Cory Schmidt, head of marketing at Canto, explains how to unlock the potential of your time-pressed team and external suppliers.
How much visual content do you have? The exhibition and events industry uses more than ever – from floorplans, shell schemes, and stand design to imagery, presentations and video files.
This abundance of digital assets means there are more people and processes involved in creating and sharing content than ever before.
What is DAM?
With such volume, and regular deadlines to meet, your team needs to find assets quickly and in one place. What about version control and access to third-parties to collaborate on both planning and delivery? And what about the security of allowing access to assets, especially if sensitive for launch activities?
Digital asset management (commonly referred to as DAM) helps solve this problem. Put simply, DAM is a solution to help consistently store digital assets in a central location so they can easily be found and shared. It makes life easier for internal colleagues and enables fast, secure access for outside parties such as agency partners, suppliers and venues.
How is the exhibition, events and broader marketing industry using DAM?
The one thing that everybody involved in events would like is more time. This industry is fast-paced and no two days are the same. So anything that helps team members quickly find tagged assets and avoid lengthy hunts for files helps everyone spend their time where it really matters.
But why would you consider a dedicated DAM solution when a shared server or Dropbox-type service can provide access?
The sheer volume of digital content now used for marketing and events – and the need to easily navigate the archives of previous projects – means content sharing and storage requirements go way beyond basic functionality. Simple file sharing like Dropbox, Google Drive or Box are quickly outgrown, being limited in storage capacity and performance.
Not having a central system for visual brand assets and project files can result in a lot of confusion and wastes countless hours of searching. Plus project owners run the risk of outdated, off-brand and unlicensed imagery being used.
DAM software also integrates with InDesign and Photoshop, which enables faster editing for designers, particularly where quick and simple changes are required. New file versions are automatically synced with the centralised DAM storage system so there’s no danger of updates being saved to a local destination inaccessible to others.
If your files contain metadata, that’s searchable too. If any of your imagery contains people, facial recognition allows you to search for all files featuring a particular individual.
How can DAM improve working relationships with external parties?
Often your files for a particular event are all saved in a master folder location. And you might want to limit access for third parties, but you need to share applicable content without splitting files into multiple folders. With DAM, admins can simply allow an approved individual or team access to only the assets they need. For example, sharing branded assets with external parties – such as freelancers and other outside contractors – ensures your brand consistency is upheld, streamlining the design process.
With numerous individuals involved in creating, sharing and using files, you need everybody involved, including outside suppliers, to work in the same way. One central and secure system provides consistent organisation, searchability and version control of all your digital assets.
So next time file frustration sets in, or you need to share outside your organisation with one click, ask yourself: are we working in the most effective way? Have we unlocked our full potential?