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The Evolution Of DAM Into Digital Asset Production

by Naresh Sarwan on March 28, 2012

We missed this blog post last week from one of our featured DAM vendors, ADAM.  It covers a number of themes we have described in our predictions for the Digital Asset Management sector, in particular the transformation of DAM systems from being merely libraries of content to active ‘media hubs’ that most end users may not interact with directly but do use via other production applications.  Two key areas are integration with production tools (especially Adobe products) and workflow approval, which DAM systems have (historically) been weaker at handling.

A robust DAM system will enable you to tailor your approval processes to your specific needs and embed those processes in the DAM software. This makes even complex approval processes easy to deploy and execute. When you’re evaluating DAM solutions, you should look for the ability to support three levels or types of process/workflow automation.” [Read More]

This is one area that ADAM have invested in, hence why they are keen to differentiate themselves from the competition.  They are, however, not unique in recognising this need.  We reported last year on Vyre’s introduction of advanced workflow to deal with more complex marketing approval situations and also last week we discussed Adobe’s promotion of their Creative Cloud application suite (which does integrate directly with their other creative tools).

What is interesting to contemplate (if you are a follower of the DAM industry) is whether this will see the fragmentation of DAM systems along functional lines: i.e. the generalist ‘ECM with photos and videos’ options vs highly specialised marketing oriented DAM that connects directly into an organisation’s production systems and marketing decision making business processes.  The marketing department segment of DAM is a big slice of the revenue pie  (arguably the biggest) but whether cost pressures will persuade some end users to forgo the specific benefits of a marketing oriented DAM or lump in with whatever their corporate IS department is offering remains to be seen.  In strongly consumer oriented markets such as FMCG we would expect to see some bloody battles for clients between vendors as this is one area where marketing have far more clout and, therefore, money to invest in dedicated products for their sole use.

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