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Published on 7th February 2017 at 14:59 by Roger Erra
Our recent research shows that digital asset management solutions are gaining popularity in the AEC world. And for good reason. By providing a central, single repository for a firm’s rapidly expanding library of all digital assets—including project images, video, floor plans, elevation drawings, logos, and more—DAM makes it faster and easier for marketing, sales, and project teams to access the assets they need when they need them. And that translates into streamlined workflow and faster production of higher-quality marketing and sales tools, including RFP and tender responses.
While around 50% of the AEC firms we surveyed are currently using a DAM, among those who aren’t already on-board, half are actively looking for a solution, or they will be soon.
If you fall into this category, or if you’re looking to upgrade your existing solution, then a project-based DAM should definitely be on your radar. Compared to off-the shelf DAM solutions, a project-based DAM goes beyond giving you easy access to images. It gives you easy access to everything you—or a prospective client—would ever want to know about a project and your firm’s experience. And that’s powerful stuff when it comes to competing for new business.
The biggest benefit of a project-based DAM is that these solutions are typically built specifically to work with the technology that AEC marketers already use day in and day out. For example, a project-based DAM is designed to integrate seamlessly with ERP, CRM, and knowledge sharing systems, like Deltek Vision and Synthesis. This integration essentially links your image assets to the project information and profiles in your other systems, and vice versa, making all of the systems more robust and useful as a result.
For example, you can pull project information from Deltek Vision into your DAM and have all the information about the client, budget, location, project type, project team and services delivered connected right to your project images. Similarly, if you use Synthesis for knowledge sharing and training purposes, you can link the project images stored in your DAM to the Synthesis Profiles, making those profiles more impactful.
While this sort of integration is possible with an off-the-shelf DAM, it would require extensive customization and programming. A project-based solution has essentially already done that work for you, so you can get straight to the real work at hand.
Many project-based DAMs include plug-ins for programs like InDesign and PowerPoint—the tools you most likely use to develop case studies and other marketing collateral featuring your projects. With these plug-ins, building high-quality, branded deliverables becomes as easy as dragging and dropping images into templates and presentations.
And since images are already linked to project information in your ERP or CRM, marketing professionals can often create marketing and sales assets with just a few clicks, dramatically improving their efficiency and giving them more time to focus on other more value-added tasks.
AEC firms really are defined by the projects they’ve performed. And since as a marketer, you have a need to showcase those projects all the time, a project-based DAM may just become your new best friend. With it, you’ll be more efficient and effective at your job. And your firm will be in a better position to show off its capabilities and win new business as a result.