Using Taxonomies in your Digital Asset Management increases Content Utilisation.
Effectively finding the right assets for use in marketing communications, sales presentations, catalogues, EDM's or any form of communication can be difficult. Quite often we use the same images and videos time and time again and create our own local storage collection because it was too hard to find them in the first place. Tell me I'm not wrong. Taxonomies assist in finding assets more quickly.
Having your own personal repository of assets leads to a number of problems such as the 'old' product image being used in a presentation or the same image used in multiple campaigns or channels. This can cause much frustration to the marketing team who are producing more and more content so that your customers are engaged with you and your brand. This leads to low Content Utilisation and reduces the benefits associated with branding and content marketing.
Whilst Digital Asset Management systems are there to solve this problem they are often implemented in a structure that makes sense to the team creating the content and often without considering how people in the broader part of the business or organisation actually think when trying to find them.
This is where Taxonomies can help.
So you may be asking, what are taxonomies and how are they going to solve the problem? The answer is, alone they won't but correctly implemented as part of a workflow and metadata strategy, they can be the golden goose to solving content utilisation - or lack thereof.
First of all a Taxonomy metadata value is not a Tag (keyword). They describe different things and are used in different ways to find assets.
First of all a Tag describes what is represented in an asset such as the theme i.e. medieval or party or something like 'red dress' because the person was wearing one.
Taxonomy is a method of classification into hierarchical groups. Very commonly used in science, taxonomies are a way of classifying content as it relates to your business. Most people visualise taxonomies as a tree structure. Each asset will generally belong to a number of sub-branches of the tree structure. The deeper into the tree structure one goes, the more specific the classification gets. Each business will have their own specific taxonomies but many share common root branches such as location, subject and time. Business specific taxonomy branches can relate to asset use (what it was used for) or subject matter (which is where taxonomy can overlap with tags).
The important thing to distinguish is that an asset (or set of assets) should belong to at least three to five different taxonomy values. Its purpose, if correctly implemented, is to allow the person 'searching' for the right asset to use to be able to find it, no matter their perspective on the situation.
A product manager would look by product range or category whereas someone else in sales might look to find what was used in a specific campaign or the person maintaining the web site needs to get the variation of the approved asset that has been created to suit the specific use on a website.
At Creative Folks we help our client create functional taxonomy structures and we help put processes in place to ensure the assets are associated with multiple taxonomy values and the results show a significant increases in Content Utilisation.
WoodWing Software have had taxonomy support in Elvis DAM for some time and have recently added support via their new HTML5 Pro Web Client. They have written a blog about taxonomies with some animated examples demonstrating how they are implemented in their UI which you can read here.