Content Tagging Framework & Taxonomy for Marketing Content
Finding the right files for a marketing campaign can take up a huge chunk of time. With a maze of folders and files on Google Drive or Dropbox to stumble through, it’s a slow and frustrating process. We’re resigned to the fact that we’re going to have to do a lot of work in wrangling together the correct digital assets. It’s just the way it is.
Without an advanced way of categorizing files, a Marketer’s job is more difficult than it needs to be.
Utilizing folders doesn’t help make this job that much easier. Even the best-laid organizational systems are limited to the sparse information that folders communicate.
Content tagging allows for a more focused way of organizing your files and a more sophisticated classification framework.
This post walks you through tagging strategies, and content tagging examples to get you started.
Tags work for different contexts
Content tags make files discoverable under a variety of circumstances not to mention tags make a content audit easier. They can be relevant to a specific campaign, provide visibility to a select group of people, and be specific for a given period of time, like a financial quarter.
Tags are a network of interconnected assets, with files that can be searched through a number of different criteria. Ambiguity is eliminated and replaced by specificity. Team members are able to find the files they want when they need them.
Getting started with content tagging taxonomy
Before you take on creating a tagging framework for marketing content, there are a few things to consider.
Do you want to classify all of the files, and subsets of files, or just apply your system to manage all of the new files from here on out? Define the criteria that will determine what files will become a part of the new taxonomy. Forward think if you had to conduct an exhaustive content audit what would be the easiest way to search for files?
Who is going to be in charge of file management? Someone needs to oversee setting permissions, testing to see if the taxonomy is working, and making adjustments like adding new tags, getting rid of them, and keeping those in place that people find useful.
How are you going to classify the files, and what metadata are you going to use? Are there system limitations to the number of tags that can be indexed? No matter where the files are, and who is looking for them, a clear set of categories should guide people straight to what they need.
The goals of this process are to simplify document management, provide a taxonomy that’s easy to comprehend no matter what team someone may be on or their role, and be applicable across different platforms.
Developing a content tagging metadata strategy
💡 Definition: Metadata is a set of data that describes and gives information about other data.
In this case, we’re talking about data that’s attached to a file that gives important descriptive information about it.
There is standard metadata already built into every file. These do an okay job of communicating the general characteristics of a file but lack giving anything more than surface-level details.
The most descriptive part of this standard metadata is the file name. If you have hundreds or thousands of digital assets categorizing them by their names or the date they were created will get unmanageable very quickly. No one is capable of memorizing every file name and knowing exactly where they’re stored.
Tags are a form of metadata. They go further than just showing general information about a file, conveying more descriptive information about it. Creating a taxonomy of marketing content tags that transcends generalized metadata can be done in a few logical steps.
Create file search use cases
What are the actions that team members take when looking for files for a given type of project? File search use cases define different project scenarios and the search terms people use in finding the files they need for them.
We can look at the Hills framework, a project management technique, to inform use cases. Product teams use this method to distill the customer value of a product down to a single sentence of its intent. Content organizers can apply this same philosophy in creating use cases, writing single sentences for each use case that describes the intended outcome for colleagues in their search for specific assets.
These goal-centered sentences could be things like:
- A graphic designer should be able to find relevant images within 3 seconds
- My sales team should always be able to find the most recent data sheets to respond to customers in minutes
- Content writers should be able to find and reference relevant components of previous thought-leadership pieces to streamline their writing process.
Analyze existing potential content tagging patterns
Take inventory of the current ways that files are being classified. If they’re organized by folders and subfolders, this can help inform how you structure things. Look at what’s in place that works and apply it to your new taxonomy.
Talk with your team in finding out what their biggest challenges are and what would make looking for files easier.
During this content audit, it might also be a good time to migrate or delete files that you don’t need anymore, especially those that have not been opened or modified for 2+ years.
Define your content tagging taxonomy
The Dublin Core Metadata Initiative lays out fifteen widely used taxonomic elements.
Here’s the good news. If you’re using Digitile’s tag management platform, 90% of these variables are automatically identified as searchable elements and filters. Since this is already taken care of, you can put your efforts towards creating more descriptive and unique tags that go beyond these basic fifteen to embrace a comprehensive content tagging strategy.
Framework for marketing tags and best practices
Once you create file search use cases and have an idea about what kind of categories would be most helpful it’s time to leverage this information to create the most obvious and optimal content tag names.
Here are a few things to consider about tag naming:
- The term or phrase most likely to be looked up. This may require you to make hard decisions between similar terms. For example, content management, document management, file management, and digital asset management may have the same meaning to a marketing team but it’s too hard to juggle all of these when indexing multiple files, and not to mention, the team may gravitate to specific terms.
- Create tag style consistency to help users with looking up content. For instance, using acronyms versus the full word or phrase, (MQLs vs Marketing Qualified Leads), (ROI vs Return on Investment), (SEO vs Search Engine Optimization). Acronyms should only be used when they’re widely used and established as the primary go-to term.
- Differentiate tags that have the same name but are conceptually different. You may have Market (Industry) and Market (Advertise) as two distinct tags for files that fall into these respective categories.
- Keep SEO best practices in mind. When possible, add the unused metadata tags within the document so it’s indexed. This will help surface relevant content not searchable with tags.
- Hyphens and symbols should be avoided to minimize issues with searching. Marketing teams tend to create tags with underscores and symbols like Holiday_Campaign_2020 and Holiday_Campaign_2019. As team members change, what’s obvious today may not be intuitive to others in the future.
Example marketing content tags framework
As we mentioned earlier, a taxonomy doesn’t represent a single path to finding a file. Through content tag categories and tag subcategories, each file can occupy specific sets or subsets at the same time. A content tag should convey the intended scope of the information within the document. Here’s a digital asset management tagging framework for marketing content.
These templates above represent a straightforward framework for tagging. We get relevant time frames with the Year and Quarter meta tags. Files can be tagged with what point they are applicable to in the customer journey. The channel they’re best suited for like Social or Print can be specified. And the status of the file, whether it’s a draft or final version can also be tagged.
Let’s say you’re after all of the files that you used for a fourth-quarter holiday social campaign from 2019. You could go through your Google Drive filtering by the date, or you could type in the metadata “2019 Q4 Holiday Social Campaign” and pull up all of the associated files in an instant. It’s obvious which is the better choice.
What is the difference between a DAM & Tag Management Solution?
Version Control and History
Digitile Headless DAM
Sits on top of primary storage solutions Google Drive and Dropbox to leverage your company-wide single source of truth.
Onboard in 30-seconds
Connect your Cloud Storage and sync the entire account or select a sub-set of folders to synchronize.
Auto-synchronizes all file changes with Google and Dropbox, so employees do not have to waste time moving files or recalling where a file is stored.
Tags Are Centerpiece
Offers different ways to classify and categorize digital assets into related groups that users can search and filter on the most granular level. Set permissions for users with access to the Tag Manager, and bulk tagging.
Defer to Best of Breed
Does not include image optimization features. Most companies use 3rd party tools (ie. Canva or Adobe) to optimize images and store their final product images in Google or Dropbox.
With tags as the centerpiece of file categorization and organization users can create a share link to a group of files that is shared with guest to add tags for workflow/ approval/ or to just add context.
Defer to Storage Source
Version control and file history information is collected and viewable within the storage source Google Drive or Dropbox.
Automatically applies image attributes to minimize the workload and in bulk, users can remove and delete irrelevant attributes.
Create and set rules that automatically apply tags when a file meets a specific criteria.
Base packages for a team of 10 users. A Headless DAM business model avoids double dipping on storage fees.
Requires companies to port and store digital assets within its ecosystem. This creates document chaos.
Long & Complex
Setting up a traditional DAM takes months. Teams meet to discuss and identify groups of files to move and upload from the primary storage souce into the DAM.
Generally, employees must remember to move files from one system to another. They become another source of truth seprate from cloud storage.
Offers different ways to classify and categorize digital assets into related groups that users can navigate. Set permissions for users with access to the Tag Manager, and bulk tagging.
Includes workflow features such as markup, resize, and compress images to optimize image quality and page speed. Features like these are overkill when most companies already use Adobe Creative Cloud
Sharing For Basic Access
Traditional DAMs include sharing features to help users quickly share digital assets with guest.
Reporting is available to track who uses, shares, and edits content within the system.
Vast majority of traditional DAMs surface image recognition attributes. However, users must manually select them one by one to apply the attribute as a tag.
Few Offer It
A limited group of providers include rules-based auto-tagging feature.
Minimum $3,000 Annually
All companies pay for their cloud storage provider. In this scenario, companies end up paying multiple vendors for cloud storage.
Content Tagging & Taxonomy Solutions
Digitile -> Sits on top of your Google Drive and Dropbox team shared folders to organize, categorize, and unify digital assets across your Cloud Storage, Social Networks, and eCommerce platforms at scale to enable teams to deliver work faster and more effectively. Digitile offers auto-tagging for images and also has a managed tagging service.
PoolParty -> An enterprise semantic technology platform that automates metadata creation to generate knowledge graphs and make information available for digital transformation.
SmartLogic-> Smartlogic’s Semantic AI platform Semaphore reveals qualified contextual data using a centralized integrated platform that identifies enterprise information with capabilities to create and manage semantic metadata, active metadata, and information extraction.
Tags make sense for Marketing Content
It’s easy for files to get lost with folder-based organizational conventions. When you have multiple departments working with different cloud apps to store and organize files, staying consistent can be impossible.
Content tags are a practical system of organization and make content audits a whole lot easier. They provide clarity instead of confusion. Looking for files becomes intuitive rather than guesswork. That said, it’s vital to have a well-thought-out content tagging strategy.
Digitile’s market-leading content tag management platform makes for better file management. For the first time, you can add group and category tags, improve document discovery, reduce duplicate files and reuse them for future projects.