How Retailers Are Gearing Up for Growth with DAM
The one-two punch of Covid plus the supply chain crisis has put retailers on the ropes. But the actual picture is more complex. Agile marketing departments and their creative directors are resetting their strategies, and one of the critical components of those strategies is the use of data. Specifically, we’re talking about Digital Asset Management (DAM) systems.
The DAM Challenge
These database systems are not new. DAM has been around for thirty years. However, early systems were really complicated – as many still are today – and were usually stored on local network servers. Present-day, most DAM systems reside in the cloud or are heading there but are no less of a headache for creative directors. Here are some of the obvious challenges:
- Consistent Usage – According to a McKinsey report, 19 percent of users still spend their working time searching for and collating data! The savings potential of integrating a DAM system can be very large, but consistent keywording of images is crucial. Therefore, potential savings from any DAM system can only be realized through the employees’ consistent use of it.
- Metadata Madness – The key to any database is its metadata—technical and content related image information. But if your imported metadata does not conform or is inconsistent, then your DAM platform will waste valuable time.
- Integration – To be efficient, a DAM system must work seamlessly with many other systems, from product information management (PIM) to marketing campaign planning and production. The fact is that most legacy DAM systems do not play well with other databases.
The explosion of new marketing channels and the intense competition for people’s attention have worsened the situation. In a marketing campaign, a picture may be worth a thousand words. However, getting the right version of the right picture, at the right instant in time, and for the right channel is a major challenge. Traditional DAMs cannot do it alone. A DAM must be much more than a single-use filing system in organizations with multiple legacy databases.
Digital asset management can play a vital role in your marketing organization.
The ever-growing multichannel landscape dictates that digital assets must be accessible in real-time – all the time. As a result, accurate and dynamic data are more critical than ever. So, having all your assets in one place – and easily accessible to every person and marketing-related system – is vital.
As a recent article in MarTech put it, “Digital asset management can play a vital role in your marketing organization, unifying online and offline marketing channels and leading to more efficient marketing resource allocation.”
But Not All DAMs Are the Same
Unfortunately, many DAMs exist in a world of their own, designed to meet the needs of one channel or workflow. Traditional DAMs are cumbersome in the extreme when used for other purposes or channels. They are also not always easily accessible across departments or regions. An InDesign user creating a print or online campaign, for example, may have to stop what they are doing in order to hunt through a DAM manually to find the photo or description of a promoted product.
Hoping that they see the most recent version, they then download the file, thereby creating a duplicate, placing it in the layout, and hoping for the best.
Multiply that scenario by the number of regional variations in a campaign – and the number of media channels involved – and you get a chaotic and cumbersome process, slow to market, costly, and highly subject to human error.
It’s every creative director’s worst nightmare to discover—too late—that a catalog or circular flyer error caused the company thousands of dollars.
But traditional DAMs are cumbersome in the extreme when used for other purposes or channels.
The LAGO DAM Solution
Fortunately, there is a DAM system designed for today’s multichannel marketing world. Comosoft’s LAGO DAM allows marketing departments to consolidate digital asset management into a single, unified repository – distributing assets to team members across the enterprise through a centralized platform.
The LAGO DAM assures that the correct version of the asset for a particular channel will be found immediately.
LAGO’s automation and integration with other product databases assure that the correct version of the asset for a particular channel will be found immediately. In addition, if a new version of the asset is created, it can be automatically updated throughout the campaign.
Creative designers, photographers, and art directors especially benefit from using the LAGO DAM through an Adobe InDesign layout plugin. Allowing the DAM to manage assets in the background automatically will enable them to focus on what they do best – design and collaborate – rather than waste time searching for the right image.
Marketing planners and product line managers also benefit greatly from using the LAGO DAM system. Comosoft is highly adept at integrating DAM, PIM, and other critical databases with its expert planning tools, so that each campaign can use just the right products to feature – even if there are multiple regional variations to consider. Furthermore, the marketing manager’s decisions are automatically conveyed to the InDesign user, including product size, type, color, pricing, regional variations, and the myriad of other details that make campaign planning so difficult.
Once a campaign is in motion, LAGO data can be automatically exported for digital publishing on websites, mobile apps, or other digital channels – eliminating the manual process that traditional, channel-specific DAMs can impose. The net result is more work accomplished by fewer people – freeing others to create new campaigns and expand your marketing footprint.
Every creative marketing director understands the necessity and urgency of having a reliable DAM system – one that is integrated with every step in the marketing workflow. LAGO’s DAM solution grows and evolves with the company – and with the ever-changing, multichannel world.