Branding is such an integral part of ensuring that a company makes a unique and personal connection with potential consumers. Essentially, branding is what keeps customers coming back for more, as well as what entices others to buy a product for the first time.
Without an established brand image that clearly conveys what the company stands for, there is a risk of getting lost in the competitive landscape of their respective industries. Branding allows consumers to personify a company, as opposed to just seeing it as a lifeless entity.
Nike has created the ultimate performance persona, where simply wearing apparel branded with the infamous swoosh makes the wearer feel faster, stronger, and more athletic.
Apple has perfected its simplistic, modern, and luxurious branding, winning legions of fans in the process.
Coca-cola, which has kept its branding and messaging consistent for over a century—leading to a brand persona of familiarity and trust—is one of the most successful American companies of all time.
So yes, branding is and always will be necessary. And because branding is such a vital component of success, brands should be carefully managing and organizing their digital brand assets. Especially if that brand is trying to grow, whether domestically, internationally, or both.
But branding can be difficult, and not every company is as good at it as Coca-cola. As a global brand, Coca-cola has thousands upon thousands of digital assets (like logos, videos, colors, white papers, packaging, etc.) that their teams across the world need access to. Allowing the appropriate teams to have access to these assets is a must for streamlined productivity and successful branding campaigns.
So, what are brands today getting wrong about brand asset management, and what are innovative brands doing right with their brand asset management?
Brands that lack organization are doomed to fail. Disorganization causes mistakes and misinformation. Mistakes lead to a tarnished brand image and reputation. And a tarnished brand image is hard to come back from.
Control over assets like logos, images, videos, white papers, colors, and fonts allows brands to streamline their marketing efforts. However, many brands today do not possess centralization and control over their brand assets. This leads to a decrease in efficiency as both time and money are lost, with employees searching for assets that have seemingly vanished from their desktop or email. It also leads to an increase in the risk of errors in branding—from packaging and social media posts to everything in between.
A central system to manage all assets can significantly improve productivity while reducing the time wasted from searching for files, eliminating workflow redundancies, improving collaboration, and maintaining brand consistency. All of this culminates in an improved ROI for the brand.
For companies that want to take their branding to new heights and improve their ROI, here’s how to get there.
First things first: brands need to take stock in terms of what is or isn’t working with their brand assets. Specifically, where are the roadblocks occurring? Management should be communicating up and down the organizational chart during this stage. While some of the higher-ups may not necessarily feel the pain of disorganized brand asset management, others most certainly will.
For example, are some employees only using images that are easier to find, instead of the most appropriate image? Maybe they are spending too much time emailing across teams trying to track down the right image, and even if they do find it, they’ve wasted a substantial amount of time. Or perhaps they don’t even think to look for an existing image and they just go straight to creating new images because they don’t know that something might already exist.
When a brand is interested in improving their brand asset management, talking to the employees that are using those assets every day is the best way to understand where there are challenges. For many of the issues revolving around finding and using digital assets, a DAM is a good solution. However—and this is very important for large companies or those with national or global aspirations—the software or solution needs to have global functionality. The ability to store key assets and make them readily available for employees regardless of the region, timezone, or continent they are located in is important. When brands are looking for digital asset management solutions, the ability for large-scale functionality should be heavily considered.
The ability to review and annotate assets should also be considered when brands are looking for digital asset management solutions. A good digital asset management solution will allow brand owners to review and annotate assets from any location or web browser. In addition, any comments or suggestions that are made should be visible to others in real-time to ensure total version control.
It is pretty safe to say that companies that excel at branding also have a robust workflow solution throughout their organization. The benefits of a thorough workflow range far and wide, including:
Having clarity around each project and the assets associated with it is important, too. For example, briefing templates are a great way to gather all the necessary information in a consistent, central location.
Implementing good project management strategies can benefit a brand, no matter its size. A detailed project management process allows brand teams to organize more complex projects with the ability to assign tasks, track progress, and increase traceability and transparency. It also increases visibility into the overall progress of the campaign and can provide crucial insight of at-risk programs and correct them, before significant time and money are lost.
Mistakes in content—particularly packaging—can be harmful to both the brand and its consumers. Finding software that can automatically review every asset, artwork, print, and package can help brands drastically reduce errors.
Another part of quality control is ensuring that the right assets are where they should be—or rather, making sure that old, outdated assets are clearly differentiated from new assets. Whether they are stored in separate folders or made distinct through the file names. A brand can manage their digital assets correctly, but if they are careless with which assets are used for what, then it will be all for naught.
MediaBeacon is a DAM solution from Esko that is designed to support brand asset management for companies.
With MediaBeacon, brands have the power to bring all their assets together in one centralized location. MediaBeacon gives brands—both big and small—a clear-cut way to find the assets they need to carry out marketing and branding projects. Teams can utilize customizable metadata fields and advanced search capabilities to find digital files as soon as they need them.
For collaboration on projects, WebCenter is the ultimate tool to improve transparency and workflow. WebCenter is a robust yet easy to use software that enables cross-functional teams to deliver content with precise quality. In addition to the ability to simplify packaging project management, the software includes a diverse amount of add-ons, allowing brands to customize the solution to their needs.
If you’re interested in learning more about MediaBeacon and WebCenter or are interested in a free demo, simply fill out this brief form.