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Business

Aug 08, 2022

5 min to read

PIM and DAM: Everything You Need to Know

Managing product data can be a huge challenge for companies in the e-commerce space. Regardless of what product your company might be selling, pictures, videos, and accurate data tied together in targeted customer communications is an anchor for success.

Managing product data can be a huge challenge for companies in the e-commerce space. Regardless of what product your company might be selling, pictures, videos, and accurate data tied together in targeted customer communications is an anchor for success. As a solution to this challenge, both a digital asset management (DAM) system and a product information management (PIM) system can help improve efficiencies for companies working with e-commerce product assets. For many organizations, because of the need for accurate product data in order to build a successful, scalable e-commerce store, the integration between the two systems has become foundational.

Why Connect PIM & DAM?
While PIM focuses on the product itself and how it gets sold and distributed to the customer by dealing with product attributes and content, as well as collaboration around those aspects, DAM focuses on managing the brand assets owned by an organization, like logos, photos, videos, and marketing materials. Connecting the two systems allows organizations to improve efficiency and boost overall productivity, companywide. When PIM and DAM work together, they can:

  1. Enhance Automation: When a DAM is at the center of your automated workflows, you can use your assets in a way that is scalable. Using PIM to validate and enhance metadata increases speed and ensures a smoother transition down that digital pipeline.
  2. Achieve Better Data Quality: Validating metadata improves data quality—and an asset is only as good as its metadata. When an asset is tagged with inaccurate metadata, its essentially undiscoverable.
  3. Improve Governance: The best way to govern metadata is to do it once and send that clean metadata out to other systems that need it. There are plenty of supporting metadata attributes that you need to govern within the DAM, so using an upstream source of truth, such as a PIM can be beneficial.
  4. Improve Customer Experience: PIM data increases your efficiency and accuracy in existing DAM workflows, and it provides you new opportunities to make the most of your assets—this results in serving customers better as everything they would need is easier to provide.

Improve Time-to-Market: Due to the increase in efficiency within your DAM, searching for assets is much easier. By taking advantage of the several additional features offered with your DAM, you can streamline workflows and get your assets out the door faster.

Learn more about how PIM and DAM work better together

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Use Cases for Integrating PIM & DAM
By combining the benefits of PIM and DAM, you can accelerate a number of significant commerce use cases. Some examples include:

  • Validating packaging information,
  • Validating artwork text for marketing or social media campaigns,
  • Enhancing shopper marketing,
  • Enhancing multi-locale,
  • Enhancing multi-channel content enrichment and syndication,
  • Improving print automation and syndication, and/or
  • Enhancing product data governance.

7 Questions to Ask Before Integrating PIM & DAM
Does a PIM and DAM integration sound like the right fit? The first step in integrating the two is to map out exactly what you’re looking to achieve. Here are some questions you should answer as an organization before you get started:

  1. What pain points are we hoping to address?
  2. What are our key use cases and how can the integration help?
  3. How do we collect and distribute data and digital assets today and what are the bottlenecks?
  4. What is our current digital asset and product data volume?
  5. How much are we going to grow in the coming years?
  6. How will we approach data and asset migration?
  7. What are our team’s integration capabilities?

By answering these 7 questions, your organization will gain a better idea of how to approach your integration, the stakeholders that need to be involved, and how to approach the workflow(s) between the two solutions.

Best Practices of a PIM & DAM Integration
Once you begin implementing PIM and DAM, there are a number of integral best practices to ensure the project is as successful as possible. Here are a few to keep in mind:

  1. Ensure it is Configurable and Scalable
    Enabling granular control over the sync processes makes it easy for your users to handle evolving requirements. As a simple example: adding the additional asset categories or asset types. Transferring to a PIM should be a quick operation with no additional development needed.
  1. Lean into Automation
    Linking assets automatically to products or variants in the PIM minimizes additional work delays and delays. Don’t forget to associate the images and the digital assets to the right level in your PIM.
  1. Transfer All Asset Types
    Transfer all digital asset types, including images, videos and others like safety data sheets, spec sheets, assembly instructions, warranty documents, etc. to maximize the benefits gained by the integration. Consolidate all the product assets first in the DAM and then share relevant assets with customers and other systems.
  1. Ensure Metadata Integrity
    Top priority should be ensuring that the metadata you’re spreading across your ecosystem is accurate—even if you have multiple sources that you can pull from. Make sure that you’re putting in business rules to appropriately address any conflicts within that metadata (which should take “priority”?).
  1. Validate Assets for Downstream Workflows
    Always validate your assets before they move downstream. This is another place where automation can be your friend. The further upstream you can validate assets and metadata the better in order to prevent potential errors.
  1. Track & Report
    Tracking your asset lifecycle within the pipeline and then using reporting to enhance decision making can better help you achieve organizational goals. This kind of data could inform decisions around budget, metadata enhancement, or creative direction, just to name a few.

PIM & DAM: Better Together
Managing your e-commerce product data doesn’t need to be a huge challenge. Tying together your brand assets with accurate data is foundational for your company’s success—and integrating your PIM with a DAM will help you achieve these goals. Working with tech partners that are committed to customer success, like MediaValet and Akeneo, will ensure your PIM and DAM integration is scalable and set up as a long-term solution.

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