Digital Asset Management Implementation Guide

implementation-guideYour digital assets have never been more essential to your business. Customers expect to interact with your brand through multiple channels and in multiple file formats. Everything from video to images is required to portray your brand and its products in the right light to customers on and offline.

A DAM System will enable marketing teams around the world to create world class, on-brand marketing campaigns by storing, managing and providing access to your digital assets in one place. Your brand and product images sit beside your promotion videos and sales presentations, all within one click of your brand guidelines. This will allow you to deliver your key messages across multiple platforms, while staying on-brand and reducing costs.

No matter which platform you’ve decided to utilize for your digital assets, there are a few key tips to ensuring that the implementation and adoption of your brand asset management system goes smoothly.

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Organizing Your Brand Asset Management System

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When starting out with a new brand asset management system, finding a method of organization that makes sense to your team can feel like a difficult task. One of the key benefits to brand asset management in the cloud is being able to access and distribute your assets from one central hub. But, like any organizational system for a large number of files, when you place files into folders, subfolders and sub-subfolders… remembering where every asset is located can get confusing.

That’s why CleanPix has created image and video galleries to help bridge the gaps within your system of organization. These galleries allow you to group files together from across your database. Think of it as a playlist for your digital assets.

Galleries are also the key to the rights management and distribution of your assets making it easy to deliver access to your assets via the simplicity of a web link. Simplicity doesn’t need to sacrifice flexibility, however.

At a basic level, you have two types of galleries with CleanPix: open and managed. Open galleries provide immediate access, but can also be protected with a unique verbal access code that can be changed at any time or even apply specific expiry dates. The default setting for public facing galleries is managed. Managed galleries allow you to include a customizable request form that is integrated directly into the permission and delivery workflow which makes tracking a breeze.

Because your CleanPix galleries are stored in the cloud, any adjustments you make to a gallery are immediately visible to anyone who already has access. This makes it easy to add or remove assets and modify access levels in a quick and simple fashion.

With CleanPix, we also offer the ability to add terms of use agreements or end user licence agreements (EULAs) with specific galleries, while keeping EULAs disabled for others. We give you all of the tools you need to create galleries that work for your team.

The ability to store images and videos in galleries is a great feature of CleanPix and one that our customers love. If you’re sitting on the fence when it comes to testing a digital asset management system out for yourself, take advantage of a 14-day trial, with no credit card required.

Graphic Design Trends for 2016 and Beyond

pattern-libraryDesign is constantly evolving and in recent years has been very influenced by the imagery and style of yesteryear. This isn’t going away any time soon, in fact many design experts agree that while we are going to see the continuation of retro “designspiration” from the vintage 50’s, 60’s and 70’s to progress to the more colourful 80’s and 90’s.

After much discussion in our own marketing and design department, here are the current trends we’ve noted to watch.

Shapeshifting
Shape is coming to life more and more in the form of icons, logos, backgrounds and repeated patterns. It is becoming more and more important to create some sort of iconography for your organization that is appealing on the eye and memorable. We follow this trend, ourselves, with our iconic smiling CleanPix logo.

Iconic
(left to right: Tokyo 2020 Olympic Logo, Clubish Dance Radio, Airbnb, Windows 10)

Custom illustration and infographics
While many people have used stick imagery and illustrations over the past several decades, it’s safe to say that this trend is largely dead. Custom illustrations have officially replaced stock photography.

Originality is king. Find what sets your company apart and sell it for all it’s worth.

Screen Shot 2015-08-24 at 3.56.18 PMhttp://mintdesigncompany.com/work/

Typography
Thanks for Google Fonts, designers aren’t constrained to the same dated, web-compatible fonts. There is a much larger scope for creativity.

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Colour
The trend unfolding before us appears to be rich, bold colours. And these are getting more adventurous as the months pass us by. If you look closely at interior design trends, it appears that we are heading towards colours of the eighties. We’re expecting a similar trend to appear in graphic design, web design and advertising in 2016 and 2017.

Neon

Flat design
While flat design is here to stay, it appears that the trend will be to grow into something better. White space will continue to play a huge role, but keep an eye out for a slightly more layered approach to design in the next year.

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Right or wrong, these are maybe our hope for the future of graphic and web design. We’re itching to see the current style evolve, but it has in all honesty been a big improvement and march forward. Where do you see design trending from now through the next year?

10 Things We Love About Calgary

calgary-golden

We work hard at our Calgary office, but outside of business hours, we play hard as well. Many people may only associate Calgary with the annual Stampede, but this midwestern Canadian city has transformed into a cultural and economic hub in recent years.

A rapidly growing urban centre, Calgary was featured this past week on the Economic Intelligence Unit’s list of the world’s most liveable cities. While they have their own reasons for the ranking, below is our top ten list of the things we love most about Calgary:

1. Economy
Calgary is Canada’s number one economic performer and is home to a diverse array of industries, including the energy, finance, manufacturing, transportation, technology, film and creative industry sectors.

331780-svetik2. Proximity to the Rocky Mountains
The Rocky Mountains and Banff National Park are just a stones throw away (ok, maybe not a stone throw, but depending on where you are in the city the longest it could take is about 90 minutes).

14132110708033. Parks and pathways
Largest pathway system in North America with 700 plus kilometres km of pathways.

4. Golfing
If you like golfing, you’ll be happy to know that Alberta touts more golf courses than any other province.

CS-at-dusk5. Calgary Stampede
Home to The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth, the Calgary Stampede!

Screen-Shot-2015-08-09-at-7.32.43-PM6. Public art
Calgary’s investment in public art over the past decade has transformed the city’s public spaces into eye-catching hubs of creativity.

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808850_orig7. Festivals
Festials in Calgary have exploded in recent years, annual events such as Lilac Festival, ReggaeFest, Fringe Festival and Calgary Pride draw huge numbers each year.

Mall-0848. Great restaurants
Calgary is home to some of the nation’s best chefs, whether you’re looking for a unique downtown bistro or a fine dining experience, Calgary’s restaurant has become more and more refined in recent years.

9. Diversity
Calgary is an incredibly diverse city. You only need to visit International Avenue (17th Avenue SE) to see evidence of this in the unique ethnic grocery shops, clothing boutiqus and restaurants that line the strip.

Kiesza-gold-jacket-promo-photo10. Local talent
Calgary is home to world class talent including current top 40 hitmakers, Kiesza and Tegan & Sara.

Introducing… The Digital Asset Review

nelson-ceo

.The Digital Asset Review

Welcome to the first edition of our brand new newsletter: the Digital Asset Review by CleanPix. We’ve got plenty of great thought leadership to share in the coming months. We hope you’ll enjoy reading it and feel free to share your comments with us. We’ve built our company based on the feedback of customers and followers.

Digital Asset Management can be a seemingly confusing topic at times. We’re aiming to change all of that with this newsletter by explaining the technical aspects of DAM in simple words.

We’re also going to be sharing our in-house marketing expertise to help you take your corporate strategy to the next level. We don’t want you to just think of us as just another digital asset management service. Many of our clients think of us as a member of their internal team. We’re rooting for your organization’s success just as much as you are.

Here at CleanPix, we have purposefully streamlined our feature package to target what you need from a Digital Asset Management service. CleanPix features robust metadata and a focus on rights management. In addition, our team has put real emphasis on straightforward workflows that take minutes—not hours—to accomplish. Therefore avoiding the typical “sluggish staff adoption” that too often plagues the DAM industry.

We’re looking forward to getting to know you better through this newsletter and our revamped social media channels.

Onward,

Nelson Vigneault, CEO

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Making The Most of Your Email Marketing Campaigns

Email-Marketing-Tips

Email marketing is an important component of your overall digital marketing strategy. While you can see great success from targeted email campaigns, it is also quite time consuming and a great responsibility – people don’t give up their email addresses as easily as they used to. If you aren’t producing content relevant to your audience, they’re very likely to hit that “opt out” link at the bottom of your emails.

When you’re writing up an email marketing strategy for your organization, there are some imperative pieces to not overlook. Here at CleanPix, we’ve compiled a list of tips below on making the most of your email campaigns.

Make it easy to subscribe
Put calls to action on your website to help grow your subscriber list. Make it simple, straightforward, and promote what you’ll be offering to members of your mailing list.

Stay on brand
Your emails should be on-brand and should feel familiar to all other aspects of your brand, including your website, advertising, collateral and social media messaging.

Send useful content
Self-promotion is the death of most email marketing campaigns. Try not to overwhelm your subscribers with self-promotion, but rather focus on offering useful content and giveaways. Create a newsletter filled with takeaways that your subscribers will look forward to reading.

Make it mobile-friendly
This is a no-brainer. Emails that are not optimized for mobile devices are essentially useless. These days, the majority of emails are viewed on smartphones, making up 66% of all email opens.

Proof it twice, send it once
There is nothing more embarrassing than having to send a retraction of a previous email to your audience. Have multiple team members proof your emails and test links to ensure that your communication is sent properly the first time.

Stay on top of spam regulations
Keep ahead of the curve when it comes to changes regarding your country’s spam regulations. The last thing you need is to have your organization slapped with a large fine by the government for sending unwanted emails. In addition, some government fines are shared between the sending individual and their organization.

Before you embark on creating a new email marketing strategy, it’s important to consider your strengths. There is likely great content hiding with your organization in the form of blogs and collateral that can easily be re-purposed to fit a monthly newsletter. Create a content calendar and set regular sending dates to create consistency for your subscribers.

CleanPix is about to relaunch our own newsletter strategy. Sign-up for the CleanPix Newsletter to see the above tips in action.

Digital Asset Security 101

File-SecurityBalancing security with ease of use is a fine line and rights management is an important consideration when reviewing tools and services for controlling your brand files.

All too often security is lacking in many applications. It is far too easy for the wrong group of people to gain access to your brand files. But at the same time, it can be difficult with a secure system to release your files to the right audience without requiring some kind of digital security root canal to make it happen.

We’ve taken all of this into careful consideration when fine-tuning the governance and permissions within CleanPix, providing an effective balance of security and functionality that you require out of any digital asset management system.

There are 2 main levels of permissions in CleanPix: “open” and “managed”.

For galleries you have shared with a public URL, the default permission is managed. This means your assets collection is immediately accessible for browsing, but downloading is restricted until the user submits through a moderation process and you approve the request.

As for assets that you collect within a gallery intended for direct access, the default permission is “open”, which means that they have secure access to your files without being restricted by a moderation process.

You can even layer additional modes of protection including access codes unique to each gallery and require users to agree to a terms of use page before they continue. Of course, you have full control over how you specifically set the security dial.

It’s easy to mix and match assets into different galleries with various levels of protection. It’s also easy to select a new group of assets on-the-fly and deliver access directly to a single or group of email addresses, without requiring you to modify settings on existing galleries. You can even select a protected gallery and send direct unencumbered access to a trusted email address, while keeping the existing protections in place for the public URL.

Although we can’t control what happens once an asset has been downloaded from the system, it is easy revoke existing access and to update or remove assets from a gallery once released. While using CleanPix, the security and agility of asset sharing is our number one priority.

If you’d like to take CleanPix for a test drive, take advantage of a free 14-day trial account with no credit card required!

Creating an online brand that stands out

Creating-A-Brand

Every update that you post to your social media channels becomes a part of your brand, whether intended or not. There is no difference between creating a personal brand and a corporate brand. Whether posting for your personal brand or on behalf of a corporation, both should feel very genuine, organic and human. In fact, think of all digital media accounts as “personal” accounts. If you’re able to do this well, the public will respond.

When building a brand via digital media, there are a few very important considerations that should be made in order to ensure you stand apart from the flock.

Audit yourself
If you’re working with a pre-existing digital brand, take a close look at your social media history and remove any content that may conflict with the brand you’re creating. Consistency is king, and you don’t want anything compromising the hours of work you’ll be putting in to craft a personal or corporate persona.

Use only the social channels your demographic actively uses
There really is no use in trying to grow your brand on a social channel with limited ROI. Be a master of few rather than a user of all. For example, a B2B organization would likely have very limited reach on a network like Facebook, but could see considerably more success on sites such as Twitter and LinkedIn.

Uniqueness is your greatest strength
We live in an age where the internet is so over saturated with content, making it harder than ever to stand out. While it can me simple to mimic what the best are doing, this isn’t going to yield great results. Follow what the best are doing, but tailor it to yourself and highlight what makes you unique.

Be relatable
There is a fine line between being human and personal, while remaining professional. It’s important to get as close as you can to this line without crossing over. Use casual and conversation language that is in-line with the distinct persona of your brand.

Offer takeaways

Nobody likes being “sold” to, so you’re going to have to get crafty with getting your message across without alienating your audience. Offer takeaways such as no-strings-attached thought leadership content, free resources or product demos.

By offering takeaways for your following, you’ll make them feel that there is value in your content.

Keep content fresh and timely
To ensure success, you’ve got to post regularly… but you’ve also got to ensure it’s great content. Posting anything but can shrink the size and engagement of your audience.

If you’ve taken a close look at each of these areas, you’ve no doubt spent countless hours building a following and online brand. Once your brand is firmly in place, grow and protect it by utilizing Digital Asset Management software. Efficiently managing the life cycle of your key brand assets is the key to deal with today’s explosion of rich media content.