Barbara Alexander discusses Digital Asset Management
Henrik de Gyor: [0:02] This is Another DAM podcast about Digital Asset Management. Hi, I’m Henrik de Gyor. Today I’m speaking with Barbara Alexander. Barbara, how are you?
Barbara Alexander: [0:09] Good, thank you, and you?
Henrik: [0:11] Great. Barbara, how are you involved with Digital Asset Management?
Barbara: [0:15] The function that I handle essentially handles all digital assets for our company across all markets. We manage all product images, videos, presentations. All the assets then come in, and we tag them with metadata. The types of metadata that we embed assist our different markets and our different functional teams in sourcing the images that they need.
[0:44] For our marketing teams, they use the DAM to find and launch assets to all the different markets. When we’re rolling out a new program, we’ll supply all the print assets for ad production. All the assets for POS and displays, social media assets, and videos and other related assets roll out in their countries
Barbara: [1:07] One of our big initiatives was to really focus on the consumer this year. We paid a lot of attention to our relationships with our retailer accounts. One of the things we do with our assets is we organize them in collections. Each collection has a single link that we can send to our retailer, or it can be embedded in a spreadsheet. They can click on it and have access to the assets without needing to log on to the DAM. This has been a big success for us.
Henrik: [1:42] How does a global beauty manufacturer use Digital Asset Management?
Barbara: [1:48] Primarily we use it to make sure that only approved assets are used in the marketplace, and to be sure that usage rights are complied with. We’re able to expire the assets on our platform. Our platform will send out notification to anyone who’s downloaded the asset that’s expiring to alert them to the fact beforehand. So that they can pull the asset and supply an alternative asset.
[2:17] It’s a great governing platform. It gives a worldview to the global marketing teams. It allows them to see how the markets are using the assets. If they’re really using the whole palette that’s been provided to them, or if they’re taking a few select assets. It allows the marketing team to assess their budgets and where they should spend their money.
Henrik: [2:42] Barbara, what are the biggest challenges and successes you’ve seen in the Digital Asset Management?
Barbara: [2:48] We’ve had a lot of successes and some realistic struggles. The successes have been with our ability to really service our markets and our retailer accounts, which are very important. We’ve been able to really focus on consumer‑facing experiences.
[3:06] The struggles really center around the internal reorganization our company has gone through, which has been quite traumatic. I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about where the DAM is located within the organization. It really matters in terms of its overall success and survival.
[3:25] The closer you are to the core of the corporate level, I think the more successful the DAM function can be within the organization. The further you are from that, the more vulnerable you are to new people coming in, or a new emphasis. That’s been very difficult. The DAM function right now is getting re‑assessed. It’s becoming more global marketing focused, we’ll have to see what happens with it. [laughs]
Henrik: [3:51] A lot of people struggle with being more center to the core rather than being on the fringes and being possibly at irrelevance, unfortunately, because it’s not even known to the rest of the organization.
Barbara: [4:03] That’s exactly right. We’ve had such a reorganization and shift in people, and as a result, DAM is not understood, or really factored in as a very core, relevant function of our company.
Barbara: [4:19] We’re struggling with that right now.
Henrik: [4:21] I understand, and I think a lot of organizations struggle with that. I’ve heard that from many organizations. That they don’t know where to put DAM. Is it IT? Is it marketing? Is it some creative function? Or is it tied to distribution or something? It’s a struggle for many organizations.
Barbara: [4:37] Exactly.
Henrik: [4:39] What advice would you like to share with DAM professionals and people aspiring to become DAM professionals?
“We have to think of ourselves as more than just a DAM professional. It’s more a media professional. I think that the more certification and knowledge that you can gain will only assist you.”
Barbara: [4:44] We have to think of ourselves as more than just a DAM professional. It’s more a media professional. I think that the more certification and knowledge that you can gain will only assist you. I know the DAM Foundation has a program. I would recommend that. I also think it’s very important to attend industry functions whenever you can.
[5:10] There’s so much information to be gained by your colleagues in the industry that you really can’t source online or from a book. That face‑to‑face contact and understanding is really important. Definitely the DAM New York Meetup, the Henry Stewart DAM New York Conference, and Metadata Madness [laughs] .
Henrik: [5:33] Which we’re attending right now.
Barbara: [5:34] Exactly.
Henrik: [5:36] Thank you, Barbara.
Barbara: [5:36] Thank you, Henrik.
Henrik: [5:38] For more on this and other Digital Asset Management topics, log on to anotherdamblog.com. If you have any comments or questions, please refer to email me at email@example.com. For this and a 150 other podcast episodes, including transcripts of every interview, go to anotherDAMpodcast.com. Thanks again.