What Is Digital Asset Management?

digital asset management software
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What Is Digital Asset Management?

Oh, the wonderful and mystifying world of content and file management. 

Long before they were relegated to a ubiquitous “save” symbol, floppy disks were our only source of digital media storage. 

Then came CD-ROM, followed by physical hard drives.

USB storage devices and external hard drives? What are those?

Now, teams are tasked with producing, managing, and maintaining thousands of pieces of digital media (every year), and they need modern-day solutions to help them get the job done.

That’s where digital asset management comes in.

Digital asset management (DAM) is a new solution that helps teams store, share, and organize content in a centralized location.

You no longer need to Slack your designer for creative files or send your writer an email to let them know when their draft is due—with DAM, you can get it all done from a single integrated system.

It’s 2021. If your marketing teams are operating without a digital asset management system, please read this page from top to bottom—it’s going to change the way you and your teams work (for the better).

What Is Digital Asset Management?

Digital asset management refers to software that makes it easy for businesses to compile, organize, filter, find, and use digital media and content.

DAM also applies to any solution an individual or company uses to store its content, even if its purpose-built for that intent or not.

These file types could be creative assets, planning documents, articles, marketing materials, SEO-targeted pieces, email campaigns, onboarding information—really any digital asset. 

However, not all DAM software performs equally. Basic systems allow you to organize your content in folders, while others enable search and tagging to help you locate the right piece of content. Yet, this is just the beginning when it comes to DAM functionality.

Advanced digital asset management systems empower collaboration with workflows, automation, templates, APIS, version control, real-time edits, and support for various file formats. They make it simple to maintain a single source of truth while pushing marketing campaigns out the door at lightning speed and scale.

Beyond just creating a place to store your media files, these top-of-the-line DAM solutions promote project management efficiency and brand consistency from concept to completion. Modern-day marketers need DAM software to stay on top of their brand assets, content creation pipeline, and aggressive business expectations. 

Advantages of Digital Asset Management Software

Save Time

Time is money. Every minute you save is valuable to your bottom line.

Digital asset management provides your teams with automation and workflows to help you get projects across the line faster while still maintaining top-notch quality. 

Replace your back-and-forth Slack conversations and email threads with a single source of truth where you can collaborate in real-time. Create, publish, and distribute content and marketing assets at scale with a centralized hub.

Stretch Your Budget

Stop wasting time and money re-creating media assets and duplicating work. A digital asset management system helps you do more with less.

It’ll give you a platform to consolidate your budget and content marketing plans. See exactly where you’re allocating your dollars and what you need to adjust to ensure projects get completed in full and on time.

Notice an important project falling behind? Borrow from a low-priority campaign to ensure it stays on track.

Protect Your Brand

Brand management is not a one-and-done part of your business. 

You have to work hard to ensure the messaging, voice, colors, logos, icons, taglines, and assets stay consistent with your brand guidelines.

Welcome’s digital asset management system gives you complete control of your brand with version control, compliance workflows, and usage history. Ensure the right content gets shipped and old branding stays locked away for historical and inspirational purposes. 

Make Digital Content Accessible

Content’s value comes in large part from its accessibility. Unlike a physical book or a piece of paper, your digital content can (and should) be shared and used by anyone who needs access (anytime, anywhere).

A DAM platform lets you organize content, tag relevant users, and share assets to get the right content in front of the right people. Don’t worry, you can still enable permissions to help you control how content gets used. However, now your designers and project managers can get out of the file-sharing weeds and back to work.

Explore New Possibilities

With more time and budget, you’ll be empowered to test new use cases and see what works. You won’t be fighting a weekly or monthly battle of getting items across the finish line—you’ll be completing projects with a newfound efficiency that breathes life into your teams and business processes.

5 Things to Look for in a Digital Asset Management Platform

At a fundamental level, just about every digital asset management solution will let you store and retrieve digital files. However, you and your teams deserve (and need) more. The right marketing DAM solution will empower collaboration at scale, helping you and your teams complete more projects in less time and create more assets with less budget.

Here’s what you should be looking for when considering a DAM platform for your team:

1. Organizing and Finding Digital Content

Welcome Library DAM

Storing content is great, but you want a system that’ll make it easier to find the files later—for you and others. Look for a system that lets you add more details and metadata so locating the right file doesn’t feel like looking for a needle in a haystack.

The best asset management systems make organizing the content the easiest part of what you do. Welcome lets you tag, label, and nest your content to make retrieval quick and easy. Use the intuitive search function to look through file names, formats, and other types of metadata and dive into tasks, events, and even the text in the content itself.

2. Brand Governance and Consistency

Native brand governance checklists

Your digital asset management system isn’t there just to make it faster to find files—it’s there to protect your brand and ensure the right assets get used every time. 

Think about it. Your brand likely has multiple logos and branding assets floating around since its creation. There’s nothing wrong or unusual about that. 

However, it can hurt your brand when the new intern or blog writer uses Google (instead of a DAM system) to find the brand assets they need. They could end up using outdated logos or illustrations that ruin the customer experience and subtly damage your reputation.

3. Workflows and Automation

Native workflows

The best asset management platforms don’t add another layer of complexity to your technology stack—they consolidate it. You shouldn’t have to manage your assets, tasks, workflows, and compliance approvals in 5 different applications. 

With a solution like Welcome, you can streamline content from ideation to published within a single platform. Stretch the life of every asset by letting contributors download, edit, and repurpose approved content with integrated workflows. Custom automations will move tasks appropriately through their lifecycle, notifying the responsible members of your team every step of the way.

4. Publishing and Distributing

Native publishing integrations

Your digital asset management system shouldn’t only store content—it should help publish and distribute it. No more copy-pasting your document from Grammarly to a Google Doc to your CMS. Do it all within your DAM software.

Welcome’s content management system lets you store your content and push it to the right downstream systems with just a few clicks. Whether you need to publish your blog post to WordPress or post a new image to your social media accounts, Welcome’s widgets and integrations make it easy to manage all your digital assets from one content hub.

5. Content Tracking and Analytics

Performance analytics

Content without data is blind. You need analytics on every piece of content’s performance to learn more about what works and what doesn’t. These insights help you discover what to repurpose, replicate, or stop investing in.

Welcome’s digital asset manager has built-in analytics to help you see which assets get used the most so that you can prioritize future content production. Identify your high-performance assets, proactively share content with power users, and give your teams the resources they actually want.

Get Started With Digital Asset Management

Ready to change the way you manage your digital assets? Get started with DAM software.

Create an account with Welcome and see what digital asset management is supposed to look like. Your account is free forever—no credit card required. And it’ll take you less than a minute to get up and running.

Sign up today to see first-hand how simple and downright powerful your digital asset management system can be.

Done reading and ready to try Welcome?

Welcome’s marketing orchestration software is free for up to 5 users, so grab 4 of your closest marketing buds and see what we’re all about.