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Top 8 digital asset management platforms to consider in 2023

DAM platforms help marketers manage digital assets for customer-facing channels like websites and social media pages. Top DAM products include Acquia DAM, Bynder and Canto.

Organizations often struggle to manage their digital assets, but digital asset management platforms may be the answer to that problem.

A digital asset management (DAM) platform can help organizations manage visual, immersive and interactive digital experiences. The platform lets users source, organize and offer many types of rich media on demand -- something that web and enterprise content management systems can struggle to do.

DAM platform buyers can choose from a number of products on the market. Top platforms include Acquia DAM, Adobe Experience Manager Assets, Brandfolder, Bynder, Canto, Nuxeo Platform, OpenText Media Management and Sitecore Digital Asset Management.

These platforms were selected based on analyst and peer review websites. They appear in alphabetical order.

1. Acquia DAM

Acquia DAM, formerly Widen Collective, can benefit marketing and creative teams, as it offers a central repository for rich media files. The platform uses cloud-based architecture, load balancers and microservices to let teams scale up or down to meet their needs.

The product includes the following features:

  • Portals to curate and personalize access to assets.
  • Templates and workflows to streamline asset creation.
  • Analytics to track and measure asset effectiveness.
  • Integration with over four dozen systems, including creative tools like Adobe Creative Cloud and Canva, file-sharing tools like Dropbox and project management products such as

Acquia DAM offers a simple UI and lets users easily create metadata, attributes and collections. The tool also has intuitive search capabilities. However, some users caution that the product can lag, and they have struggled with dashboard messages.

The vendor offers three pricing tiers: Workgroup DAM, Workgroup DAM and PIM, and Enterprise DAM. Further details are not readily available on the vendor's website.

2. Adobe Experience Manager Assets

Adobe Experience Cloud is an integrated suite of services that helps users produce digital experiences. This system can benefit marketing groups that create experiences on websites, email, advertising campaigns, e-commerce ventures and social media platforms. Adobe Experience Manager Assets (AEM Assets) -- the DAM platform within Experience Cloud -- offers a repository to store and manage edited and approved images, videos and other types of assets.

Creative teams can rely on their own work-in-progress repositories -- including Adobe Creative Cloud -- to manage creative workflows, editorial reviews and design approvals for producing individual assets. AEM Assets manages the downstream delivery processes.

The product includes the following capabilities:

  • Intuitive asset search and preview.
  • Automation to share assets to multiple devices and accommodate for different screen sizes, display resolutions and network bandwidths.
  • Access controls and digital rights management (DRM) features.
  • Image recognition to automatically tag assets by items and attributes they contain.

Adobe tightly integrates AEM Assets with related products within its portfolio, such as AEM Sites for web content management and Marketo Engage for e-commerce. Marketers and other nontechnical users can continue to use these line-of-business tools while they search through a repository of approved assets, find what they want and directly update the digital experiences they created.

This platform costs more than many others, and users may struggle with its asset control features. AEM Assets has two pricing tiers: Departmental and Enterprise. Further pricing information is not readily available on the vendor's website.

3. Brandfolder

Brandfolder's cloud-first system offers marketing teams a single source of truth for their digital assets and lets them share assets internally and with external partners. This product can help marketers organize, manipulate, distribute and analyze digital assets, and lets external users quickly access content.

Brandfolder uses AI and machine learning (ML) for its search functionality and lets teams view who uses the assets, where they use them and which assets team members use the most. These tracking features can help marketers create more assets that resonate with partners and customers. Brandfolder offers integrations for nearly 50 tools, and customers can use API integrations and Zapier to create custom connections.

This DAM platform includes the following features:

  • Brand guidelines and customizable templates.
  • Workflow features so managers can assign and approve tasks.
  • AI metadata tagging capabilities, which users can train on their unique taxonomies.
  • Support for multiple file types, including images, video, audio and text.
  • A simple drag-and-drop interface.
  • Large file ingestion from FTP servers.
  • Guest access features.
  • cold storage for files after campaigns have ended.

Additionally, Brandfolder's search function offers a visual preview of assets to help teams quickly find files. However, the tool's AI tagging isn't always effective and the system has a steep learning curve.

Brandfolder offers two pricing plans: Premium and Enterprise. Further pricing information is not available on the vendor's website.

4. Bynder

Bynder is a cloud-native DAM platform that offers subscription-based services. The tool targets creative and marketing teams in advertising agencies, small marketing groups and large enterprises. Bynder helps these teams collaborate in the cloud, quickly produce rich media and deliver digital assets to marketing channels.

The platform focuses on the end-to-end digital asset lifecycle, which refers to the ways creative teams source, manage, distribute and analyze creative content. Bynder includes the following features:

  • A cloud-based repository that can store various types of digital assets such as photos, images, videos and 3D printing files.
  • AI to automatically tag assets with metadata.
  • Workflow capabilities that let users submit works-in-progress for review and approval, then store approved assets in the repository.
  • A tool which lets marketers modify predefined elements within branded videos and produce multiple versions of clips for different market segments and delivery channels.
  • Print and digital templates to automate marketing campaigns.

Marketers can use Bynder's templates to quickly create alternate versions of assets for different business use cases and for A/B testing. However, graphic designers must first design the templates and identify which elements, such as images or text blocks, users can edit.

Bynder also helps users develop branded assets, ensure brand consistency and quickly complete creative tasks. However, Bynder's UX is not intuitive and users may struggle with third-party integrations.

Bynder offers three pricing tiers. Further pricing information is not available on the vendor's website.

5. Canto

Canto lets marketing teams collect and curate all their digital assets in a central location. The cloud-based DAM platform offers users a fully searchable library with AI tagging, customizable portals for external asset sharing and workflow capabilities that let managers assign and track tasks.

Canto runs on AWS and touts the security of its servers. The product offers the following capabilities:

  • Multifactor authentication and access control to limit access to specific individuals within the organization.
  • Reporting features to track who accessed what and which assets performed well.
  • Customizable portals to ensure specific teams can access certain assets.

The platform also uses facial recognition to automatically tag images with metadata. However, the UI has many bugs, and users may struggle to change or reset their passwords.

Pricing information is not readily available on the vendor's website.

6. Nuxeo Platform

Nuxeo Platform is an enterprise DAM system that manages product-related assets -- such as images, schematics, data sheets and 3D object renderings -- through digital supply chains.

Enterprise customers -- particularly those in consumer packaged goods, retail and media industries -- can use this platform to digitize parts of their product design processes. For example, designers and marketers can design packaging and develop marketing collateral for new products without waiting for manufacturing to make prototypes of physical goods.

The product offers the following capabilities:

  • A scalable repository that can run on premises or in the cloud.
  • Metadata management capabilities, which help users search through large asset collections that businesses categorize with corporate taxonomies.
  • Low-code capabilities for rapid application development and to let nontechnical workers develop ML models on their own.
  • Customizable workflows that let creative teams, marketers and subject matter experts collaborate to produce product labels and accelerate time-to-market for new products.

Additionally, Nuxeo offers AI capabilities, so users can train ML algorithms to recognize specific elements and attributes within their own products. These AI features let users automatically tag product-specific assets with relevant metadata, classify images and automate processes. However, the platform doesn't come with digital signature capabilities and implementation can challenge organizations.

Pricing information is not readily available on the vendor's website.

7. OpenText Media Management

OpenText Media Management (OTMM) can benefit creative, marketing and line-of-business teams within large organizations -- including media, advertising and branding, consumer packaged goods and government firms. Archivists and museum curators also use OTMM to digitize paintings, historical photos and other valuable artifacts for preservation and digital distribution.

Organizations can deploy OTMM on premises or in the cloud. This system manages the works-in-progress files that creative teams develop. The product includes the following features:

  • Workflow capabilities to coordinate ingesting, editing, reviewing and approving processes for rich media assets.
  • Integration with external AI and ML tools for tagging automation.
  • Integration with DRM services to monetize protected assets and streamline commercial transactions.
  • AI video recognition capabilities to automatically index and transcode videos.
  • Security features to manage access rights and permissions.
  • Tracking features to show how employees use assets.

Furthermore, OTMM can serve as the repository that organizations use to manage and distribute approved digital assets to marketing and business teams across an enterprise. Team members can browse through collections that use a familiar organizational criteria, search for what they want and download what they need. However, the platform has a steep learning curve and training manuals offer limited knowledge.

Pricing information is not readily available on the vendor's website.

8. Sitecore Digital Asset Management

Sitecore Digital Asset Management offers marketing teams the ability to access and manage rich media to coordinate campaigns across multiple digital channels, including email, web, social media, mobile and in-store kiosks. The vendor designed this platform to integrate with Sitecore CMS, its core web content management platform.

The system offers the following features:

  • Predefined and customizable categories to help users organize assets.
  • DRM features to track usage rights.
  • AI to automate metadata tagging.

Organizations can use the same categories they defined in Sitecore CMS so employees don't need to learn a new taxonomy system.

Sitecore DAM is an integral part of Sitecore Content Hub, the vendor's digital marketing platform. Marketing teams can maintain a complete view of their content landscape and rely on the Hub to plan, schedule and organize creative operations, such as photo shoots and video recordings of live events. Photo editors and video producers can upload assets to the Content Hub, manage the works-in-progress revisions and support review and approval workflows.

Creative operations managers can use the Content Hub to manage schedules and track costs. Digital marketers can then search through collections of approved assets as they use Sitecore CMS to update content on websites or launch omnichannel marketing campaigns.

However, Sitecore DAM has a dull and unintuitive interface which often fails to engage users. Also, the system frequently lags.

Pricing information is not readily available on the vendor's website.

Editor's note: This article was originally written by Geoffrey Bock and expanded by Christine Campbell.

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