Product Data & Digital Assets
It takes both: correct and complete product information and the corresponding images or videos. Both of these elements have traditionally been handled by two different types of software. Product information is managed in Product Information Management systems (PIM systems) and media content such as images, videos, audio files, graphics or presentations are managed by Digital Asset Management systems (DAM systems). While PIM systems can often also store product images and the use of a dedicated DAM system may therefore seem obsolete to some, there are a number of good reasons to combine both systems. As a result, a best-of-breed approach can be applied.
Product information systems maintain product data in a central instance and eliminate inefficiencies such as duplicates, outdated information, or the management of product data in multiple fragmented sources and Excel sheets. In addition to pure product data, PIM systems also maintain marketing texts for a wide variety of purposes and channels such as online stores, apps, or catalogs, and also support multilingual product data as well as processes related to translation management. Due to the central importance of product information, the integration of PIM systems into upstream and downstream systems and processes also plays a major role. For example, the PIM often obtains data from ERP systems or from suppliers and ultimately delivers the product information to print catalogs, online stores, or social media. For many industries, compatibility with standardized exchange formats such as BMEcat also plays an important role.
On the other hand, digital asset management systems manage media content such as images, videos, graphics, presentation or audio files. A dedicated DAM system is essential, especially for companies that have many different products in their offering. The creation of this media content is often time-consuming and cost-intensive, and the effective use and reusability of these assets is considered to be todays standard. DAM systems not only provide centralized access to all of a company’s media content, but also facilitate collaboration among marketers, graphic designers, and photographers for optimized workflows around the creation and use of this content. This includes the integration of content management systems (CMS), online stores, Adobe Create Cloud applications such as InDesign and Photoshop, or even Microsoft Office PowerPoint. As a result, DAM is the central hub for all digital assets within the organization – regardless of where they are created, edited, or ultimately delivered to.
So even though PIM and DAM each have their own specific tasks, they fundamentally have the same goal: their complementary content supports every type of product communication and as a result they are essential tools for marketing and sales.