Aliya Zaidi
Aliya Zaidi 18 March 2021

5 Steps to Help You Select a DAM Vendor

Digital asset management is about more than storing files. A DAM system enables companies to be agile and respond to customers in real-time. Having the right platform in place will enable brands to personalise the customer journey and manage the brand at every touchpoint. This post includes five steps that organisations should take before investing in a DAM and choosing an appropriate vendor.

The Digital Asset Management Vendor Selection Guide, produced by Digital Doughnut sister company London Research in partnership with Bynder, is full of practical guidance to help you find the right DAM platform for your business. The report, which is free to download, includes guidance to help you find the right tech provider, and includes a list of the most important criteria for assessing vendor capabilities.  

What is a DAM?

Digital asset management (DAM) software stores, shares and organises different types of content from a central location. Digital assets are the all-encompassing content that belongs to a company. They may include videos, music, photos, documents and other forms of media. Summarised from our whitepaper, below are the five steps we recommend you take in your quest to find the right platform for your needs.

#1 Build the Business Case for Investment

At the outset, it is essential to acquire senior management buy-in. Teams must build a business case for investment. Some of the benefits of DAM systems include: 

  • Improve brand consistency by capitalising on digital assets to personalise the customer experience. 
  • Deliver a greater volume and high quality of content.
  • Create streamlined workflows. 

#2 Define Internal Requirements

Before procuring any martech, businesses must list their requirements. Companies must have a thorough understanding of what internal teams need from a DAM platform.

  • Carry out an inventory check of the types of assets the company is using. 
  • Talk to the users within the organisation. Assess who will be using the DAM, and work through the possible use cases and scenarios. 
  • Ensure the DAM specifications align with business objectives, the digital strategy and the IT strategy. 

#3 Consider Working with an Agency Partner

Businesses may opt to work with a partner to implement the DAM. The option to work with a partner depends on several factors, including organisational size, the nature of the business, and the complexity of IT deployment. 

For custom-built systems, integration of DAM with other software platforms may be more challenging. For highly bespoke software, businesses may require external help. Working with an external agency may speed up deployment and simplify IT implementation. 

#4 Formulate a Shortlist of Vendors

Once businesses have a better idea of their requirements, they must consolidate a list of vendors. After writing a shortlist, companies can send out an RFP (Request for Proposal). An initial assessment will help to cut out unsuitable suppliers. 

Once companies have a final list of potential candidates, a side-by-side comparison will allow businesses to make an initial assessment of their capabilities. The team must assess whether the vendor specification aligns with the internal budget and resources. 

#5 Evaluate your Shortlist of Vendors

At this stage, your company would have assessed their martech requirements and considered how the vendor specification aligns with business objectives. You would also have sent out an RFP and written a final list of possible vendors. 

The next step is to invite the shortlisted vendors to pitch and present their software offering. A matrix or scoring system (like the interactive one provided at the end of our guide) will quantify the extent to which vendors meet expectations. Some of the main criteria to look out for include: 

  • User experience – the software must be easy to understand and use. 
  • Time for implementation – how simple it is to deploy the system and get it up and running. 
  • Integration – how easily the DAM integrates with other IT platforms and internal systems. 
  • Content creation – some DAM systems enable the organisation to set up different content types, such as variants for ad formats. 
  • An important consideration is thinking about how users can manipulate digital assets and edit them into a final form. Some DAM systems can create different content variants and even automate them. 
  • Analytics and reporting – a modern DAM must provide the user with data to analyse content performance and assess which digital assets are working well. 

Final thoughts

Figuring out the suitability of a particular DAM system is by no means a simple process. Companies must assess their requirements and ensure the vendor spec aligns with their core strategy and business objectives. 

Download the Digital Asset Management Vendor Selection Guide for more information about how to select the best DAM for your business.

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