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Why Companies Are Integrating DAM & Online Proofing

Why Companies Are Integrating DAM & Online Proofing

There are a growing number of organizations who have or are planning to integrate their Digital Asset Management (DAM) system with an Online Proofing (OP) system. This integration trend has been underway for the past four (4) years, but has accelerated over the past twelve (12) months as more DAM Managers, Marketing Teams, and Creative Teams work together to effectively incorporate these two systems that are integral to an effective Work In Progress (WIP) process. 

While there are many reasons and use cases to support the need for integration that we’ll explore in the future, in this article, we’ll examine three of the most commonly cited reasons for integrating DAM and Online Proofing systems. These cover the basics of why this is becoming increasingly common in organizations. Perhaps even expected. 
 

1 - Making DAM a Critical Part of the WIP Process

WHERE YOU ARE
Marketing organizations know that an effective WIP process allows them to optimize how many, how quickly and how cost-effectively they can produce approved assets to fuel an ever increasing number of campaigns. Unfortunately in too many organizations the existing DAM system is not effectively incorporated into the WIP process. This not only creates lost value, but also leads to many marketing teams starting to circumvent the current DAM systems and replace them with other “storage” solutions. This is a wasted opportunity and wasted resources (time, dollars). Significant value can be achieved through even basic integration.

WHERE YOU CAN BE
Make your DAM a valuable part of the WIP process by integrating it with an Online Proofing system. With a click of a button, existing assets like last year’s direct mail piece can be pushed from your DAM to the online proofing system to be reviewed and updated to reflect this year’s Spring Campaign. Reviewers can pull in appropriate approved content like product images from the DAM directly into the Online Proofing system, pick the right one, and include it into the content they’re reviewing. These basic points of integration make the DAM more valuable to the WIP process and participants by speeding up how quickly and easily you can make use of assets from the DAM. 
 

2 - Guaranteeing All Approved Assets End Up in the DAM

WHERE YOU ARE
Unfortunately even after significant investments in technology and training not many organizations can say that their DAM lives up to that promise. Why? The whole organization knows that the DAM is where final approved assets are supposed to go. You were told during training for DAM System X. There is the problem. Saying and doing don’t always align.

It’s not that people want to break the rules. It’s just that the goal (as the marketer or creative or agency) was to deliver a final approved asset for use. That was done. Remembering to upload it to the DAM where it can be found and used by others (Marketing, Creative, Agencies) in the future is quickly drowned out by other urgent priorities. Instead of ending up in the DAM, that final approved asset will take up residence in an inbox, a network share drive, Dropbox, or anywhere except the DAM. 

WHERE YOU CAN BE
By integrating DAM with Online Proofing, this problem can be eliminated. You’ll know where every approved asset is going to be at the point of approval. That is where the integration between your DAM and Online Proofing systems comes in. Once an asset is marked as approved in the Online Proofing tool it sends a message to the DAM. That message basically translates to “Hi, I have a newly approved asset. Come pick me up.” The DAM receives the message, sends a request to the Online Proofing tool for the new approved asset and then stores it in the DAM. That’s it. No user intervention required. The whole trip from Online Proofing to DAM is automated and doesn’t require anyone (the marketer, the agency, the DAM Manager) to do anything. 


3 - Eliminating the Naked Asset 

WHERE YOU ARE
There are assets that show up or are already in the DAM that have little to no Metadata attached to them. It’s a case of “if an asset doesn’t have Metadata does it really exist?” Why does this problem occur? Everyone agreed on the Metadata attributes and agreed that applying the Metadata is critical to ensure assets can easily be found in the future. Seems simple. What’s the problem? Again, it’s not that you (or anybody else in the company) wants to break the rules. It’s just that the goal was to deliver an approved asset. You did that and now are off to the next urgent priority. Applying Metadata is valuable, but the payoff is not immediate so you are going to ignore doing it. 

WHERE YOU CAN BE
Your Online Proofing system (if it’s a good one) should allow you to capture metadata during the review and approval process. All sorts of critical information are communicated during this phase. Capturing this information doesn’t place any extra burden on the people involved in the review process. This information needs to be communicated so that the reviewers have the necessary context to provide their feedback.

So why not input this information (metadata!) through a series of drop downs, pick lists and other input fields? And then when the file is approved and the DAM comes to pick it up (automatically!) it can also pick up the metadata and map it to the corresponding fields in the DAM. 

Metadata you can capture during review & approval:
• What? A banner ad
• Who produced it? ACME Agency
• Where can it be used? USA, Canada, UK


As a DAM Manager what do you want to accomplish?

  • Want to use DAM to support Work in Progress?
  • Want 100 % of approved assets in the DAM?
  • Want complete metadata on new assets?
     

 

As a DAM Manager what do you want to do next? 

Assessing Your Creative Review and Approval Process

Assessing Your Creative Review and Approval Process

Guide to Evaluating Online Proofing Tools

Guide to Evaluating Online Proofing Tools