How to Cover Your Digital Assets

May 01, 2010 9:30 PM  By

Don’t mistake video hosting for digital asset management. Though you distribute your videos to YouTube and other social networks, you need to keep track of what’s running where, says Matthew Gonnering, CEO of digital asset management software provider Widen Enterprises.

Distribution sites like YouTube compress your video so that it is easier and faster for viewers to download and stream. But Gonnering notes that compression affects the quality of the video. The compressed quality is good enough for viewing, but it is not good enough for repurposing, which is the goal of DAM.

“I think YouTube is an awesome destination site for videos, but it is not a management tool,” Gonnering says. “The management tool is the starting point and is independent of the destination; it provides neutrality for the digital assets so when the destinations change, the digital assets can be easily repurposed in these new channels.”

One of Gonnering’s favorite examples of DAM is a skateboarding English Bulldog. This YouTube hit spread so fast that it was in high demand for television.

“The asset is the highest resolution version of the file; probably straight off of the camera, and that is an asset that you put into a DAM system,” Gonnering says. “The owner of this video had to send the high resolution version to TV stations and other news organizations all over the world.”

But if you’re considering a DAM, you may want to have a load of assets. There are about 20 major DAM vendors, and the annual cost for an entry-level hosted SaaS can run you $20,000 to $30,000. — TP