Which DAM Solution is Right for My Organization?
No two implementations of digital asset management are the same. Therefore, determining which DAM solution is right for an organisation will require an element of discovery to find out what the business is trying to achieve. It’s the same reason why there are so many cars on the market. Taking a Ferrari off-road isn’t going to work. One size just doesn’t fit all.
To work out which solution(s) would be right, understanding the following will guide you in the right direction.
Content Creation and Origination
Knowing who is creating your content will help you understand how early on in an asset’s lifecycle the DAM needs to be involved, and what interaction is required. Organisations often use a number of creative agencies to create their content, but there has also been a move to create more content internally. If content creation is internal, you’ll need tight integration into the creative environment, such as Adobe Suite. If third-party agencies are creating the content, a simple way to collaborate through creative briefs and approval cycles may be a higher priority.
Personas and Use Cases
Who will be using the system? It sounds obvious, but different user communities will have different use cases. Librarians of content, whose primary role is the management of assets and their metadata, often require much richer or complex ways to search for content as part of their role. More casual users, on the other hand, need the DAM to have the same level of accessibility as a public domain website, where an untrained user can intuitively find the assets they require and keep returning. Creative and production users often want the DAM to be relatively transparent, where version control and access is maintained, but doesn’t slow them down when working with creative tools. There will be many personas, and each of them needs to be evaluated, providing details of how content will be managed, shared and utilised.
Workflow and Collaboration
Understanding workflow requirements will help you understand the flow of assets throughout the asset lifecycle. It may involve fast-paced production processes, marketing briefs and approvals, legal and compliance checks or any number of workflow processes. Over-complicating the workflow can be as hazardous as having no control in some cases, but an understanding of how content will flow throughout its lifecycle will help identify the right solution.
Collaboration is a great way to support normal DAM processes and your workflow. It provides a way for people to work together within the DAM environment. It encourages communication to take place centrally instead of being lost in email. This may be a consideration depending on your use case.
Integration and Delivery
These days, DAMs are rarely standalone solutions. There is a growing number touch-points that either provide content, aid the management of content, or distribute and deliver content. This could include other content-related systems, such as Product Information Management (PIM), ERP, eCommerce, social, web, etc. Understanding what other touch-points are required will help you to determine the type of solution architecture you will require and what services the DAM needs to provide.
Delivery is also about user interaction. As mentioned earlier, thinking about who the users and consumers of your content will be can determine how the content is made available to those consumers. One of the key metrics of success for a DAM implementation is adoption. Adoption will only take place if people find what they are looking for. Otherwise users will go back to local copies on their desktop that are no doubt out of date or not approved.
Making a Decision
Deciding to implement a DAM is only the first step. Next, you will need to build your case for the key decision makers within your organisation. They will want to know how DAM will save the company money as well as how DAM can increase revenue.
Need help answering these questions? Download the DAM Purchasing Guide.