It’s often helpful to take concepts that are complex or elaborate and ground them in real-world stories of people like us overcoming similar challenges by implementing those concepts. In this article, we have provided three stories of brands and their employees struggling with digital asset management (DAM) and how they overcame those challenges.
1. The Baltimore Ravens: Capitalizing on an MVP Season
In today’s world, generating excellent and engaging creative content and delivering it to the consumer quickly is a must for any effective brand, and the same is true of the Ravens. By deploying team photographers to home and away games, the Ravens were generating hundreds to thousands of beautiful and exciting photos to capture consumers’ attention after each game. The only problem: these assets were hard to find after they had been uploaded to their digital asset management (DAM) platform.
Erin Disney, the Digital Media Manager at the Ravens said this about their struggles with DAM: "With an increase to the number of visual assets being produced, we fell behind on keywording game photos for the 2019 season.”
The Ravens were already using Photoshelter as their DAM platform, but they needed help creating processes to make the platform work for their team’s needs. With this in mind, Stacks sat down with the Ravens and helped them develop metadata taxonomies, file naming conventions, and other DAM standards.
The results? A simple, yet effective set of standards and processes that could revolutionize the way they searched and organized game photographs. All these were created, formalized, and delivered by Stacks to the Ravens in a clean and simple Best Practice Guide that could quickly be shared with new members of the team or referenced when team members had questions.
Once these standards were created, Stacks got to work applying them to the Ravens’ backlog of photos already living in the DAM, as well as any incoming assets from games that were played that week, with a 24-hour turnaround time. In total, the Stacks team enriched the metadata and file names of over 14,000 assets from the 2019-2020 preseason, regular season, and playoffs.
According to Erin, “In less than a month, Stacks was able to get us caught up on the full season, greatly improving the speed in which assets can be located. Player, coach, and sponsor photos are now easy to search and find for any user in the organization."
Read more about how the Ravens build a sustainable DAM program to drive digital success off the field.
2. MANSCAPED: Facilitating Sustainable Growth
From the beginning, MANSCAPED made its name marketing to Millennials and Gen Z on YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter with funny ads around male grooming. This marketing strategy helped MANSCAPED grow internationally and steadily increase its revenues, becoming a widely known brand in just a few years. As the company grew, creative services and marketing teams struggled to keep track of the sheer volume of content accumulating in the company's servers and Dropbox accounts. Up to date, on-brand content became difficult to find and share with colleagues quickly. This looming problem threatened to stunt the continued growth of the business.
Without anyone on their team with digital asset management (DAM) experience, the task of achieving these objectives seemed overwhelming. Due to the responsibilities required to keep the business running day-to-day, Lizzie Correia, MANSCAPED’s newly hired Creative Services Project Manager, knew a more experienced person could help them prioritize and execute their efforts. She decided to hire Stacks to meet their needs and after some initial meetings to understand MANSCAPED's needs, Stacks got to work making DAM easy for Lizzie and her team.
Lizzie said, "Stacks was the only agency that understood our needs. They narrowed down hundreds of DAMs to 2-3 options which would have taken us months to do. Their team was integral in helping us make a case for pulling the trigger on purchasing the DAM. And now, they continue to help us manage our assets on an ongoing basis. Doesn’t hurt that we dig the team as people, too. They’re down-to-earth, friendly, and super accessible."
After gaining a deeper understanding of the team's DAM workflows, the Stacks team used their vast network and experience in the DAM space to connect MANSCAPED with several platforms that met both their needs and budget. After choosing a platform, Stacks handled the work of populating the DAM with content, applying standards, and managing the system. At the same time, Lizzie and her team got up and running, creating more content, and continuing to connect with consumers.
Read more about how MANSCAPED is managing and using content to grow their brand
3. KIND Snacks: Enabling Successful Brand Management through DAM
With up to 15 unique product lines featuring several flavors and hundreds of unique ingredients, KIND Snacks generates tremendous amounts of creative content from packaging design files to marketing materials.
While the brand succeeded, however, KIND was finding they had a problem: they had no where to store, sort, and access all the creative assets they were creating. They needed a space to house all their creative content that had been so integral to the company’s success so that it could be accessed, searched for, found, shared, and downloaded in a simple and secure way.
The Stacks team knew from experience that a DAM platform itself would not solve the issues that KIND was facing. In order to effectively implement a new platform and maintain it, standards had to be created and goals for the new platform set. Together with a set of key stakeholders from KIND, the team identified 4 key standards to establish:
- A future-focused folder structure that used internal language. This would allow for seamless navigation of the DAM and natural growth on the platform for years to come.
- A controlled internal vocabulary for metadata tagging and searches. These came in the form of a master keyword list of 110 keywords that was segmented by product, ingredients, packaging, product description, and nutrition facts.
- A file naming convention that would allow for straightforward organization within the folder structure and a more effective search function.
- A clearly-defined permissions tree to keep important assets and the brand as a whole safe from breach.
Once these standards were created and key objectives for the DAM identified, the Stacks team got to work applying keywords, renaming files, and building out KIND’s folder structure in the DAM. In all, the Stacks team curated nearly 3,000 unique design assets in a matter of weeks, and quickly began uploading assets to the freshly-created folder structure.
KIND’s Social Media Coordinator, Blair Hirak, had this to say about their experience with Stacks: “Quick and painless experience to migrate a TON of digital and design assets (all while entering a completely remote work environment due to the pandemic). It would have been a nightmare to navigate asset accessibility in a remote world if Stacks hadn’t helped us get up and running on PhotoShelter in this very efficient, quick, and timely manner!”
Read more about how KIND benefitted from having their DAM program in place before the market changed due to COVID-19