A key element around our continued exploration of what asset management means for companies of all sizes is the way in which assets are created, organized and stored. A single image can be reused in an infinite number of ways, but how are all those different versions being saved? Is the original image easily accessible? How is everything being organized for short-term and long-term use?
These are just a few of the questions that content creators of all sizes can and should be asking. The video below is a quick visual representation of how many different ways a single image can be utilized across different media and what that means logistically.
To talk through some of these issues and questions we grabbed John Price, Product Marketing Manager at OpenText, to discuss automation, intelligent approaches when it comes to asset management and plenty more.
ProVideo Coalition: What sort of problems does Open Text help large media & entertainment companies solve?
John Price: OpenText has solutions to manage the video and other rich media content in a centralized Digital Asset Management System. This provides a structured, searchable repository for all of the media content. It’s secure, controlled and accessible to the entire enterprise, supporting the Digital Supply Chain.
OpenText solutions orchestrate the creation, planning and production across departments with tasks, notifications and status dashboards, review and approval processes, moving files around the globe with secure, fast file acceleration and managing the delivery in any format, to any screen, anytime.
Are the roadblocks you run into technological or philosophical? That’s to say, is it about users being too intimidated by the system or about them being unable to grasp what an intelligent way of managing their assets can mean to their organization?
In many respects it’s both, and digital transformation is now imperative in the media industry and most others. Every organization has a mix of new and legacy technology, and that means they also have some workflows needing to be updated to enjoy the productivity gains promised by new digital technologies. OpenText Media Management invested a great deal of effort working with customers in our latest release.
The two major areas we focused on were the UI and integration/interconnection with all the other systems in a media operation. The redesign of the user interface for our DAM system was heavily influenced by the consumer and mobile apps for ease of use and intuitiveness. The HTML5 UI provides a balance for users needing to find and make use of stuff in the repository. It enables easier workflows by allowing users to get content in the system via features like drag & drop and tagged/searchable content. Integrating with the ecosystem means a platform and tools providing the ability to collaborate with teams, share data with other systems, streamline workflows such as work in progress, review and approve, and the ability to work seamlessly with creative tools that professionals are using.
Our goal is not a “use this system or else,” but to offer the OpenText Media Management DAM system as a useful and adaptable toolset, helping people get their work done faster and easier. We want to grow adoption and usage of the system because it works and makes users work lives better. It also generates assets for more compelling and relevant experiences to consumers.
How has the digitization of the industry as a whole affected the way in which companies are looking at their assets?
Digitization has been around for a few decades. Now it is permeating the entire Digital Media Supply Chain. Organizations are initiating a digital transformation of the enterprise for end-to-end digital workflows supporting B2B and B2C. At OpenText, we are working with our customers and these digital supply chain ecosystems. An example is a media company that has taken on the role of a “production factory.” Borrowing from the manufacturing and supply chain processes, they are able to “manufacture” just-in-time programs and promos to deliver across multi-channel destinations. This process involves global delivery, conforming to language, format, and localizing content for distribution.
Not only does Media Management serve as the searchable repository of record, but it can process workflows to auto-assemble content, check rights and usage, and streamline delivery with secure accelerated file transfers to all the various channels and outlets. Plus, we are also working on analytics and metrics to provide insight and data so that we can manage and deliver media more effectively.
Your “Cold Blood” video is a great visual representation of how a single/simple asset can and is used in many, many different ways. What has been the biggest takeaway for viewers once they see it?
It resonates with people’s experience of “Wow, a single production creates a huge number of assets.” What they take away is the realization that the amount of digital assets is growing exponentially. Many organizations are trying to figure out what to do with all the digital media that is quickly overwhelming their capacity to manage and store. OpenText Media Management has solutions for secure and centralized management of all those assets. Whether it’s getting the right file for the billboard to the outdoor advertising firm, sending the mobile app to the app stores, or ensuring the timely and secure delivery of promos to hundreds of outlets, all those assets have to be created and managed appropriately while maintaining consistency.
Too many organizations are relying on outdated, manual and labor-intensive workflows that drive productivity down and increases costly human error. There is a better, smarter way.
What sort of time and money savings are associated with this kind of process and system?
Certainly a key benefit is automating many of the repetitive, manual tasks and reducing the amount of human intervention and human error. OpenText Media Management provisions the Digital Supply Chain, which means a partner can securely access and select the assets they need. They can then be assured the rights/usage controls, consistency, workflow and delivery transformation will be applicable across channels.
Collaborating and provisioning the supply chain generates greater efficiency and promotes agility in marketing campaigns and content delivery. The OpenText platform allows the system to be customized to the way your organization works, with integrated tools to orchestrate workflows and content flows in the digital supply chain. The platform also enables the interconnection of systems by sharing and synchronizing data, content and tasks.
How does this intelligent approach affect the end product, and in turn the affect on customers and consumers?
Managing assets should be simple and “under the radar” so the digital assets themselves can be used, reused, repurposed, refreshed and re-imagined to impact and resonate with audiences and consumers, driving success. Intelligent digital asset management reduces the amount of friction between systems, departments and channels while also allowing an organization to control their assets and who can access them. Finally, this approach enables adaptable workflows based on metadata and other metrics to optimize the supply chain, just-in-time delivery, agile and opportunistic responses, faster time to market, greater precision in personalization and custom delivery.
It’s all about the platform being able to support data and drive delivery and distribution, which ultimately gives creators the ability to put together compelling interactive experiences.
What sort of bottlenecks or pain points come about when there isn’t an intelligent way to store and access all of this info?
Obviously, too many outdated, legacy DAM systems create lots of contention in an organization. There is no single source of truth. Lack of collaboration and workflow means things just take longer to get done. You get frustrated users and missed opportunities.
Most critical is the increased risk. If someone is allowed to use a clip without the proper rights, the organization may face fines and expensive lawsuits. Unsecured systems can be hacked and valuable IP exploited or privacy breached.
As risk awareness increases, the need for and benefits of a secure DAM platform like OpenText Media Management makes great business sense.
What stage or aspect of production is impacted the most by this kind of system and process?
OpenText helps manage the Production process – including the planning phase – using process management for content flows, project management, review and approve. As the content is in progress, the DAM repository manages the metadata, versions, storage and renditions for work in progress. Once approved with relevant rights and usage information, it is ready for staging, transfer transform/conform and delivery.
OpenText’s platform allows integration with interrelated systems managing, sharing, and synchronizing data and workflows. It is flexible to take on the end-to-end workflows or adapt to work with other systems supporting the ecosystem.
How will the ways in which digital assets are handled continue to evolve?
Digital assets in organizations will continue to grow exponentially. The ability to easily search, manage, store and archive all of the available assets will be critically important. There will be more and more formats to support and migrate.
One area where we see a lot of interest right now is in metrics and analytics. How the assets are being used and what the results are (click rates, viewing, heat maps, etc.) is of key interest to many organizations. Getting this information in a feedback loop to designers, producers and creators will make projects more tailored and targeted. All of it will help create more relevant customer experiences to drive further success.
What are some the questions professionals can and should be asking around their asset management software or system?
Every organization is different, so it can be difficult to speak in generalities when we often need to get specific. Everyone needs to start somewhere though, and there are a few questions that can help you down that path…
- What does digital transformation mean to our organization, and how would we define our digital supply chain?
- Where are we supposed to store in progress and finished assets?
- How easy is it to share and collaborate assets? To search and find assets?
- Are there multiple digital asset management systems?
- Is there a secure, central place for all our digital assets?
- How do we control assets, know usage rights, and allow others access to assets?
- Are users satisfied that their digital asset management system is making their job easier, helping them get stuff done quicker and be more productive?
- What things would you want to change in how things are now and where do you want to be in five years (with 25x to 50x the amount of digital assets)?