DAM Scenario 7: Photo and Asset Library

Digital Asset Management business scenario #7 in RSG's newly-updated roster of DAM vendor evaluation criteria is one of the oldest use cases for this marketplace, and still an important one...

Photo / Asset Library

A common starting point and basic use of a DAM system is a digital asset library or photo archive. Your DAM system functions as a common, centralized place to catalog and store all your digital photos or assorted assets. 

These assets may be at the end of a creative process, older, or used infrequently. For example, the archive becomes a reference for the following:

  • Historical use of assets
  • Generation of new ideas, such as using an old picture in a new brochure
  • Scene re-creation, such as seeing what the set for a photo shoot looked like
  • A “reference library,” such as images of taillight and headlight designs from 100 years of automotive manufacturing — used for insight and ideas for design work

In essence, these scenarios set forth the idea of a single, definitive catalog to determine what the organization owns. 

This type of DAM system works for museums and other cultural institutions, which have various sizes of physical asset collections, such as works of art, clothing, or artifacts, and need a system to manage them. Because museums often lend or borrow items and collections, they also need to capture a variety of information about the asset, such as; name of the artist, history of the asset, relationship to other assets or geographic locations.

This same use case can describe a seemingly simple photo “management” scenario, yet it can develop into a highly profitable business model. The ability to preset images for sale or licensing can grow from a simple, photo-management style DAM to a profitable business.

Photo / Asset Library

Typical adopters:

  • Media companies
  • Stock photo and image agencies
  • Ad agencies
  • Small company marketing groups
  • Colleges or universities
  • Museums and other cultural institutions
  • Internal corporate archives

Is Photo / Asset Library one of your scenarios?

RSG can help jump-start your analysis. Try the RealQuadrant Shortlist Generator to find out which DAM vendors excel at this scenario. Our evaluations also call out specific capabilities for this scenario for each vendor.

Other Posts in This Series

Brand Management:

Marketing Asset Management:

Enterprise Asset Management:


  • Digital+Print Publishing (coming soon)
  • Periodical & Catalog Production (coming soon)

Video & Audio Management:

  • Media Library Review & Approval (coming soon)
  • Media Editing & Assembly (coming soon)

Our customers say...

"The Digital Asset Management Research is a straightforward, comprehensive report that's invaluable to anyone considering or implementing digital asset management. With a no-nonsense approach to evaluating the major vendors and best practices, this report is a true handbook. It's my new bedside reading..."

Faith Robinson, Content Strategist & Industry Thought Leader

Other Digital Asset Management posts

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