Whether you like to platform it, puzzle it, shoot it, or level it up, nothing brings out the competitive nature of people like video games.

What video games can teach us about digital asset management (DAM) strategic planning

Every great video game has a great story behind it, just like every great brand has a great story about it. And the day-to-day obstacles of digital asset management are no different. Brands worldwide universally struggle with slight variations on the same issues:

I can’t find the files I need.
Another castle

In a video game, the protagonist is on a quest to find something, just as you are on a quest to find the right files, at the right time, to get to the next step in your work.

No one follows the process.
Brand guidelines

There is usually a structured process and logical sequence of events in a video game to get from the beginning to the ultimate objective. Bypassing a critical step in the process could mean you arrive at an advanced level unequipped with the right item.

While these two common problems are frustrating internally, what’s most relevant is that these digital workplace issues could eventually affect the downstream customer experience.

DAM strategy: how do you know when you’ve won the game?

While there are fun similarities between video games and the practice of digital asset management, there’s never really a satisfying wrap-it-all-up happy ending for DAM.


Digital asset management is less like Mario Brothers and more like Sim City. In both Sim City and DAM, you keep building and building and trying to get more sophisticated over time. The more you put into it, the more value you get from it. The end goal is to keep leveling up.

Some DAM cheat codes

If you’re ready to level up your content game or even push play for the first time, here are the top hacks for DAM strategy while you play the game of DAM:

1. Know where you want to go by establishing your DAM vision
Side quests might be fun, but they don’t necessarily contribute to advancing the gameplay. Stay focused on your high-level objectives by sticking to the main storyline. In DAM terms, this means creating a vision for your digital asset management program, which helps to stay aligned and focused on the most important, high-impact tasks for your company.

2. Know where you’ve been and what assets you have with a content audit
In certain video games, you can collect items to aid you on your quest. This way, you can always know if you have enough food, fuel, weapons and others items to fulfill your mission. You might even identify things in your collection that you should remove. Does your company have digital assets on shared network drives, unapproved cloud storage platforms, or on local desktops? What are those assets and will they help you win the DAM game?

3. Create some principles that will help guide you with a mission statement
If you’re playing an action-adventure western-themed video game, there are certain parameters you expect the game’s storyline to stay within. In a similar vein, a DAM mission statement helps you identify the scope of what digital assets belong in the DAM, and which don’t.

4. Know who you’re going on this journey with by identifying players
It’s easy to tell in a video game who is an enemy or an ally, but it’s a little more difficult in real life. And while some games are single player, DAM programs aren’t a journey you can take alone. Identify key stakeholders in different departments and roles within the company, as well as those who aren’t invested in adopting new technologies.

5. Admit where you’re starting from by assessing DAM maturity
Are you at level one or 100? Knowing where you stand in your DAM maturity is probably one of the most significant things you can include in your DAM program. Use the DAM maturity model framework to audit your DAM program on a regular basis. This free framework is designed for organizations without DAM, but also those that have already had a DAM in place.

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