performance stages of the cycle—perhaps your data shows that Agency A works more quickly through your workflows (management), while also creating assets that perform better on social (performance). Now, you can use that data to help enrich and optimize the creation stage. Once you begin looking at your data holistically rather than by individual metrics, you’re more likely to get truly valuable insights that inform workflow and creative improvements. You’re more likely to see the entire story of your DAM data.

Users are the key to every stage of the asset journey

Tracking users sets a baseline for how your DAM is being used. This data may surface questions like—how long are my users staying on my DAM? Are there a large number of users only logging in for two minutes each session? If so, why is that? Is it because the DAM experience is difficult to navigate or extremely streamlined? These insights will reveal how you can assist in the creation and management stages of the asset cycle with DAM training or workflow improvements.

Search data increases findability and closes content gaps

By tracking search terms that result in the incorrect asset results, you’re able to reveal two things. First, whether your data model and tags reflect the closest synonyms and popular misspellings of words to increase findability. And second, how exploring unsuccessful search terms can reveal a content gap in your assets and help you support your creative teams in filling that gap. Your users are telling you what content they need and how they search for it—this will help inform feedback for the creation and management stages of the asset cycle.

Geography reveals more about the performance of assets than you think

Typically, geography reporting only tells you where a user is accessing assets. But if you break out of that silo, you may notice other interesting insights arise. For example, when comparing geography to search results data, you may encounter a need for more localized assets, or a need to localize an asset because it’s often searched for, but never downloaded.

There are also insights to glean when comparing data from the creation stage of the asset cycle to an asset’s geography. Does content take longer to get approved in different regions? Is there a legal, rights, or communication blockage in the workflow? In this way, data from one stage of the cycle (management) can inform and improve another stage of the cycle (creation).

Similarly, channel performance data sorted by geographical tags can be revealing. What images resonate more in Europe vs. North America? That data can inform how you create new assets, manage which retail partners have access, and which distribution channels you focus your advertising budget on. When you break out of individual data silos, possibilities swirl.

Views and downloads show you where the data cycle ends (or should continue)

For many DAM users, after downloading an asset, their session within the DAM stops right there. Unfortunately, downloading is where the virtuous DAM data cycle cuts off too. So, when your data reveals that downloads outweigh any other method of sharing assets, it may be a risk indicator.

This data may surface questions like: does this user know about the DAM’s sharing functionalities and how they work? Is this an opportunity for training or internal communications?

If most users are downloading instead of sharing directly from the DAM, you’re losing out on the ability to recall assets, update them, and redistribute them from a central, secure source.

Create a cycle of virtue, not a circle of chaos

You can only tell part of your data story if you have three silos of disconnected data. In a perfect world, all assets would be available to be tracked, updated, and distributed in one holistic, data asset management system.

In the meantime, breaking out of a siloed view of data is your best chance at discovering insights that represent the full story of your assets and your DAM. It requires you to track individual metrics while analyzing how they interact with processes and users at every stage of the asset journey—from creation to management to performance. And to use those insights to suggest improvements that would make each stage better. It’s no simple task, but this process promises fewer vicious tornados and more virtuous cycles.

Is your DAM offering motivating, actionable metrics?

If your current data management system leaves something to be desired, learn more about Tenovos’ data-first digital asset management platform. Eliminate complexity so your storytellers can focus on what they do best: reaching your customers and growing your brand.

Book a demo to see it in action
Digital asset management data

Level Up Your DAM Data: Taming Chaos And Providing Indispensable Insights

By Blog

Since the 1990s, digital asset management systems (DAMs) have made the promise to relieve some of the burdens of work. But as many of us know, even fabulous DAMs come with sprawling folder structures, endless maintenance, and confusing data dashboards. What if—instead of cascading into chaos—it tended to improve with use? What if those dashboards offered data that was so helpful you came to consider it indispensable?

Let’s explore the valuable data you can gather from your DAM and how to implement it. Use ‘failed’ search terms to inform content, compare data sets to reveal progress, and better understand your creative team’s high-performing campaigns—and more.

Digital asset management data

Level 1 - Discover unlikely search insights

Tags. Tags. Tags. They can either be the bane of your existence or your savior. Users are constantly searching for assets in your DAM, so in order to expedite the process, you should continually be improving your tagging systems. Most DAM managers gather the most popular search terms and use that data to extrapolate where the tagging process could be more efficient. But this method only gets you part of the way—we call that survivorship bias. If you’re only looking for what DAM users searched successfully, you’re missing the most important search terms—those they used that resulted in them not finding what they needed.

Find out what search terms users are choosing that result in the incorrect asset results. How many attempts does it take a user to find what they need? How close to the exact tag do their search terms need to be? What you’ll discover is how to better refine or expand your tagging system to enable users to find assets faster and with better accuracy.

Most importantly, your users are telling you what content they need and how they search for it—if you take the time to ‘listen’ to them. Perhaps, your designers are constantly searching for smiling faces of masked people using your skincare products. They’re searching ‘mask’ only to discover stock images of masks used in internal communications. Exploring unsuccessful search terms can reveal a content gap in your assets and help you support your creative teams in filling that gap. Marketing and creative leaders will thank you for keeping their teams in the loop of the changing needs of your global partner and teams.

Data is a foundational element of DAM success. Learn how to set up your DAM to deliver key insights in our webinar DAM Data 101. 

Watch it here

Level 2 - Comparing data sets to discover workflow insights

If you’re using your DAM to move content from creation to approval, your users no longer suffer from endless email threads, permissionless assets, and rogue edits.

But what if I told you that your workflows could get even better? The data in your DAM can reveal the inefficiencies in how users complete workflows. The first step to discovering areas for workflow improvement is setting a benchmark for comparison.

You can start by gathering data on:

  • When your tech stack changed—Identify any third-party software the DAM has replaced or consolidated in the past 3-5 years. Note when that change happened.
  • Average creative time to approval—Pick a window of time before and after you implemented the DAM. Has your DAM made collaborating with global partners easier? How much time did approvals take before and after?
  • Project and partner—Compare approval cycle time and ease based on project or partner.

Within a selected window of time (one quarter, one year, or three years), what have been the results? The next step is to use this benchmark to inform workflow solutions and improvements.

For example:

  • If your DAM has effectively replaced software in your tech stack—explore new features in the DAM to discover what other software your DAM could streamline such as workflow or rights management tools.
  • If your approval cycles are growing faster and producing better assets—show your leadership how the DAM is continually improving workflows. Prove the value of the DAM and your role in managing it.
    • If it’s not, use that data to inform better workflows. Reach out to users and managers to understand how the approval process could be improved.
  • If some partners appear to speed through the approval process where others lag—inform your creative teams and reflect on what’s working (or not) when collaborating with a partner. Adjust project timelines, address blockages in workflow or communication, and use the opportunity to continually improve your partner relationships.

Level 3 - The data behind your high-performing assets

To ascend to this level, you need to take advantage of the data your DAM collects on the content it holds. You’ll need real-time insights into how your content is being used and who is using it. Explore how your DAM tracks asset and campaign performance to measure the impact on conversion and revenue. If your DAM isn’t providing these Level 3 insights, Tenovos does.
Discover which personas respond to which assets, or how your newest campaign is impacting brand loyalty—access to this data makes you, as the DAM’s manager, your team’s greatest ally. With asset and campaign performance data, your creative and marketing teams can replicate the success of past campaigns or pinpoint criteria for improvement.

Picture of charts and data

Leveling Up Your DAM Data And Your Brownie Points

DAM data can help you support improvements to your organization that are sure to be well- received by your creative and leadership teams. From discovering content gaps, improving approval cycles, and replicating the success of high-performing campaigns—the value of the data your DAM provides cannot be understated. And neither can your role in providing it.

Is your DAM offering motivating, actionable metrics?

If your current data management system leaves something to be desired, learn more about Tenovos’ data-first digital asset management platform. Eliminate complexity so your storytellers can focus on what they do best: reaching your customers and growing your brand.

Book a demo to see it in action

DAM Insights Your Entire Organization Will Actually Use

By Blog

Your digital asset management system (DAM) can feel like an overwhelming tool to report on. Everyone wants something different from it—end users want assets and tasks at their fingertips, managers want seamless workflows, and CMOs want to see their ROI. But when you give your DAM report to all these teams you get … *crickets*. You may even try to throw data into a bar chart. However, until that data tells a story of how to use it, those charts won’t be winning you any awards. So, how do you report on the success of your DAM in a way that’s motivating and practical for your teams? 

Your problem may lie in how you’re reporting. Most users of the DAM, regardless of their involvement, need tailored insights. Insights that are meaningful to them, contextualized in their work, and practically applicable. If you present actions they can take to get the results they want, that’s vastly more helpful—and they’ll likely see you as more helpful.

So, let’s decipher what insights each DAM user needs, from the end user to the CMO, and deliver data in a way that’s motivating to the entire organization.

End Users Are Worried About Their Task List

End users are working in the DAM all day, every day. They use it as a productivity tool to get approvals, search for assets, and collaborate with external partners. They know the DAM almost as well as you do. Getting work done effectively and on time is always on their mind. However, they tend to fall into patterns and resist adopting new features which require extra brainpower. They want to know what their outstanding tasks are and how much time they have to finish them.

You should provide insights on: 

How they can achieve their goals faster. Share data on how end users are utilizing the DAM and where their productivity hiccups are. For instance, if end users know that specific assets (or reviewers) take longer to complete the workflow, your end user may elect to schedule more time for review in their future projects. If you empower them with insights into how they work in the DAM, end users can set aside more time for lengthy tasks. In this way, those data points are now actionable, focused insights to help end users do their jobs better.

Additionally, consider creating a monthly DAM digest. One painlessly short missive of interesting links, or a video of you explaining one thing via Slack, Teams, or even email. This strikes the right balance of respecting their time and keeping them engaged. You could even feature someone from your teams who uses the DAM in an interesting way, has a productivity tip to share, or whose feedback has made the DAM better.

Data is a foundational element of DAM success. Learn how to set up your DAM to deliver key insights in our webinar DAM Data 101. 

Watch it here

Managers Are Worried About Empowering Creativity

Managers are asking themselves: How are our campaigns going? Are my creatives empowered to deliver top-notch assets on time? Am I able to get approvals on time? They see the DAM as a tool that enables successful campaigns, but they’re more concerned about how to make sure it works for the creatives they manage.

To lend them a hand:

Offer them data on how workflows are continually improving in the DAM. Show them how those efficiencies are helping end users stay productive. For example, they might be interested in data on how quickly approval cycles go depending on the partner. It will help inform them on future timelines, and direct them to make improvements. After all, why do we report? Not just to celebrate wins, but to find places to be better.

Create helpful how-tos on improving their approval processes or show them how to implement new DAM features into their project workflows. Present them solutions to their problems and they will thank you.

VPs Are Worried About Workflow Success

VPs across the organization want to see their projects move forward successfully, without interruption. They are keeping an eye on budget and time constraints. VPs of Marketing and Sales not only care about their customer-facing projects and cycles, but also making sure BDRs and external partners have the assets they need to be successful. VPs want to ensure everyone has the right assets, for the right programs, to yield the right results.

To keep them in your corner:

Empower them with the right tools to keep their sellers and partners engaged and productive. VPs are looking for ROI that counts. Show them you’re ensuring everyone who needs assets has access to them—If they don’t, they aren’t succeeding. When you’re reporting to VPs, make it clear whether their teams are getting the right stuff, using it effectively, and getting results. 

Try offering insights into which pieces of content are performing well. An excellent data asset management system will allow you to see your content performance and audience engagement, so you can help VPs replicate and scale that success.

CMOs Are Worried About Their ROI

CMOs are laser-focused on performance and their approach to the DAM is no different. They want to know if customers are happy. They’re obsessed with how customers are receiving the brand and how it makes them feel—especially if it influences how they buy. CMOs want quick answers to their questions and only relevant details. They won’t look up from slaying proverbial dragons unless something is broken or someone is working extremely well in supporting strategic goals.

To provide them value:

Make insightful connections between the data your DAM provides and the success of your latest sales cycles and marketing campaigns. Partner with sales and marketing managers to offer insights that reflect the collaborative work you’re all doing to get the most out of your DAM. How is the DAM enabling successful GTM strategies? How is the DAM contributing to overall productivity? It’s a big investment and your CMO will appreciate seeing cross-functional teams align their data to tell a cohesive story.

Ask your CMO if they have a deck of their top initiatives, perhaps which they presented to your board. Can you see it? If you can, maybe you can translate some of the promises they’ve made into dashboards in the DAM, to help them prove to the board they’re making progress.

Cast Their Worries Aside

When everyone is empowered with knowledge they can make better decisions and collaborate more effectively. By providing personalized insights into the DAM you’re enabling organizational harmony, from the end user to the CMO. Now, that’s motivating.

Is your DAM offering motivating, actionable metrics?

If your current data management system leaves something to be desired, learn more about Tenovos’ data-first digital asset management platform. Eliminate complexity so your storytellers can focus on what they do best: reaching your customers and growing your brand.

Book a demo to see it in action

How Do I Get More Out Of My DAM Platform? 5 Career-Catapulting Tips

By Blog

A digital asset management system (DAM) is more than an archive. As its manager, you hold the source to unlimited potential—to increase your team’s productivity, to offer data to back up or challenge people’s pet theories, and to manage content out in the world. But, how often are you using your DAM to its fullest potential? How can you add value to your team and propel your career forward? 

These five career-catapulting tips will help you level up your automation, simplify your tech stack, and collaborate effectively with your partners—all by maximizing what your DAM can do. Who knows… You may even get promoted *wink*.

1. Rules Are Revolutionary

How often do you get requests that boil down to, “I don’t know what I’m allowed to use!“ or “I can’t find what I need!” (Or, *shudder*, “Can I get that logo again?”) Whether it’s your internal marketing team or global partners and licensees—rules are an invaluable feature to streamline several processes.

Not all DAMs work the same, but you should be able to set rules to automate things like:

  • How metadata is mined from ingestion—Set yours to automatically tag file properties, content, and embedded data at ingestion.
  • Permission-based access—Automate permissions based on where content is uploaded in the platform, or how content is tagged.
  • Workflows—Apply rules to automate content organization and tagging when assets are uploaded into the system, ensuring they go where intended every time.

Rules release you from having to recreate new criteria every time you invite a freelancer into a project or ingest a big batch of assets. It’ll create cleaner data, reduce work, and as we’ll explore, offer better insights.

2. DAM, Those Channels Look Sharp

A good DAM doesn’t just store assets—it should also help you publish approved content. That’s pushing creative out to campaigns, channels, social, and eComm sites. Whether you use a CMS integration or a content delivery network (Tenovos’ CDN is built-in), your marketing teams can push assets directly to their channels. This potentially saves everyone time from using third-party publishing tools, which simplifies the workflow. It also reduces the potential for human error and simplifies onboarding. Plus, you can change any asset after publication and push updates across all those channels instantly. Your teams also have the power to retract content at the click of a button, if necessary. 

The best part of using your DAM as your channel delivery tool is that all of the vital metadata for each asset is in one place, meaning you never lose important SEO tags. Expanding your use of the DAM in this way increases productivity and maintains brand consistency.

3. Automate To Liberate

The creative world suffers from app sprawl. In most organizations, the review process is scattered—it’s email threads, ‘check-ins’ on Slack, approvals in Asana, and meetings in Zoom. The challenge with this workflow is that it robs a percentage of everyone’s day as they attempt to keep up with all those communication tools. Undoubtedly, helping everyone at your organization get a bit of their day back is sure to set you apart from the average DAM manager. 

The solution is to automate the review process. If you automate reviews, it allows everyone to forget about things until it’s ready for them, which frees them up to do more focused work. Your DAM probably comes with a review template you’ll want to customize. Review and annotate content in the DAM and set workflow triggers to automatically alert marketing leaders and external partners to complete a review round—once they do, the cycle continues until all assets are approved.

It works just as well for long-term reviews. If an asset is set to expire or should be revisited after six months, set alerts for the DAM to automatically resurface content to the attention of your marketing teams for regular review and updating.

4. Make DAM Collaboration Irresistible

One of our clients does something unique for their retail partner. This liquor brand uploads pre-approved templates and available assets into their DAM. Their retail partners access these permissions-protected assets and can change the templates based on their recent promos. From there, retail partners can print and publish new content in bars and restaurants worldwide, all without additional approval cycles or fear of misusing creative. 

In the same way, what if you created an irresistible DAM collaboration experience? Not just fun or engaging but a process they can’t resist. Lockdown your creative in a template they can only use with your DAM—if they want those shiny new assets, they have to use your tried and true process. Resistance is futile—and they might just thank you for making their lives easier. Plus, dynamic templates for print and digital will have everyone thanking you for making their lives easier.

5. Make Your DAM Your CMO’s Favorite Tool

The key to getting noticed by your CMO is proactively offering insights that prove the value of your DAM. Reach out to your C-level leaders and book a meeting to present on the DAM. Now, it might feel like jumping into the catapult and tightening the rope yourself, but fear not—this is a golden opportunity to show them the value of the DAM and your role in managing it. 

To impress your CMO: 

  • Report on your ongoing work of integrating your DAM with your product information management systems to share data 
  • Explain how the DAM is speeding up approval cycles or contributing to the success of your newest campaigns
  • Show how newly implemented DAM features have replaced redundancies in your stack, saving the organization money on software

Go beyond reporting how the DAM helps your creative perform and report on how it helps your creatives perform. 

Onwards And Upwards

The value of the DAM—and what you do as its manager—cannot be understated. These tips will help you get the most out of your DAM, whether it be automating workflows, collaborating with external partners, or showing your executive leadership the ROI of one of their most important tools. Your DAM is your catapult—it’s time to propel your career forward.

Does your DAM do it all?

If your current data management system leaves something to be desired, learn more about Tenovos’ data-first digital asset management platform.

Eliminate complexity so your storytellers can focus on what they do best: reaching your customers and growing your brand.

Learn more
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Interpreting The Forrester Wave™: Digital Asset Management for Customer Experience, Q1 2022 report

By Blog

The latest Forrester Wave report on Digital Asset Management (DAM) for Customer Experience has just been published, and like many, perhaps you’re wondering how to make the most of this incredible resource.

 

We’re here to help.

Full disclosure, Tenovos is named in the report as a ‘strong performer’. As a startup company that is only three full years old and making its first appearance in a Forrester report, being evaluated as a strong performer is a big accomplishment for us and speaks volumes about what we’re doing in the market. 

That said, our industry experts have been in the DAM space for a long time. They’ve all used Forrester’s guidance in the past to evaluate vendors, and so we thought it would be a good idea to share our experts’ insights with you, to help you interpret the report and use it to inform your vendor selection process.

Let’s break it down.

Structure

Forrester has developed a 27-criterion evaluation of the DAM for customer experience space, and within that evaluated 14 vendors (of which Tenovos is one, as mentioned above). The criteria are split into three primary categories: Current Offering, Strategy, and Market Presence. Each vendor is given criteria scores, and then placed on the Wave as leaders, strong performers, contenders, or challengers.

The report provides a breakdown of how each DAM vendor scored across those three categories, in addition to their individual scores for each criteria. Forrester shares how it weights each criteria to help you understand how they prioritize performance.

You can find the full Forrester Wave methodology here.

Current Offering vs. Strategy:

Which is more important?

Let’s get right into this question, as it’s probably the most important one for you to consider when evaluating DAM vendors. 

Here’s a quick tl;dr on this section: you want to look at criteria that are more reflective of the future, and not just things that are fundamental current dimensions of digital asset management. Read on for more on why.

Read the Forrester Wave Report on Digital Asset Management in Customer Experience to help you choose the right DAM for your organization.

Click here to download the report.

There are some DAM vendors who have been in the space a long time and are really good at what they do. These companies have robust capabilities today that may satisfy all of your current needs and a little bit more. While these organizations are great choices for your DAM platform, ask yourself if they’re built to grow and change as your business needs evolve.

Think about the last five years, and how much change your business has likely experienced. The way your team goes to market, the expectations of consumers, the importance of brands, and how the digital world just continues to evolve day after day. The things that are innovative today are old news tomorrow… that’s just the way of the world now.

The DAM space is similar, in that the functionalities that are evaluated as part of the Current Offering category are really just table stakes. Library services, workflow management, clean user interfaces, DAMs today just have to do these, and do them well.

Now, you might say, when reading the report, that some DAM vendors score much higher than others for different functionalities. Well, you’re right. But that’s where things get difficult in your evaluation, because you need to decide how to prioritize the strength of the current functionality alongside the long-term strategic direction of the platform.

It’s our suggestion that aligning to the strategic vision of a DAM vendor is going to provide the most value to you in the long run. That’s because, as mentioned above, things change fast. But DAMs are complex systems that take time to implement, are not easy to swap between, and that require a lot of internal buy-in to be successful. No one wants to be changing DAM vendors every few years as your requirements evolve.

Within the Strategy category, you’re able to assess how companies approach the market and get a sense for whether or not Forrester agrees that their vision is realistic. It evaluates the roadmap, and gives an assessment of each vendor’s financial performance as well.

We’ll get into more on strategy below, but suffice it to say, the best approach is to ensure a vendor’s current offerings do match your needs, but then focus on their long-term vision and strategic direction to make sure it’s the right DAM for you in the future, as your needs grow.

What are the key criteria to evaluate?

The Forrester Wave evaluates DAM vendors on 27 criteria, which are reflected in 15 higher-level criteria. While each of these categories is important, there are a few that we believe are the most interesting to look at when evaluating your vendors. We’ve provided a breakdown here, with some thoughts on each.

 

Current Offering – Library services:

Library services are absolutely essential to the success of your DAM. Without this foundational capability, nothing in the DAM works. In fact, a decade ago, the most important characteristic of a DAM was how well it organized and indexed content for searchability. 

But DAM vendors that focus on archiving content really well, rather than activating content, are living in the past. Today, and looking to the future, how your DAM integrates and activates content, and how it can measure the impact of your content by channel, is much more significant to your business than its ability to store content.

So while library services are incredibly important, they’re also table stakes. Archiving content is the past. Activation is the future.

“Archiving content is the past.

Activation is the future.”

Current Offering – Enterprise platform integration:

As you’re evaluating DAM vendors, you’ll find two primary camps. You have certain large vendors who have DAM systems within a wider service offering. Purchasing the DAM is taking on just one part of a larger suite of products. There are some pros to these vendors — just think about Adobe and how closely connected their DAM is to their CMS platform. However, Adobe’s top priority is their CMS, meaning their DAM rarely gets prioritized for innovation and improvements.

On the other hand, you have vendors who are solely focused on providing a world-class DAM platform. The benefits here are obvious — having a vendor that pours all its resources into the software that you’ve purchased can only lead to a better DAM for you. But you run the risk of having a DAM that operates in a silo within your organization, if it can’t integrate well with other systems.

That’s why enterprise platform integration is such an important category for you to consider during your evaluation. Think about your DAM and the place it should have in your organization. At Tenovos, we believe DAMs should be as important as any other tech in the enterprise ecosystem of big consumer brands. Therefore, enterprise platform integration is critical so that you have interoperability between systems, and your content can be activated wherever it’s needed. 

Some top systems to consider here are integrations with your product information management system (PIM), your social media publishing software, CMS platform, and collaborative work management platforms to tie into enterprise workflows.

Strategy – Product vision

We’ve already said a lot in this article about the future vision of a DAM platform, and how important it is to your evaluation. But it’s worth mentioning again that, as your industry evolves and the digital revolution continues, your requirements for a DAM are going to change with it. Selecting a vendor based solely on current offerings is not going to serve you in the long term.

So, what is a good product vision?

That depends on how you see the future. At Tenovos, we believe the future is all about activating content, measuring its impact across channels, and leveraging those insights to inform content decisions on a daily basis. Today’s DAM platforms are great libraries of content, they improve productivity through workflows, and in some cases can help distribute content effectively.

But the future of content is much more granular. It’s a future where buyers and consumers expect personalized experiences. They want to see themselves in images, and they crave storytelling as a way to consume messages. Today, we’re doing a lot of guessing. Tomorrow, we should have data and insights to help us make these decisions. 

Forrester has scored each vendor’s vision in their report based on their assessment of that vendor’s ability to achieve the vision. When you’re looking at this category, take it as an indication that what each vendor says is their vision is something they can actually achieve for you. And if that vision is something you get excited about, then maybe you’ve found your next DAM provider.

Strategy – Market approach

Market approach is Forrester’s evaluation of how DAM vendors go to market, and if their approach is sound. As with other categories, you have different groups. The first are your legacy vendors who provide a strong DAM platform, and continue to do the things that are working, or who haven’t really changed their approach.

The second group are the disrupters, like Tenovos, who are new on the scene and are pushing the boundaries of what it means to provide a DAM platform. 

As you’re evaluating DAM vendors, this is a good indication of the kind of company you’re getting involved with. Are they stagnant or innovative? Are they trying to disrupt the category or maintain stability? Do you want to push the envelope or stay in familiar territory? These are all questions for you to answer, and there’s no right or wrong way to go necessarily.

Strategy – Performance

A quick note here on performance. Forrester defines this as financial performance, and the score is not reflective in any way on the platform’s performance for customers and their users. One component of the performance score is profitability, for example. 

What this doesn’t really represent well are startup companies like Tenovos. In our example, as a three-year old company, we are not profitable today because we are intentionally investing our capital to drive growth and innovation instead of cash flow. However we, like many tech startups, are venture-backed with a strong financial position and a documented plan towards profitability. We also have very strong indicators in terms of customer retention and revenue growth rates.

When you’re looking at this section, it’s important to keep these factors in mind so you don’t exclude powerful up-and-coming vendors like Tenovos from your process.

Closing thoughts

The Forrester Wave is an incredible resource for you when evaluating DAM vendors. We hope to have provided you with some insights and food for thought as you review the report, and that you’ve understood the message here that, while the report lists clear leaders, there are other factors we think you should consider when making your decision.

These are things like strategic vision and plans for the platform, abilities to integrate with enterprise platforms, and willingness to innovate within an evolving business landscape where every company is becoming a media company, and content activation is going to be supremely important.

If you’re ready to choose a modern digital asset management platform to help you activate your content, read Forrester’s Wave on DAM vendors for key insights.

If you have any questions about digital asset management, click here to contact us, or book a demo to see the Tenovos platform in action.

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The Modern Marketer Needs a Data-First DAM Solution

By Blog

In an era of increasing personalization, the key to successful marketing campaigns is effective storytelling that reaches the right audience with the right message at the right moment. If this chemistry between audience, content, and timing is the key to success, creative and marketing professionals have to rely on next-generation asset management technology that can guide them toward the right combinations by replacing guesswork with data, and surrounding content with context.

Traditionally, Digital Asset Management platforms (DAMs) have focused on assisting teams to manage their digital assets and move them from inside the organization to external partners and platforms. The premise is simple: a central repository where brands can store their assets alongside relevant metadata to make everything easy to find — photos and videos, logos and tear sheets, and any other brand collateral that needs to be used and reused.

At its most basic level, a good DAM solution enables marketers to do their jobs more efficiently. More modern DAMs employ AI and machine learning to automatically add relevant tags to assets, so teams can spend less time on tedious tasks like tagging or finding assets and more time on the creative and analytical areas of their jobs. The most advanced DAM platforms, however, go beyond managing and moving assets, to actually measuring their performance in their context of use.

 

Building a DAM for the Modern Enterprise

Over the past 20 years, the pace of change in technology has exploded, while the DAM category has lagged behind in innovation. Brands have come to expect an exceptional, personalized user experience complete with smart insights from their marketing platforms, and DAM should be no exception. As marketing becomes increasingly fast-paced and data-driven, it’s time for a completely new and different DAM experience — one that can meet the demands of an increasingly tech-savvy industry and understands its pain points.

The first and most important question that a DAM provider should ask is, ‘how does my solution help marketers do their jobs more effectively?’ That is, after all, the central goal of a DAM system: to make it easier and more efficient for creators and marketers to collaborate to design and execute successful campaigns. In other words, if finding an asset within the DAM system and searching through emails to find it take approximately the same amount of time, the system is not making teams more efficient — it’s simply adding a layer of complexity to their martech stack.

 

Creating a Seamless User Experience

Not all DAM platforms are created equal. One common issue that many enterprises face is the inability to seamlessly integrate their DAM platform with the rest of their marketing ecosystem, which can essentially negate the efficiencies gained by using an asset management solution in the first place. Considering that the code base of many solutions currently on the market is over a decade old (older, in some cases), this is a problem that will only get worse over time as marketers look to incorporate new tools and technologies into their workflows. Consequently, it’s important to find and implement a solution that leverages the use of modern technologies — such as AI/ML, micro-services, graph databases, and serverless environments — that will be able to maintain its speed and flexibility in the years to come.

An organization’s ability to collaborate seamlessly with team members across — and outside of — the organization is also a key indicator of the success of a DAM implementation. Marketing doesn’t happen in a single silo; from research to ideation, to creation to deployment, marketing is interconnected and interdisciplinary. A modern DAM platform should connect the enterprise in such a way that it simplifies the creative life cycle and enables marketers to reduce the friction and time required to launch each new campaign.

 

Data-Driven Marketers Need Data-Driven Technology

The reality is that many of the DAM solutions available on the market currently have not kept pace with the evolving needs of the increasingly data-driven marketing operation; they’re often expensive, difficult to implement, and don’t deliver the user experience marketers and creative professionals have come to expect from their technology. Seen from this angle, it’s not surprising that many organizations are hesitant to invest heavily in a new system that is not capable of demonstrating a return on investment.

Brands need modern DAM platforms that not only enable them to meet the demands of marketing in the digital age, but also help them to demonstrate — and improve — their ROI. Marketers should expect their DAM platform to provide:

 

  • A data-first approach to asset management that allows brands to measure and optimize their processes and their content to provide increasingly personalized experiences
  • A seamless user experience that drives adoption and enables teams across the world to collaborate easily
  • Performance and optimization capabilities underpinned by artificial intelligence and machine learning
  • Continuous improvement and delivery to support the demands of a global omnichannel enterprise

At the end of the day, companies implement a DAM solution in order to optimize their processes and improve their ability to tell the compelling stories that are central to a successful marketing operation. This optimization should come not only in the form of improving the speed of creation, but also the strategy behind a given campaign. A system that has access to all of the contextual data that surrounds your every asset should be able to distill those data into insights that inform the creation of future content.

A modern, data-first DAM should act not only as a content database but also as a source of insight to enable marketers to make smarter creative decisions, which in turn allows them to tell stories that matter to their audience.

Want to know what types of data your DAM should be providing? Read our blog on Capturing Data Across the Story Lifecycle or contact us for more information.

 

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Capturing Data Across The Story Lifecycle

By Blog

When marketers talk about data and analytics, we are most often referring to performance data, i.e., what was the outcome of the campaign in which our marketing assets were used, or how much engagement did we generate on a particular channel?

And while this end result is critically important to decisions about the kind of assets we should produce in the future, it only tells half the story. To identify areas where we can optimize across our content operation, marketers need to gather data across the lifecycle — not just at the end.

Data-Driven Marketing: Are We There Yet?

The concept of the “data-driven” marketing organization is not new, but achieving that status is still out of reach for many. According to statistics gathered in the Invesp infographic excerpted below, nearly half of marketers feel “significant pressure” to increase the role that data plays in their current marketing strategy. That stat is unsurprising when viewed in context with the next, which is that 87% of marketers consider data to be the most underutilized asset in the organization. 

But regardless of how much pressure organizations put on their marketing teams to increase the emphasis on data, that can be difficult to do without the ability to collect that data readily and accurately. While advertising platforms and CMSs have come a long way toward providing insight into the performance of completed campaigns, everything prior to that stage is still out of focus for most organizations.

What Is Story Lifecycle Data?

Before we jump into the stages of the Story Lifecycle, let’s back up a moment to define a “Story” as we think of it here at Tenovos. Digital assets are the building blocks of your content — photos, videos, logos, etc. — the kinds of things brands manage in a Digital Asset Management (DAM) platform like ours. These assets on their own are just the beginning. When you are able to augment those assets with data such that you get a 360 degree view of your content, that’s when we call it a complete Story. These data types include classic metadata, product and business data, all the way down to performance data, which we store alongside assets in our Story Manager platform.

As any content marketer or designer can tell you, a lot of time and effort has gone on in the life of a piece of content before it reaches its final, published form. In fact, we think of this Story Lifecycle as having six stages:

  • Creative Ideation
  • Design Iteration
  • Review & Approval
  • Campaign Creation
  • Content Distribution
  • Review & Optimization

Each of these stages is generating data that can lead to actionable insights for marketers that can improve their efficiency, effectiveness, and audience engagement. Below is an example of a Story Lifecycle and the kinds of data that can be captured at each stage if the right tools are in place.

Seeing it laid out this way, can you start to imagine the kinds of opportunities you and your team would have to improve your processes and outcomes if each asset in your content library was stored alongside this kind of data profile?

How To Collect and Store Lifecycle Data

Now that you’ve seen examples of the kinds of data your Story Lifecycle is generating, you might be trying to figure out how you could go about tracking and storing that kind of information within the structure of your organization and the tools you have available. There are as many methods for doing this as there are marketing teams out there, but most companies generally fall into one of three buckets when it comes to lifecycle data:

  1. Not tracking it or storing it
  2. Tracking some of it manually or in disparate systems, but not storing it alongside content
  3. Tracking it automatically through platform integrations and storing it alongside content

Which category does your organization fall into? If you aren’t where you’d like to be, keep in mind that every move along the spectrum adds a great deal of value. That is, there’s a huge leap in value from not tracking data to manually tracking data, even if you haven’t devised a means of storing that data with the content it applies to yet!

The real magic happens when moving from bucket #2 to bucket #3. As those in #2 can tell you, manually tracking data and/or KPIs is time-consuming, and it can be hard to dedicate that kind of time when there’s no clear purpose to what you’ve collected. Without a way to easily attach what you’ve collected to your content and store it in a central hub for later review, it’s easy to let the tracking fall by the wayside when things get busy. 

But when teams are able to harness the power of automation and platform integrations to track their lifecycle data in the background and pair those insights with the content they apply to, those insights become actionable and can add real value to the organization. 

If you’re interested in learning more about managing your content library in a way that adds value and empowers your marketing team to make better decisions, click here to set up a personalized demo of Tenovos’ Active Story Management platform today. We’d love to show you what the modern, data-first DAM can do for your business.