DAM Best Practices: Organizing Your Assets Effectively

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Digital asset management, or DAM, is a company’s system for creating, storing, accessing, and distributing digital assets like images, videos, graphics, documents, and more. An effective DAM system makes it easier for cross-functional teams to find the assets they need faster, leading to more efficient processes.

Discover the digital assessment management best practices that can transform your content operations, driving faster timelines for creating and distributing better content.

Organizing Digital Assets Effectively

One of the major reasons for implementing a digital asset management system is to have a central, well-organized space for storing every asset. When implementing a new DAM platform, building a structured organization system is of the utmost importance.

Design a folder hierarchy that matches workflows and teams within your organization. Try to follow consistent logic as much as possible to empower teams to store and find assets intuitively. In addition, standardization means that every team member uses the same filing system when adding or updating assets in the DAM system. 

For a smooth transition to a new DAM platform, make sure high-level decisions on the system’s organization follow advice from each department and leverage knowledge of their pre-existing processes. Create consistent training materials and train each team on new processes.

Intuitive DAM software can assist further in finding and organizing assets through the use of metadata, which collects and summarizes the basic information in an asset. Companies can use digital asset management best practices to leverage metadata for efficient asset retrieval.

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Version Control and Asset Management

Version control is a tool used to track and manage revisions in assets. Version control software within a DAM platform can detect duplicates and ensure each asset is updated as users change it.

One helpful tool that many DAM platforms include is the ability to track and list version history. Powerful DAM solutions will also include integrations that allow customer-facing tools ? like the CMS that powers a website ? to benefit from DAM version control software. In this case, version updates within the DAM platform will automatically be updated on the website. This guarantees that customers are not accessing old information like expired sales offerings or out-of-date product information.

Access Control and User Permissions

Robust DAM software empowers companies to secure digital assets with role-based access. Administrators can create customized roles with permissions to different types of assets, allowing companies to keep sensitive information more secure.

Digital asset management best practices for setting user permissions include only allowing for the least permissions necessary within each role and making highly customized role groups instead of a few generalized roles. When in doubt, cybersecurity best practices suggest that requiring a user to request permission to access an asset is better than giving too much permission upfront and jeopardizing data.

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Integration with Other Systems

Using DAM-specific software may seem like an intimidating change for companies already using several other tools alongside a less formal DAM system. In actuality, DAM tools that prioritize easy integration with other essential programs can help companies streamline workflows for asset creation, discovery, revisions, approvals, and distribution.

For instance, DAM software that integrates with email or social media software allows easy access to well-organized images, videos, and graphics stored by the DAM platform. Using AI, DAM software can even help make a single asset suitable for multiple platforms by optimizing content to fit platform-specific qualifications and automatically running campaigns on various channels.

When integrating DAM with other tools, clearly define your goals first. If you know the current workflows your teams are operating within and the pain points you are hoping to address with integration, then you’ll be better equipped to work with DAM experts to properly integrate the new system.

Backup and Disaster Recovery

Backup systems create another copy of each asset that can be accessed if the original becomes damaged, destroyed, or otherwise inaccessible. Disaster recovery means recovering multiple assets in a larger event in which multiple or all assets are destroyed, like a natural disaster that damages hardware, a cyberattack that corrupts files, or similar.

Best practices for creating robust backup and recovery plans include backing up critical assets frequently and testing and refining disaster recovery methods regularly. Storing backups in multiple locations and creating recovery plans tailored to different situations ensures your system will be ready to face any threat.

As mentioned above, many DAM platforms store the previous versions of a project, which allows for easy recovery if a mistake is made. Similarly, DAM software often includes protections against loss or damage of valuable assets.

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Selecting the Right DAM Solution and Implementation

Ultimately, there is no ?one-size-fits-all? solution for effective DAM. Thoroughly evaluating your organization’s needs and constraints upfront will help you create a guideline and priorities to keep in mind during your DAM software search.

Once you thoroughly vet options for DAM systems and find one that addresses your company’s specific needs, seamless implementation will depend heavily on the software’s integration capabilities with your current tools. Partnering with an expert you feel you can depend on will smooth this process.

Finally, prioritizing consistency and communication during training will confirm that all teams are on the same page about new processes. This will allow the DAM system to improve pre-existing workflows rather than impeding them.

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