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DAM vs PIM: 40 words and data to know

Below is a list of definitions on what you need to know about Digital Asset Management and Product Information Management. In a time of IT budget cuts, you will discover why the DAM + PIM approach should be preferred to DAM vs PIM.

DAM vs PIM: let’s start by talking about DAM

  • 1. Digital Asset Management is the process by which a digital asset is managed.
  • 2. A digital asset is any digitally stored item that can be uniquely identified and used by organisations to realise value such as documents, audio, images, video and spreadsheets, enriched with metadata and tags that contextualise and enrich it. A digital asset without metadata and tags is simply a file.
  • 3. The term metadata, literally, means data by means of another data. It is information that describes a set of data.
  • 4. A tag, in the digital sphere, is a kind of label. It is a keyword or term associated with a piece of content.
  • 5. A Digital Asset Management software (DAM software for short) is the platform that allows an organisation to manage its digital assets and their tags and metadata.
  • 6.An enterprise technology platform that enables the production, management, and digital-rights-managed distribution of rich-media assets such as images, audio, and video at scale.“, the DAM according to Forrester, one of the world’s leading consulting and analyst firms.
  • 7. The global DAM software market in 2022 exceeded 4 billion.
  • 8. It is estimated that the DAM market in 2030 will break through 9 billion.
  • 9. DAM software allows all versions of any content to be archived. In other words, the outputs of a creative and/or revision workflow will no longer be scattered around and you are always assured of access to the most up-to-date version of a digital asset.
  • 10. Centralised management of digital assets fosters a key aspect in accelerating marketing processes (but not only): reuse.
  • 11. Transcoding is one of the key feature of a DAM because it allows, once a content is uploaded at the highest quality, to always offer the best possible user experience.
  • 12. Delivery is a crucial step to be able to speak of a concrete and effective management of digital assets. It must be direct, dynamic and performing.
  • 13. A DAM that delivers directly to the end channels publishes the most up-to-date version of an asset, avoiding manual downloads and uploads to operational users.
  • 14. A DAM that dynamically delivers to end channels automatically adapts the attributes of a content according to the specifications required by each touchpoint, cutting down manual work.
  • 15. A DAM that delivers efficiently avoids downs and crashes of end channels caused by traffic peaks.
  • 16. In Forrester’s Budget Planning Survey 2023, 59 per cent of decision makers declared an increase in budget for DAM technologies.

DAM vs PIM: now on to the PIM

  • 17. The Product Information Management is the process by which an organisation’s product information is managed.
  • 18. Information is the result of a processing and contextualisation process by which meaning is associated with one or more pieces of data.
  • 19. A data is symbolic element, expressed in figures and/or letters.
  • 20. Data and information are often used as synonyms but are not the same thing. Data becomes different information depending on how it is processed and contextualised. For instance, in a university booklet it represents the mark of an exam, in a red-board road sign the maximum speed limit, and so on.
  • 21. In the context of PIM, attributes are elements to describe product characteristics. For example, for a clothing brand, the most common attributes include product name, size, colour, material, and so on.
  • 22. A Product Information Management software (PIM software for short) is the platform that allows an organisation to govern data, information and attributes related to its products.
  • 23. ” A platform that allows organizations to collaboratively enter, manage, enrich, and syndicate product information.“, PIM according to Forrester.
  • 24. The global PIM software market in 2022 exceeded 12 billion.
  • 25. The PIM market in 2027 is estimated to be close to 24 billion.
  • 26. When setting up a new PIM, one always starts with the data model, with which one lists all the information in circulation and determines how it should be grouped and linked together.
  • 27. Centralisation is one of the key features of a PIM software. Product information is often scattered across many different tools, such as ERP and spreadsheets. An integrated tool with the entire digital ecosystem into which all data converges makes the flows more streamlined.
  • 28. A software PIM allows the definition of a taxonomy, i.e. a logical and hierarchical system for classifying information. The taxonomy allows the entire organisation to speak the same language and makes the user experience consistent.
  • 29. The Product Information Management approach enables a more effective management of the relationship between a model and its variants, which will automatically inherit a set of information without manual workflows. The shoe model in the following example will belong to the ‘high heel’ category in both the pink and gold colour variants.

From DAM vs PIM to DAM+PIM

Summarising the 30 points above, one uses a DAM to manage photos, videos and files, a PIM for data and product information.

We also talked about this in the December 2023 issue of NORTH: companies are compressing the IT stack for budget reasons.

In spite of (and precisely because of) this, it makes sense to avoid pitting DAM and PIM against each other, and rather see them as two symbiotic tools. Why? For the customer experience.

This is discussed in the following points.

  • 31. DAM and PIM both belong to the MarTech (marketing technologies) galaxy.
  • 32. 75% of CMOs (or Marketing Managers) say they are under pressure because they have to squeeze MarTech budget.
  • 33. Compared to 2021, in 2023 the number of SaaS tools increased in all companies. By more than 50% in large ones.
  • 34. Marketing IT choices today are driven by two opposing forces: innovation by (also) adopting new software and rationalisation.
  • 35. The rationalisation process may push DAM and PIM, but both impact on the CX (Customer Experience) as they govern images, videos, documents and product information, i.e. the raw material of e-commerce product sheets, marketplaces and websites, as well as digital totems, social media and paper or virtual catalogues.
  • 36. 86% of consumers (B2B or B2C) are willing to spend more if the CX is quality.
  • 37. The second most influential factor on CX is the consistency of information across a company’s various business and communication channels. Omnichannelality, in other words, only guaranteed by tools that offer global control of the entire asset and data pool.
  • 38. is made possible by a continuous, consistent and real-time flow of assets and information to communication channels. In essence, a flow of content circulating through tools that talk to each other, within an integrated digital ecosystem.
  • 39. Over 90 per cent of CX Leaders have invested (or will invest) in enterprise systems integration. Yet another reason why it makes little sense to talk about DAM vs PIM.

Two more words

You now know that the sum of DAM and PIM equals CX if the digital ecosystem is integrated.

This is even more true if DAM and PIM reside in a single platform.

It is no coincidence that THRON’s return on investment is over 200%.

Yes, this was the fortieth data/word in the article 😉

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