DAM, what a year.

Some highlights of digital asset management in the soon-to-be history of 2012:

THE BIG PICTURE

Trends in DAM

In September, DAM expert Edward Smith took a shot here at CMSWire.com to list some of the big trends, including integration with other business systems, larger and larger collections and automation of asset/metadata ingestion.

Let’s Work as a Team

Collaboration strategies and techniques are among the growing trends in virtually every kind of work-based software, and their emergence in DAM systems is exemplified by new features in WebDAM, with email notifications and alerts to keep team members up to date on where things stand on a given asset or action.

One of the most impressive displays of teamwork, for which a medal of some sort should be given, was undertaken at the London 2012 Olympic Games by OpenText. Its Content Hub for Publishers cloud-based solution was used by over 4 dozen sports and news photographers in the National Olympic Photo Pool to transmit their photos from diverse locations. The workflow included editing by photo editors, the addition of semantic metadata and distribution to over 1100 media outlets.

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LAUNCHES AND UPDATES

Major product news during the year included updates to Widen, such as new digital watermarking integration, enhanced analytics and enhanced PDF exporting; the launch of PublishingNOW!, Van Gennep’s editorial system that is integrated with ADAM Software’s DAM platform; new features for WebDAM; the release of Razuna's Enterprise Edition and updating of its open source edition; the launch of Canto's Integration Platform for its Cumulus DAM software; and the launch of Celum's damcloud.com, which it described as the first “highly professional DAM solution, in the cloud, with no reduced functionality."

ACQUISITIONS

North Plains Reinvents Itself

Building on its Telescope digital asset management software, the Toronto-based company is undertaking a total makeover, with a new visual identity, logo and website. In April, it bought Xinet, a provider of file-based management for work-in-progress visual content at agencies and publishers, and in early December, announced the purchase of VYRE, which provides marketing resource management through its SaaS On Brand management of brand guidelines, brand assets and creative workflows and Unify, a web-based marketing application platform.

With these purchases, North Plains’ new, “complete solution” is coming into focus -- Xinet for asset creation and production, Telescope for the management of those assets, and Unify for their distribution.

WoodWing Software Finds Elvis

Elvis DAM, developed in 2008 and best known for its use in Wikipedia, has been purchased by WoodWing softwaree, provider of a well-known multichannel publishing system, Enterprise. In announcing the acquisition, WoodWing CEO Hans Janssen noted that publishers and corporations are “looking for solutions that support their increasing multichannel publishing activities,” most notably rich media, which Elvis DAM can provide.

Re-Examining DAM Pricing

Value of DAM

Automated assessment of asset value is gaining traction. For example, value optimizer JumpTime announced this year that it had obtained a patent for a system and method for “determining overall content values for content elements in a web network.” The process utilizes a metric called FloPower, which expresses the value of content assets in terms of dollars and page views. The company also has a new tool, called Revenue by Traffic Referral Source, that calculates “the exact economic value in dollars of a site’s traffic referral sources,” such as social media, search, referring links and partner sites.

Google Drive = DAM Gone to Heaven?

Google Drive launched in 2012, and some users see the service, including its free tier, as having the potential of being a rudimentary digital asset management system in the cloud.