Digital asset management reimagined…
Google Suite’s base of 6 million businesses and Dropbox’s respective 500K demonstrate their continued popularity. But despite this widespread adoption, both have their digital asset management (DAM) organizational limitations.
Their core repository service is invaluable but neither cloud storage service was designed to help employees organize the large volumes of shared files that businesses generate for simple document management. Duplicate files multiply, folders and subfolders swell, and disorder takes over despite the best efforts of those in charge.
💡 Did you know: On average, an employee has 25,000 folders and subfolders in Google Drive or Dropbox with 50,000+ files spread across them. File management is a task that seems as impossible as organizing pebbles of sand on a beach.
And let’s not forget how time-consuming a process it can be in searching for files.
The average amount of time at work that someone spends looking for a digital file is 18 minutes. Multiply that by 100’s or even 1000’s of files that need to be tracked down over the course of a year and that adds up to a colossal amount. All of those hours poking around in emails, Google Drives, and other cloud-based apps could be better spent on more productive activities.
It’s difficult to devise a digital asset management framework that’s consistent and that everyone will follow if you’re only using folders to keep your files organized and accessible.
File tagging eliminates the detective work in finding files, adds specificity with meta descriptions, and establishes a taxonomy that isn’t possible with folders alone so you can take on file management.
Tags Surface Context Cues
You wouldn’t stuff a metal cabinet full of disorganized paper files. Each would have a clear label and follow a hierarchy in how they were organized.
Utilizing a tagging framework for digital asset management brings this same sense of order. Every file gets classified with universal tags, making finding and retrieving them a quicker process. Rather than wading through file after file, a tag brings you straight to what you’re looking for. Imagine having a dedicated Dropbox DAM or a Google Drive DAM, how much more efficient would you be at work?
📚 Use Case: Sales
Sales teams are always looking for new ways to be more efficient. Whether it’s landing new customers or responding to inquiries, faster is always better in bringing in new business.
Marketing teams pump out a steady flow of new documents in the form of sales decks, product sheets, and sales enablement materials to help their salespeople close deals. But for those in sales, it’s a struggle to keep up with the most current versions and where to find them.
Providing the sales department with documents that have tags that relate to the customer journey, opportunity stage, persona type, and vertical lets them respond quickly to keep opportunities moving forward.
Folders offer only a bird’s eye view of where files may be located. Tagging offers more specific categorization and a more efficient way to find the correct files that you’re looking to create. Tags offer a way to create a simple file management eco-system.
Tag’s One To Many Relationships Offers Flexibility
Folders remain fixed in time. What was once a logical organization and naming convention can lose all significance as a business changes and adjusts its strategies. What had taken so much effort to assemble, becomes a monument to outdated thinking. Tagging clears the way for change. New tags can be added, and taxonomy can shift as a company evolves. A single contextual tag connects dots between 100’s of files dispersed across folders and platforms to create a content graph of related files.
Tag It, Then Scale It Across Multiple Platforms
Documents tend to live in multiple places, whether it’s in an eCommerce system, marketing campaign management app, cloud storage solution, email, Slack channel or other software, all have their own folder structure that requires one-off implementations, maintenance, and updating. As companies continue to add more cloud-based solutions the world of document management becomes more complex.
Universal tagging is vital to every company’s ability to organize and discover files successfully. A universal tagging platform attaches valuable consistent metadata to files that can be put into action by a number of platforms.
📚 Use Case: eCommerce
An eCommerce shop that stores all their product images in Google Drive can apply product categories, SKU codes, and product relationship tags to every file, upload the manicured tagged files into Shopify to configure, and assemble their front-end commerce engine with ease.
Tags Are More Accessible Than Folders
Folders only provide a location path.
Tagging gets down to a granular level of categorization. It communicates with a more focused level of detail, showing both content and context. Instead of a general categorization, files get a microscopic level of organization and specificity.
It’s the difference between trying to find something with a hand-drawn map, or a hybrid Google map. You get there that much faster when the details are right there in front of you.
How To Get Started With A Unified Taxonomy
For anyone who has ever been tasked with organizing and file management an unwieldy Google Drive or out of control Dropbox, they’ve experienced that feeling of dread that comes from the almost endless scroll of folders that appear on the screen. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by it all.
Beginning the process isn’t difficult, with evergreen tags and purpose-driven tags being two strategies to help you get organized.
Like any bigger task, it helps to break the tagging process down into smaller chunks. Pick a couple of projects or folders to start. Taking on a smaller number of files lets you identify what system of tagging makes sense.
As the name implies, an evergreen tag will always be relevant, no matter how a business or the market may change. Anyone from marketing, sales, human resources, legal or accounting, will be able to use these tags to find the files they’re searching for no matter what point in the future.
⚡️ Tip: Using quarters and years are a good application of evergreen tags. Classifying files by Q1 2020, Q2 2020, etc, provides a solid foundation to building a more formal hierarchy.
📚 Use Case: Marketing
Nurture email campaigns, which involve scheduled emails, may need a large chunk of images uploaded to a campaign management system. A marketing manager can search by tags significant to a campaign, download all of the related images, then bring them in all at once, instead of doing this manually. Universal tagging makes tracking down these photos and uploading them a more speedy process.
Tags Empower File Discovery
A folder may connect its files to a main category and file path, but there isn’t anything beyond these basic connections. Universal tagging allows a single file to have numerous ways it can be classified. Instead of the linear relationship of files in an individual folder, files come together in a web of interrelationships. They form multiple groupings that are discoverable through a variety of ways. To help file ‘organizers’ and ‘searchers’ with file management.
📚 Use Case: eCommerce
Images might get tags relevant to the product category they fall into, whether it’s an original or edited version, the year and quarter they were created, or other important information. A designer or webmaster can hone in on the photos they need, no matter where they are located through universal tagging.
Purpose-driven tags are about context. A taxonomy may begin with higher-level tags but always leads to those that are more specific. Start with a high level of classification and then get down to the cellular details that capture the substance of a given file.
📚 Use Case: Legal
Law firms handle a mountain of agreements and documents for their clients, and many of these files look almost exactly the same.
Imagine punching in “non-disclosure agreement” (MNDA) as a keyword search. Most law firms would generate 100’s of matches. Let’s say what you’re after are MNDA’s that have specific redlined changes that can be leveraged for another client’s request. Even the sharpest of legal minds wouldn’t be able to remember the nuances of every agreement.
Tags offer law firms case management flexibility in adding project codes, matter identity, as well as other unique attributes of a contract, to make these documents easier to discover.
Digital Asset Management tips taxonomy framework
The who, what, where, and when may inform how you begin tagging.
- The who may include a designation such as internal or external teams the files may be relevant to
- The what may encompass the product, project, or market.
- The status of a project, whether it’s in progress, approved, or draft, maybe the where (as in where in the process).
- The when can be the year and quarter that the image or project was created.
- You can also tag with endpoints, like the marketing and commerce channels that the files may be used for.
And of course – don’t go overboard with tagging. Tags that cover 5-7 key features of a file are ideal. Anything more and things get too complex and convoluted, which defeats the purpose of trying to get organized in the first place.
A Super Simple Tag Management Tool
Without a formal taxonomy, there’s a disconnect between knowing what files are needed for a project, and actually finding them. Removing this divide makes these assets more immediate. Team members, rather than stressing about the work ahead of them, can jump in with confidence knowing that they’ll be able to locate what they’re after, without wasting valuable time.
Digitile’s universal tag management platform gives you and your team members the digital asset management superpowers to find and tag files, bringing efficiency and order to what can be a chaotic and frustrating task. Digitile’s automated metadata management reigns in what’s out of control across GSuite and Dropbox, empowering team members with a tool whose purpose revolves around enhancing efficiency. Digitile is the first tag management tool that makes document management easy, allows for files to be optimally used across different platforms, and brings cohesion and harmony to project workflow.
There’s no easy way to manage and organize Google Drive and Dropbox files. Having the power to categorize (create a Google Drive DAM or Dropbox DAM) with these Digital Asset Management tips is essential to anyone who has to manage a ton of content. Digitile offers a document management solution without the DAM cost.