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The Evolution of Digital Asset Management systems

by William Gist

In the same way that the typewriter evolved to your MacBook Pro, the company share drive has been surpassed by it’s a faster, smarter and online version, Digital Asset Management.  This evolution has come about out of necessity.  With the expectation for marketing and creative teams to produce greater volumes of work, distributed across a growing number of media channels with teams spread across multiple locations, a better way for managing assets was vital.

The share drive was king at a time when teams were more inclined to work in silos at one location. Permission to create new folders or access creative was less of a priority and where the usage rights on assets expired, it was unlikely that a breach would be detected.  In most cases, old creative died with the campaign as its folder was buried in a bird’s nest-like folder structure.


The way marketing teams worked was also different.  The collaboration wasn’t possible in the way that it is today.  Work in progress files was saved to a local computer and shared versions were difficult to keep track of.  Put simply, it was difficult for multiple people to work on a project.

Because of these limitations, digital asset management emerged as a new way to manage your files.  It’s a central online location to store images, videos, documents and audio that can be accessed from anywhere in the world.  A core feature of a Digital Asset Management platform is that it provides a way to categorize and search for digital assets.  Unlike the share drive which relies on accurate naming conventions to be able to search for assets, digital asset management uses artificial intelligence, keyword tagging, filters and metadata to quickly find the right file when you need it.


Aside from categorizing these assets, Digital Asset Management software allows for users to work collaboratively and distribute assets from directly within the platform.  Features such as annotations, comments and version control make it easy to work with other people on creative production.  Then, when creative has been finalised, approval requests can be sent from within the platform to get it signed off, ensuring that only approved creative is used by your team.

Enterprise digital asset management software has the capability to be a single source of truth for digital files, powering your marketing.  Files can be transformed on the fly, cropping, compressing or converting video, then shared directly from the platform.  Either by using share and embed links or by downloading the file in a range of formats.  By sharing files directly from your Digital Asset Management system you can track their usage, putting a quantitative value on creative content.

It’s no surprise that digital asset management has evolved to be a core component of the MarTech stack, as it is the enginethat powers creative production.  So what’s next in the evolution of digital asset management?  Marketing departments are looking to consolidate their excessive toolbox to increase efficiency and simplify processes.  Digital asset management is just one component of Marketing Operations software which is the natural evolution of software to help us be better marketers.  Market leader IntelligenceBank has been reporting growth year on year with no signs of the category growth slowing down.

You can manage all your digital assets in on this platform and easily access the files you need, keep everything organized, and easily share them with your team within seconds.
Because of these limitations, digital asset management emerged as a new way to manage your files.