Tuesday, September 20, 2011

How to Choose the Right Marketing Asset Management Solution

Implementing a marketing asset management solution is a big step for most companies.  Not only does it represent a significant financial investment, it also requires you to change the processes you use to acquire, manage, and distribute marketing materials.  In some cases, it can change how you execute direct marketing campaigns and programs.

To select the right MAM solution, you need to determine what capabilities and functionality you need and then make sure you ask prospective solution providers the right questions.

There are four key issues that all companies should address when evaluating potential MAM solutions.

Solution Use and Scope - How will the MAM solution be used?  Put another way, what kinds of materials will be included in, and managed through, the MAM solution?  How you answer this basic question will determine how many and what kinds of individuals need access to the solution, and it will greatly influence what functional capabilities you need in your solution.  The obvious answer here is marketing materials (marketing collateral documents, promotional items, point-of-sale materials, etc.).  When you're evaluating potential MAM solutions, however, consider what other kinds of materials your solution could be used to manage.  Some examples would include:
  • Direct marketing campaign materials
  • Sales support materials (presentations, proposal templates, etc.)
  • Administrative/technical/human resources documents
  • General business supplies
Solution Reliability and Responsiveness - How reliable and responsive must the MAM solution be to meet your needs, and will prospective solution providers offer appropriate service level guarantees?  For most companies, the two most important performance attributes of a marketing asset management solution are system uptime and order turnaround time.  These attributes are critical because the success of your MAM deployment ultimately depends on the willingness of your users to rely on the MAM solution for their needs.  If your users know that the solution will be available when they need it and that the materials they order will be delivered quickly, they will be more likely to use the solution consistently.

Incorporation of Business Rules - Can the MAM solution be customized to incorporate and enforce your business rules and control mechanisms relating to the acquisition and use of marketing materials?  A capable solution provider should be able to customize the MAM solution to incorporate the control mechanisms you need, but this issue should be addressed early in your evaluation process.

Reporting Capabilities - Does the MAM solution provide all of the reporting capabilities that your company needs?

Of course, your evaluation process should not be limited to these four issues.  Your company's particular characteristics and needs will point to other issues that you should address when selecting a marketing asset management solution.

To help jumpstart your evaluation process, we've just published a white paper that contains twenty-three critical questions you need to ask when choosing a marketing asset management solution.  If you'd like to review a copy of our new white paper, send an e-mail to ddodd(at)pointbalance(dot)com.


  1. Hi David,

    Good article on Digital Asset / Marketing Asset Management.

    I would also add that an important attribute of a DAM/MAM solution is accessibility.

    Are the assets available anywhere, anytime and by anybody with the correct security clearance? You're not always in the office when you need these files, so loading them onto your work server can be troublesome. Even VPN's can be pretty slow due to security.

    This is where a good SaaS solution for Marketing Asset Management can show really beneficial ROI.

    Additonally, an MAM solution allows for easy re-use and repurposing of content.

    Lastly, we are talking "assets" which inherently have value, and as such need to be protected. That's exactly what an MAM solution can do for you.



  2. Don't forget scalability - how easy will the system allow for upgrades, new functionality and extensibility from the original core deployment. How are phased modules introduced?
    Also, collaboration with existing systems, content migration, and Brand UI influence.
    The use and influence by agency/third parties and their ease of use. (they will be the first to complain if getting content in and tagged is complex and expensive)

    The list of questions to validate the suitability of a potential vendor is vast. A good vendor will provide a questionnaire that inspires the client to think about their current and future requirements.

    www.adgistics.com - Mike Brothers

  3. Some good points here David,

    We're seeing a levelling of the playing field with smaller companies being able to access solutions that were previously the sole domain of the large players. As Mike Brothers mentioned - I would add to this the ability to scale. With today's cloud based applications the ability to scale up (or down), eliminates the upfront expenditure on infrastructure - now just rent what you need from the cloud.

  4. Paul,

    Thanks for your comment. The points that you and Mike Brothers make are all important. The ability to scale the solution is critical.

    Thanks again for your comment.