Video has become the dominant form of content online, and it continues growing to this day. More companies than ever are applying video as part of their marketing, training, and business strategies and efforts. These companies include not only the traditional broadcasters extending their business model into internet distributed film and tv but also a much more generic usage of video in internal and external daily communication by a plethora of different companies and organizations in all sectors, all around the world.
This gives rise to new, more complex workflows requiring a so-called “Media Asset Management System”.
When to consider a MAM System?
The concept of media asset management has become essential in this new environment where new workflows have appeared with new requirements. In the end, the value of your media files is closely related to what we know about the files — the data about the data, commonly known as “metadata”. The more you know about the files, the more valuable they are. This is where media asset management comes into play.
When the number of files is starting to grow, and the number and complexity of your workflows are increasing, you will quickly come to notice what a difficult task it is. It will become evident you will need a system that can efficiently and automatically guide you through the thousands of files and take actions based on the metadata of these files. For example:
- Find a set of files based on metadata criteria’s
- Updating a set of files based on metadata
- Assemble and deliver files based on metadata
The media asset management system architecture is the result of these new workflow requirements. A media asset management software knows all about your files, including asset name, location, codecs, formats, frame rates — every little bit of important information about your media assets. But it doesn’t stop there, certain media asset management software can even give you information on the actual visual and audible content inside the video, for example recognizing faces, speech for subtitles, and much, much more.
If you recognize everything said here, then you need to consider investing in a media asset management system… Today!
The difference between DAM, MAM, and VAM
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of how to choose the right media asset management software system. We need to shed some light on a topic that always seems to resurface itself when talking about asset management solutions: the difference between DAM, MAM, and VAM.
In the end, the world of media production is rifled with jargon and acronyms. And when it comes to the solutions for managing digital assets and media, you have plenty of acronyms to choose from. At first glance, it might look obvious how they differ from one another. But as new solutions with discrete functionalities have emerged on the market over the years, the lines between them have become increasingly blurred.
It doesn’t really help the matter that there is virtually no consistency in how they are applied in the industry. But to try and shed some light on this discussion, we’ll give a quick summary of the three most commonly used solutions (including MAM) to hopefully help you understand what you might need.
DAM (Digital Asset Management) is the solution you need for managing brand and image assets. DAM is mainly focused on managing already finished digital assets. It includes functionalities such as uploading, searching, and transforming digital assets for several different formats. At times, DAM is used as an umbrella term that other more specialized asset management solutions sit under.
MAM (Media Asset Management) was previously focused on the archiving and storing of video assets. But, being pioneered by the broadcast media, it has expanded considerably to serve other functions such as the distribution of media. With the increase of business producing multimedia content, media asset management software has grown to accommodate a much wider array of needs and requirements.
VAM (Video Asset Management), or as it’s often referred to — VDAM (Video Digital Asset Management), is a subset of MAM. A VAM system includes advanced functions beyond the basic store and search functions to handle both pre- and post-production media assets. It often includes functionality such as editing, collaboration, sharing, and version tracking. VAM usually integrates within a larger MAM or DAM system and enables direct uploading to distribution channels such as YouTube.