DAM Good: Making the Most of Your Assets in a Multimedia World

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Chances are, you watch almost as much video content on your computer screen as you do on the television set in your family room.

When you head to the beach for this summer’s family vacation, you could likely be one of a growing number of consumers forgoing the comfortable paperback novel in your bag for the equally portable Amazon Kindle or Sony Reader.

As increasingly rich digital media becomes a regular part of consumers’ information diet, it also becomes a more important aspect of business operations for companies in practically every industry. According to a 2008 survey of 800 end-user organizations by research firm Gartner, Inc., digital software that manages images and video was being used by 44% of those respondents; 22% planned to install such solutions this year.

In the recently released AIIM report, “Content Creation and Delivery: The On-Ramps and Off-Ramps of ECM,” it is noted that 34% of companies are archiving digital video, a practice that is expected to reach 47% in 5 years. Digital audio archiving is expected to increase from 30% to 37%.

“The market is moving so fast,” says Scott Bowen, president of Open Text Corp.’s digital media group, which offers the Artesia digital asset management solution to customers. “The experiences people are having in their homes at night as consumers … those experiences are beginning to set the bar for the kind of tools they expect to be able to use at the office.”

Digital asset management (DAM) providers have responded with tools and functionality that can enable their clients to more effectively store and manage digital assets that run the gamut from PDFs to audio and video clips and can impact practically every business unit within an organization. According to Mukul Krishna, global director, digital media practice at Frost & Sullivan, the digital assets possessed by an organization can include materials from marketing and product development departments to engineering units. Those assets can range from marketing to training collateral and can be in the form of simple text, animation, spreadsheets, PDFs, and videos—“anything you can think of,” says Krishna.

 Companies using these latest tools range from Hollywood studios and video production houses—organizations at which video content is their only business—to consumer packaged goods companies and retailers, which use digital content to power things such as marketing campaigns. Other regular customers of DAM solutions are publishers that began their digital management initiatives with PDF files and are moving forward with digital files that support ebooks, as well as using video for their promotional activities.

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