Marketing is a visual medium (sorry radio ads, but it’s true). Images are much more powerful than words. Which is more appealing – a dry-as-dust five page technical document of a car’s specs, or the image of the same car roaring down a highway with Tom Hiddleston behind the wheel? (To be fair, everything looks better when Hiddleston’s involved).
Your clients and customers view hundreds of images, videos, animation, memes and other visual media every day, on and offline. Your digital assets are one of your greatest strengths – if you know where to find them.
Trying to locate a single image amidst a thousand files scattered across multiple folders is like trying to identify one specific locust in a swarm. At best, it’s time-consuming and frustrating, taking your team’s attention away from more important tasks. At worst, your image is lost in the swarm, never to be seen again (or, in accordance with Murphy’s Law, only showing up after you needed it). To really get the most out of your visual media you need the image cataloguing power of a digital asset management system.
What is Digital Asset Management?
Digital asset management (DAM) describes the organization, tracking, and distribution of digital media using an image archiving system to manage digital rights, improve your images’ SEO and choose who can or cannot view, download and manipulate images. In purely practical terms, DAM systems help you find and use digital assets.
Benefits of Image Cataloguing and DAM
Digital asset management offers more than just image archiving – although that feature alone makes accessing digital media easier. A good DAM provides so much more, including:
- Providing a means of setting privacy and copyright options for different images.
- Allowing the public to view files.
- Assigning individual and team access to specific media.
- Managing third-party image requests.
- Protecting images with brand watermarks.
- Automated backups of images.
- Sharing files without bulky email attachments – just send the recipient the image link.
- Rapid search and retrieval of media with metadata and taxonomy systems.
Image Archiving and the Cloud
Most DAM software stores images behind secure logins in the cloud, so your team can access the images they need 24/7, from anywhere with an online connection – , improving the results of remote collaboration. Your team can find and share images in seconds while you control exactly who has permission to access and work with sensitive media.
SEO, DAM, and Your Images
Digital asset management improves your images’ SEO rankings once your media is out in the wild online world. Without SEO, you’re throwing your images into the virtual void, with no way for search engines find them. If user searches were fish, SEO keywords would be the bait.
Image management software helps you assign embedded metadata to improve an image’s SEO. DAM systems like Webdam suggest SEO keywords to embed in metadata such as:
- Title tags
- Primary and secondary headlines
- Alternative image text
- Descriptive links
With a few clicks you can assign multiple images’ the same SEO keywords, updating and embedding them all instead of laboriously updating each file. Image cataloguing makes your media instantly accessible, easy to control and ready for when your team needs it. No individual locust hunting required.
Need a DAM to keep your own images in order? Not sure what features you need? Read our guide: How to Select a DAM.