What is Digital Asset Management (DAM)?

Mrignayni Pandey

Content strategist, and copywriter.
September 1, 2022

Find out how the use of a digital asset management system can help you manage your files effectively and organize your projects with greater efficiency in the long run.

As digital assets increasingly become a core part of a company’s business, the need for an effective digital asset management (DAM) solution grows. Many companies struggle with managing their digital assets effectively, resulting in lost or misplaced files, version control issues, and difficulty collaborating on projects. 

A DAM solution can help companies by providing a central repository for all digital assets, complete with robust search and organization tools. This makes it easy for users to find the assets they need and ensures that everyone is working with the most up-to-date versions.

In this article, we'll go over some of the fundamentals of digital asset management and what you should know about it.

What is digital asset management (DAM)?

DAM systems are software applications that help businesses keep track of their digital assets and make them easy to find and use. They include a web-based interface that allows users to search for and retrieve assets.

DAM systems can be used for a variety of purposes, such as:

They may also include tools for managing assets, such as online proofing tools, online measurement scales, artwork management tools, and color extractors.

What is a digital asset?

A digital asset is a file that has been created or procured by an organization for the purpose of communication, collaboration, or business processes. 

Businesses use digital asset management (DAM) solutions to maintain these digital assets. These solutions provide a centralized file repository as well as collaboration, version control, and file security tools.

There are many advantages to using DAM solutions, including improved efficiency, better control over brand identity, and reduced storage and bandwidth costs.

The benefits of digital asset management software

Here are some advantages of digital asset management.

1. Improved organization and searchability of assets 

With so many files to keep track of, and with new files constantly being added to the mix, it can be difficult to keep everything sorted and accessible. 

A digital asset management system can easily help you search for and find the files you need when you need them.

2. Better control over your assets 

When all of your assets are stored in one place, and when you have a system in place for managing them, you can easily keep track of who is using what, and when. This is especially important if you have sensitive or confidential files that you need to keep track of.

3. Increased efficiency and productivity 

When a system is in place for managing your assets, you can spend less time searching for files, and more time actually using them. 

Additionally, you can avoid the frustration of trying to track down a file that you know you have but can't seem to find.

4. Improved collaboration and team workflow 

When everyone on your team has access to the same files, and when those files are organized in a central location, it's easier for everyone to stay on the same page and to work together effectively.

The five key components of digital asset management tools

The five key components of a digital asset management solution are: 

1. Digital asset repository

A digital asset repository is one of the key components of a digital asset management system. It is a central location where digital assets are stored and managed. 

The repository provides a secure, central location for storing and managing digital assets. It also provides access control and versioning capabilities to ensure that only authorized users can access and modify digital assets.

2. Searching 

Finding the right asset without digital asset management might take time, even if you know exactly what you're looking for. However, with a DAM system in place, your files will be easier to find.

The first priority is your keywords, which are words and phrases that describe the materials you're submitting. Attributes, like keywords, are used to specify other crucial information about your assets, such as the date generated, stakeholder name, file name, and more. These attributes assist users in discovering your assets and are automatically retrieved from your assets upon upload or are manually added.

For example, Artwork Flow is an artwork management tool and you can find all your label artwork files by searching for them by name. 

A clear and straightforward category structure is another important characteristic that makes searching less stressful. This feature improves the library's "browsability" by allowing you to navigate multi-level folders to discover the files you're looking for.

3. Version control and history 

If you make modifications to any marketing materials or collaterals, you must ensure that the right version is used in the future. So, a digital asset management system must have the capacity to save and track the history of prior versions, as well as the option to return to an older item at any time.

It should also allow administrators to monitor who is accessing, sharing, and editing content within the system. They provide detailed histories for each item, from viewing to commenting, so you always know who has interacted with an asset at any given time.

Artwork Flow’s project artwork library allows you to see the latest artwork version and who edited it so you can track all the changes easily. 

4. Rights Management

Rights management is a critical component of any digital asset management (DAM) system. Without it, you run the risk of infringing on the rights of others, which can lead to legal action and costly damages.

There are a number of ways to manage rights within a DAM system. The most common is to use a Rights Management Information (RMI) database, which stores information about the copyright holder, licensing terms, and expiration date. This information can be used to automatically generate license agreements and track usage.

Another approach is to use digital watermarks, which are embedded into digital files and used to identify the copyright holder. Watermarks can be used to track unauthorized use and enforce copyright violations.

Finally, many DAM systems offer built-in support for Creative Commons licenses, which are a set of standard licenses that allow creators to grant certain rights to their work. This makes it easy to find and use content that is licensed for specific uses.

5. Access control 

Even though your assets might be in one place, you may not want everyone to have the same viewing and downloading permissions. This is where access control in a digital asset management solution comes in.

You may utilize digital asset management systems to create user groups with various viewing, uploading, downloading, and sharing capabilities, ensuring that your assets are only used by the appropriate people at the right time. This means that your contributors may quickly upload their work into your system, and your users can be confident that any assets they can access are suitable for their purposes.

Conclusion

In this fast-paced world we live in, it has become necessary to have a system for organizing, storing, and retrieving digital assets such as images, videos, and documents.

A digital asset management system can help you track all of your digital assets and make it easier for you to find and use them. 

If you’re looking for a digital asset management system for your specific needs, Artwork Flow is your best bet. In addition to managing your files, you can also take advantage of features like online proofing and approval, artwork management, and color extraction with this solution. 

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