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Digital assets are like rough diamonds. While deep inside they are highly valuable, you have to do some serious polishing before reaping the benefits. All business owners and executives know that digital assets are revenue-generating instruments, but only a few use them to the fullest extent.

In fact, teams spend more than 90 hours a week just searching for the assets they need. That's two and a half weeks worth of one person's work!

An enterprise digital asset management (DAM) system is a polishing brush that can make your assets shine and is easier to implement without workflow redundancies, time-consuming research, and unfortunate data errors.

In this article, you'll learn how to dig deeper into your needs to determine whether an enterprise DAM can streamline your work processes and positively affect the company's bottom line. Let’s dive in!

What exactly is enterprise DAM?

It’s a comprehensive solution that not only compiles and organizes the company's digital assets for simplified access and distribution, but it houses them in a way that makes it easy to find them. Say goodbye to archaic folder systems.

In simple words, a DAM is a digital library with a multi-tasking librarian. This librarian:

  • Accepts your assets.
  • Tells you how to label them.
  • Puts them in the right folders.
  • Provides assets to users when they ask for them.
  • Makes assets available to users based on their needs.
  • Keeps assets away from users without authorization.

The level of automation provided can save significant time and money for a company while keeping asset waste to a minimum. Today, employees spend 3.6 hours daily searching for information, slowing the work process tremendously. The immense number of digital assets an enterprise produces daily requires an effective approach to automation. Otherwise, these assets can get lost, fall into the wrong hands, or provide inaccurate insights.

Businesses leverage enterprise DAM systems to automate workflows, streamline asset creation, improve data sharing with clients, and increase content efficiency.

According to a recent study, 51% of content creators and marketers waste money on producing and recreating unused assets simply because people don't know about their existence. This is a major issue for enterprises that create huge volumes of assets but can't manage them effectively.

A comprehensive DAM system can integrate with the tools your team loves and uses every day so you can save a tremendous amount of time and avoid repetitive data entry. This can include various types of content management software, including Salesforce CRM and others.

The enterprise-level DAM can become an integral part of your workflow. Instead of being just another piece of your sales and marketing puzzle, it turns into a central point that other pieces fit right into.

5 signs your organization needs a formal enterprise DAM system

The variety of digital asset management systems is somewhat overwhelming. In fact, the DAM software market size is expected to reach $8.7 billion by 2028 (compared to $4.7 billion in 2023).

Many enterprises mistakenly believe that storing their assets on Google Drive or Dropbox does the trick. While important, storage is a tiny part of asset management. Instead of turning rough diamonds into royal necklaces, it often reduces their value. Traditional systems don’t streamline creative workflows, increase productivity, or guarantee brand consistency, leaving you at a loss.

If you are looking for a way to effectively manage digital assets and metadata, track publishing rights, maintain brand consistency, scale your creative efforts through content automation and save time, then it is time to explore implementing a DAM solution. Here are a few clear signs your organization needs to make that switch.

1. You're scaling quickly

If you are scaling quickly, your tried-and-true asset storage and management tools can't keep up. When the volume of assets you produce grows exponentially, the risk of losing value is extreme.

Fast scaling clearly shows you need something more sophisticated to manage your assets than a simple system. Besides allowing you to hold onto value, an enterprise DAM can streamline your workflow and help with making educated decisions.

2. You're using several systems that comprise a workflow and facing redundancy

Easy access to digital assets is essential for success, particularly when used across several project management solutions. An enterprise DAM system ensures quick and efficient asset sharing to help streamline workflows rather than requiring back-and-forth communication.

With multiple users requiring access to digital assets across various systems, it can ensure everyone can find the necessary assets, contributing to more efficient operations. A significant advantage of using a DAM system is its ability to reduce redundancy, lessening the burden on time and resources for managing them.

As the number of assets grows, teams often worry about organizing them. An enterprise-level DAM allows you to automate asset management to a point where you don't have to worry about:

  • Reusing outdated assets.
  • Relinquishing control to users without authorization.
  • Uploading duplicate content.
  • Organizing assets into folders.
  • Spending long hours uploading, replacing, and storing assets.

It provides an impressive level of automation with an intuitive user interface, making it easy to improve overall productivity.

3. You're worried about asset stability and security

When the volume of your digital assets is high, regular DAMs don't give you an opportunity to keep it safe from user access.

For example, you need one team to change the presentation's image collection while another team needs to work on the text. By giving both teams access to the entire presentation, you risk one of them making unauthorized changes to another's content. While this can be completely accidental, you could lose valuable data.

An enterprise DAM can help you set user authorization levels so data remains safe and your team can breathe easily. Meanwhile, your digital DAM “librarian” can help users find the assets they need based on their authorization level. The "right face, right place" system does wonders for data safety and user satisfaction.

4. You need to maintain better brand consistency

Maintaining a consistent brand identity is crucial for maintaining customer loyalty, attracting new business, and standing out from the competition. If you use an outdated or incorrect brand asset in a campaign or presentation, it quickly becomes apparent to customers, stakeholders, and competitors, leading to a negative perception of the brand.

The same goes for duplicate files, which needlessly take up storage space and create confusion when stakeholders can't identify the primary source. A DAM ensures everyone involved in the marketing communication process can access the appropriate assets. When one is updated, they all reflect those changes.

5. Your team is spending too much time searching for assets

The growing number of assets can turn your marketing team's daily activities into continuous research. And really, who likes doing that? The easiest way to figure this out is to ask your team members to measure their research time. Results could shock you.

If they do, you need to take action to reduce the time wasted. Research shows that after implementing an enterprise DAM system, over 60% of marketers and creators report spending less time on research. If you could benefit from such a reduction, you may want to consider investing in one.

When don't you need enterprise DAM?

While it is definitely a useful solution, some business owners may find that it doesn't suit their needs. Here are two important questions to ask yourself before investing in this solution.

Q: Do I need to manage data like HIPAA-compliant patient records or other sensitive information?

A: If you are dealing with sensitive data, you need a compliant system. However, you can still use an enterprise-level DAM to manage other types of assets for your company, including marketing materials.

Q: Does Google Drive, Dropbox, or another DAM system you use now perfectly suit your business needs?

If your current DAM system fits you perfectly, you may want to stick with it until the need for a more comprehensive one becomes obvious. A good rule of thumb when considering enterprise cloud storage vs enterprise DAM is: if you won't use at least 30% of the DAM solution's features, you don't need it. When you do, we’ll be right here!

Improve your creative operations with an enterprise DAM suite

You need a management system to fully harness your digital assets' potential. As the number of assets at your disposal increases, an enterprise DAM solution ensures comprehensive management and usage.

It goes beyond storing, aligning, and streamlining your digital assets. It can guide you in reducing asset waste, streamlining processes, and adding efficiency to different aspects of business operations.

Brandfolder's enterprise DAM solution is the leading digital management system leveraged by Fortune 500 companies. Find out how it can help you take asset management to the next level.