At NAB, the National Association of Broadcasters show in Las Vegas, Digital Asset Management (DAM), media and technology are finally catching up. I have been attending the NAB Show for nearly all of my working life – a long time! I have been working in the DAM industry for the last five years and it is gratifying to see the amount of interest in DAM at this show.
Over the years, many media companies were looking for solutions to better manage media, but they were ahead of their time. The technology just hadn’t progressed to a point to make their vision a reality. Now the technology is catching up. Broadcast media has certainly evolved. Back in the day, it seemed innovation at NAB was about how many shiny new buttons were added to the cool box for the control room gallery or studio. Now all those buttons are part of a slick mouse-controlled interface that can do the same job that it used to take 25 people to do.
Managing media assets and metadata, whether its called MAM, DAM or whatever, should be a no-brainer in the media industry. DAM sits at the intersection of making media and doing something with it. It is not just about broadcasting, and DAM is not just a library of media content. The biggest change for vendors in both broadcasting and DAM is in integration. The silos must die! The proprietary systems of the past have given way to interdependent ecosystems.
In DAM this means going beyond integration with other systems and being able to adapt to the customer’s environment. Who wants to support an integration in which both ends have to code and test at every release to make sure the middle still works? Plus, there are so many pieces to fit together, multiple systems and dependencies that need to share information and work together. It is all part of an ecosystem which includes the processes to plan, produce, deliver, and measure digital media. Lots of pieces have to fit together and work together in complex environments, touching all parts of the organization and the wider digital media supply chain.
What excites me about DAM (OpenText™ Media Management is the one I am most familiar with) is that it is moving to more of a configuration model, rather than heavy coding for integration and customization. It allows loosely coupled integration with secure, controlled access to share and synchronize data. It allows customers to work the way they want to work.
At OpenText we are starting to see this with the media companies we work with. We can media-enable the processes, such as project management, so you can track the people, budget and time as a project as all of the associated assets move through its lifecycle. We can consolidate the assets so there is a single container or place for all the metadata, relationships and versions – a single source of the truth, and we can securely manage and control access.
Ultimately, this is about providing transparency and collaboration in media planning and creation, and leveraging metadata to provision the processes in how that media content is to be used. Then providing the feedback with analytics and metrics in how it is actually used across all of the different delivery vehicles to get your message and story to any audience, any device, any format, any time.
I tell customers all the time that every company is a media company. And it’s a great time to be a media company.