Brand consistency

Brand consistency: Your ultimate guide for 2024

Apple. Google. Starbucks. The world’s most famous brands don’t achieve this status by accident – they are masters of brand consistency.

Brand consistency is the foundation from which customers recognise, understand and trust your brand. From your visual identity and colour palette, to your tone of voice – keeping every aspect of your identity unified is critical for long-term success.

As developers of solutions that empower hundreds of global organisations to stay consistent, we’re experts in true brand consistency and how to achieve it.

In this ultimate guide, you’ll discover exactly why consistency is so important, and what you can do to maintain it across every marketing touchpoint:

  • See statistics that demonstrate the value of consistency
  • Learn what tools and techniques are crucial to brand consistency
  • Discover brands that have their identities locked down
  • Find out how to overcome common brand consistency challenges

Want to build a brand that resonates with customers wherever they see it? Then let’s get started…

What is brand consistency?

Brand consistency is when you present a unified, harmonious brand voice across all marketing materials. Websites, emails, social media platforms, brochures, posters – everything your potential customers see carries your unique identity.

Think of it as the glue that holds your brand messaging together, from a huge billboard in a busy city, all the way down to a single TikTok. Maintaining a consistent style across all your marketing campaigns and channels helps familiarise your target audience with who you are, what you stand for, and how you can help them.

4 essential elements of brand consistency

The most successful brands ensure that every strand of their marketing is woven with their distinct personality. That means every key element must be aligned…

Visual identity

McDonalds’ golden arches. The Starbucks Siren. The four fundamental colours on every Google product. Consistent visual elements are crucial if you want people to recognise your brand, as it’s often the first thing prospective customers will connect with.

From your logo and colour scheme, to the brand images, typography and design elements you utilise. These all communicate your brand’s identity, and should never deviate across any of your assets.

“Brand visibility statistic showing how consistent brands are 3.5 times more visible than inconsistent brands. Source: Demand Metric”

Tone of voice

How you communicate with your potential customers plays a huge role in how they perceive your organisation. Do you keep things simple and jargon-free like Apple? Are you motivational and aspirational like Nike?

No matter how you talk to your target audience, your distinct tone of voice and language must be reflected in every message, from a simple Instagram caption to a multi-page brochure.

Brand messaging

The core values at the heart of your organisation should influence every brand element you create. Your brand’s promise, vision and goals transform occasional customers into full-blown advocates, so these messages must be reflected in your marketing materials.

Social media

A go-to destination for billions, brand consistency on social media is essential to establish your identity to a worldwide audience.

Over 75% of consumers use social media to decide what brands to engage with, so you want to ensure everything you share on these platforms reflects your personality – from a YouTube video to a pithy Facebook post.

Remaining consistent across these elements gradually propels brands into people’s hearts and minds – ensuring that everyone understands who your company is, wherever they encounter your messaging.

Why is brand consistency so important?

Brand consistency is a long-game strategy, and vital to ongoing success in any market. 

You want customers to think of you first and foremost for whatever product you sell, service you offer, or cause you represent. And in our experience, consistency in your messaging is the path to fulfilling that ambition. 

But the benefits don’t stop there……

Brand consistency differentiates your company

Your brand is your most valuable asset in setting yourself apart from your competitors. By consistently presenting this across your marketing channels, you help people understand what makes you different and why they should choose you over anyone else.

In an increasingly competitive landscape, a clear, consistent brand presence can ensure your target market sees your unique proposition no matter what platform they engage with.

Brand consistency helps audiences recognise you

Did you know that it takes up to 7 interactions with a brand for the average customer to remember it? That’s a lot of touchpoints! So, if every one of these interactions is inconsistent, your audience might not attribute that credibility to your company.

Maintaining brand consistency across all channels ensures that, as your prospects take the gradual journey of ‘learning’ your brand, they get the same impression each time. This familiarity leads to recognition, boosting your odds of repeat business.

Brand consistency builds trust with your customers

As well as recognition, brand consistency is a hallmark of trust. Modern customers expect a seamless, coherent experience with the brands they engage with. This is the crux of a strong, lasting relationship – if each customer interaction with your brand is slightly different, it makes it much harder for them to understand what you stand for.

Consistent brands create loyal customers, where both sides always know where they stand. By staying aligned on all media channels, you help your audience truly understand you.

Brand consistency supports your bottom line

Loyal customers lead to repeat purchases, which in turn raises your profitability. Research suggests that consistent brands enjoy over 20% more revenue growth when compared to brands that don’t take this as seriously.

Need more convincing? Brands that consistently tell their story also often see their brand value grow up to 20% as well. Plus, inspiring loyal, repeat customers is a more fruitful source of revenue than having to constantly reach out to new audiences.

With today’s consumers expecting quality and stability from companies, consistency is essential to a successful ROI.

“Brand consistency leads to a 2% increase in customer retention and 10% reduction in marketing costs. Source: SmallBizTrends”

Brand consistency grows your authority and equity

Beyond your ROI, strong branding also breeds authority, which in turn builds brand equity. Excellent brand equity is the objective for any commercial organisation and is a good indicator of how much your target audience loves, trusts and acknowledges your brand. 

This is only achievable through sustained interactions and customer experiences, and a key step on the path to brand salience. In fact, becoming a thought leader is how brands like Google, Hoover, Velcro and more entered our everyday vocabulary.

Brand consistency brings your employees together

Brand consistency benefits more than your customer experiences – it also means a lot for your employer brand. In the competition to secure the best candidates, it’s a huge advantage that potential recruits are clear about who your company is and what sets you apart from others in your industry.

Staying consistent across all your employer branding – from your online recruitment page to your onboarding materials – reassures recruits and helps build a united identity among your existing team members.

 “6 stats showing the importance of brand consistency contributing to growth, value, brand recognition and increased revenue”

What happens if a brand lacks consistency?

Inconsistency is a silent brand killer. If you fail to maintain a uniform presence across your various channels, it can:

  • Erode the trust between your brand and your audience
  • Limit your ability to turn occasional consumers into loyal customers
  • Negatively impact the stature and perception of your brand
  • Confuse and irritate buyers, leading to poor customer experiences
  • Reduce your long-term profitability
  • Affect your ability to consistently recruit top prospects

We’ve seen first-hand how inconsistency can severely hurt people’s marketing efforts, making it much harder to grow a core of repeat customers. Learn from mistakes like Coca-Cola’s “New Coke” campaign – make sure your brand message stays aligned.

Is brand consistency only important for large corporations?

Absolutely not. While many of the world’s most renowned brands have achieved this through unwavering consistency, they all started somewhere. 

No matter the size or scale of your business, or whether you appeal to a local or global audience, consistent branding helps customers understand, recognise and trust you. It’s critical to building a loyal customer base – something every startup or small business should aspire to in a world of constant change.

 “Papirfly brand consistency success story for ecommerce”

Creating and maintaining brand consistency

Now you understand how valuable brand consistency is to the present and future of your organisation, how do you create and maintain it? Let’s break it down piece by piece…

Brand strategy

It all starts with your brand and marketing strategy. This establishes the identity, mission and personality you will project across all your marketing channels, so it must be carefully considered. So from the outset, ask yourself:

  • Who are our target audiences? What are their motivations and values?
  • What values do we stand for?
  • What colour schemes, language and more will resonate with our audiences?
  • What marketing channels and types of content will we utilise?

As well as these fundamental questions, your strategy can establish if your company’s branding adapts to different areas of your business. Consider Tesco – it’s a well-known multinational retailer, but also branches out into banking, mobile phones, photo printing and more.

Therefore, Tesco slightly adapts its brand messaging to suit each particular audience, while retaining enough of its core identity to flow its equity across all areas. If your company has distinct services for different audiences – say a service aimed at consumers and another at businesses – you may consider a similar approach.

Brand guidelines

If strategy is the base of brand consistency, brand guidelines are the blueprint to maintain that consistency. This is crucial for ensuring consistency across all brand elements, setting the rules for how your brand must be presented.

What colour palette do we base our designs on? What is our tone of voice? Where do we place our logo on social assets? The answers to these questions and many, many more should be found in your brand guidelines.

So, what should you include in this essential user manual?

  • Brand identity
    • Logo, including variations, spacing and sizes
    • Colour palette, with specific hex codes or Pantone values
    • Typography, with font styles, sizes and weights
  • Visual identity
    • Imagery, listing approved photos, illustrations, icons, etc.
    • Graphic elements, including specific patterns, textures and design elements
    • Layouts, breaking down parameters for different content styles
  • Tone of voice
    • Brand language, describing what terminology your brand employs
    • Messaging, covering communications for different channels and audiences
  • Brand usage
    • Applications, explaining variations of your brand identity on different channels or materials
    • Misuses, clearly showing what not to do with your brand elements

But, it isn’t enough to have brand guidelines – you need to know people are following them. Over 85% of companies have brand guidelines; only around 30% actually use them.

So, it’s important that you make your brand guidelines accessible to anyone who produces branded assets, and train your team in how to use them, whether this is part of your induction process or ongoing rediscovery sessions.

Looking to create the best brand guidelines for your organisation? Read our must-have guide for global brand managers.

“Infographic image showing 85% of organisations have brand guidelines but only 30% use them. Source: Marq”

Brand hub

Evolving beyond guidelines, truly consistent brands create dedicated brand hubs that contain every aspect of their unique identity into one centralised, digital resource.

This is effective as it offers an interactive, comprehensive breakdown of the components, templates and more that will keep your brand aligned on every platform. With FAQs for your users and examples of pre-approved assets, brand hubs are becoming increasingly vital for end-to-end consistency.

Brand templates

Smart design templates take the essence of your guidelines and put them into action in an automatic, second-nature way. 

Harnessing templates removes the pressure on designers and marketers to constantly interpret or recall your guidelines. Instead, these fixed components, colour schemes and more are laid out as required, without any risk of deviation.

This unlocks numerous benefits beyond just a more consistent brand presentation…

  • Brand templates make producing assets quicker and more efficient
  • Brand templates allow designers to be creative and consistent
  • Brand templates reduce decision-making time and streamline workflows
  • Brand templates minimise the time spent proofing and amending assets before they are published
  • Brand templates help create a more professional, quality brand image
  • Brand templates help local outlets adapt company assets for their specific audiences

Simply put, digital design templates are a must-have for unwavering consistency and agile communications – two things modern customers expect.

“Brand templates are being used by 82% of companies to ensure brand consistency. Source: Capital One”

Recycling assets

A great tip for maintaining brand consistency and streamlining production costs is recycling assets. This is not simply posting the same asset over and over again – it means taking an asset and repurposing it for another audience, channel or time of year.

For example, say you’ve produced a two-minute explainer video on a product for your YouTube channel. How many 10-second TikToks or Reels can you make from that video? Could you take visuals and parts of the script to create pamphlets or digestible social assets?

By regularly recycling brand assets, you stretch the value of each resource and help ensure a consistent, unbroken presentation across your platforms.

Digital Asset Management

A high-quality Digital Asset Management (DAM) system is another vital tool in your bid to stay consistent. At its core, a DAM is a central repository of all approved, compliant assets, providing a single source of truth in your organisation.

How does this support brand consistency?

  • It gives your marketers a clear guide of what brand images and assets are suitable for use
  • It lets you see the latest versions of assets, so any old or outdated branding is never shared
  • It allows you to tag assets for specific locations, channels and applications, so these are reserved for specific uses
  • It lets you review and see all assets in one place, and identify any issues before they are presented to the public

A solid DAM system is a powerful ally in the battle for better brand consistency. It’s why we dedicate significant time and energy to making our Place product one of the leading DAMs globally, as detailed in the latest Forrester Wave™ Report.

How do you measure brand consistency?

While there is no set metric you can use to measure brand consistency, there are some steps you can take to track this:

  • Run a brand audit, reviewing the assets you created across your channels in a set timeframe. This will highlight any brand assets that have deviated from your guidelines, so you can identify what went wrong and introduce measures to fix this.
  • Track the usage of your approved assets and templates, as this will illustrate how regularly your marketers are using your brand consistency software and services 
  • Monitor the views of your brand hub, which again offers a window into how often your team is reflecting on the guidelines at the heart of your branding
“Papirfly Brand Management platform product showcase to help organisations create and control brand consistency”

6 brilliant brand consistency examples to learn from

So, you now know the value of brand consistency and what can help you maintain it. Now it’s time to learn from organisations that make consistency a cornerstone of their approach…

1. Google’s clever colour palette

Today, whenever we see the careful combination of red, blue, yellow and green together, our minds immediately go to Google. This ingenious colour scheme has spread from the heading of their search engine into their wide variety of apps to bring them all under one umbrella.

This consistent branding immediately adds authority to any new product Google brings out, and remains at the heart of their near-universal recognition.

2. Nike’s seamless simplicity

Just do it. Swoosh. Four simple words, all instantly attributable to Nike. One of the world’s premier clothing and footwear companies, Nike’s consistent application of their iconic logo on their products, brand materials, packaging and more was vital to achieving this status.

This is coupled with a familiar flow of language and imagery centred on achievement, motivation and empowerment – messages that permeate every piece of content they produce.

3. Starbucks’s standout identity

Starbucks’s globally recognisable brand centres on its consistent use of its iconic Siren logo, personalised customer experiences and cosy ambience. This stability has made Starbucks the go-to name in the highly competitive coffee industry.

This is the power of consistent branding. In terms of products, Starbucks isn’t much different from any other coffee cafe. However, their immediately identifiable visuals – and the meaning they hold to customers worldwide –  place them head and shoulders above the competition.

4. Apple’s universal presentation

It’s arguable Apple is the standard bearer for the benefits of brand consistency. From its sleek product design to its minimalist advertising campaigns, every aspect of Apple’s brand communications promotes simplicity, innovation and premium quality.

This universal application extends from its websites and stores through to its social media platforms and, coupled with the intuitiveness of Apple’s products, has helped the company develop its cult-like following.

“Steve Jobs quote on the importance of brand consistency and the essence of brand marketing”

5. Patagonia’s powerful messaging (H3)

The best brands are founded on beliefs and values that connect with customers on a deep, emotional level. That is the secret to Patagonia’s growth over the decades, continuously pushing its commitment to the environment and ethical behaviours.

Placing this at the core of their brand guidelines, marketing campaigns and initiatives has enabled Patagonia to build a devoted fan base and a strong reputation.

6. BMW’s roadworthy branding (H3)

As the maker of “Ultimate Driving Machines”, BMW has long held a powerful, reliable reputation for quality, dependable vehicles. This is echoed in their brand identity and visuals, blending their superior engineering with their motto of delivering sheer driving pleasure.

But, with hundreds of dealerships scattered over Europe and beyond, BMW know the need to maintain consistency from location to location. Through Papirfly’s brand management platform, BMW NE has closed the distance between HQ and their individual dealerships, keeping communications coordinated and on-brand at all times.

“BMW Brand Success Story using the Papirfly brand management platform. A better path to brand consistency…”

3 common brand consistency challenges… and how to overcome them

Total brand consistency should be the aim of any organisation. But achieving it is easier said than done. Here are three of the biggest pain points to reaching this goal, and our specialist advice on navigating them.

1. Maintaining brand consistency across different marketing channels

Social media. Emails. Digital ads. Posters. Billboards. The nuances of each marketing channel can make it easy for inconsistencies to creep into your branding.

We know from experience that establishing design templates for every channel your organisation appears on is critical to fixing this problem. Rather than put all the responsibility on your team members, this approach ensures that certain brand elements, from your logo positioning to colour choices, are as they should be – from your display ads to in-store banners.

Using intelligent, high-quality templates, you can achieve a consistent presentation at every touchpoint – and make producing these assets significantly faster and cost-effective!

2. Remaining consistent on a local and global level

For organisations that operate in multiple regions worldwide, one of their greatest brand challenges is maintaining consistency on a global scale. It’s understandable – HQ can’t be everywhere at once, so what prevents individual stores and offices from going off-piste to appeal to their audiences?

The key is to find the right balance – a foundation of brand compliance, with room to personalise assets for specific target markets. Global branding with a local touch. Brand templates can play a crucial role here, setting parameters your local teams cannot stray too far from.

A centralised DAM system is also useful. This allows you to tag images and assets for particular audiences, so they can only be employed where relevant. Consequently, you maintain a consistent presence in each location AND achieve the personal touch today’s customers demand.

3. Rebranding your organisation

After a rebrand or a significant update of your branding, there’s always a risk that old brand elements are accidentally published at a later date, confusing customers who are adjusting to the switch-up.

To prevent this, your first step is to ensure your brand guidelines and/or brand hub reflect this new identity. As the home of your branding, this must immediately be aligned with the rebrand to keep your marketers on message.

Then, harness your DAM solution to file away any assets that no longer have the correct branding, or update these under your new guidelines. This will ensure your central repository is free of any old designs, so your teams can pick from these with complete confidence.

Want to know more about rebranding? Download our essential guide to a successful rebrand.

The role of AI in building brand consistency

As AI continues to evolve, its benefits to the marketing industry aren’t going unnoticed. One area it can definitely play a part is nailing down consistency – making this a more effortless, intuitive process for marketers worldwide.

Here are some of the ways it can achieve this:

Chatbots that speak your language

As chatbots and AI prompts become more sophisticated, companies will eventually be able to program these to understand and mimic their brand’s language and tone of voice when responding to customers. Eventually, this will mean users receive personalised responses, which still align with your overall brand messaging.

Faster, more accurate asset location

In your DAM systems, AI allows for faster and more accurate tagging of assets, so you can identify the right one to use in any campaign or location. Plus, as contextual searches become stronger, users can find on-brand, relevant assets for their specific needs in seconds, streamlining your production processes.

AI-generated brand assets

Taking templates to the next level, AI technology is gradually gaining the ability to produce high-quality images, videos, designs and more, while working within set brand guidelines. With this greater degree of accuracy, marketers will one day have the tools to create branded assets with total confidence and outstanding efficiency.

At Papirfly, we’re constantly experimenting with the potential of AI to improve all areas of brand management. If you want to learn more about the latest developments to our platform, check out our regularly updated release notes.

“Papirfly download for a guide to more consistent and efficient content production for businesses”

Papirfly: A platform made for consistent brands

We hope our ultimate guide to brand consistency has helped you understand its value and showed you how it can be achieved. 

At Papirfly, brand consistency is one of the fundamental driving forces behind our end-to-end brand management platform. Our solutions are helping over 600 brands worldwide stay on top of their assets, so they never stray from the guidelines at the heart of their brand identity…

  • POINT: Empowering every person who uses your brand with one online brand portal
  • PLACE: Establishing a single source of truth for your on-brand assets with our globally renowned DAM
  • PRODUCE: Intelligent templates that allow you to create an infinite number of assets quickly and consistently

Discover how our brand consistency software and services can help you stay on message at every touchpoint with unrivalled ease.

“Papirfly solutions and brand consistency services - CTA to brand management software platform”
Brand management

Future-proofing brand lifecycle management with MarTech

Scott Brinker’s annual Marketing Technology (MarTech)report for 2024 is here.

With a phenomenal 14,106 tools available for marketing leaders to ponder over, if you’re not evaluating your current Tech stack and pondering any potential next moves, your competitors will be.

In the net addition of 3,068 tools from the 2023 report, it will come as no surprise that most of those additions are AI tools – with Generative AI exploration and implementation clearly the new normal to be embraced in MarTech over the next few years. 

Aside from that obvious trend, composability was also a key trait i.e. tools that integrate with different components or elements – combining or connecting in various ways to create larger, more complex systems. Of course for users, these systems must be as easy to use as possible in order for the technology not to get in the way of the people using it.

The ever-evolving MarTech landscape of the past few years means that for CMOs, brand managers, and employer brand leaders – and the array of people responsible for empowering teams across their enterprise to activate their brand identity – it’s never been more important to ease tech-stack-anxiety for marketing and branding teams in the products and services that SaaS platform leaders provide.

Brand lifecycle management in 2024

Brand lifecycle management – the art of navigating a brand through its introduction, growth, maturity, and potential decline –  is expected to see a focus on adaptability and data-driven decision making in 2024. Companies will need to be agile and responsive as teams continuously monitor market trends, consumer preferences and competitive dynamics in order to be able to grow at scale – never losing sight of the core brand identity and the potential availability to build brand equity.

With the report showing the MarTech landscape exploding with innovative products (2024 seeing a 27.8% year-over-year growth in MarTech tools), there are ever-expanding possibilities for brands to leverage technology in managing their life cycles. This will involve practices like integrated risk management and a more coordinated flow of information across departments. By leveraging data and new technologies, brands can aim to extend the maturity stage of their products, while also effectively managing decline and potentially reviving declining products – end-to-end brand management in every way.

End-to-end brand management

In order to make the most out of data capture, creating a dynamic ecosystem for teams within brands to remain agile to their customer’s needs and desired experiences is a clear priority to stay ahead of competitors.

As tools must deliver the all-important consistency every brand needs to resonate with customers – year in, year out – well-integrated and future-proof Digital Asset Management (DAM) sits at the centre of a MarTech ecosystem. By seamlessly connecting with various MarTech tools, a DAM empowers teams to adapt strategies quickly, personalise content across channels, and optimise campaigns – all essential for success in the always-changing, relentlessly innovative global landscape we live in today.

DAM as a MarTech priority

There is no doubt that innovative Digital Asset Management (DAM) is becoming an evermore crucial part of activating a brand. Traditional DAMs are well represented in the report and brand management space, with many vendors focused primarily on evolving customers’ asset repositories’ abilities to hold its brand’s images, videos and wider assets – away from a world with misplaced files in local folders and outdated logos and brand assets, and toward a centralised solution to keep all teams on-brand across their entire enterprise.

Yet when considering the future of your brand, a DAM must protect a brand for years to come. This year, the Papirfly Platform was included in Forrester DAM Wave™, where our ambition goes way beyond these traditional DAMs, including the adoption of AI technologies. You can read our recent article on being named in the Forrester Wave™, or hear from our CEO, Stefan Ropers, and our CPO, Thanh Nguyen, as they describe the future of Digital Asset Management, including AI, at Papirfly:

As the MarTech report shows, one thing is for certain – brands now require the foresight to consider AI as part of ensuring unwavering brand consistency across every touchpoint, to build and sustain customer trust. From meticulously crafted global campaigns to localised activations in diverse markets, products must offer brand and marketing leaders solutions that transcend the limitations of traditional DAM systems – with AI at the forefront of innovation.

Of course, end-to-end brand management should be the goal of any DAM system, and with brand portal technology, accompanied by on-brand templating, there are a wealth of brands who have taken the step to empower teams today, and future-proof team agility. Becoming the hero in a successful brand management journey – in both corporate branding and employer branding – is more possible than ever when the right MarTech choices are made by individuals in forward-thinking enterprises.

Corporate branding and a unified voice for Rabobank

For Rabobank, a leading cooperative bank with a presence in 43 countries, growing the brand at scale to maintain a unified brand identity while empowering local teams was proving a challenge.

Empowering local teams to activate the global brand

By centralising brand guidelines – readily available to all teams, regardless of location – it is ensured that everyone from seasoned marketing veterans to enthusiastic interns, can create content that flawlessly aligns with brand identity.

With a foundation set, Rabobank’s teams were able to streamline asset production, creating over 23,000 assets across one year by unlocking on-brand templating based on brand guidelines – empowering high-quality, asset creation without relying on external agencies and fostering a sense of ownership for global and local markets across the organisation.

Gaining a bird’s-eye view of campaign execution

Agile teams also saw campaign execution improve, with approval processes helping to improve workflows, where needed – saving time and money while empowering local teams to respond swiftly to market trends. This agility ensures brand messaging remains relevant while maintaining consistency through built-in approval processes.

With cost avoidance at 20 times the platform investment – such was the ability to create and activate assets in-house that would not have been affordable if given to an agency – Rabobank witnessed a significant increase in user-generated on-brand assets. This proved to support a cultural shift of brand ownership and empowerment for employees to become brand ambassadors – something not only vital for the corporate identity, but as Rabobank and other customers testify, is vital for activating and sustaining the foundations of a strong employer brand.

Employer branding success at SAP

Traditionally, employer branding efforts are often siloed within HR or marketing departments. Yet building a strategy that empowers employees to become ambassadors across the organisation, helps build the on-brand culture that’s so important for morale, retention, and recruitment efforts.

Empowering local brand ambassadors

Global brands like SAP need to cater to diverse local audiences, while maintaining brand consistency. In SAP’s case, they used their brand management tools to empower over 2,000 employees at SAP to become content creators across various global and localised campaigns – the Papirfly Platform is leveraged by teams in 5 global regions to adapt social media content to reflect regional languages and cultural nuances.

Employer branding tools that increase talent pools

With pre-approved, on-brand assets that are social media-ready, employees can shape the content to share across their own channels – laying the foundation to create curiosity and attract the attention of high-calibre talent, way ahead of any recruitment campaigns that attempt to enchant the talent pool from scratch. All the while saving the equivalent of $100,000 in agency fees if work had been done externally.

Executing talent acquisition campaigns across 5 global regions included empowering nuances to be added for local markets to deliver exceptional candidates . With a significant engagement improvement noticed from the assets created with Papirfly, SAP were on-brand and consistent at every turn.

A future-proof brand management platform

The marketing technology world is a whirlwind of innovation. As Scott Brinker’s MarTech landscape of 2024 report suggests, when it comes to brand management and nurturing the life cycle, staying ahead by empowering teams with tools that provide the agility to be responsive based on data-driven decisions is a priority – all while growing at scale with platforms that offer  composability (integrations).

Papirfly fosters brand ownership and empowers employees to become brand ambassadors. This cultural shift strengthens not only your corporate identity but also your employer brand – allowing you focus on the business area that requires the most attention, and scale at the pace that suits you.

We see the future of brand management as empowering everyone to build a brand they can belong to – as customers and employees – using MarTech that’s easy to use and can help teams do more with less.

Hear more from our leadership team at Papirfly below, or read our article about what the future holds for Papirfly customers as we look to lead the way in brand management technology.

Brand consistency

Mastering global brand consistency while empowering local markets – key insights from Rabobank’s strategy

Papirfly’s Brand Management Specialist Justin Diver was recently joined by Roel Smit Rabobank’s ‘Product Owner of Brand Portal’ for an insightful webinar “Elevating brand reputation globally while empowering local markets’.

During the discussion Rabobank shared effective strategies and experiences, offering invaluable insights for brands looking to balance global consistency with local relevance.

Webinar highlights and key insights

1. Strategic brand management across borders

Rabobank has successfully managed to maintain its brand identity across a global workforce of 43,000 by integrating strategic brand management tools that accommodate both global oversight and local flexibility. The discussion highlighted how technology can facilitate the decentralised execution of brand strategies, ensuring that local teams have the tools and autonomy needed to adapt brand messages to their specific markets.

2. Efficient asset production and campaign execution

The webinar delved into how streamlined processes for asset production and campaign execution can significantly enhance operational efficiency. By adopting a centralised platform for brand management, Rabobank has managed to reduce time-to-market for campaigns while ensuring that all marketing efforts are consistent with the brand’s core values.

3. Measuring success through brand metrics and ROI

Tracking brand metrics and understanding the return on investment (ROI) from brand management activities are critical for justifying marketing spend and guiding strategy adjustments. Rabobank’s approach to quantifying the effectiveness of their brand management strategies offers a blueprint for other organisations aiming to measure and enhance the impact of their branding efforts.

4. Navigating challenges in brand consistency

Maintaining a unified brand identity across diverse markets presents significant challenges. Rabobank explained how they address these issues and highlighted the importance of having robust systems in place that support both global brand consistency and local market adaptation.

Linking brand management to brand equity

For organisations aiming to mirror Rabobank’s success, understanding foundational steps to building brand equity is pivotal. Our detailed guide, The 4 Key Steps to Building Brand Equity, outlines essential strategies for strengthening market presence and achieving sustainable growth, reflecting the practices discussed during the webinar.

To discover more about how Rabobank utilised Papirfly’s brand management platform to achieve global consistency and local relevance in brand management, watch the webinar in full below.

Brand consistency

Mastering brand salience begins with brand consistency

What is brand salience?

Brand salience is the multifaceted way in which your brand is thought of or noticed when a customer makes a purchase or a decision. It is a foundational component of achieving brand equity – the culmination of consumer perceptions, loyalty, and the inherent value attributed to your brand, forged through sustained interactions and experiences.

Brand salience then refers to the degree of which you are maintaining your brand’s position with key moments of interaction. When done successfully, your brand has firmly established itself in the minds of consumers, standing out prominently in the ever-crowded marketplace.

Mastering brand salience

At the highest levels of brand salience, the ideal is to have your brand name be synonymous with the solution that customers are seeking. For example, we don’t “search the internet for information using Google”. Instead we “Google” things. We talk less and less about watching TV, and more and more about binging Netflix. 

These brands are so easily recogniseable that we’ll even refer to them when in actual fact we are using their competitors. We’ll “Google” a problem using Bing, or we might refer to “watching Netflix” when we may generally mean another streaming service. Similarly, we might order Coca-Cola or “a Coke” in a restaurant, be sold a Pepsi, and continue to refer to it as a Coke.

In these examples, a particularly strong brand has entered culture to the extent that it has become a household object. These are also the brands that will be referred to in films, music and TV shows. Their presence helps artists to quickly set a scene that audiences are familiar and intimate with.

When it comes to your industry and niche, whether your brand becomes a verb or not, the opportunity for your brand or product name to be at the forefront of your target audience’s mind when considering their pain point is always up for grabs – wherever they are in their buying journey.

What creates brand salience?

There are different ways to think about brand salience. One famous model, put forward by Kevin Lane Keller in his book Strategic Brand Management, frames brand salience as ‘how aware your potential customers are of your brand’. Importantly, this should be the right type of awareness – positive emotions and associations, not scandals and bad press. 

In Keller’s model, brand salience can be summed up with the question “Who are you?”. To consider how salient your brand currently is, you should consider questions like: 

  • Is our brand easily recogniseable? 
  • How well are our branding efforts communicating a clear and consistent brand identity? 
  • Is our brand clearly differentiated from its competitors? 

The important thing is being at the top of your customers’ minds, with the emphasis on timing crucial for successful branding. In a digital economy where time is short and attention spans are limited, your window of opportunity is small – every moment, every thought, and every association counts, at every point of contact. 

Achieving brand salience

The key is to have an easily recognisable and well differentiated brand, which customers recall the moment they need to make a purchase. This means brand consistency across memorable high-quality interactions throughout your marketing channels go a long way to help.

But how do you build this understanding into your branding efforts? There are two key points to consider here: memory, and attention. 

A matter of memory

Quickly, think of a brand you use or buy from regularly. The chances are that several different memories of consistently positive interactions will come up.

Everything potential customers know about your brand, everything they have in the back of their minds, and everything they associate with it comes from a string of memorable moments. 

Similarly, think of someone you trust in your personal life. In the same way you will likely recall several consistent, positive moments that confirmed this was someone you could trust – selflessly making you or someone feel good and therefore forging a positive connection.

While the people who make us feel good in our lives are close to hand, your brand may be far away from customer’s minds. Having a clear and consistent marketing strategy that builds trust with your target audience over time is essential. You want to associate your brand with strong, positive emotions which will be recalled when a potential customer goes to make a purchase.

Not only will customers be reminded of your product, they will also think of the types of experience associated with your marketing campaigns – as well as values, commitments and partnerships that they know you stand by.

Building up your brand with consistent messages and visual elements that reinforce positive and aspirational states of mind, you’re much more likely to be recalled positively at the time of purchase.

Are you paying attention?

However impressive the associations you’ve built up with your brand, they count for little if they don’t come to mind when it’s time to buy.

Whether it’s in a brick and mortar store, or via a digital platform, you need to make sure your brand jumps out at your customers. Successful branding stands out, no matter what the competition is doing, how you’re feeling, or what the weather is like.

This is where the work you’ve put in to build up positive emotions and associations with your brand pays off – and is paid forward by loyal customers, with 94% of consumers claiming they would recommend a brand to others with which they are emotionally engaged.

Trust and empathy plays an important part here too. We rate brands far more on feelings and associations than on information alone. Rather than talking just about what we do, gaining people’s attention by consistently placing them – or people that could be them – at the centre of the message is key. Often speaking directly to their needs.

For example, if we were told “We help you to just do it” next to a Swoosh, the brand (which we don’t even have to name or clarify the true slogan for – great brand salience right there) may not be as motivating and inspiring to millions of people worldwide.

Past experiences of a customer’s attention being ‘grabbed’ by a brand will shape the likelihood that a customer will pick up your product over one of your competitors. As a result, you need to make sure that every customer experience is consistent with your branding intentions – building momentum and trust with each experience.

Putting brand salience into action

Achieving brand salience is a complex and ongoing process that involves various factors beyond consistent branding efforts. The important thing is to remember that the aim of your marketing is not simply to persuade customers to buy your product. It is also to build up and refresh positive memory structures, so that your brand grabs their attention when the time comes to make a decision.

Being ready for those decisive moments means adapting to the needs of your customers, wherever they are in the world – by location and digital channels. Maintaining brand consistency, while being agile in your marketing operations, can empower teams anywhere in the world to activate your brand.

The best way to maintain brand consistency is to establish clear brand guidelines that are available and enforced across your business, as well as centralising all digital assets in one place so teams know where to find those images that are crafted into amazing assets that create positive memories and grab their attention.

Empowering your people to build brand salience in a way that is intuitive and effective ultimately creates the foundation of your brand equity success.

Brand management, Digital Asset Management / DAM

Navigating the future of brand management with integrated DAM solutions

Papirly’s recent webinar “Beyond DAM: Shaping the Future of Brand Management Strategies,” brought together a distinguished panel of industry experts to delve into the evolving landscape of Digital Asset Management (DAM) and its pivotal role in brand management and compliance. The session featured insights from Chuck Gahun, Principal Analyst at Forrester; Jane Robinson, Global Employer Branding Director at Boston Consulting Group (BCG); Priya Patel, Senior Market Research Analyst at G2; Thomas Larzilliere, CEO of Keepeek; and Papirfly’s own Max Sihvonen, CoSo.

The webinar explored three main areas: 

  • the latest technological trends in DAM,
  • the increasing demand for personalised and localised content across diverse channels, 
  • the significance of efficient asset management in creating on-brand assets

A consistent theme throughout the discussion was the synergy between DAM and brand management. This highlighted the need for solutions that not only manage digital assets but also ensure brand consistency across all platforms.

The panel unanimously agreed that consumer expectations are driving the need for more sophisticated DAM solutions. Chuck Gahun emphasised the societal shift towards interactive engagement, necessitating brands to centralise assets to deliver immersive experiences across multiple touchpoints. This is pushing DAM solutions to evolve, incorporating features like 3D models for virtual reality and API-driven content delivery to meet the demand for personalised experiences.

Priya Patel shared insights from G2’s user reviews, noting an increased demand for DAM features that support integration with marketing and creative software, digital rights management, analytics, and workflow management. These features are crucial for brands to differentiate themselves in a crowded marketplace by delivering high-quality, relevant, and on-brand content swiftly.

The integral role of DAM in brand management

Jane Robinson shared BCG’s journey of implementing Papirfly to drive global brand consistency. The DAM platform has become a “one-stop shop” for BCG’s employer branding needs, allowing for the creation of personalised and customised assets that adhere to global brand guidelines while enabling local teams to add a personal touch. This balance of global consistency and local relevance has been key to BCG’s employer branding strategy.

Thomas Larzilliere discussed the evolving role of DAM in content production and brand compliance. With the proliferation of content across various platforms, maintaining brand governance has become more complex. DAM solutions are central to managing this complexity, ensuring that assets are produced correctly, efficiently, and in compliance with brand guidelines.

Key insights and future directions

The webinar showcased not only the current state and evolution of DAM but also revealed key insights pivotal for the future of brand management:

  • The imperative for agile content strategies: One critical takeaway was the growing need for brands to adopt agile content strategies that can quickly adapt to market changes and consumer behaviours. This agility is facilitated by platforms that go beyond traditional DAM, offering robust analytics and insights that allow brands to pivot and personalise content in real-time.
  • Enhanced collaboration across teams: Another revelation was the increasing importance of fostering collaboration across creative, marketing, and IT teams. Integrated DAM and brand management solutions are breaking down silos, enabling cross-functional teams to work cohesively towards common branding goals, thus accelerating content lifecycle processes from creation to distribution.
  • Security and compliance in Digital Asset Management: With the rise in digital content, ensuring the security and compliance of digital assets has become a forefront concern for brands. The discussion highlighted how modern DAM systems are incorporating advanced security features and compliance tools to protect brand assets and adhere to global regulatory standards.

These insights highlight the journey beyond traditional DAM, emphasising the critical need for brands to adopt holistic, secure, and adaptable brand management platforms. This will be essential for staying competitive and thriving in a rapidly evolving digital landscape.

For further exploration on how these trends impact your brand strategy and how Papirfly’s brand management platform can support your brand’s growth, catch the webinar below, or learn more about our platform.

Digital Asset Management / DAM

How can DAM keep you on brand in 2024

Staying on brand is a challenge. Especially if you’re a global business or enterprise. 

You need to manage a complex matrix of audiences, regions, brand identities, digital assets, distribution channels, collateral, campaigns, creative teams, external collaborators…the list goes on. And the stakes, paces, and competition are high. 

Against this background, a Digital Asset Management (DAM) system can be a game changer for busy brand and marketing teams. A significant differentiating factor that helps you stay on brand, work smarter, and get to every market faster.

Here are six things DAM can do to keep you on brand in 2024 – whether you’re concerned with accelerating on-brand content creation, improving brand assets distribution, or automating manual tasks that hamper agility.

1. Centralise all of your digital assets in a single library

How DAM helps you stay on brand – Giving all content collaborators fast access to approved assets, to accelerate on-brand content creation, speed to market, and overall agility  

The defining feature of a DAM system is that it provides a single, secure platform to store, access, and use all of your digital assets. Whether that’s the building blocks you use to create campaigns – like photos, video, and artwork – or finished collateral that brand ambassadors use out in the world (more on that later).

Without a Digital Asset Management system, brands often struggle to find and use their digital assets. They can be strewn across the organisation and external agencies – hiding on desktops, departmental drives, and intranet sites. This makes it hard to track them down – and even harder to know whether and how they can be used. 

This has lots of risks associated with it – such as using embargoed, withdrawn, or older versions of images or logos. Not to mention the disruption and time wasted hunting for assets, which slows your time to market. And, of course, the cost when lost assets need to be recreated from scratch. 

On the other hand, a Digital Asset Management system lets you centralise thousands – millions – of assets in one global library.

Centralising all of your creative building blocks in a digital asset library ensures they’re immediately available for designers and content creators. 

Advanced search functionality, visual previews, version control, metadata, and usage rights make it quick and easy to find on-brand digital assets – and know how to use them compliantly.

This enhanced visibility into digital asset availability also reduces the risk of duplicating and recreating existing assets – and allows for repurposing and reuse. This cuts creation time and costs. 

2. Get everyone on board and on-brand

How DAM helps you stay on brand – Give everyone access to up-to-date brand guidelines and approved assets

A Digital Asset Management system isn’t just about storing digital assets, it’s also about accessing and using them. A DAM has advanced sharing capabilities that let you provide people with secure access to assets – either as a system user or via share links and portals for external stakeholders.

One use of portals in DAM is to create a brand hub. This provides people with structured access to brand guidelines, approved assets and tools. It’s a dedicated space for people to discover, understand, and apply your brand correctly – whether they’re internal collaborators, regional partners or external contractors, like design and marketing agencies. 

You can set up a brand portal to share logos, approved imagery, templates, font files, brand guidelines, examples of on-brand design and copy, etc. And thanks to the structure, searchability, and user-friendly interface in most DAM systems, they’re more accessible and easier to use.

This all improves brand consistency and compliance, and helps reduce the time it takes to onboard new creative suppliers. 

Portals aren’t just great for brand hubs. You can set up portals for any purpose. For example:

  • A sales enablement hub that gives dealers and distributors instant access to marketing collateral for their region
  • A media hub that provides press and other stakeholders with access to your logo and other brand assets
  • An employer branding hub that contains resources and assets for recruiters, HR, internal comms, employee advocates etc

3. Provide templates and localisation tools

How DAM helps you stay on brand – Empowering local stakeholders to create on-brand collateral that meets their specific needs, while meeting global brand standards 

Even if you have centralised your brand and marketing function, you’ll have a lot of stakeholders in a lot of places. And these local stakeholders can have needs that your central team can’t meet. For example, promotional posters for an event, a brochure addressing a specific local market…

With limited time and resources available centrally, these well-intentioned but poorly equipped brand ambassadors may create their own collateral – and the results don’t always meet brand standards. This risks brand dilution and even damage. [For example, this off-brand PureGym post

Some Digital Asset Management platforms include – or integrate with – template and localisation tools. 

These provide access to a library of on-brand templates for local stakeholders to tailor to their needs – with a choice of formats, approved imagery, and current logos etc. [Advanced DAM systems also offer automatic translation into different languages 🤯]

This empowers individual branches or divisions easily create the collateral they need, without going off-brand. Plus, it lets organisations leverage the benefits of central control and efficiency, while maintaining responsiveness to local market conditions.

4. Easily archive out-of-date assets

How DAM helps you stay on brand – Flagging dated assets that need retiring or replacing 

One of the biggest risks to your brand visual identity is the use of out-of-date assets. Especially if you’ve been through a rebrand. There’s nothing worse than seeing collateral featuring an old logo, the wrong font, or a photo of a product or service that’s no longer available. 

A valuable feature of DAM is lifecycle management and the ability to archive assets. You can do this automatically – for example, when an asset hits its three-year upload-aversary. However, it’s better to review each case individually, as some assets may still be relevant and valuable.

One way to assess whether to retire assets is to look at analytics in your DAM. Usage metrics will tell you if an asset is highly used. If so, you may decide to keep it in circulation a little longer. Or, if it is looking dated and needs to retire, you know you need to commission a suitable replacement. 

Either way, the archive feature of a Digital Asset Management system helps keep your brand feeling fresh, current, and consistent. 

5. Protect embargoed assets

How DAM helps you stay on brand – Providing access to assets for faster time-to-market, while protecting them from premature use

One concern people have about centralising their digital assets is how to protect embargoed files. For example, photos of a new unreleased car model. You want to provide content creators and collaborators with easy access to digital assets. But don’t want to risk them falling into the wrong hands. 

A DAM system has advanced permission controls and usage rights. You can safely add any digital asset and restrict access at a granular level – letting individuals and small groups have very specific rights. For example, you can allow a graphic designer download rights but a marketing manager view-only access.

This enables brands leverage the benefit of centralised digital asset management and online collaboration, without worrying that commercially sensitive assets will be leaked. 

6. Apply brand treatments at scale with AI

How DAM helps you stay on brand – Automatically editing digital assets to match your brand visual identity 

Our last benefit of DAM for brands today is automation. This can take many forms as Digital Asset Management platforms grow ever more sophisticated. AI in DAM is becoming more common and makes previously manual tasks automated and scalable. 

Imagine your brand styles photography in a certain way. Perhaps oversaturating the colour to make food imagery extra appetising, or reducing saturation for a more moody monochrome look. 

Applying this style manually takes valuable time. AI in DAM can automatically apply these brand treatments, so you achieve a consistent style, even if you use a variety of creative suppliers. 

Another time-saving DAM automation is the ability to resize assets on demand for different web, print and email templates – for example, a lower res crop for headers in your CRM system, and a higher res image for printed brochures. 

This makes it easy for any team to stay on-brand, reducing their reliance on design-savvy colleagues and external agencies to provide what they need.

Plus AI in DAM can automatically identify the content of assets at upload and tag them with meaningful metadata, so you don’t have to. You can even train a DAM system – using machine learning – to recognise and tag your specific products. But that’s a whole other article…

Stay on brand in 2024 with Papirfly

Papirfly is an all-in-one enterprise brand management platform that includes a powerful DAM, template and localisation tools, digital asset analytics, and brand consistency resources.  

Discover our suite of brand tools to amplify and standardise your brand – trusted by multinational and global brands like BMW, Unilever, and IBM.

Employer brand

7 reasons Digital Asset Management is essential for employer branding teams

Employer branding is more important than ever in 2024. Remote and hybrid working. A globalised recruitment landscape. Widespread skills shortages. A demanding talent pool and candidates’ market. 

Brands face stiff competition to secure the best people and to keep them. And employer brand professionals are the frontline in talent acquisition and employee engagement. 

You know that a strong employer value proposition is a candidate magnet. It helps your organisation attract and retain the talent it needs for success. But creating a consistent, compelling employer brand is a challenge in itself.

So many touchpoints. So many stakeholders. So little time. 

If you’re here looking for an answer – a way to ‘do more with less’ – then you’re in the right place. 

From working with employers of choice like Unilever and Vodafone, we know Digital Asset Management software can revolutionize employer branding efforts – helping create a strong brand presence on every platform and in every locality.

Here’s what you need to know.

Employer branding is crucial – but hard – in 2024 

In a landscape characterised by skills shortages and increasing choice, great candidates have the upper hand. You’re in a global competition for talent – both to attract it and retain it.

Businesses that win the war will secure in-demand skills and value-aligned individuals to drive their ambitions forward. Businesses that lose… not so much. 

But it isn’t just the (current) candidates’ market that’s making employer branding more important. It’s our shifting expectations of employers. From ‘the great renegotiation’ inspired by global lockdowns – to the influx of Gen Z into the workplace – we’re demanding more of employers than before.

Employee engagement is key. We want great benefits, work-life balance, and an inclusive company culture. But we want meaningful work, authenticity, corporate ethics, and societal impact too. And people aren’t stupid. Employers need to walk the walk… or their people will. 

In this challenging employer branding environment, businesses need to improve their employee value proposition, embed it, and communicate it consistently across every touchpoint.  

In the burgeoning digital landscape, there are so many places to communicate your brand. Managing that to maximize impact and consistency is getting harder. Your platforms and digital brand assets seem to multiply exponentially – but your budget and hours in the day don’t.

And that’s before we even think about localising employer branding campaigns to maximise their impact in different regions and cultures.

If this problem sounds familiar, Digital Asset Management (DAM) software is the answer.

An avalanche of assets is overwhelming employer brand teams

An avalanche of digital brand assets is overwhelming employer branding teams. Digital assets are the images, artwork, video, audio files, campaign materials, PDFs, guidelines etc that you use to market your business internally and externally.

[See What are digital assets and how do you manage them? for why you need to treat these files with the utmost care].

  • There are the digital brand assets you use as building blocks to create campaigns – your photoshoots, your graphic design files etc. You need easy access to these to create brand content quickly and efficiently.
  • Then there are the employer branding materials you create – your finished artwork, campaign materials, brand guidelines, templates, etc. You need to be able to distribute these easily to the people who’ll use them. 

There are so many of them because employer branding is increasingly digital. You need to create employer branding content for your company website, social media channels, third-party sites, campaigns, employee advocacy, and more.

That means you’re creating and managing more digital assets than ever. And that can get messy, real quick. And that’s a serious risk to your employer branding efforts.

You cannot manage brand assets at scale without an appropriate system. And that spells risk for your team and the wider business. 

Challenges managing employer branding assets

  • Wasted time – Searching for assets that are hidden away in the wrong place or have file names like ‘IMG07624.jpg’ – not helpful.
  • Wasted money – Recreating assets from scratch because you simply can’t find them and your stakeholder needs the content ‘yesterday’.
  • More risk – Using outdated assets because you don’t know which is the most recent version – or using restricted assets because there’s no way to know.
  • Inconsistency – Because people are frustrated with the current system and just start doing their own thing.

Problems distributing employer branding materials

  • Distribution issues Getting brand assets to the right people at the right time. You can have the best employer brand ever…but it’s useless if you can’t get it out there.
  • Diluted brand – People simply not knowing how to apply your employer brand and putting out materials they think are right… but aren’t on-brand at all.
  • Missed opportunities to localise – Issuing one-size-fits-all campaigns because you don’t have time to optimize materials for different markets.

You might be so used to the scenarios above that it feels normal. 

But it’s not. 

There is a better way.

7 reasons your employer brand needs DAM

To excel in the ever-more demanding future of work, you need to reclaim control now. Savvy businesses leverage Digital Asset Management for employer branding. They know a DAM platform makes brand content creation easier and brand asset distribution foolproof. 

Digital Asset Management (DAM) software provides a single space to store, access, and use your digital assets – like images, videos, brand collateral, and multimedia materials that support effective employer branding. 

DAM makes it easier for every team that touches your employer brand – HR, recruitment, marketing, regional managers, employee advocates – to stay on-brand. And it accelerates campaign activation. It’s a two-for-one win for ambitious employer brands. 

Here are seven things DAM can do for you – whether you work in employer branding, corporate branding, marketing operations, creative services, or any other team with digital-asset-heavy workflows.

1. Cut costs and maximise efficiency 

Using Digital Asset Management software for employer branding saves you time and money. A centralized digital asset library – for brand content creation, management and distribution – streamlines your processes. This efficiency translates into better resource utilization and cost savings. 

Team members can quickly locate and utilize the necessary materials, reducing the time spent on searching and requesting assets. Internal and external contributors can collaborate in the cloud, bypassing messy manual processes. And branding materials can be distributed instantly. 

2. Make more space for strategy

Your personal creativity and strategic approach are key differentiators for your brand – but they’re drained by the demands of the job – and your great ideas and good intentions get lost in admin.

Using DAM software reduces time spent on pointlessly ineffective processes – like fruitlessly searching for assets and manually emailing them to people – so you’ve got more time for stuff that actually adds value – like strategically shaping your employer value proposition and getting creative about how you communicate it.

3. …And localisation

You know you should be localising campaigns to increase their relevance to regional audiences. From changing photography to accurately reflect local demographics and cultural norms, to offering materials in multiple languages. But you simply don’t have time.

With efficiency gains from using a Digital Asset Management system, your team can dedicate more time to impactful campaigns for specific audiences – supporting recruitment and DEI goals. And, thanks to easy distribution via your brand portal, you can make sure each region only accesses materials meant for them.

4. Guarantee your brand consistency 

In employer branding, consistency is key. A strong, consistent and recognizable visual identity increases brand recognition and supports organizational objectives around talent acquisition, recruitment, and engagement.

A Digital Asset Management platform doubles as a brand asset management portal – an online space where stakeholders can access branding guidelines, employer branding materials, templates, approved image sets etc. 

This empowers your wider collaborative team – everyone from external design agencies to regional divisions to employee advocates – to find, use, and create on-brand materials for the organization. 

5. Enhance your agility 

How many times are opportunities passing you by? Like experimenting with a new platform or localizing assets for higher regional impact. Without efficient Digital Asset Management, your slow processes can limit your agility. 

Centralized DAM software lets you quickly locate, modify, and repurpose digital assets, accelerating content creation and increasing overall creative capacity. This lets you respond promptly to emerging opportunities, ensuring a dynamic and consistent brand experience. 

6. Reduce brand risk

The biggest risk to employer branding efforts is unfit-for-purpose processes. We’ve shown how a digital asset library can address this issue.

Beyond this, DAM software also mitigates risks associated with the misuse or unauthorized access of sensitive brand assets – thanks to robust access controls and permission levels. Plus, version control features reduce the risk of using outdated materials, preventing inconsistencies and potential damage to the brand image.

Imagine job descriptions using a retired logo, or a social post using a photo where the participant has since withdrawn their permission for use. Centralizing assets – and removing and archiving assets that should no longer be used – protects against this kind of risk.  

7. Empower employees to become brand ambassadors 

If you want to help your employees advocate for your employer brand, you need to give them on-brand tools and materials. A DAM used as a brand portal gives employees easy access to a curated collection of brand assets. 

They can share branded content on their social media platforms – such as job ads, announcements, and the popular ‘new position’ celebrations to LinkedIn – so your brand benefits from their authentic excitement about working for you. This builds trust with the audience, as it comes directly from the voices and experiences of employees.

Key features of DAM for employer branding

A single source of truth keeps assets secure but accessible

A DAM system provides a single secure repository for all your brand assets. Cloud-based DAM is accessible 24/7 online. No more assets lost and languishing on desktops, attached to emails, or in different departmental folders. 

Metadata puts files at your fingertips 

A DAM applies metadata to assets to make them findable in a few clicks. You don’t need to know file names anymore. Just search on keywords that describe the file you want – and see beautiful visual previews to identify the file you need.

Automatic version control keeps you up-to-date

No more time wasted wondering which file is the latest version. You’ll always see the most recent version in your DAM – but with a full audit trail and ability to revert to previous files if needed.

Integrations make design processes easier 

A DAM is designed to integrate. Integrate it with InDesign or your website CMS to give designers immediate access to all your brand assets without even leaving the window they’re working in.  

Online portals effortlessly deliver assets to end users 

A DAM doesn’t just make your content creation processes easier. Distribution is easy and instant, anywhere in the world. Upload finished employer branding materials and guidelines to your online brand portals for easy internal and external access.

Permissions protect embargoed assets 

Worried online access means a free-for-all? It isn’t. Permission controls mean people only see what you want them to. Protect embargoed assets and commercially sensitive content.  

Workflow automation accelerates creation 

A Digital Asset Management platform automates so many processes you perform manually at the minute – saving you tonnes of time. For example, bulk uploads, instant content sharing, and one-click, in-app editing (eg applying crops and ratios for different platforms). 

Employer branding teams to power up with Papirfly

You know the employer branding landscape is changing. Your systems need to evolve to cope. Digital Asset Management software is a game changer for busy, ambitious employer branding teams. Papirfly’s platform is a full suite of enterprise-grade brand management tools, including a portal for brand guidelines, Digital Asset Management, on-brand templating, campaign management, real-time data analytics, and more.  

Discover how global employers of choice strengthen their strong employer brand with Papirfly. 

Further reading

One home for your brand – approved assets and guidelines

Digital Asset Management for employer brands

Templates and localisation tools for employer brands

Aligning Unilever’s global team and employer brand

Digitising Vodaphone’s employer brand

Transforming content creation for global brand, DSV

Employer brand

Empowering employer branding –  insights from SAP and Papirfly

Papirfly and SAP recently joined forces to showcase an engaging discussion on SAP’s employer branding and employer ambassador program. 

The session, led by Papirfly’s VP Marketing Siril Jacobsen and Nneka Mmeh, Global Employer Branding at SAP emphasised strategic collaboration and innovative approaches to employer branding. Papirfly’s brand management platform enabled SAP to harness the power of their workforce in storytelling, turning employees into brand champions.

This partnership not only enabled SAP to enhance their employer branding but also showcased the transformative impact of leveraging employee experiences in attracting and retaining top talent. The discussions provided actionable insights into

  • creating a compelling employer value proposition (EVP)
  • emphasizing the importance of inclusivity and employee empowerment in building a strong, engaging employer brand

The power of employee ambassadors

SAP’s journey into enhancing its employer branding strategy with Papirfly’s support shows a commitment to not only attract but also to nurture talent by fostering a culture of inclusivity and empowerment. The creation of an employee ambassador program exemplifies SAP’s innovative approach, leveraging the voices of its workforce to amplify the company’s values and culture. This initiative, driven by Papirfly’s brand management platform, enabled SAP employees worldwide to share their authentic experiences. As a result, it humanized the SAP brand and significantly improved its market positioning as an employer of choice.

Revolutionising talent attraction through brand consistency

The webinar highlighted the importance of brand consistency across all channels and the role of Papirfly’s platform in achieving this for SAP. By implementing a centralised employer brand management system, SAP was able to streamline its messaging. This ensured that the employer brand resonated well with its global audience. This strategic move not only enhanced the company’s visibility but also guaranteed that potential candidates received a coherent and compelling narrative about what it means to work at SAP.

Strategic insights for employer branding professionals

For employer branding professionals, the discussion provided invaluable insights into the strategic planning and execution of a successful employee ambassador program. From revamping the employer value proposition to leveraging social media and digital platforms for storytelling, the webinar offered a blueprint for organisations looking to elevate their employer brand.

The role of Papirfly in SAP’s employer branding success

Papirfly’s role in this journey was highlighted as more than just a platform provider. It was a strategic partner enabling SAP to leverage technology for brand management and employee engagement. The use of Papirfly’s solutions facilitated a seamless integration of brand assets, storytelling, and employee advocacy, setting a new standard for employer branding excellence.

Measurable success – the impact of SAP’s employer branding strategy

  • Increased engagement: SAP saw a remarkable increase in employee engagement on social media platforms, where ambassador content received higher interaction rates compared to standard corporate postings. 
  • Improved talent acquisition: By leveraging employee testimonials, SAP saw a substantial improvement in its talent acquisition efforts. The data showed a notable decrease in time-to-fill for open positions. This highlights the effectiveness of a strong employer brand in attracting qualified candidates swiftly.
  • Enhanced employer brand perception: Surveys conducted before and after the implementation of the ambassador program indicated a significant improvement in SAP’s employer brand perception among targeted talent pools. The positive shift in perception reflects the impact of humanising the brand through employee narratives.
  • Greater employee retention: The initiative also played a crucial role in enhancing employee retention rates. By empowering employees to share their experiences and become brand advocates, SAP fostered a deeper sense of belonging and loyalty among its workforce. This contributed to a decrease in turnover rates.
  • Enhancing efficiency and savings: The financial efficiency gained through SAP’s partnership with Papirfly particularly highlighted a staggering $100,000 saved in potential agency costs in 2023. This reduction in potential expenses was achieved by utilising Papirfly’s platform for in-house brand management and content creation, bypassing the need for costly external agencies. The strategic approach not only streamlined SAP’s marketing expenditures but also illustrated the effectiveness of leveraging internal capabilities to foster a compelling and authentic employer brand. This also shows the tangible benefits of SAP’s innovative employer branding strategy

A blueprint for future success

The collaboration between SAP and Papirfly showcases the transformative power of employer branding when executed with strategic intent and the right technological support. For companies looking to attract and retain the best talent, the insights shared in this webinar serve as a blueprint for leveraging employee voices to create a compelling and authentic employer brand. To discover more about how SAP utilised Papirfly’s brand management platform to get set up for success watch the webinar in full.

Digital Asset ManagementLeave a Comment on Digital Asset Management in 2024 – the only guide you need

Digital Asset Management in 2024 – the only guide you need

If you’re drowning in digital assets – if you’re losing productivity as well as files – you need a Digital Asset Management platform. 

This in-depth guide to DAM is for savvy brands that want to get their products, services, and marketing messages out there – fast, at scale, and on brand. 

Take a deep dive into DAM to 

  • Understand what DAM actually does  
  • Decide if investing in DAM is right for you 
  • Discover how DAM creates bankable business benefits
  • Confidently make the business case in your organisation 

If you’re looking at competitors and wondering how they do it all, they’ve probably got a DAM system. Let’s see if you need one too…

Introduction to Digital Asset Management

What is Digital Asset Management?

Digital Asset Management is simply the practice of properly managing your digital assets. If you’re not familiar with Digital Asset Management, you’ll certainly be familiar with the problems it solves – like chaotic content creation, lost digital assets, manual workflows, and imperfect processes.  

What are digital assets?

Perhaps a better question than What is Digital Asset Management is What are digital assets

‘Digital assets’ is a way to describe digital files. But not just any file. A digital asset is a file you’ve invested money in creating and can use to create value for your business. 

Files like images, video, audio, and artwork are digital assets. Anything you can use and combine to deliver strategic goals for your business. For example, by creating marketing collateral, employer branding materials, or ecommerce listings. 

Why is Digital Asset Management important?

Digital Asset Management is important because these intellectual properties cost – and make – you money. You need to manage them like you would any other business asset – to protect your investment, get ROI, and reduce any risk associated with them. 

It’s also essential for efficiency in our digital world – where content is exploding, digital platforms are brand battlegrounds, and digital transformation can make or break a business. 

More on this at the end of the section.

What is Digital Asset Management software?

Digital Asset Management software – also known as a DAM system or DAMS – is a platform specifically designed for managing your digital assets. Organisations typically use it to replace unfit-for-purpose filing systems – like Google Drive, Dropbox, or departmental folders – that simply can’t cope with digital assets at scale. 

A DAM platform provides a single, central space to store, secure, search, and access valuable digital files. The key elements of DAM that make it an improvement on the likes of Google Drive are:

  • Centralisation to make assets available for use throughout the organisation
  • Metadata and taxonomy to make assets infinitely more discoverable 
  • Robust permissions to ensure people only access what they’re supposed to
  • Automated workflows to accelerate processes and workflows

DAM is more than just a digital asset library. Effective Digital Asset Management cuts your costs, improves efficiency and productivity, and gives you a significant advantage over your non-DAM-using competitors.

DAM is more than just a digital asset library. Effective Digital Asset Management cuts your costs, improves efficiency and productivity, and gives you a significant advantage over your non-DAM-using competitors.

Four types of Digital Asset Management software

You might hear people mention different types of DAM software – like cloud DAM, on-premise, enterprise, and headless. Here’s a quick introduction to the differences. 

On-premise DAM

On-premise DAM – sometimes shortened to on-prem DAM – is Digital Asset Management software that you manage in-house. It’s installed on your internal infrastructure and you’re responsible for upgrades, maintenance, and troubleshooting.    

Cloud-based DAM

Cloud-based DAM – sometimes just called cloud DAM – is a DAM system you subscribe to. It is hosted, managed, and used in the cloud. The software vendor is responsible for all upgrades and maintenance. We’ll compare on-premise vs cloud DAM below. 

Enterprise DAM system

Enterprise Digital Asset Management is just DAM at a larger scale. Some DAMs market themselves specifically at the enterprise market because they have features that make it suitable for large-scale deployment. For example, more storage, unlimited licenses, or global/local support options. However, the underlying functionality is the same.

Headless DAM 

Headless DAM is a Digital Asset Management platform that is designed to work in the background. It doesn’t have a front-end for people to search and access digital assets. It exists to power processes behind the scenes, like linking to a PIM system and automatically sending images to an ecommerce website.  

Why is DAM so important in 2024?

The business case for Digital Asset Management grows every year. The main imperative is using digital advances to streamline and automate processes, saving businesses like yours time and money. 

But societal trends are increasing the pressure even more – from the avalanche of digital assets to remote working, and online competition to cybersecurity. 

If you’ve been toying with the idea of DAM, 2024 is the time to act. Here’s why.

The avalanche of digital content

The growth in online platforms means ambitious businesses are producing more content than ever – for your website, social channels, intranet, third-party sites, email marketing – not to mention traditional print media too. 

To keep up, businesses are producing an unprecedented volume and variety of content – images, videos, audio, webinars, product tours, slide decks, POS materials, brochures etc. 

Without an appropriate way to store, manage, and access this content, businesses risk being swamped by it – undermining their efficiency, productivity, and brand. DAM is the way you’re looking for.

The shift to remote work and collaboration

Businesses are benefitting from several remote work trends in 2024. As well as flexible working, organisations are increasing capacity, lowering costs, and delivering 24/7 operations by using freelancers and offshore support. 

A cloud-based DAM system enables seamless remote collaboration by providing secure access to digital assets – from anywhere in the world with an internet connection – significantly enhancing productivity in the era of distributed workforces. 

The value of brand in a distracted society

The online landscape is growing evermore competitive, as digital tech makes it easier for challenger brands to set up shop online. And we are an easily distracted society, looking at more content, across more devices, in ever more complex contexts. 

Our attention spans and patience online are low and research says brands have only 8 seconds to grab it. In this context, an instantly recognisable brand is one of your most valuable assets. And yet many organisations struggle due to difficulties communicating and distributing the brand internally.

A DAM system fixes that by providing easy access to approved brand assets, style guides, and marketing collateral. So you can deliver a cohesive and recognisable brand experience across every channel.

Rising concerns about data security

With the growing frequency and sophistication of cyber threats, data security has become a top priority for organisations. DAM software addresses these concerns by offering robust security features, access controls, and encryption to protect digital assets from unauthorised access, ensure compliance with data protection regulations, and prevent intellectual property theft.

Features and benefits of Digital Asset Management software

1. Centralisation and organisation 

All too often, your creative teams spend more time searching for files than actually using them. They’re hidden on people’s desktops, attached to emails, in third-party FTP sites, or hidden behind meaningless file names like ‘Image_38.jpg’. This wastes so much time that it’s almost impossible for your team to be agile and efficient. A digital asset library solves all that.

Centralised repository

A DAM system is a centralised repository for your digital assets. So instead of your digital assets being stored in random folders across your organisation, they’re all in one place. 

And – in the case of cloud-based DAM – that place is accessible 24/7 from anywhere with an internet connection. 

That means authorised users have almost-instant access, so they can spend less time searching for assets and more time making magic with them.

Version control and audit trail 

Another feature of DAM is automatic version control, so your team always knows they’re accessing the most up-to-date version of a file. Version control also keeps an audit trail of any amends made to a file, so you can see what’s changed and when.

This is vital for any digital assets that require accuracy – like technical documentation or brand guidelines. 

2. Search and discoverability

How does a DAM system make digital assets so discoverable? Through a double whammy of taxonomy and metadata. This gives people lots of different ways to search, browse, filter and find the file they need, fast. So no matter how big your digital asset library grows, it’s always quick and easy to use.


Metadata is information added to a file to make it more findable. For example, in a footwear photoshoot, a single image may be tagged with the shoe make and model, material, style, colour, and which season it belongs to. 

This gives people numerous routes to find the image they need compared to knowing what the file is called or where it is saved. 

Metadata also provides valuable contextual information about assets – like usage rights or embargo information – to ensure they’re used correctly. 


Taxonomy is the use of systematic terms and categories to create a sensible folder structure. This means people can also navigate logically to images if they want to. 

For example: Brand name > Footwear > Fall 2024 collection. But – to be honest – the search functionality in DAM is so good that most people will use that.

Visual search results

Search results in DAM systems are usually displayed as visual thumbnails that let you quickly see file content – even text-based documents – so you can confidently choose the one you want. No more clicking into anonymous thumbnails hoping to get lucky.

3. Security and sharing

A DAM system secures your assets and protects them from unauthorised access. It also reduces risk and frustration associated with sharing assets via email or external transfer processes (expired WeTransfer link anyone?)

Permission controls

Permission controls ensure that only authorised users have access to specific assets – and they can only do what you want them to – like view, download, or edit assets. This enhances digital asset security and stops awkward faux pas like using embargoed assets before their release date. 


DAM uses encryption to protect data and assets. This adds an additional layer of security, making it more challenging for unauthorised parties to access or manipulate the content of digital assets.

Secure file sharing

A DAM reduces the risk associated with transferring sensitive assets via email and third-party sites. Users can simply access the assets they need from within the system – whether that’s through their own account, link sharing with external contractors, or a public-facing portal. 

Branded portals

You can create branded portals in a DAM to share curated asset collections with particular audiences. For example, an organisation-wide portal to share brand guidelines and logos. Or a sales enablement portal to share marketing materials with different branches.  

4. Collaboration and automation 

Don’t let anyone tell you DAM is just about centralising storage. Modern DAM is so much more than the media library it started out as. Today it is a hub of collaboration and automation, designed to accelerate and streamline any process that uses digital assets. 

Cloud collaboration

Cloud-based DAM provides an online space for collaborating on content creation processes. For example, a photographer can upload a photoshoot, your marketing can approve or reject them, route them to an offshore touch-up studio overnight, ready to serve up to your graphic design team the next morning – all without leaving your DAM.

Task automation 

DAM can automate manual tasks for faster delivery. There are so many time-saving DAM hacks you’ll wonder how you lived without it.

Anything from using AI to recognise asset content and tag them on upload, to automatically creating on-the-fly renditions of assets for use on different platforms – for example, converting a high-res CMYK tiff to a 72dpi RGB jpeg for use online. 

Workflow automation 

DAM lets you fully automate tasks to accelerate time to market. For example, receiving, quality checking, and publishing millions of product images to an e-commerce website with no human intervention. 

AI tools

Many DAM systems offer machine learning and AI to speed up processes – from tagging assets with metadata to predicting the best search results to serve up. See the Future Trends section for more on AI in DAM.

5. Integrations

Virtually any system that needs access to digital assets can integrate with your DAM – and your DAM can feed images, video, documents, and data directly to that system. Here are some common DAM integrations and how they work.


Most CMS have a media library where you can store images. But finding those images again isn’t always easy. Integrating DAM with your CMS gives web editors powerful search and retrieval tools – so they can quickly find the perfect assets to bring your website to life. 

DAM + design software

A DAM integrates with graphic design tools so designers can search and find the perfect visual assets without having to leave the window they’re working in. This keeps them in the zone and their creative juices flowing – while allowing for seamless editing, version control, and collaboration. [Think that’s not important? Check out the cost of context switching on productivity.]


PIM is a Product Information System – software used in manufacturing, retail, and ecommerce. Integrating DAM and PIM lets you automatically pull images from your DAM into catalogues and websites, so you can get your marketing out there – and start making sales – faster. 


Integrating a DAM with your CRM system accelerates the process of creating on-brand communication with customers. Sales and marketing teams can pull assets into messages – automatically cropped and formatted for optimum display.

Benefits of Digital Asset Management software explained

DAM featureDAM benefit
Centralisation– Central accessible digital asset library
– Single source of truth creates clarity/reduces confusion
– Everyone can quickly find and use the files they need 
– Increased visibility into assets reduces duplication
– Productivity and creativity go up
Metadata– Digital assets are easier to browse, search, and find
– Contextual information ensures confident, compliant use of assets
Version control– Everyone is working with the latest versions of assets
– Keeps an audit trail of changes and approvals
– Prevents version conflicts and confusion 
Access permissions– Ensures that only authorised users have access to specific assets
– Safeguards sensitive information and intellectual property
– Ensures compliance with data protection regulations
– Prevents unauthorised use and reduces legal risk
Collaboration tools– Supports communication and remote collaboration 
– Streamlines project execution and reduces time to market
– Facilitates use of contractors, gig workers, and offshore providers 
Portals– Provide access to approved brand assets for all creators and end users
– Supports better brand consistency  
– Mitigates brand risk 
Workflow automation – Streamlines workflows through automation 
– Accelerates project completion
– Reduces manual interventions and human error
– Improves human resource utilisation
Integrations – Reduces duplication through syncing and sharing data
– Facilitates cross-departmental workflows
– Accelerates processes and improves efficiency
Analytics– Insights into asset usage help optimise future commissioning and creation strategies

What can DAM do for you?

From streamlining marketing processes to get your message out there faster, to creating global brand consistency that grabs attention and keeps it, DAM delivers. Discover what Digital Asset Management can do for your business.

Use cases for DAM systems

DAM for marketing 

Marketers use DAM to centralise and organise digital assets, ensuring everyone involved in campaigns can collaborate efficiently. DAM gives creatives access to up-to-date assets and artwork, accelerates creation workflows, and allows for rapid distribution to end users. 

DAM for agencies

Creative agencies create and use a high volume of digital assets for customers. They use DAM to streamline and accelerate production processes, and protect and manage assets for different customers. Agencies can even offer DAM services to customers as an additional revenue stream. 

DAM for publishers

Content creators and publishers build their business on distributing written, visual, and multimedia content. They need a DAM to store and access this content quickly during the creation processes, manage production and approval processes, and power automated publishing workflows. 

DAM for ecommerce and retail

Retail employs DAM to organise and distribute product images, marketing visuals, and multimedia content. This streamlines product launches, enhances customer experience, and supports effective merchandising strategies in a highly visual and competitive landscape. 

DAM for employer brands

Businesses work hard to attract, recruit and retain top talent. Employer branding teams create campaigns that position organisations as an employer of choice. Using a DAM helps streamline this process and create a consistent employer brand across every platform. 

DAM for corporate brands

A strong brand delivers a competitive advantage. Corporate brands use DAM to centralise and distribute brand assets. This improves brand consistency by sharing brand guidelines and assets with everyone involved in promoting the business. 

When should we invest in Digital Asset Management technology?

Most businesses reach a critical point where the business case for DAM becomes undeniable. Here are five operational challenges that DAM can solve. Do any sound familiar? If so, you probably need to invest in DAM.

1. Your systems are inefficient and productivity is compromised

Problem: You face avoidable frustrations, bottlenecks and delays due to disorganised assets.

Solution: DAM centralises your assets and streamlines workflows, reduces time spent searching for assets, and minimises manual interventions. Replacing unfit or decentralised storage enhances overall efficiency and productivity.

2. You need to cut costs, without cutting corners  

Problem: You’ve been asked to cut costs. Or worse, ‘do more with less’. How do you maintain quality?

Solution: DAM accelerates and automates workflows, allowing you to do more with the same headcount. Or to maintain existing services when faced with budget and staff cuts. Time savings come from less duplication, waste, and higher operational efficiency. 

 3. You have sensitive assets you need to protect 

Problem: You have sensitive or embargoed assets and no way to prevent unauthorised access.

Solution: DAM’s access controls and user permissions let you restrict access to authorised users only. This helps manage GDPR compliance requirements, prevent potential legal issues, and protect against leaks of time-sensitive assets (accidental or otherwise.)

4. You need to improve brand consistency and governance

Problem: Multiple departments or divisions involved in marketing pose a risk to brand consistency.

Solution: DAM provides a central place to share and distribute brand assets – from brand guidelines to approved imagery – so everyone can create and use on-brand materials. Templates – and even translation tools – help divisions localise materials while staying on-brand.

5. You want remote access and online collaboration

Problem: You want to take advantage of remote workers, the gig economy, and offshore contractors.

Solution: Cloud-based DAM enables online collaboration from anywhere with an internet connection. Users can upload, download, view, edit, comment, and collaborate online, supporting a global workforce.

6. You’ve outgrown our old storage systems  

Problem: Your business and digital asset demands have grown and your current system can’t keep up.

Solution: DAM scales with you. So no matter how many digital assets you accumulate – or how many staff you have – people can always search, retrieve, and access the files they need, fast.

7. You want to raise your content game

Problem: Competitors are running rings around you with higher quantity and quality of content.

Solution: Implementing a DAM system supports content creation at scale. With DAM in your corner, you’ll be able to create, distribute, and publish more content to more platforms.  

8. You have a digitisation strategy 

Problem: Legacy processes and manual workflows are holding your business back.

Solution: Put DAM at the heart of your digital transformation journey and build new processes around fit-for-purpose tools. Don’t think about how DAM can digitise your processes – think how it can revolutionise them.

The business case for Digital Asset Management software

The business case for DAM

DAM delivers significant operational, financial, and competitive advantages to brands. Here are three benefits of Digital Asset Management software that you can take to the bank. 

1. Higher operational efficiency 

DAM improves your operational efficiency in a variety of ways. 

  • By helping people assets instead of endlessly searching for them
  • By reducing the time creatives spend recreating lost assets
  • By automating tasks like resizing and cropping images
  • By translating written content and transcoding video
  • By automating manual workflows
  • By reducing context-switching

We could go on and on… These faster processes save you money but they also give you a competitive advantage – getting you to market faster and better than ever before. 

2. Resource optimisation 

Resource optimisation is concerned with getting the most valuable work from your people. And when they’re engaged in manual admin that’s way below their pay grade – or fruitlessly playing ‘hunt the asset’ – you’re not getting ROI.

DAM eradicates low-grade work and puts assets at people’s fingertips so they can spend more time adding value to your business – through strategy, creativity, and understanding your customers better.    

3. Resource optimisation 

As well as efficiency gains, DAM delivers cost benefits you can take to the bank. It’s not just about using your human resources more efficiently. You save money because: 

  • People can access existing assets and repurpose them instead of starting from scratch
  • Enhanced visibility into your asset stock reduces the risk of duplicated work or purchases
  • You reduce your risk of costly legal exposure

Agencies and content creators can also commercialise their DAM – selling their artwork or selling Digital Asset Management as a service.

The ROI of Digital Asset Management software

The Return on Investment from Digital Asset Management software can vary depending on factors like your specific use case, the size of your business, the functionality of the software, and how many people use it. 

As a benchmark, take a look at the economic impact of Papirfly

Papirfly combines powerful DAM functionality with a suite of branding tools. A composite business based on our most typical customers* achieves 

  • 212% Return on Investment (ROI)
  • $1.17m Net Present Value (NPV)
  • 80% reduced effort in asset creation
  • $200 average agency spend avoided per asset
  • Payback in less than 6 months

What does DAM software cost?

Here are some DAM costs you need to be aware of.

  • Upfront costs Usually only applicable to on-premise deployment – the cost of buying a license for the product and costs associated with the infrastructure you’ll need
  • Subscription costs Cloud DAM will charge per user per month (also known as ‘seats’) and may have a minimum number of users
  • Storage costs – A certain amount of storage may be included in your fees – you may need to pay more for extra capacity
  • Number of assets – Some pricing models consider how many assets you need to store
  • Features Some DAMs may have an all-in price tag, others might charge extra for advanced features
  • Customisation – You may need to pay for product Customisation or custom integrations
  • Maintenance, support and upgrade fees – You may need to pay a monthly fee for technical support and training – plus an annual renewal fee
  • Migration costs – You may choose to pay the vendor or a third-party to migrate your assets to the new DAM
  • In-house costs – Don’t forget to factor in-house costs like the time it will take to research and implement the system – perhaps funding for a DAM librarian role

When totting up the cost of Digital Asset Management software – and calculating your potential ROI – you need to remember how much your current content chaos is costing you. 

How to choose and implement a DAM system

How to choose a DAM system

Choosing a DAM system takes research, consultation, and consideration. Rush it and you’ll regret it. Here’s a very quick overview of how to choose a DAM and make sure your first choice is the right choice. 

1. Determine your requirements

Once DAM is on your radar, think about it from an organisation-wide point of view. DAM is a centralised digital asset library that serves all business functions. You don’t want different departments to implement their own separate DAM solutions – that undermines the whole point.

Once you know who’s going to use your organisation-wide DAM, start determining and prioritising your collective needs. 

  • What does the DAM need to do? 
  • What’s outside the scope of the project? 
  • How many assets do you have and what type?
  • What workflows need automating?
  • What systems need to be integrated?

Write a requirements document to start shortlisting DAM systems – and share it with your shortlisted providers when the time comes. 

2. Research your options

In 2024, there are over 100 DAM platforms on the market. Start with online research to narrow down your options. Don’t just click on the ads at the top of your search results – just because they have the biggest ad budget doesn’t mean they’re the best DAM for you. 

Search for DAMs that serve your sector successfully, look for external endorsements from the likes of Forrester Wave, and check out user review websites like Capterra.  

3. Demo your shortlisted products

Create a shortlist of products and do a side-by-side comparison against your requirements document. Whittle it down to no more than five and speak to the vendors for an online demo. Which ones feel like a good fit? Invite your favourite vendors to give a demo to your main stakeholders before deciding which to buy.

What to look for in a DAM platform

Implementing a DAMS takes time and money. But it isn’t just about investment, it’s about impact. The right DAM system can be transformative. Beyond price and features, here’s how to pick a DAM platform that will deliver…


The majority of DAMS have similar functionality. However, some may be targeted more toward specific use cases – such as branding or ecommerce. Define the requirements of your DAM – for example, do you need it to act as a brand portal or integrate with a PIM system – and make sure your shortlisted DAM systems deliver that functionality. Look for existing customers in your sector and check out reviews.


Don’t just think about your current digital asset needs. Your number of assets is only going to grow. Ensure the DAM system is scalable to accommodate your future needs and growth plans to avoid outgrowing the DAM solution you choose. If you expect your user base to grow, make sure you can scale accordingly, within your budget. 

User experience 

An IT system only delivers ROI when people use it – and use it properly. If your DAM system is hard to use, people will bypass it and continue to store files on their desktops and departmental folders. Choose a DAM system that is intuitive and easy to use. That will encourage widespread adoption and reduce the learning curve.


Consider the DAM system’s ability to integrate with other essential business platforms. For example, your website CMS or PIM system. This helps create seamless cross-department workflows that enhance productivity. It also reduces data duplication and silos. 

Vendor support

Regardless of whether you deploy your DAM on-premise or in the cloud, you’ll need support from your vendor – during set-up and beyond. Check that they’ve provided adequate self-service documentation and ask how much support you can access as part of your contract. 

Deployment options

Consider the pros and cons of on-premises vs cloud-based DAM (see table below). The choice comes down to how much control and responsibility you want to take on, as well as questions of data sovereignty. 

On-premise vs cloud-based DAM: pros and cons
On-premise DAMCloud-based DAM
AccessRestricted access Anywhere access 
ScalabilityLimited by your in-house storage capacityIn theory, unlimited storage, but with costs attached
Maintenance and updatesYou are responsible for upgrades and maintaining the systemThe provider is responsible for upgrades and maintaining the system
Security and control Direct, maximum control Reliant on provider 
CustomisationCustomisation options via your in-house team – maximum flexibility but limited by IT capacitySome customisation usually availability via support request – may incur additional cost
IntegrationsVia your in-house teamSome available out-of-the-box and others via your own team using APIs
Upfront costsBigger upfront costs – you buy the platform outrightLower upfront costs – you buy subscriptions (seats) 
DeploymentSlower due to need for infrastructure set upFaster as minimal infrastructure needed – simply deployed online
Data sovereigntyGreater control over geographic location and data sovereigntyLess control over geographic location and data sovereignty

Five best practices for Digital Asset Management

Be strategic about DAM

Your DAM implementation should align to your organisational objectives. Common goals include improving workflow efficiency, enhancing collaboration, ensuring brand consistency, cost savings, optimising resource utilisation, and digital transformation. Use your objectives as a North Star to inform your needs analysis, your KPIs, and your choice of DAM system. 

Audit your assets and workflows

Your DAM provider will have a LOT of questions. Come prepared. Know how many assets you have, what types, what you need to do with them, who is involved, how many users you have, what types of access they’ll need etc. Download our Digital Asset Management checklist to help you start thinking…

Don’t just replicate, innovate

Implementing DAM is an opportunity for change. Don’t waste it. Talk to people currently involved in content, marketing and branding processes. What challenges do they have? Where do bottlenecks occur? What could be improved? Talk to your DAM vendor about how other customers use the software. DAM is transformative – think big.

Plan for onboarding and training  

No matter how intuitive your new DAM system, people will still need training and support in order to use it. Different levels of user need different levels of training. Admins, for example, will need in-person training, while casual users can self-serve training videos or how-to guides. Make sure you have a communication and training plan to help you roll out your new software and get people excited about using it. 

Commit to the long-term (Digital Asset Management governance) 

Digital Asset Management is an ongoing commitment. The key principle of DAM is to manage your digital assets so people can confidently find and use the right ones. If you neglect your DAM system, this gets increasingly difficult. In businesses with a large volume of digital assets, you may need to appoint a DAM librarian who is responsible for Digital Asset Management governance like

  • Regularly archiving old or outdated assets
  • Checking your metadata and categories are still fit for purpose
  • Adding, training, and removing users as required
  • Applying software and security updates 
  • Monitoring and optimising DAM performance 

Future trends: AI in Digital Asset Management

AI for metadata application 

Most DAMS these days use AI to automatically add meaningful metadata. The DAM recognises the file content and adds keywords to describe it – even if you’re bulk uploading 1,000s of assets. 

You can also use machine learning to train a DAM to recognise your specific products or people who work for you. This makes the whole process of getting assets into your DAM super fast. This will become an ever-more standard feature of DAM systems.

AI-powered search recommendations

Another area AI will improve is predictive search results. Predictive algorithms analyse user interactions, search patterns, and content usage to provide personalised recommendations. This helps users discover relevant assets faster and put them to work.

Generative AI and DAM

Generative AI will become prevalent in DAM as the technology becomes more reliable. Some DAM systems already include generative AI to edit assets – for example, applying brand treatments to images or videos. A new application will be that users won’t just be able to search for assets by typing in keywords, they’ll be able to create them using AI.

Digital Asset Management Glossary 

Here’s a round-up of key DAM terminology used in this guide to Digital Asset Management.

  • Access Controls – Mechanism restricting user access to digital assets based on permissions.
  • Audit Trail – Record of user actions within a DAM system for accountability.
  • Cloud DAM – Digital Asset Management hosted on cloud servers for accessibility.
  • Customisation Tailoring DAM system features to meet specific organisational needs.
  • Data Sovereignty – Control and management of digital asset data based on geographic location.
  • Generative AI Type of Artificial Intelligence that creates new visual and text content.
  • Governance – Policies regulating digital asset creation, modification, and usage.
  • Headless DAM – DAM that is decoupled from a front-end interface.
  • Hybrid DAM – Blend of on-premises and cloud-based DAM hosting for flexibility.
  • Integrations Seamless connectivity between DAM system and other software applications.
  • Machine Learning Enables DAM to learn and improve through experience.
  • Metadata Descriptive information associated with digital assets for organisation and searchability.
  • On-Premises DAM – Local hosting of DAM system infrastructure for maximum control.
  • Optimisation Continuous improvement and refinement of DAM system performance.
  • Permissions Authorisations defining user rights and actions within a DAM system.
  • ROI – Measure of financial gains resulting from DAM implementation.
  • SaaS DAM – DAM provided via the Software-as-a-Service subscription model AKA cloud DAM.
  • Scalability Capability of DAM system to handle growing volumes and user needs.
  • Security Measures protecting digital assets against unauthorised access or breaches.
  • Taxonomy Hierarchical classification system for systematic organisation of digital assets.
  • User Adoption – Degree to which individuals actively use and embrace the DAM system.
  • Version Control – Management of different versions of digital assets to ensure consistency.

Further reading

Discover Place. The essential DAM system for global brands and enterprises.

Meet the family. Papirfly’s ultimate brand and Digital Asset Management platform.

Success story. How IBM accelerated go-to-market with Papirfly.

Employer brandLeave a Comment on How to make your employer branding work for your business in 2024

How to make your employer branding work for your business in 2024

Where have we come from with employer branding?

The last year has seen huge development and investment in employer branding from large, global companies seeking to improve company culture and provide a positive and inspiring place to work. There are some key trends we have seen develop across the last year which employer branding teams need to consider moving into 2024.

Using AI solutions to enhance your employer brand

We can’t ignore the existence of AI and it’s now commonplace for companies to use ChatGPT to develop their content, for example. However, over the past year we have also seen corporates put in place policies to ensure that there is always a human input to their content: it needs a human touch to edit and sense-check, as well as to add the local element to the words and imagery. 

However, you can now use AI to edit videos, add subtitles, colour correct imagery and so on. The list is only going to grow, so in order to enhance your employer brand, it’s vital that comms and marketing teams stay on top of the trends.

How digital asset management can improve your employer branding. People buy from people, and now we are in a post-pandemic world, we need to get back into the field and show people working day-to-day for your company. Not only this, but also in-person video, instead of remotely-recorded video, is on the rise so it’s time to showcase your staff in an interactive way again. Company culture videos are proving popular as businesses become more aware of the value of employer branding.

Social media tactics for your employer brand

Social media continues to develop at pace and as communicators we need to stay on top of the trends, such as the rise of X and TikTok. For large corporates, LinkedIn posts from senior leaders are becoming incredibly popular and successful. This goes hand-in-hand with brand ambassadors – where employees promote the brand themselves on social – to build a strong voice for the brand. In fact, companies are 58% more likely to attract talent if they have a successful employer branding programme, which covers both universal themes and localised messages.

Follow these top tips to ensure that your employer brand works for you this year.

Putting company culture first

Looking ahead to the coming year, we would expect to see a growing focus on health and wellbeing of staff. Gen Z in particular are very vocal on social media and will soon call out companies that are missing the mark in this field. Employees are increasingly looking for a good company culture and one that nurtures its staff as mental ill health is a growing problem in society; 77% of employees on Glassdoor said they would look at company culture before applying for a job. 

Company culture - employer brand

Improve your EVP

So companies need to look to the core and ensure that the work their staff are doing is not detrimental to their health and that they have good policies in place to protect them. Generous annual leave, sick pay, employee assistance programmes and so on are all bread and butter now. Going above and beyond, we see companies developing webinars to support perimenopause and menopause, wellness days, volunteering and yoga sessions. The whole package of support is increasingly important as burnout becomes so damaging to a career and also a business. 

Enhance your employer image

This coming year is also the time to develop the leadership narrative further. As we mentioned, leaders are becoming visible on platforms like LinkedIn and this is only going to be more necessary. And while they are venturing into the social world more, it’s important they remain authentic – so those crafting the messages need to pay attention to the tone of voice and audience. It’s important to come across as engaging and relevant, whilst maintaining the authoritative voice of a leader.

Develop your brand ambassadors

Frontline staff are also becoming more visible and rightly so. With AI, video and interactive content coming to the fore, it’s possible to get their voice heard and internal comms are focusing on those key workers. Events to celebrate them, such as awards are being used and global webinars and townhalls are making a comeback post-pandemic. In general, companies are keen to have deeper discussions and involve staff from all levels of the business, in a two-way communications process.

Focus on your employer branding strategy

Brand ambassadors also support the rise in recognition of your employer branding. Employees need to understand and engage with the business in order to promote it, and when they do it’s a win-win as they learn more about the company, whilst prospective candidates do too. This makes ensuring you have the most effective employer brand management solutions to articulate what your brand is about – both in values and overall identity – all the more essential. 

AI in employer branding

And as we began with AI, so we will conclude – it’s a necessary strategy to develop your AI usage throughout the business and employer branding is no exception. For 2024, the key thing will be to empower and hire staff to be able to use the tools to your advantage. We will always need the human touch, especially in employer branding, as there is a need to have an authentic voice. But AI can do the legwork.

Build positive brand perception from the inside out

There has never been a more important time to invest in your employer brand. No matter how successful it is, the attitudes of employees and prospective talent can switch at any time, and it’s important you have processes, tools and skills in place to respond. 

With a brand management platform, you have a centralised portal of all recruitment and brand assets, which teams can edit, share or even create from scratch. Digital, print, video, social, email. Everything you need to keep your employer brand front and centre. 

Make this quarter count, find out more about how Papirfly empowers employer branding teams in 2024

Curious to learn how multinational software corporation SAP, successfully activates localised employer branding across 70 countries and 110,000 employees worldwide? Join our exclusive webinar on Wednesday 31st January. Register here.