Another DAM Podcast

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Another DAM Podcast interview with Erin McElrath on Digital Asset Management

Listen to Erin McEIrath discuss Digital Asset Management

Transcript:

Henrik de Gyor:  This is Another DAM Podcast about Digital Asset Management. I’m Henrik de Gyor. Today I’m speaking with Erin McEIrath. Erin, how are you?

Erin McElrath:  I’m just fine. How are you?

Henrik de Gyor:  Great. Erin, how are you involved with Digital Asset Management?

Erin McElrath:  I am the Creative Tools Manager at an e-commerce company called Brandless and I manage all of the digital asset management and content that comes in and out of the company, whether it be on the site or on our printed collateral or on our social media.

Henrik de Gyor:  How does an e-commerce company that puts people first use Digital Asset Management?

Erin McElrath:  We use it just like any other company would. We do a lot of creative assets internally for marketing purposes. We also use it to store all of our product information, all of our packaging. Anything. Any image that has shown up on our site, we like to house on our DAM, but most recently, we’re starting to use a lot of user-generated content (UGC) from social media. So we’re scraping all social media sites and the images that we like and we would like to use further, ideally, we would like to put that in the DAM, in the, in the next coming months. In addition to the digital asset management, I also do all the post-production workflow. So I’m working with all of our outside agencies as the content is funneled in through the company and then approved and funneled back out.

Henrik de Gyor:  What are the biggest challenges and successes you’ve seen with Digital Asset Management?

Erin McElrath:  Well, I think the biggest challenge, and I think anybody has been in the industry for awhile can agree that the biggest challenges assessing the need of the company for our positions. We do a job that we’re basically when we’re doing our job, no news is good news and everything is sailing right along and very efficient, but to bring other people on as help and as teammates because this is a very hard job to do by yourself. To show the need and the value of the position can be challenging. When the company would rather spend their money on new creatives or engineering team on new platforms to show that the DAM is actually the brain and the hub of the organization.  When that is running smoothly, everybody can do their jobs. It takes a lot to show that value for successes. I guess on that same note when everything is running smoothly, that is my biggest success. Right now at Brandless, I have implemented three workflows using our current DAM where content has flowed in and out through a system with permissions and approvals. Everybody seems to be really happy with it and everything is working. So I think that to me is the pillar of my big success in any job that I have is making sure that the DAM that the company purchases is used to its full capabilities.

Henrik de Gyor:  Would you like to share with DAM professionals and people aspiring to become DAM professionals?

Erin McElrath:  I think the biggest one is don’t be afraid to assert yourself. We’re often seen as the people in the corner doing manual data entry work. That’s how we’re viewed by certain members of a team or a company, but we’re really not. We do so many things and most of the time nobody knows what we do. Digital Asset Manager is such a broad term that it could mean anything, so define the role that you want within your organization and what will be most appropriate and try to align yourselves with them, with the people in your company that you know you can help them most. Oftentimes, they don’t know what you do. Go up to them and asked them their pain points and see how you can help.

Another big one, most recently I kind of spoke about it earlier… Learn all you can about user-generated content, which is often called in the industry UGC. This is really big now. A lot of Digital Asset Managers don’t like to put that in the DAM because there’s so much. The liability is very unclear. It changes all the time and oftentimes when we have assets, we have contracts and releases for those assets, but for UGC we do not. Oftentimes, we just have a screenshot that our producers said, “can we use this photo?” And the person said “yes,” and that’s it. I think in my opinion, times are changing and we’re starting to formalize that relationship. Now Brandless, for example, is using a lot of UGC content and our marketing and our social media. We like to have and I like to have those in the DAM so I can track where they’ve been used and who is responsible for that connection. If something goes wrong with that initial user that uploaded that content, we can take it down immediately. I know where it lives on everything, so yeah, just familiarize yourself like technology is changing and we’re right at the forefront of that, so just be on the ball.

Henrik de Gyor:  Well thanks, Erin.

Erin McElrath:  Thank you very much.

Henrik de Gyor:  For more on this, visit anotherdampodcast.com. You have any comments or questions, please feel free to email me at anotherdamblog@gmail.com. Thanks again.

 


 

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Another DAM Podcast interview with Ron Gill on Digital Asset Management

Listen to Ron Gill discuss Digital Asset Management

Transcript:

Henrik de Gyor:  This is Another DAM Podcast about Digital Asset Management.  I’m Henrik de Gyor. Today I’m speaking with Ron Gill. Ron, how are you?

Ron Gill:  Hey, how is it going, Henrik?

Henrik de Gyor:  Good. Ron, how are you involved with Digital Asset Management?

Ron Gill:  That’s a good question. Like lot of my colleagues, Digital Asset Management was something that you kind of wander into. So in my case, I started out as a graphic designer with a fine arts painting background and throughout my career as a graphic designer all the way up to art director, I was always involved with the management of large archives of assets, whether it be for the architectural firms that I was working for, the advertising firms that I was working for throughout the cycle. And this is before Digital Asset Management and even became a industry, let alone a descriptor for what it is that we do. It was a series of organizing and making these assets useful within the company. So as the tools got better and as the systems got more elaborate, I basically had a trial by fire, a learning experience from the ground up. It was learning about how these systems are being used and how I could best implement them in the company’s workflow. So as I progressed, I became more and more involved and roughly around 2008 I became more heavily vested in Digital Asset Management. I kind of a made that my focus over design. So that’s how I got involved in Digital Asset Management, in the Digital Asset Management space.

Henrik de Gyor:  What are the biggest challenges and successes you’ve seen with Digital Asset Management?

Ron Gill:  They are quite a few challenges. And there are also a number of successes that I’ve seen and I had. The challenges I think are, they’re varied actually. So silos, information stored in silos and teams not being up to cooperate with each other are some of the biggest challenges because in each, in each silo you have system, a subject matter experts that understand the content for their silos and they don’t necessarily communicate too well even though, for example, if you’re doing or you’re working for a marketing organization and the company is large enough so you’ll have different wings or different teams working on different aspects. They all might be doing different things, but in the same industry or sharing the same goal. So getting all these silos together is one of the biggest challenges and getting people to recognize that I think is the biggest challenge for Digital Asset Management. In the beginning, it’s getting a company sign on and higher-ups to pay for the system because it’s not something that you can get overnight.

Ron Gill:  It’s not something that’s going to happen, you know, by pulling the software off the shelf and then plugging it into your system. It’s something that takes thorough investigation. It takes an understanding of how the company is using assets and it’s understanding the needs of the end user. So those are the biggest challenges that, I think in Digital Asset Management. Of course, there’s a number of splinter challenges that come up from that way, you know, adding metadata and who gets to add metadata, adoption, so on, so forth. In the beginning, the biggest challenge is getting everybody on board and understanding the baseline workflow that needs to happen inside the Digital Asset Management system.

Ron Gill:  Now, so far, successes, successes wouldn’t be obviously getting that challenge, taking care of, so being able to find what the company would need in so far as their workflow is the biggest success I think you can have initially. Finding the system that is going to work for multiple teams and the system that will best make their output and workflow more efficient is the biggest success. Once you have a working DAM in place, those successes will come.

Henrik de Gyor:  What advice would you like to share with DAM professionals and people aspiring to become DAM professionals?

Ron Gill:  Advice I’d like to share with people aspiring to become professionals. There’s not too much information online or anything that you can glean through the Internet. There is some resources that you can, forums. I think Deb Fanslow has a great one, DAM Peeps. This is for non-vendors. It is a invite only Google group or forum and it’s a good resource that just came up. And it’s good to learn as much as you possibly can and there’s so many industries that DAM touches. So obviously going to big events like Henry Stewart or going to DAM Meetups will expose you to different areas, different industries. I mean I’m still talking to people that are also Digital Asset Managers, but I’ve never met before or I have, I didn’t know that industry was using DAM in that fashion. So getting out there and, and meeting new people and seeing how they’re using DAM to help their company and help their workflows is a vital resource. I mean, it’ll help you tremendously in, in what you’re doing and you’re trying to achieve.

Henrik de Gyor:  Well, Thanks, Ron.

Ron Gill:  All right. Excellent. Thank you.

Henrik de Gyor:  For more on this, visit anotherdampodcast.com. If you have any comments or questions, please email me at anotherdamblog@gmail.com. Thanks again.

 


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