As digital commerce becomes more mainstream, the way that you manage the digital assets under your control will determine your future in the marketplace. You must first organize your assets in a way that allows for easy access. However, you must also learn to leverage the most out of your assets while securing their place in your infrastructure from malicious outside forces.
The way the manager digital assets will reflect directly on your brand as well as your operations. You will need communication between departments, accessibility among all important contact nodes and organization that everyone understands. The center of this kind of structure is the digital asset management system.
If you have not yet implemented a system for digital asset management, you owe it to yourself to look into the advantages of such a move. Here are just a few of the reasons that digital asset management systems are the marketing pillars of truth.
1) Maintains Brand Integrity & Eliminates Content Fragmentation
As you expand your marketing strategy to scale with business or to simply follow your customer journeys, you run the risk of content fragmentation.
Content fragmentation can mean a lot of things depending on who you ask. All of the definitions, however, focus around one major theme – a reduction of brand integrity.
If you keep to the same messaging over different outreach channels, then you have good brand integrity. The challenge is that this integrity becomes more difficult to maintain over varied formats and platforms. For instance, it can be quite difficult to maintain brand integrity between a 120 character Twitter message and a four minute YouTube explainer video.
Organizing your digital assets helps to organize your brand messaging as well. If your system connects finance, marketing and the executive suite, you are much more likely to maintain a consistent look, feel and message no matter how that message is portrayed. The less accessible your assets are and the more bottlenecks in your execution process, the more likely you are to fragment your messaging. This is true even if you are working within one or two platforms.
Keep in mind that messaging is more than keeping the same color scheme and font throughout your advertisements. It has to do with a tone and the format that you are choosing as your primary mode of communication. This can only be accomplished if everyone is taking notes from the same blackboard – a la a consistent digital asset management system.
2) Boosts Productivity
Keeping everyone to the same format, opportunity for accessibility and real-time updates can only help productivity. The bottlenecks in your process are most likely caused by a lack of communication between people and between departments. Standardizing the way that you send and receive information between nodes in your company is what a digital asset management system is all about.
One study found that companies without digital asset management systems lost an average of 2.5 hours daily simply trying to find files that were up-to-date. This equates to more than $2.5 million in annual productivity losses. This kind of time can be easily restored with a centralized hub for your assets that provides an easy place for everyone to look.
Having a centralized hub also helps your updaters understand what they need to do. For instance, if you have an image that is in the wrong format or sized incorrectly, your sales team can simply leave a message in your asset management system that your design team picks up. This message travels instantaneously and can be read in real time even if you have outsourced your design to a third-party consultant across the world. Instead of waiting a week for designers to catch the message and respond, you can have your new image within minutes, signed, sealed and delivered to your sales team and ready to put into advertisements.
3) Makes Content Production More Transparent
Most of your content will have to move through a chain of command before it can be approved for any outside use. This is a good thing ideally. Your executive team needs to approve assets from different departments in order to ensure brand continuity – this is one of the main jobs of the executive suite. In practice, however, this chain of command can lead to bottlenecks if there is not a streamlined process to accelerate the move between departments.
A content management system also lets everyone know if an asset has been properly approved. In short, your company can keep projects that are in different stages in the same place. Not only does this save time and space, but it also saves money by centralizing production. You no longer have to keep native files in five different design platforms and wait for the C-suite to get around to you for approval.
4) Provides Secure Asset Allocation
The most significant improvement that a digital asset management system provide your infrastructure is security. Without proper security and access allocation, none of the other improvements matter very much. With cybercrime on the rise (and culprits coming from outside and inside company walls), security should be one of your main concerns moving forward into an increasingly complex digital landscape.
Even if there is no malicious intent, secure asset allocation keeps prying eyes from making unintentional mistakes. Because you will be able to see the timeline of changes and approvals to an asset, you can also hold the right people accountable should something go awry in the production or distribution schedule of a particular asset. Security is not only about criminal activity – it is also about protecting the production schedule from overzealous employees.
The best practices above will help to ensure that you get the most out of your digital assets. From accessibility to administration, this is the future of your company. Keep your ear to the street for the newest technologies and techniques that you can use to leverage the intellectual property and proprietary funnels that you have worked so hard to create!
Want to learn more about how you can get your marketing content organized, streamlined and can help you unite your teams? Check out: