5 ways your print company can make money with a DAM system
The print industry has undergone massive changes in the past ten years. With the rise of digital communications, newspapers are going 100% online, less direct mail is sent, and pre-press services are being outsourced.
This trend is likely to continue. To keep your print company in business, you’ll need a new business model. We suggest adding digital asset management (DAM) to your services.
It’s not a far jump. Experts in print products are accustomed to handling the digital files, also referred to as digital assets, needed to produce photos, magazines, and other physical print products. And when it comes to your customers, it’s a natural fit that their favorite printer should help manage their digital assets.
The agency model
We’re here to offer five ways a print company can make money with a DAM system, advocating what we call the agency model. The inspiration for this idea comes from a post on the Smartimage blog. Smartimage is a Widen product and an example of a cloud-based digital asset management system that is so easy-to-use and intuitive you can jump right into it with little training.
The best thing about the agency model is that overhead is low. You don’t need servers, developers, or a team of specialists. With an easy-to-use, cloud-based DAM system, you can instantly create a customer portal branded with their logo, look, and feel.
Without further ado, here are five ways a print company can make money with digital asset management software.
- Manage digital assets for customers: The most basic way to utilize DAM software is to manage your clients’ digital assets. This means setting up a good digital asset management system, helping clients determine their metadata fields and access rights, and providing support when necessary. Doing so gives customers easy access to critical digital assets, helping them maintain brand consistency and integrity in the process.
- Add value to existing offerings: As we mentioned before, managing digital assets is a natural partner to printing. And while the addition of a DAM system can be an internal cultural hurdle to overcome, your customers will see your print and digital asset management software offerings as complementary services. In fact, since you likely deal with their large, unwieldy files already, offering a DAM system is a way to add value and revenue with current customers. As an added bonus, providing this service will differentiate you from the competition when it comes to reaching new customers.
- Reduce marketing campaign time to market: One of the hallmarks of a good digital asset management system is time savings. Having things organized and easy to access reduces the amount of time it takes to produce, approve, and share campaign collateral — whether the destination is online or in-hand. Customers can also eliminate the cost of lost or misplaced work, boosting the return-on-investment of engaging your DAM software solutions.
- Improve internal processes: Your customers aren’t the only ones who can benefit from digital asset management software. Your team can eliminate workflow redundancies, make assets easily available, and accelerate creative and production cycles with a streamlined DAM system.
- Boost customer retention: It’s no secret that print is on the decline, and it’s not expected to pick up anytime soon. As marketing becomes more targeted, printers are seeing lower and lower runs. If your regular print jobs are thinning out, digital asset management is a great way to keep your customers — regardless of how much print work they need.
Using the agency model, you have the ability to offer digital asset management software services with little upfront investment. Depending on how many DAM sites you manage for customers, you will likely need only a portion of one staff person’s time to handle it all. As your number of DAM software customers grows, you can easily expand without adding staff or hardware.
Interested? We’re happy to share a few resources to help you learn more. First, head over to our DAM Basics page. It provides definitions and explains the functionality and benefits of digital asset management software.
The article “DAM in the ‘Content is King’ era” is another good read to understand the importance of digital assets to today’s marketer. It also includes some context as to how a digital asset management system can help your customers.
And finally, “What does a DAM administrator do?” provides insight into the tasks you might take on while managing digital assets for your customers. The article is written more for the manager of a large, internally managed system, but it gives a good overview of the kinds of tasks you would be responsible for on a smaller scale.
Any questions? Let us know in the comments. You can also sign up for the DAM Digest to receive our monthly newsletter that will help keep you in-the-know on everything pertaining to digital asset management.