Digital Publishing Guest Columns
4 mins read

Multimedia content piles pressure on publishers to manage digital assets or lose audience

It is estimated that the global digital asset management market will grow from a value of $1.2 billion in 2018 to $6.9 billion by 2024. This massive growth in demand stems from a truly exponential increase in the number of digital assets being created and deployed, and the need to manage critical assets in an efficient and secure manner.

Media and entertainment companies as well as commercial and ecommerce brands have become multi-platform content publishing machines to reach and engage their target audiences. This shift has only accelerated during global lockdowns amidst the Covid-19 pandemic.

We work with publishers including The Financial Times, Bild, Reuters, Axel Springer, Telegraph Media Group and The Economist, and see at first hand the exponential increase in multimedia content as they now produce and store trillions of digital assets. Even the smallest of publishers will deal with many thousands of videos, images, and social media-friendly media snippets.

Media groups, such as Klambt Verlag in Germany which processes tens of thousands of images on a weekly basis for its 70 magazines, are using digital asset management (DAM) to get the most from their multimedia content. Asset files are stored securely, tagged, labelled, and categorized in a common repository that all employees can access.

Publishers often accept that they are wasting storage on duplicate data, but do not know how widespread the problem is. It is here that cloud storage provides the visibility needed to eliminate this issue and the need for manual sharing.

Proper digital asset management is positively impacting all levels of the Klambt Verlag. Employees are able to easily find the right content in the right format. Centralising asset storage facilitates this and reduces the redundancies in stored data.

Research by Publishing Executive demonstrated that workflow and project management technology is now a top purchasing priority for publishers. At Klambt, a cloud-based DAM solution saves thousands of hours per year. Its editorial system uses images’ metadata to automate filling out the photo-line for every image.

Klambt’s employees further use metadata to maintain “job tickets” that automatically deliver media to the next responsible team member. Using a centralized system enables more specific functionality and automated management of assets, with the potential of AI to speed up tasks, such as the input of metadata.

Image attribution and copyright

Recent years have also witnessed an increase in pressure to track image attribution and ownership or face copyright infringement lawsuits. FotoWare’s recent DAM survey revealed that in 2021 GDPR and copyright issues are a top concern among publishers. This finding makes sense as even major publishers such as BuzzFeed and Getty Images have been sued for millions.

Not only is the media industry demanding efficiency in digital asset management for all the aforementioned reasons, but DAM software is used in many settings, so publishers are looking for flexibility, be it software available in the cloud or on-premise. Security, intelligent features for consent and rights management, and intuitive to use are also high priorities for DAM users.

For publishers, DAM delivers real-time content feeds to automate workflows. Journalists need to be able to upload new assets as they are created, on the go, anywhere in the world. Klambt has used DAM to adapt its folder structure to work with metadata – the system now requires no downloading or uploading but still resembles a conventional folder structure at the surface level.

Instant access, peer approval and fast publication can keep a company ahead in a media-rich age that requires a constant fresh content stream. Speed is of the essence in sharing breaking news, but publishers must be ready to share the same story, in different formats, across multiple outlets such as social media, websites, and live broadcasting.

Without proper repository organisation, a large delay can build up in the publishing process as images are lost between colleagues or not in the correct format. The assets used in news publications may originate on one side of the globe, be edited and managed on the other, and then be published everywhere in multiple formats and multiple languages. A comprehensive DAM system can deliver efficiency for news publishers by condensing this entire process.

Properly managed files mean control, cost savings, and can help publishers avoid costly copyright infringement penalties. The ability to manage assets anywhere in the world and from any device provides instantaneous sharing and super-fast publishing, enabling content creators to stay far ahead of their industry peers. 

Bjørn Tore Hoem
Digital Asset Management Executive for the Media & Entertainment Industry, FotoWare

About: FotoWare is a Norwegian software company that is a world-leading provider of Digital Asset Management (DAM) solutions. FotoWare was one of the first in the world to offer a DAM system, back in 1994. Today there are about 50-60 providers of DAM worldwide. FotoWare is located in Norway, Sweden, and Australia. HQ is in Oslo. Find out more at