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DAM Market Reaching Maturity For End Users – But At What Cost For Vendors?

by Naresh Sarwan on August 22, 2012

This article was written by Nick Van Weerdenburg, Senior Product Marketing Manager from one of our featured DAM vendors, North Plains.  It is mercifully free of sales spin about how great NP are and explains how more demanding requirements from other industries have helped shape DAM solutions and provide an opportunity for marketing managers to access high value solutions that leverage this accumulated experience.  Nick goes through five vertical markets to illustrate how this process has played out and what it means:

  • Publishing
  • Retail
  • Automotive And Manufacturing
  • Pharmaceuticals And Life Sciences
  • Agencies And Post-Production

For each of these, he uses some characteristic of the industry in question to illustrate how DAM has been applied, for example, this one from Agencies And Post-Production:

Post-production is a video-centric variation on agency successes with DAM. With video, DAM provided a way to make video available to both customers and other partners. The file size and specialized viewing format tool requirements of video previously made collaboration a process that required shipping hard drives to people who needed that video, and only trained users with specialized equipment could make use of that video…DAM allowed lightweight, Web-friendly versions of video to be automatically generated, enabling anyone with a Web browser to participate in the video production and post-production process. This is emerging as an urgent business pain as video becomes more important in the marketing and publishing mix of most industries. And once video is pervasive, all of the other collaboration and governance challenges DAM solves become important for video.” [Read More]

I would probably add stock media libraries (especially images) and law enforcement agencies also to the list of early adopters who many older DAM vendors once regarded as the mainstay of their business, although I accept they’re not exactly marketing (especially the latter).

The thesis of the article seems to be that lots of other sectors have been through the pain (and cost) of DAM implementation to enable marketers in other areas to potentially reap the benefits of the investment made.  Essentially, the DAM market is entering a maturity phase where the later adopters no longer need to put major amounts of capital at risk to implement DAM in a manner that will yield them a usable solution that achieves a decent ROI.

It could be argued that this point in conjunction with the vast proliferation of DAM vendors (of all kinds) indicates that the market might soon become even better value for buyers and they should demand still more functionality at a lower cost with a reasonable expectation that they might get it with minimal negotiation required.  Further, the other possibility not fully explored in the article (for obvious reasons given the guy who wrote it) is that vendors from other technologies can go an appropriate the know-how and techniques gleaned from Digital Asset Management to bolster and enhance their own products and overlap some of the functionality to potentially avoid the need for a dedicated DAM system at all.

As an active participant in the DAM market, I rather hope that isn’t the case, however, the economics of where it is going seem to have momentum and follow familiar patterns in other tech/software industries.

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