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Taylor Veres

Feature blog post 01

Revolutionizing Sports Content Creation with DAM

By Blog
Reading Time: 9 minutes

Teams across major leagues like the NBA, NFL, NHL, MLB, and UEFA (to name a few) are churning out more content than ever.

Discover how modern digital asset management (DAM) can streamline the sports content creation and distribution process.

visual sport blog

In the world of pro sports, content – from game-day coverage to training footage, fan interactions, stadium tours, historical milestones, player interviews, and more – is continuously being captured and published.

Today, fans aren’t just watching games; they’re engaging on social channels, demanding real-time updates (has anyone seen an NFL Reddit on Super Bowl day?), and crave immersive experiences that transcend traditional sports coverage to feel closer to their teams.

Social media is but one part of this bottomless content demand. Beyond audience engagement strategies, content is also integral in supporting sports sponsorships (a global market projected to reach USD 189.54 Billion by 2030), partnerships, marketing campaigns, press releases, and more.

Setting the Stadium:
The Need for Real-Time Sports Content

Think about a playoff game in the NBA; fans eagerly anticipate that game-winning dunk as the clock winds down and tension grows.

In this moment, the need for real-time content is palpable. Live updates will need to be published to team apps and social media (and the player who scored probably wants that photo for their own Instagram), not to mention the assets that need to be distributed for post-game analysis and sponsor collateral. 

With the imperative for real-time content, meticulous workflows are even more necessary to ensure assets are appropriately categorized and approved. Working fast is when errors and steps are most often missed (as we all know too well).

Sports teams today are not just franchises; they’re brands unto themselves. This necessitates the strict management and protection of their identity.

The need to manage and safeguard content is paramount due to the significant financial investments associated with sports branding, sponsorships, and rights management.

So, what’s the solution for balancing the demand for real-time content and upholding brand integrity?

The Role of Digital Asset Management in Revolutionizing Sports Content Creation

Given the sheer volume of assets constantly generated in the sports industry, and with many sports teams having a rich history (there are archives and older assets that need to be managed, too), digital asset management (DAM) is becoming a critical solution for sports teams to implement.

DAM provides teams with a central repository to ingest, manage, and categorize assets and expedite the approvals and publishing of these assets with integrations and automated workflow capabilities (more on that workflow below).

Moreover, DAMs improve content discoverability, ensuring digital assets are accessible for future marketing and partnership initiatives by applying customizable metadata that make assets easily searchable. 

However, given the significant financial investments associated with sports branding, the ability to use assets must also be restricted. DAM platforms enable teams to configure user permissions and download requests, as well as marry assets with the associated rights information, mitigating the risk that assets are misused.

Taking it one step further, modern DAM platforms leverage data across the asset lifecycle to track content and it’s performance from the moment it leaves the DAM, letting you see what is (and isn’t ) being used, where, and how. These insights enable brands to optimize content reuse and ensure assets are utilized as intended, maximizing content ROI.

Now, let’s delve deeper into the practical applications and business advantages of DAM for sports organizations.

Breaking Down the Use Case for DAM
in Sports Organizations

sportblogdiagram
DAM underpins the entire content creation workflow, as content, (meta)data, analytics, and more move from system to system.

Asset Ingestion 

In the initial phase of content creation, DAM systems streamline the process of importing assets into the digital ecosystem. 

Let’s consider the scenario of capturing a burst on a professional camera or smartphone during a touchdown. With the camera or smartphone connected to wifi, the photographer can send that photo to the DAM in near real-time. 

We call this “Click to Cloud,” where in seconds of the image being captured, it can be sent to the DAM to kick off the ingestion, categorization, and approval process.

Automated Tagging

Utilizing AI capabilities, DAM systems can automatically tag objects and individuals in the assets based on customized metadata tags and vocabulary sets. This metadata could include player names, team logos, specific landmarks, game dates, or any other relevant data your team chooses to add. 

This metadata tagging helps to correctly categorize assets at speed as they are ingested and makes assets easily searchable in the DAM. For instance, a Raptors DAM user looking for an image of Pascal Siakam, during the 2019 NBA playoffs, in a red jersey could search using these keywords and locate images that match these criteria within the DAM.

The business of a streamlined ingestion and tagging process is manifold. The DAM lays the groundwork for efficient content management throughout its lifecycle by accurately categorizing assets with metadata during ingestion. This enhances searchability and expedites subsequent approval processes and workflows, ensuring seamless content distribution across various channels.

Streamlined Creative Workflows and Approval Processes

After content is tagged in the DAM, workflow automation can streamline intricate creative workflows and approval processes. This is achieved by orchestrating various software, such as project management and creative tools, to execute and monitor tasks automatically triggered by data. With DAM connecting the tech ecosystem, the need to manually transfer assets between systems and individuals is eliminated.

Here’s a simplified example of how a creative workflow for sports content could play out with automation. For the purpose of this example, let’s say the team has set this workflow for touchdown images:

Asset Ingestion:

A photographer captures an iconic touchdown during a game. The shot is sent to the DAM and ingested.

Automated Tagging

The DAM automatically assigns metadata to the image, such as player name, team logo, and game date.

Rights Applied

The rights information associated with players in the image is applied to ensure that the use of this asset is in accordance with usage or licensing agreements. 

Review

Stakeholders receive a notification in their project management system to review the metadata and rights information for accuracy. 

Creative Workflow

The creative team receives a notification to add the player’s name in the brand font to the image. A new version of the image can be created and edited directly in the DAM with the integration of creative tools like InDesign, so the original asset stays secure.

Approval Process

Stakeholders receive a notification in their project management system to review the final image for brand compliance and approve the image for an Instagram story.

Publishing

Once approved in the project management system, the image is triggered to be automatically published to the team’s Instagram.

There are plenty of ways this type of workflow automation could be orchestrated based on the specific needs and existing technology within a sports organization. Ultimately, streamlined workflows expedite the sports content creation and approval process, allowing for faster turnaround times from “Shot to Social.”

Posting in Near Real-Time

To expand on the publishing step in the above workflow example, integrating DAM with social media platforms empowers teams to publish finished digital assets directly from the DAM. 

Publishing from DAM ensures the correct version of the asset will be posted without the need for assets to be downloaded or transferred, risking version control issues. 

Even when leveraging automated posting, teams can have confidence that the brand and financial risks associated with posting incorrect content are mitigated, as this content has undergone an approval process within the DAM. This integration capability further contributes to a faster turnaround time from “Shot to Social.”

The integration between DAM and social media platforms enables higher engagement levels, as near real-time updates allow fans to feel involved in the game atmosphere, even from the comfort of their couch.

Rights Management 

The use case for DAM extends beyond the context of getting content live faster with “click to cloud” and “shot to social” capabilities. DAMs play a pivotal role in enforcing usage policies and mitigating unauthorized distribution with rights management.

By leveraging AI for tagging during ingestion, DAMs can automatically apply rights to assets, ensuring compliance with usage agreements. Teams can access assets directly in the DAM based on rights agreements and also use that information to inform the content lifecycle (i.e., if/when an asset needs to be archived).

As integrated rights management allows rights information to be readily accessible alongside the asset, this functionality empowers teams to better avoid costly fines and brand damage.

In the context of sports partnerships and sponsorships, marrying rights information with assets also informs what assets can be shared with external teams (or “third parties).

Controlled Third-Party Access

Partnerships, press, broadcasters, and other stakeholders require access to assets for various purposes, including marketing campaigns, press coverage, and broadcasting rights. Controlling third-party access to assets in the sports world is paramount, especially given the significant financial commitments and implications. 

DAMs facilitate secure and controlled access, as features like portals or collections allow teams to organize and share groups of assets with the external relevant stakeholders. 

Assets remain within the DAM and are shared securely without needing to leave the platform. This ensures that stakeholders only access assets relevant to their needs, improving efficiency and mitigating the risk of unauthorized distribution.

By providing secure (and easy) access to relevant content, teams can foster stronger partnerships, optimize revenue streams, and have confidence that contractual agreements, licensing rights, and brand guidelines are being upheld.

Integrations

Beyond social media and rights management, connecting other platforms with DAM (made possible with APIs) introduces more possibilities for optimization.

For example, by integrating DAM with content management systems (CMS), teams can access assets in the CMS and effortlessly add and update images, videos, text, and more on webpages, accelerating content distribution and ensuring brand consistency and accuracy across all digital touchpoints.

DAMs can also integrate with league-specific platforms or other industry-specific systems through APIs. These integrations provide tailored solutions that cater to sports organizations’ unique needs.

For instance, integration with league-specific platforms like NFL Next Gen Stats enables more personalized metadata applications within the DAM. By leveraging external data sources, such as player performance data or sponsorship information, DAM systems can enrich asset metadata automatically and allow users to search in the DAM using very specific criteria – like Josh Jacobs touchdown, wheel route, vs. Cover 2 defense, 4th quarter.”

Add DAM to Your Roster

Adopting modern Digital Asset Management (DAM) solutions is pivotal for sports organizations striving to streamline their content creation processes amid the ever-growing demand for real-time content across various digital platforms. 

Getting assets from “Click to Cloud” and from “Shot to Social” means teams can deliver content at high speed to fans and stakeholders alike.

By implementing DAM, teams can expedite asset ingestion, tagging, and creative and approval workflows, all while ensuring brand consistency. As the digital landscape continues to evolve, the role of DAM in sports content creation will remain pivotal, offering teams a competitive edge with automation, integrations, and insights to stay ahead of the game. 

Just like a championship-winning team, embracing DAM is not just about winning today’s game but laying the foundation for long-term success in the ever-changing world of sports content creation.

Discover modern digital asset management for sports, media and entertainment.

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Feature blog post AI Trademark 01

Generative AI & Copyright: What Creatives Need to Know

By Blog, creative, DAM essentials Retail, Productivity-Reuse
Reading Time: 9 minutes

Generative AI represents a shift in the field of artificial intelligence, offering content creation capabilities that were previously unimaginable – forcing us to contemplate the privacy implications that come about as a result.

Generative AI employs advanced algorithms and models, utilizing extensive training sets to create novel content based on user input. This capability, rooted in learning intricate data patterns, opens up a world of possibilities for generating ideas, content, and creative assets, significantly streamlining content creation. 

Not familiar with the potential of generative AI? More on that here.

AI blog visual

However, the emergence of generative AI also brings with it complex and pressing risks that creatives need to be aware of.

The use of Open AI and other generative art or image technologies carries significant implications due to the potential for generating content that might inadvertently infringe on existing trademarks, as models are trained on content accessible across the entire internet.

In this blog, we will delve into the ways generative AI can be utilized by creative and marketing teams today, and the related implications for content creation and digital asset management (DAM) that users should be aware of as this technology evolves.

We’re Entering Generative AI’s Napster Era

Let’s start off by acknowledging that this is a movie we’ve seen before. Remember Napster?

When transformative technologies emerge, they rapidly gain users before the law has a chance to catch up.

In 1999, this platform sent shockwaves through the music industry with technology that allowed users to contribute to, search for, and download digital content. Virtually overnight, millions of users were engaged in the exchange of digital files, with a significant portion of that content being copyrighted material. 


Then, the law caught up.
Napster’s impact led to significant changes in copyright law and intellectual property regulations, contributing to the strengthening of copyright enforcement, and highlighting the need for digital rights management (DRM) technologies.
The law catching up with generative AI is the reality of what’s to come.


Right now, generative AI is like a party that’s in full swing – but the cops are starting to arrive.
On August 18, 2023, a U.S. federal court ruled that AI-generated artwork cannot be copyrighted on the grounds that copyright law only extends to human beings.

And just this October, big names in AI have pledged to add metadata and watermarks to AI-generated images so that they can be identified as machine-made.

These developments come amid AI companies taking some heat for how they’ve trained these models to generate content from billions of existing web sources, including images and written content, generally without the creators’ knowledge or consent.

A group of prominent novelists joined a legal battle against an AI company, accusing the company of infringing on authors’ copyrights, claiming it used their books to train its chatbot. 

Additionally, artists have launched a lawsuit against AI art generator tools, alleging that these companies have infringed the rights of “millions of artists” by training AI tools on five billion images scraped from the web without con­sent. 


Creative and marketing teams leveraging this technology need to be aware as well.
The recent federal court ruling means that any content generated by generative AI cannot be copyrighted by your company. Further, depending on how you’re using generative AI, there’s a chance you could be inadvertently using work that is trademarked. 

Finally, if you’re using a DAM that leverages AI, you want to be sure you understand how your own information is being used to train the algorithm. 

So, let’s have a look at what to be aware of regarding the typical use cases for leveraging generative AI for content creation.

Generative AI Use Case #1: Inspiration & Ideation

Generative AI can be a goldmine of inspiration, so a common use case is utilizing the initial concepts it offers to fuel brainstorms and help move things along when you’re lacking ideas.

Here’s a basic example (that many of us have likely tested out by now).

Imagine you’re planning a campaign around the launch of a new clothing line – but you’re stumped on ideas for social posts. With a prompt about the campaign and what type of posts you want, you could get a generative AI tool to suggest 10 post ideas for Instagram.

To take it one step further, if you were stumped on what color schemes and design elements you wanted to use for graphics, generative AI tools could provide suggestions based on current trends and historical data.

The beauty here is that while the AI is actively contributing to your creative process, issues with trademarks are less prominent. This is because you’re not taking any final assets that the AI created, or publishing the AI’s output with your company’s name on it.


Implications of Using AI for Inspiration

Privacy
Even when utilizing generative AI tools for inspiration, you need to be aware of what information you feed this technology. Due to how these platforms use data for training models, the privacy of what you input is not guaranteed and there’s potential to unintentionally expose data.

Being mindful of what you input into these engines is crucial for decreasing the risk of data exposure and noncompliance in the age of AI-driven creativity. As a rule of thumb, confidential or personal information should not make its way into any AI tools to protect the privacy of employees and the organization.

Generative AI Use Case #2: Production of Final Content

The second use case is where generative AI becomes not just an idea generator but a content creator. Generative AI has the capability to produce social media images, blog post headers, or even video clips. 

So, to go back to our previous example, a marketing team could use this technology to produce 10 Instagram posts, including copy and graphic components and push these assets out to their audiences. 

Of course, this would save so much time on content creation. However, this use case for generative AI brings about a lot more to consider. 

Implications of Using AI for Production

Brand Compliance
To ensure brand compliance internally, teams should ensure that any AI-generated assets are treated no differently than traditional content. This means they should go through the same review and compliance workflows as any other content your business creates.

Rights Infringements
Where things get even trickier is that the process behind how AI-generated assets are created is not transparent. Generative AI models are often highly complex making it difficult to trace what was used to create the text, visual, or audio source.

Why is this a problem?
When AI generates content, it may produce work that closely resembles someone else’s. Without a clear understanding of where this inspiration was sourced from, it’s challenging to establish how to handle proper attribution and ownership credits. This could make it difficult for the content to meet an organization’s legal and compliance requirements, or pass through the review and approval process. 

Further, using generative AI to create final content brings with it the risk of unintentional trademark infringement. If an AI inadvertently generates content that closely mirrors trademarked material, you might unknowingly be in violation of trademark law.

Your Generative AI Vendor Matters

here’s no denying these implications seem intimidating. However, the complexity doesn’t negate the creative and productivity benefits that generative AI tools can bring to the table.

It comes down to navigating AI platforms with awareness.

One factor to be aware of is that your choice of AI provider, and specifically whether that AI uses open or closed training data, can significantly impact the results and potential legal challenges you may encounter.

AI: Open Training

AI that uses open training data refers to AI models and systems that source information from a vast array of publicly available data on the internet, essentially taking inspiration from everything it can get its virtual hands on. It freely draws from texts, images from the web, and other sources without rigid boundaries.

The advantage is that it offers a wealth of creative opportunities. With access to a broad spectrum of sources, your output is limited only by the wealth of data the AI has absorbed.

However, leveraging AI tools that use open training data to create finalized assets is where the vulnerability to accidental copyright and trademark infringements is much higher.

As previously mentioned, contemporarily AI that uses open training data cannot provide the exact origins of the content it generates, making it difficult for you to be sure about whether or not it’s drawn inspiration from trademarked imagery or copyrighted material. 

The Alternative: AI Closed Training

AI that uses closed training data operates within defined boundaries, using a curated dataset, and doesn’t access external data sources. This can place a higher degree of control in the hands of users, allowing them to shape the generated content by limiting what the AI can access and pull from.

So, an alternative to using AI that uses open training data is using an AI provider that is able to provide an algorithm that specifically pulls from your existing content, providing a more controlled experience. 

An AI model that uses closed training data has the following characteristics:

  • Trains only on your curated dataset
  • Learns solely from your content during training
  • Generates content exclusively inspired by your dataset
  • Avoids external data sources during the content generation process

The advantages include reduced risks of unknowingly infringing on trademarks, copyrights, or using inappropriate content. It also allows for a more controlled and tailored content creation process, helping to maintain a consistent brand identity across content.

However, it’s important to note that the trade-off is a potential limitation in terms of creative diversity. By not drawing inspiration from a broader range of sources, the AI may generate content that is less innovative compared to a model that is exposed to billions of data points.

Companies may opt for AI that uses closed training data when they prioritize the protection of their brand’s image, content consistency, and legal compliance over exploring a broader creative spectrum. 

But, the decision should be made thoughtfully, considering both creative potential and legal prudence.

AI & Generative AI in Tenovos

There are a number of AI features currently available within Tenovos that have been proven to boost productivity with little to no risk for users. 

AI can play a pivotal role in enhancing DAM, particularly in the context of content enrichment, tagging, predictive asset recommendations, translation and localization, and video and audio transcription. These features provide significant time savings through streamlining asset management, improved content discoverability, and an enhanced user experience. 

When it comes to generative AI, any and all of the use cases discussed are possible within the Tenovos platform through our flexible APIs that allow for integrations with any AI provider. This empowers organizations to harness the capabilities of generative AI with the provider of their choice, giving clients the freedom to select the AI that aligns best with their privacy and content creation needs. 

With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility 

In conclusion, generative AI is a powerful tool for content creation, but it should be employed carefully. 

As we’ve seen with past technology revolutions, legal frameworks will eventually catch up to regulate its use. Currently, AI companies face legal challenges, but creative and marketing teams should also exercise caution to avoid inadvertent trademark infringements.

If you’re using generative AI for production, your choice of AI provider can help you exercise caution. However, there is a trade-off. While using closed AI that draws inspiration from your existing content is less risky for trademark infringements, open-source AI offers wider creative opportunities but necessitates more awareness.

In the case of DAM, evaluating the AI provider that is leveraged on the platform is crucial too, to ensure that the use of AI aligns with the privacy and compliance needs of your business. This is why Tenovos provides organizations with the flexibility to choose their preferred AI provider.

However you choose to harness generative AI’s power, it requires a careful balance between technology and human oversight. Research and awareness are key to unleashing its potential for content creation and digital asset management while upholding legal standards.

For more information on AI and generative AI in Tenovos’ DAM, reach out to our team

feature apac

Ensuring Seamless DAM Accessibility within the Asia-Pacific Region

By Blog, creative, Productivity-Reuse
Reading Time: 9 minutes

International and multinational companies often have thousands of digital assets created and stored across geographical locations. Effectively managing, organizing, and distributing these assets on a global scale can be challenging.

Modern, cloud-based digital asset management (DAM) platforms have emerged as the answer to centralized asset management needs for global brands.

These solutions go beyond being mere archives, and now support customized workflows to empower brands to manage digital rights and maintain brand consistency right in the DAM. Plus, cloud-based DAM systems are accessible from anywhere, making them incredibly flexible and user-friendly. 

image apac

However, while the demand for DAM platforms is soaring globally, providing these solutions in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region comes with challenges.

In this blog, we’ll dive into the complexities of digital asset management (DAM) in Asia-Pacific. Whether you’re a business currently operating in the region, a company looking for a global DAM solution, or simply seeking a foundational understanding of the logistics involved, this blog provides a comprehensive overview of the challenges to providing effective DAM services in this region, and how to assess vendors on this basis.

Challenges to Providing Effective DAM Services across the Asia-Pacific Region

For software services providers, the challenges of covering the Asia Pacific region are driven by two main factors: geography and distance.

Let’s dive into what this means and explore specific hurdles in the context of DAM. 

Geographical Distance and Latency

Geography and distance play a pivotal role in the efficiency and speed of software services, including DAM.

Vast physical distance can introduce latency into software systems, causing a time lag in data transmission and process execution. This latency is often exacerbated by what’s known as “chatty” services, where frequent back-and-forth communication between a user’s device and the remote server is required.

In the DAM world, this latency challenge takes on more significance due to the nature of the content being managed and distributed – sometimes called “heavy” content.

“Heavy” content refers to large files, including high-resolution images, 3D files, large videos, and other creative content. As large files consume more bandwidth for transmission, this exacerbates the effect of latency.

As a result, with some software, including certain DAM platforms, users may experience delays when uploading, downloading, or interacting with these resource-intensive files, impacting user experience and team productivity.

Specific Challenges in China: "The Great Firewall"

Providing DAM services in China comes with a unique set of regulatory and technological challenges, primarily stemming from a system many call “The Great Firewall.”

This combination of legislative actions and technologies, including internet censorship and surveillance measures, is enforced by the People’s Republic of China to regulate the internet domestically.

While these measures primarily target politically sensitive sites and are unlikely an issue for businesses currently operating in the region, other factors may impact DAM user experience for users in Asia:

  • Content Monitoring:
    As internet content within China is actively monitored, this can lead to increased scrutiny of digital assets, which may entail censorship of specific images, videos, or text.
  • Internet Speed:
    Due to extensive deep packet inspection and DNS filtering, internet speeds in China are often slower compared to other regions. This can significantly affect the upload, download, and real-time streaming of heavy content through DAM platforms.

How DAM Providers Manage Challenges to Effective DAM Service

To effectively tackle these challenges posed by the geographical and regulatory complexities and improve user experience for clients in the APAC region, organizations typically use a combination of three strategies.

1. Utilizing Content Delivery Networks (CDNs)

Content delivery networks (CDNs) serve as a cornerstone in addressing the challenges associated with latency and content distribution in Asia. Companies leverage CDNs to distribute the DAM application’s content across multiple servers strategically positioned around the region. These CDNs efficiently manage and synchronize digital asset content, ensuring they are as physically close to the end users as possible.

CDNs help mitigate latency and improve response times by reducing the distance data needs to travel. This means that even heavy content, such as high-resolution images and videos, can be delivered swiftly and seamlessly to users across Asia.

CDNs also offer redundancy and scalability, enhancing DAM platforms’ overall reliability and performance. Redundancy includes backups to ensure that even in the face of server failures or disruptions content delivery remains uninterrupted, while scalability refers to the ability of a system to seamlessly adapt to increasing workloads, guaranteeing a consistent and responsive user experience. These capabilities allow organizations to feel confident in storing and using their DAM content libraries.

​​2. Optimizing Server Infrastructure

Optimizing server infrastructure is another approach that can help mitigate challenges to service delivery. Companies strategically position servers in or near Asia through partnerships with local data centers or by establishing their data centers within the region. By doing so, this minimizes latency, reduces the physical distance that data must travel, and results in faster access to digital assets.

This approach enhances response times and aligns with data sovereignty requirements that may exist in certain Asian countries, ensuring that data remains within the jurisdiction and complies with local regulations.

3. Implementing Caching Mechanisms

Caching mechanisms are essential for reducing server load and improving response times, especially when dealing with large files. These mechanisms involve temporarily storing frequently accessed data or content, enabling quicker retrieval and enhancing system performance. Organizations can swiftly deliver content to users upon request by caching digital assets at various network points.

Caching operates at different levels, from edge servers in CDNs to the user’s device. When users request frequently accessed assets, the system retrieves them from a nearby cache rather than a distant server. This eases the server load and guarantees a smoother user experience, especially for bandwidth-intensive content.

Evaluating DAM Vendors by Content Delivery Solutions

Now that you understand the common methods to manage delivery challenges, let’s talk about how to evaluate vendors in this context. 

Knowing how to assess DAM vendors in this context is crucial, as your vendor’s capabilities will impact the success of your DAM implementation, especially when deploying a global solution that will include use in the APAC region. 

Let’s dive into what factors you need to consider to better understand how vendors will manage delivery challenges.

Does the vendor use methods like replicating databases or MFT? 

Legacy DAM vendors rely on older software and hardware systems that may struggle to adapt and interact with newer technologies. This hinders their ability to fully exploit the benefits of cloud and CDNs natively. As a workaround, they often resort to methods like replicating and synchronizing databases and content across multiple global regions or using Managed File Technology (MFT) for secure data exchange.

There are constraints to consider with these approaches. Replicating databases globally can lead to synchronization challenges, resulting in data inconsistencies impacting system availability. Sometimes, these systems are unavailable for up to 50% of the time.

On the other hand, MFT solutions, while secure, require desktop plugins and non-standard ports opened in firewalls and are inefficient compared to native CDNs. They can also be more complex and expensive overall.

Is the DAM architecture built for the cloud? 

Understanding a DAM vendor’s architecture is paramount. While some legacy vendors claim to operate in the cloud, it’s crucial to assess if their systems are truly designed to leverage cloud capabilities comprehensively. 

Any application built for standard operating systems can be placed in the cloud. However, suppose the system is not designed to exploit all of the cloud capabilities from the ground up. In that case, it is impossible to reverse engineer a legacy application to make use of native CDN, edge services, scaling microservices, and all of the resilience and failover provided by running on a cloud solution like AWS. 

In essence, relying on a legacy vendor for cloud-based DAM is akin to expecting an oil tanker to compete in a small yacht race or bringing Stonehenge to a modern architecture exhibition—it’s not optimized for the task at hand.

Does the DAM functionality vary by region?

When evaluating DAM vendors, particularly for global use, it’s essential to inquire about the functionality and capabilities available in the APAC region, including China. Some cloud vendors may limit functions and capabilities in specific regions, which can affect the suitability of the DAM platform for your needs. 

Choosing the right DAM vendor goes beyond surface-level claims of cloud adoption. 

It involves a deep understanding of how the vendor’s architecture aligns with modern cloud and CDN capabilities. This knowledge is vital to ensure your DAM system can seamlessly meet your global requirements and thrive in the evolving landscape of digital asset management.

Addressing Geographical Challenges and Latency: Tenovos' Solution

Tenovos is one example of how being born in the cloud and designed with global scalability in mind, DAM providers can navigate these challenges comprehensively.

Leveraging the latest architectures and infrastructure, Tenovos deploys multiple Amazon Web Services (AWS) in Asia, significantly reducing latency by caching and distributing content across a global network of edge locations. This strategic exploitation of the AWS backbone ensures high-speed content delivery to end-users, minimizing the impact of geographical distances.

cf map 2019 2

Tenovos’ native integration with various CDNs further enhances content delivery, offering two seamless options for delivering content and experiences, even within mainland China.

Moreover, Tenovos optimizes the DAM user experience for global companies by prioritizing using lightweight content, particularly for web browser previews, demonstrating a clear commitment to efficiency and global scalability.

The result of these strategic initiatives is a positive and efficient user experience for Tenovos users in Asia. While challenges like “The Great Firewall” in China may render the system slightly less responsive compared to other parts of the Asia-Pacific region, Tenovos is still able to provide acceptable speeds.

Navigating DAM Success in a Dynamic APAC Landscape

We’ve journeyed through the intricacies of DAM in the Asia-Pacific region, exploring the challenges, strategic solutions, and vendor evaluation criteria.

In the ever-evolving world of DAM, where international and multinational companies manage massive amounts of digital assets across geographical borders, understanding the nuances of this dynamic region is paramount. Whether you’re a company operating in APAC, in search of a global DAM solution, or simply seeking a foundational understanding of DAM logistics in this region, this comprehensive guide equips you with the knowledge needed to navigate the complexities.

Ultimately, your DAM vendor matters significantly when embarking on a global DAM implementation journey, particularly in a diverse and dynamic region like the Asia-Pacific. Leveraging modern cloud-based architecture is a key differentiator from legacy systems, and a forward-thinking approach can yield positive user experiences and overcome the challenges inherent to delivering effective DAM services in Asia. 

Your path to DAM success in the APAC region begins with informed decisions and a clear understanding of the solutions that align with your goals.

For more information on Tenovos’ DAM services in the APAC region, reach out to our team

What Saks’ Creative Process Teaches Us About The Power of Workflow Automation

By Blog, creative, Productivity-Reuse
Reading Time: 11 minutes

Digital content remains an indispensable strategy for engaging consumers at scale, amid the growing landscape of channels for engagement. However, the reality is that today, brands are being asked to do more with less – and it’s getting harder to keep up.

Growing enterprise brands have more products to promote across more online platforms (with new social platforms popping up regularly), and teams want to put out personalized and authentic content to their audiences to keep marketing campaigns relevant and effective.

This alone puts a huge load on creative and marketing teams, but brands also need to jump on ever-changing trends and social responsibilities, such as incorporating DEI initiatives. Plus, in today’s economic climate, budgets are getting tighter, and many marketing teams are shrinking due to the economic pressure.

Faced with these compounding challenges, which limit the content that teams can execute on, workflow automation is a game-changer.

Kimberly Jauss, Director of Creative Imaging at Saks – a leader in luxury e-commerce, known for its exceptional blend of online shopping and personalized experiences – recently and successfully implemented a brand new DAM. 

Kimberly walked us through how leveraging automation to orchestrate workflows has allowed the Saks team to build strong governance around asset data processes and expedited creative processes (if you have an hour, check out the full webinar here). 

In this blog, we’ll explore how strategic automation in the DAM can transform your creative workflow to optimize output and resources. With the example of how Saks implemented workflow automation in their creative process, you’ll see how automation serves to streamline content creation and enables marketing, brand, and creative teams to keep up with growing content demands.

What is workflow automation, and why does it matter for creative teams?

First, let’s start with the basics.

Workflow automation is leveraging technology to streamline and simplify your complex workflows. It involves orchestrating software and tools to automatically manage, execute, and monitor tasks with predefined steps triggered by data.

You can think of it as having a digital assistant to ensure tasks move seamlessly from one stage to the next.

Automating components of the creative workflow with digital asset management (DAM) software and connected technologies can help brands work smarter by eliminating manual interventions and repetitive steps. This allows DAM Managers and creative teams to free valuable time and focus on higher-value tasks.

Benefits of Workflow Automation Within the Creative Asset Lifecycle

In a typical asset lifecycle, there are multiple back-and-forth steps as you move through the creative stages, from ideation to content approval, rights management, and finalized published content.

Here’s an example of a traditional creative workflow process – with more or fewer steps depending on your orchestration and governance processes.

Within each of these stages, you’ve got the assets themselves to store and distribute to the relevant teams who have action items. You’ve also got data and metadata that need to be seamlessly passed on to the teams throughout these phases to ensure every team has the right version and the data to go with it.

Doing this back and forth manually is a painful task with lots of room for human error. Plus, if it’s not done well, it can cause significant productivity issues.

Here’s a classic example.

Say your team needs to edit an image. After finding the rights information, they might download it from the DAM and open it up in a creative tool like Adobe InDesign. They might spend a day or so going back and forth on Slack before agreeing on a final image. Then, your creative head goes to your legal team for their approval. After a couple of weeks of continued back and forth, you get edits and need to make changes…essentially starting the process over from scratch.

Apart from this taking a long time, what else can go wrong?

As soon as the asset is downloaded from the DAM and changes are made, version control becomes a massive issue. There could be versions of this asset on an employee’s local hard drive – and your DAM is no longer your source of truth.

User error can also come into play – perhaps the asset gets shared externally, deleted, or or lost in complex folders and sub-folder structures. This risk of error compounds with the already painful back-and-forth process.

Automation of approval processes has the potential to eliminate a lot of this pain – but ultimately, you need an underlying system that can connect seamlessly to other technologies to pass assets, metadata, and data in a way that works for your team.

That’s where the DAM comes in.

DAM's Role in Automation

A modern digital asset management (DAM) system is vital for orchestrating automated workflows – because it’s the only technology that actually touches every stage of the asset lifecycle, from ideation through to publishing the content.

A DAM is not just a repository for your assets but a smart system that talks to all the other tools that are involved within your creative workflows while ensuring that metadata (essential information about your assets), user data, and rights information are all attached to the assets throughout the process.

DAMs like Tenovos also empower brands to define their automated workflows to match their existing governance processes by embedding data triggers to initiate specific tasks and integrations. This dynamic customization allows brands to align the DAM with their unique creative process, ensuring that assets seamlessly transition through stages of the asset lifecycle with precision and speed.

Let’s delve into a real-world use case to understand how automation can enhance creative workflows: Saks’ use of workflow automation within their DAM.

An Overview of Saks’ Creative Process

Renowned as a luxury e-commerce leader, Saks offers a curated selection of fashion, beauty, jewelry, and home décor products, accompanied by editorial content and digital styling services.

As you can imagine, the workflows to produce their finalized seasonal and individual brand campaigns are pretty complex, and strong governance within each stage of their creative process is necessary to ensure alignment with the Saks brand, their vendors’ needs, and legal components.

Here’s a closer look at Saks’ creative workflow, which shows the journey from project ideation to published content.

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When Kimberly first joined the Saks team, this complex creative process was mostly manual, and they did not have a DAM to store their assets. As a result, time-consuming processes, fragmented asset management, and communication gaps led to inefficiencies, data inconsistencies, and bottlenecks during approval processes.

With increasing demands for creatives to push more personalized content with less time and resources, the goal of implementing a DAM was to centralize assets and automate as much of their existing creative process as possible. And with lots of different teams involved throughout this creative process, Saks needs to ensure that asset visibility is given to the right teams at the right times – within their internal workflow, connected technologies, and within the DAM itself.

Let’s get into the intricacies of the stages of Saks’ creative process and how they leverage automation to orchestrate this workflow with the help of their DAM.

Pre-Production & Creative Production: Setting the Stage in the DAM

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During the pre-production stage, every Saks project begins with a kick-off through their project management system, which is connected to their DAM and guides the process from inception to deadline. Merchandise teams gather products for the upcoming campaign, and photographers and art directors start cultivating the creative vision. This phase includes shoot logistics, like location decisions, model selection, and vendor coordination.

The Saks team knows that if heaps of files land in your hands after a grueling 12-hour shoot with minimal information, it’s a recipe for chaos – so here’s where the benefit of automation in the DAM first comes in.

The DAM team implemented an automated data tagging system that assigns a specific status to any asset upon upload to the DAM, paving the way for the coordinators to efficiently add metadata (we’ll delve into this shortly).

With shoot plans in place and the DAM read, it’s time to roll the cameras. The creative production stage kicks off by picking assets, which, for Saks, often happens right on the set. This initial selection gives the team a solid selection of content available to them in the DAM.

Then, these handpicked assets get fine-tuned according to specs, often with some extra paperwork like shot lists or production decks – depending on how each team operates. Once all assets are set, those assets are uploaded into the DAM. The automated data tagging created in the pre-production phase is triggered as the assets land in the system, correctly organizing them and flagging them as new

Post-Production & Content Creation: Shaping Visual Stories

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In the post-production stage, the assets are in the DAM, and have been tagged automatically as newly added or in the early stages of editing – so the team has visibility and knows they’re not finalized.

The team identifies the net new assets requiring data, and crafts a data sheet, filling in essential production, image, product, and usage data from various sources – spreadsheets, Google decks, you name it. This is where a large piece of automation will come into play, in order to efficiently and accurately attach data from all these sources to the assets, allowing the DAM team to scrub data, rather than inputting data.

Once this data is ingested into the DAM, art directors get pinged to make their selects, go through image approvals, mark up images, and hand them over to the retouching team. This is also when design and copy directions are briefed in.

With the appropriate eyes on the assets, teams can start requesting designs, copy variations, and plan out the desired looks and feels for the campaign content. This all takes place within the DAM through integrations to creative tools, simplifying back-and-forth communications.

Reviews & Approval and Content Distribution: Navigating the Finishing Line

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In these final stages, assets move into the review and approval stage, where cross-functional teams review the content. Automation in the DAM keeps everyone informed – notifications and updates are automated surrounding approvals, ensuring that the right eyes are on the content at the right time.

This meticulous review process extends to every asset Saks publishes – from book reviews to design elements like GIFs and HTML components. With the finalized assets, the wider team, including marketing and web developers, gets involved in reviewing and fine-tuning webpages, custom emails, and social assets before they’re released.

There are usually two stages of reviews: revisions and finalization. The review process unfolds through rounds of communication via platforms like Wrike, which also integrated the DAM. Once assets receive the “gold star,” final metadata updates are made, and the content is ready for distribution, ensuring Saks’ campaigns reach their intended audiences flawlessly.

The Outcome: A Transformed Creative Process with Workflow Automation

Prior to DAM implementation and leveraging automation, Saks’ creative teams encountered various pitfalls during content creation; timely review processes, version discrepancies, copies scattered across platforms, and uncertainties about asset usage limited efficiency.

Today, Saks has leveraged automation to build strong governance around asset data processes mitigating previous challenges. Version control has become seamless, with automated tagging and metadata ensuring accuracy, while the synchronization of tools across internal and external processes has simplified collaboration.

Data is the key to successful AI and automation, triggering processes and tasks. The availability of comprehensive data empowers the creation of adaptable automation that further enhances Saks’ creative workflow, supporting control, efficiency, and collaboration across the board.

Saks’ story is not just one of success but a blueprint for brands seeking to navigate the ever-evolving landscape of content creation. The integration of automation within the asset lifecycle and the strategic role of DAM serve as guiding principles for efficient content management. Innovation and creativity thrive when automation is thoughtfully integrated, creating an environment where brands can produce, refine, and deliver exceptional content in a dynamic and demanding landscape.

Learn more about the role of automation in DAM: Watch the full webinar!