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Do I need a Digital Asset Management System if I Already Have a CMS?

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11 B2B Content Ideas to Fuel your Marketing (with Examples)

Inevitably as an industry grows, terms that once had clear definitions become generalized and muddied, and that is the case with the words “digital assets” and “content.” If these terms are the same, and they are not, it would stand to reason that a CMS (content management system) and a DAM (digital asset management system) would perform the same function, but they don’t.

In fact, a DAM and a CMS are two very different systems that perform various functions for marketing teams. In a nutshell, a CMS helps manage content for your website while a DAM helps manage content for your entire business. 

So, while it is true that both systems manage content, they do so in entirely different ways. A DAM and a CMS used correctly complement each other and work alongside each other to help a brand have a unified voice and avoid any compliance issues. 

We’ll explain the uses of a CMS and a DAM system, the differences between the two tools, each solution’s essential features, and for what use cases each tool is best designed.

What is a content management system (CMS)?

According to Optimizely, a content management system is “an application that is used to manage web content, allowing multiple contributors to create, edit and publish.” 

WPBeginner defines a content management system (CMS) as: “A software that facilitates creating, editing, organizing, and publishing content.”

Here is why you don’t want to mix up the terms “digital assets” and “content.” If they are the same things, then, by definition, a CMS and a DAM would manage the same thing, but content and digital assets are very different in the marketing world.

When marketers talk about content, they are speaking of the information on your website and web properties while digital assets could be almost anything, including content. 

Confused yet? Keep reading.

Digital assets are a much broader term than content and encompass anything you might use for marketing purposes, whether it’s an image, a slogan, or a jingle.

A CMS only controls assets that are relevant to building web pages. That’s it. 

If you have a website or blog, you’ve probably used a CMS to edit the pages of your website or fix the text on your blog. A CMS’ core strength is you don’t have to have a lot of inside knowledge to use one. 

In fact, you may not be aware you ARE using one. This is because a CMS provides you with enough tools and templates that you don’t need to understand HOW it works to make it work.

If you need a higher SEO ranking, a CMS is an easy way to change your meta title and links. You can even use the CMS to change the website’s coding and technical details of the system without much understanding of how the code works on any deep level.

What a CMS and a DAM do have in common is they both store media. Interestingly, most organizations store assets in more than one place, according to a recent survey.

A CMS stores media needed to maintain your website while a DAM stores media needed to market your entire business. 

A good CMS will have the following features:

  • Tools: A good CMS should have templates and tools that allow people to alter their website without understanding the mechanics.

  • Storage: You should be able to store and index web pages.

  • Search engine: You should be able to search for and retrieve content for your web page.

  • Administrator privilege: You should be able to give various levels of permission over the ability to alter your website.

  • Publishing: You should have web publishing and editing control.

A CMS, however, doesn’t give you an excellent way to organize large digital media libraries, find assets, or distribute the assets among systems and platforms. That’s why you need a DAM.

What is a digital asset management system (DAM)?

A digital asset management system is a crucial marketing tool. Using one central library across all systems allows your team to organize, search, distribute, and collate their digital media (such as images, videos, and presentations). 

A DAM is a single voice for a brand preventing confused messaging, inconsistency, and internal bottlenecking through your entire organization.

A DAM allows you to manage any digital file and allows editing control, including reformatting or resizing an image, tracking usage on a piece of media, and sharing long files with no lag time. It also increases the security of your media files by controlling permissions, compliance, recovery, and duplication while also managing file encryption and image watermarking.

While a DAM effectively manages your digital assets, it does not have the ease of use or the publishing capability of a CMS. 

While a CMS can create highly-specific well-designed web pages without the user having advanced technical knowledge, a DAM lacks those capabilities. It was not designed for that.

While a DAM system will be used primarily by your PR and marketing teams, anyone in the organization can be given access. The power in a DAM is its flexibility.

A good DAM system will have the following features:

  • Storage: It will store and manage all marketing media (music, videos, etc.).

  • Search engine: A quality DAM system can find and retrieve media assets easily (and if it’s an integrated system, also find matching media material from the web or downloaded programs). It should also enhance searches making media files easier to find.

  • Organization: It should enrich media with custom metadata (hyperlinks and keywords) which boost productivity.

  • Security: A DAM system should manage version control of your media and track all media assets; furthermore, it should manage access permissions for all users.

  • Customization: You should be able to manipulate media into any type of file or any size.

  • Accessibility: As the DAM operates in the cloud, users can access digital media on any of their devices.

  • Distribution: Sending media files via email is a hassle. A quality DAM system allows you to send large files with download links quickly and easily.

  • Convenience: A good DAM system can format files automatically so that users always have the media they need.

Now you have an idea of what a CMS and a DAM system are, but what are the similarities and distinctions?

Do you need a digital asset management system if you have a CMS???

Although both work with digital content, are designed to be useful for teams, and improve workflow and productivity, they are very different systems. 

Having one system does not give you the capabilities of the other. The significant difference between the two systems are:

Purpose: The purpose of a CMS is to allow someone with no experience creating and maintaining a website to have that functionality even if they don’t know how the system works. A DAM system doesn’t do any of that, but it does organize and collate your digital media so that you can find it faster and use it where and when it’s needed.

Users: CMS will probably just be used by the people working on your website. Due to its ease of use, this might not even be your marketing team.

However, your company’s executive may want to keep an eye on the website, and CMS makes that easy.

A DAM system will be used by your marketing and PR teams to create creative media, but the media library also might be helpful to your developers, support managers, etc. Think anyone who might need access to media files.

Usage: CMS is fantastic at two things: maintaining websites and creating blogs. You can write, edit, experiment with fonts and styles, and publish your blog all with your CMS. 

It holds just enough of a media library to put a picture in a blog or a song or logo on a website. CMS also has some analytics features so that you can monitor the traffic on your website.

A DAM system is entirely different. It’s a centralized library of all your digital media files, all of which can be searched, organized, manipulated, and shared. It will grow as your organization scales and updates itself so that you won’t need another one until there’s a leap in technology. 

In addition, you can filter your media any way you’d like, so no matter how many files your library contains, you can always find the one you want.

Files: While a CMS tends to contain mostly text-heavy files with a few image and video files so that you can keep your website up to date, A DAM system will be home to all kinds of files of all sizes and types. A CMS is not meant to store or organize the amount of data that a DAM system can hold.

How Welcome can help

They say trust is the foundation of every relationship…and it’s the foundation of all our values. Meaning we value it over everything. 

Trust is earned, yet we first have to give trust before receiving it. We assume noble intent in all situations–so even if we disagree with someone’s approach, we believe they’re coming from a good place.

We are experts in digital asset management system solutions, and you can trust us to help you find the perfect solution for you. Ready to give it a try? 

Get started with a free Welcome account today!

 


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The Future of Content Success Is Social

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The Future of Content Success Is Social

Here’s a challenge: search “SEO RFP” on Google. Click on the results, and tell me how similar they are.

We did the same thing every other SEO does: We asked, “What words are thematically relevant?” Which themes have my competitors missed?” How can I put them in?” AND “How can I do everything just slightly better than they can?”

Then they do the same, and it becomes a cycle of beating mediocre content with slightly less mediocre content.

When I looked at our high-ranking content, I felt uncomfortable. Yes, it ranked, but it wasn’t overly helpful compared to everything else that ranked.

Ranking isn’t the job to be done; it is just a proxy.

Why would a high-ranking keyword make me feel uncomfortable? Isn’t that the whole freaking job to be done? Not for me. The job to be done is to help educate people, and ranking is a byproduct of doing that well.

I looked at our own content, and I put myself in the seat of a searcher, not an SEO; I looked at the top four rankings and decided that our content felt easy, almost ChatGPT-ish. It was predictable, it was repeatable, and it lacked hot takes and spicy punches.

So, I removed 80% of the content and replaced it with the 38 questions I would ask if I was hiring an SEO. I’m a 25-year SME, and I know what I would be looking for in these turbulent times. I wanted to write the questions that didn’t exist on anything ranking in the top ten. This was a risk, why? Because, semantically, I was going against what Google was likely expecting to see on this topic. This is when Mike King told me about information gain. Google will give you a boost in ranking signals if you bring it new info. Maybe breaking out of the sea of sameness + some social signals could be a key factor in improving rankings on top of doing the traditional SEO work.

What’s worth more?

Ten visits to my SEO RFP post from people to my content via a private procurement WhatsApp group or LinkedIn group?

One hundred people to the same content from search?

I had to make a call, and I was willing to lose rankings (that were getting low traffic but highly valued traffic) to write something that when people read it, they thought enough about it to share it in emails, groups, etc.

SME as the unlock to standout content?

I literally just asked myself, “Wil, what would you ask yourself if you were hiring an SEO company? Then I riffed for 6—8 hours and had tons of chats with ChatGPT. I was asking ChatGPT to get me thinking differently. Things like, “what would create the most value?” I never constrained myself to “what is the search volume,” I started with the riffs.

If I was going to lose my rankings, I had to socially promote it so people knew it existed. That was an unlock, too, if you go this route. It’s work, you are now going to rely on spikes from social, so having a reason to update it and put it back in social is very important.

Most of my “followers” aren’t looking for SEO services as they are digital marketers themselves. So I didn’t expect this post to take off HUGLEY, but given the content, I was shocked at how well it did and how much engagement it got from real actual people.

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7 Things Creators Should Know About Marketing Their Book

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7 Things Creators Should Know About Marketing Their Book

Writing a book is a gargantuan task, and reaching the finish line is a feat equal to summiting a mountain.

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Being position-less secures a marketer’s position for a lifetime

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Optimove Positionless Marketer Optimove

On March 20, 2024, the Position-less Marketer was introduced on MarTech.org and my keynote address at Optimove’s user conference.

Since that initial announcement, we have introduced the term “Position-less Marketer” to hundreds of leading marketing executives and learned that readers and the audience interpreted it in several ways. This article will document a few of those interpretations and clarify what “position-less” means regarding marketing prowess.

As a reminder, data analytics and AI, integrated marketing platforms, automation and more make the Position-less Marketer possible. Plus, new generative AI tools like ChatGPT, Canna-GPT, Github, Copilot and DALL-E offer human access to powerful new capabilities that generate computer code, images, songs and videos, respectively, with human guidance.

Position-less Marketer does not mean a marketer without a role; quite the opposite

Speaking with a senior-level marketer at a global retailer, their first interpretation may be a marketer without a role/position. This was a first-glance definition from more than 60% of the marketers who first heard the term. But on hearing the story and relating it to “be position-less” in other professions, including music and sports, most understood it as a multidimensional marketer — or, as we noted, realizing your multipotentiality. 

One executive said, phrasing position-less in a way that clarified it for me was “unlocking your multidimensionality.” She said, “I like this phrase immensely.” In reality, the word we used was “multipotentiality,” and the fact that she landed on multidimensionality is correct. As we noted, you can do more than one thing.

The other 40% of marketing executives did think of the “Position-less Marketer” as a marketing professional who is not confined or defined by traditional marketing roles or boundaries. In that sense, they are not focused only on branding or digital marketing; instead, they are versatile and agile enough to adjust to the new conditions created by the tools that new technology has to offer. As a result, the Position-less Marketer should be comfortable working across channels, platforms and strategies, integrating different approaches to achieve marketing goals effectively.

Navigating the spectrum: Balancing specialization and Position-less Marketing

Some of the most in-depth feedback came from data analytic experts from consulting firms and Chief Marketing Officers who took a more holistic view.

Most discussions of the “Position-less Marketer” concept began with a nuanced perspective on the dichotomy between entrepreneurial companies and large enterprises.

They noted that entrepreneurial companies are agile and innovative, but lack scalability and efficiency. Conversely, large enterprises excel at execution but struggle with innovation due to rigid processes.

Drawing parallels, many related this to marketing functionality, with specialists excelling in their domain, but needing a more holistic perspective and Position-less Marketers having a broader understanding but needing deep expertise.

Some argued that neither extreme is ideal and emphasized the importance of balancing specialization and generalization based on the company’s growth stage and competitive landscape.

They highlight the need for leaders to protect processes while fostering innovation, citing Steve Jobs’ approach of creating separate teams to drive innovation within Apple. They stress the significance of breaking down silos and encouraging collaboration across functions, even if it means challenging existing paradigms.

Ultimately, these experts recommended adopting a Position-less Marketing approach as a competitive advantage in today’s landscape, where tight specialization is common. They suggest that by connecting dots across different functions, companies can offer unique value to customers. However, they caution against viewing generalization as an absolute solution, emphasizing the importance of context and competitive positioning.

These marketing leaders advocate for a balanced marketing approach that leverages specialization and generalization to drive innovation and competitive advantage while acknowledging the need to adapt strategies based on industry dynamics and competitive positioning.

Be position-less, but not too position-less — realize your multipotentiality

This supports what was noted in the March 20th article: to be position-less, but not too position-less. When we realize our multipotentiality and multidimensionality, we excel as humans. AI becomes an augmentation.

But just because you can individually execute on all cylinders in marketing and perform data analytics, writing, graphics and more from your desktop does not mean you should.

Learn when being position-less is best for the organization and when it isn’t. Just because you can write copy with ChatGPT does not mean you will write with the same skill and finesse as a professional copywriter. So be position-less, but not too position-less.

Position-less vs. being pigeonholed

At the same time, if you are a manager, do not pigeonhole people. Let them spread their wings using today’s latest AI tools for human augmentation.

For managers, finding the right balance between guiding marketing pros to be position-less and, at other times, holding their position as specialists and bringing in specialists from different marketing disciplines will take a lot of work. We are at the beginning of this new era. However, working toward the right balance is a step forward in a new world where humans and AI work hand-in-hand to optimize marketing teams.

We are at a pivot point for the marketing profession. Those who can be position-less and managers who can optimize teams with flawless position-less execution will secure their position for a lifetime.

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