Get the Right Digital Asset Manager… the First Time Around

Image source: Adobe Stock / chanpipat.

by Mike Carley

posted on 12-02-2018

As businesses undergo a digital transformation, how you manage the digital assets of the business is rapidly becoming a competitive differentiator. You may be facing the need to evaluate, select, and implement a solution for digital asset management (DAM), a solution that can empower your business to create, manage, organize, and distribute its digital assets as efficiently as possible.

In this post, I want to emphasize why it’s important to step back and take a moment to really consider the business challenges your organization faces around digital asset management. Then explore how the right DAM can not only help you address those challenges, but allow you to leverage innovations around devices, AI, and in other areas to drive significant business value.

Why a DAM and why now?

Let’s step back and consider what’s happening today that causes a business to even utter the words “digital asset manager.” Think about what makes a DAM important — not just to your marketer, your creatives, or your IT team, but to the business. To its bottom line. Mull over the ways a DAM can keep your company competitive and drive business success.

To do that, first look at just a few of the major forces at play that are driving the need for a DAM:

Let’s take a deeper look into those challenges.

Volume of digital assets growing exponentially

The volume of digital assets your company uses to express and support your brand is likely exploding. You have documents, images, videos, 3D renderings, audio, virtual reality, augmented reality, audio, emerging formats, and so many others. You use these assets on your company’s websites, mobile sites, mobile apps, kiosk screens, training modules, IoT devices, and more. You need them to display properly on different devices with different screen sizes. You may serve a global audience, so you need to localize them in multiple languages.

As an example of how many assets a company may have to manage, consider a company with just 50 products. They may want to display those products on 50 different devices and in 10 different languages. That’s 25,000 renditions of assets for just 50 products. Clearly, you’ve got lots of digital assets to manage.

Personalization a must for today’s customer

Further exacerbating the issue around the exponential growth in digital asset volume is the fact that customers now expect personalized experiences, and those experiences are essential for driving business revenue. According to an Accenture 2017 report, 41 percent of customers abandon a site due to poor personalization or lack of trust. The cost for personalization failure is a massive $2.5 trillion globally. But personalization requires variations of assets to use in the experiences you deliver to your different audiences or individual customers. Rather than delivering a one-size-fits-all experience, you’re taking into account what you know about each visitor or audience — their device, language, preferences, and other details — to deliver the variation that resonates. With the above scenario, if you needed just two variations of an asset per product to fuel personalized experiences, you’ve now got 50,000 assets to store and manage.

To meet the content demands of personalization, you need still more assets. And, of course, you need to manage them. You also need to be able to identify your top-performing assets to use them or variants like them and avoid the cost of poor personalization. A simple file repository is not the answer.

Risk of using expired or unapproved assets high, the cost painful

Celebrities make money on the use of their likeness in digital, print, and video. Independent creatives and companies that offer stock photo services make their living from royalties and licensing fees. The use of outdated, unlicensed, or unapproved assets, which can easily happen accidentally without good digital rights management (DRM), can at best result in taking time to remove and replace them with approved or licensed images, but at worst can put your company into legal hot water with financial penalties.

With so many assets to manage, using unlicensed or expired assets is a real risk. And it can cost you a lot from a legal standpoint.

Speeding campaign time to market is essential

To keep up with the promise of delivering the hyper-personalized experiences that really drive conversion and revenue, you need one-to-one, data-driven optimization and personalization. You need a way to get content from creative into those hyper-personalized experiences that have been optimized with the best content. For that content to be as hard-hitting as possible, you want to shorten the time that it takes from coming up with the idea for the customer experience to its actual delivery. You need content velocity.

A major fast food company highlighted how it took multiple employees several business days to locate a single image. And that doesn’t even touch on the issue around images or videos that are somehow misplaced, lost, not distributed, or never found. The company alluded to annually spending tens to hundreds of thousands of hours and millions of dollars on searching for, managing, and recreating digital assets.

A central DAM is essential to finding images in a timely manner, and to save time and avoid the cost of recreating what’s already been done before.

Working smarter — not harder — to remain competitive

Your marketing and creative teams are already working harder and smarter. You need them to have solutions that allow them to get work done more efficiently. Yes, you want to save money, but more importantly you want to free up time, energy, and creativity for more innovative work — the kind of activities that add huge value to the business. These solutions often use new capabilities like AI and automation to take more mundane work out of the equation, and give marketing and creative a massive boost by speeding up workflows and task completion.

You need a DAM that includes AI and automation features that can do things like intelligently and automatically associate keyword tags with assets for quick findability, or automatically render an asset to fit different screen sizes, and so on.

A solution that ticks the boxes and more

Adobe Experience Manager Assets, the digital asset manager of Adobe Experience Cloud, provides that solution. Adobe Experience Manager Assets is not just a file repository, it’s an enterprise DAM that enables your organization to store, easily find, share, reuse, and fully maximize your return on investment (ROI) from every asset your business creates or purchases. It’s the DAM platform that you implement once and keep using for years because it’s backed by Adobe, one of the most trusted businesses. The fact is, your company probably already uses many of our tools from Adobe Experience Cloud, Adobe Creative Cloud, and Adobe Document Cloud.

Your IT team may be attracted to using Adobe solutions because they know that they won’t be ripping and replacing them in one or two years, as so often happens when a vendor closes its doors or fails to keep up with changes in a particular business area. Roadmaps for Adobe solutions extend out three to five years, and always include development of cutting-edge, new features to help ensure your business can take advantage of new market trends and innovations. In addition, native integrations with other Adobe solutions mean your company infrastructure remains stable and high-performing. A managed services solution, AEM Assets can provide many additional benefits to the various members of your IT team.

A recent IDC report found that customers who use AEM Assets gained an average of $3.17 million per year ROI in their content, for a three-year average in ROI of 366 percent.

Contact us to learn how your organization can reap the benefits of a true enterprise DAM solution.

Topics: Digital Transformation, Content Management

Products: Experience Manager