How DAM Software Can Keep You Nimble Enough for Social Marketing

For many marketers — and other professional communicators in public relations, advertising, entertainment and even journalism — there’s something downright scary about social media. Words (and images) matter. And in professions where people make their livings by crafting messages and relating ideas, it’s easy to strike fear into people by suggesting that the future of media calls for them to surrender control over at least part of their message.

After all, social media success can’t be effectively measured without tracking virality, and virality can’t happen until the message has passed through a whole lot of hands. Take a look at this whitepaper for a bit more on how social networks have grown, how to go about deciding what social spaces are worth using for your particular strategy, and why DAM can be a key part of streamlining your social strategy. For so long, marketing principles, processes and tools have been designed, in large part, to help people exercise control over messages. And yet, here we are watching advancements in technology strip that control away.

We know we can change. Of course, it’s not easy, but we know that we can adapt our thinking and our practices to capitalize on these shifts in the way communication is done. But what about our tools? How nimble are they? Are they holding us back, or is readying them for a paradigm shift simply a matter of wielding them differently?

Generally, that depends on the specific tools in your shed. Take Digital Asset Management (DAM) software. It’s built for, among other things, governance — strict control over who has access to what, when, for how long and for what purpose. If you’re going to be active in social media, any DAM system you use (and you should still be using one) needs to allow you to exercise and adapt permission quickly, but clearly. It needs to enable your content contributors to use the system as a source of media without needing a full-blown ‘project’ to justify a few tweets and Facebook posts.

A DAM system that takes all of this a step further will have at least some social publishing features baked right in. Take the Widen Media Collective, for instance. Recent updates to the SaaS DAM offering introduced features that enable the publishing of video directly to YouTube and the posting of asset links to Facebook and Twitter. Doing your social publishing from the DAM system means that you’re better able to bring your best marketing practices into social workflows.

This is part of a broader trend in the DAM industry, where providers are offering more ways for users to get their assets downstream from within the DAM interface. These features are becoming just as valuable as ones that enable video management, project collaboration, asset creation, and other functions. Social publishing in particular is relatively new territory in the DAM industry. Very few vendors have incorporated it into their offerings, but the industry is catching up.

But even if publishing can’t happen right from the DAM system, it’s important to understand your own workflows and governance processes, how they translate into the social marketing arena, and whether your current (or future) marketing technologies can keep up. The primary objective, of course, ought to be to use tools that at least don’t weigh you down by making your governance too cumbersome to keep up with the fast pace that social media demand.

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Author:Nicolas A. Jimenez

Marketing coordinator at Widen Enterprises, a Madison-based pre-media and digital asset management services company. Chairman at Caimán Journalism Training, an organization dedicated to bringing training and capacity building opportunities to independent journalists in Cuba.

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