How to regain control of your images
Visual assets have become increasingly important for companies’ marketing activities. While they have full control over the creation and distribution of their assets, it can be difficult to track what happens to them after their diffusion.
It is no secret, that for the last few years the use of visual content in marketing has become more and more important. The 2018 Social Media Marketing Industry Report published by Social Media Examiner reveals that 32% of marketers identify visual images as the most relevant form of content for their business and 80% of marketers say they use visual assets in their social media marketing. The 2019 B2B Content Marketing Research shows that more than 50% of B2B marketers have increased the use of audio/visuals (videos, webinars), text-based digital (articles and eBooks) and images (infographics, charts, photos).
The lifecycle of images doesn’t end after their distribution
In other words, companies continue to increase their investment in the creation of visual assets. When created by marketing departments, these visuals match with brand guidelines and corporate identities. Companies are in control of their visual assets and the messages they want to communicate. They should also be in control of distribution and how to spread their content through the right channels and to the right audience. This way, brands can achieve a truly great digital experience for their target group. In a perfect world, the marketing department of a company invests money in packshots or other images, produces them and then distributes them and knows at every moment of an image’s lifecycle where it can be found and who uses it.
However, we should not forget, that the lifecycle of an image doesn’t end with its distribution. In particular, companies producing enormous amounts of media assets can quickly lose control over where their images end up and if they are correctly used. The reality is that quite often, organisations are not able to track what happens to their images. They are incapable of knowing if their images are being misused. That means images could be used in colors that are not in line with the corporate identity. Old versions of pack shots could still exist. Or images whose rights expired could be still used.
Besides, many companies are unable to measure the true performance of their media assets, thus unable to identify the best performing content and adapt their marketing strategy. In other words, they’ve lost control over their assets.
Technology that helps companies keep track of their media assets
Luckily, there is technology on the market that can help companies prevent these situations and keep track of their images. Marketing solutions like Wedia’s not only help companies organise their images in one place (Single Source of Truth), they also support their distribution in the right context to the right audience. Eventually – thanks to technologies like the one from Imatag or TinEye integrated in Wedia’s DXM on top of the DAM module – they help companies track and observe where their images are and if they are used in the right context.
1) “Traitor” research and tracking of visuals
An invisible watermark is added on the fly to images when they are downloaded. It may contain the ID of the copy and the name of the person who downloaded it, the date and the time, the format, and the broadcasting medium (if available) etc. When an image is leaked and found, it is checked (reverse search) to find it in the DAM and point to the information linked to the download. It is also possible to identify the user at the source of each distributed copy.
This is especially important for companies that have to keep their new product launches secret, or want to control their notoriety or the reputation of their management.
2) Measuring the efficiency of marketing and communication campaigns
It is well known that a good part of marketing today is analytics. Marketers more than ever have to prove real ROI for their marketing campaigns. It is not only crucial to internally justify marketing costs and campaigns, but decisive to identify the best performing images to optimize campaigns and provide the best digital experience possible. With Wedia it is possible to identify which images and distribution channel works best. Thus, adopt marketing campaigns and improve the marketing strategy, the digital experience and the return on investment (ROI).
3) Searching for non-compliant visuals
Another potential use case is the possibility to check where and how images are used (and if they are used in the way they were intended to). Once the compliant or non-compliant images are identified by the user, all similar images can be filtered. Consequently, companies are able to quickly identify misuse e.g. images that have been changed, are not branded anymore, are used in a non-authorized context, whose rights have expired or which are no longer up-to-date.
With digital transformation new challenges arise. It gets harder to control what happens to a company’s media assets. At the same time, solutions like the one offered by Wedia and their technology partner Imatag, make it possible for companies to regain control and never lose track of their images again.