Success story

British Fencing




London, England

British Fencing promotes fencing benefits with digital asset repository in Canto

British Fencing is the national governing body for fencing in Great Britain. The organization runs programs to get people interested in the sport – from elementary school demonstrations to adult clubs. It also supports athletes training for and competing in the Olympics.

Sophie DeVooght is the Media and Communications Manager at British Fencing. She is responsible for a multitude of media-related projects, like press releases, news articles and their digital channels. As the main Administrator of Canto, she also maintains the photo and video content for the organization.

The goal

British Fencing needed to consolidate their assets and make them accessible and easily shareable from a single location.

The result

With Canto, the team works more efficiently to publicize the benefits and enjoyment of fencing in Great Britain.

Goal: Streamline input and output of digital assets

British Fencing aims to promote fencing as a safe and accessible sport. Their promotional efforts require a lot of up-to-date, widely available digital assets. These assets need to be approved, uploaded and shared seamlessly.

“We were looking at building our library and making sure that we had consistent permission to use assets from photographers. We’ll have photographers traveling to competitions around the world, but I want to use their photos straight away on our platforms,” says Sophie.

Since they started to build their library and had more and more assets available, Sophie realized that she couldn’t keep up with all of the content requests from the wider team.

“We started to have a problem because I was becoming a bottleneck. I was getting internal questions from staff, like ‘do you have a photo of X?’ ‘Do we have an image of this?’ ‘Can I use this picture?’ It couldn’t just be me that solved this problem. We needed a more sustainable solution,” says Sophie.

Before Canto, they used a mixed bag of storage solutions. There was no easy way to consolidate assets, which made accessing and searching for content nearly impossible.

“There were so many places that our media went. For example, you’ve got me at an event taking pictures on my phone and someone else recording an interview and putting it onto their hard drive. Then if I find a photographer’s image and need approval to use it, they could say to go download it from their Facebook profile. I wanted to make sure that we could streamline the process and be more confident with our assets centrally stored,” says Sophie.

Enter Canto: A turnkey solution

British Fencing now stores images, videos, audio files, brochures, presentations, information packs and branding materials in their Canto library. Sophie chose Canto because it was a turnkey solution and met all of her storage and accessibility needs.

“It was very evident that Canto was going to solve the problems that I was having out of the box. It is so flexible and the interface is appealing. When I was researching, I was looking for ease of use. Canto is everything that I need, and actually a couple of things I hadn’t even thought I needed that are brilliant,” says Sophie.

Getting organized and easy search

The team uses a folder structure to organize assets into categories, but they are more focused on detailed tagging to make global search straightforward and comprehensive.

“We do have folders with a couple of albums inside. Keeping in mind the use of the assets, I try to keep folders broad. With tags, you might find an image or an asset that you wouldn’t have found if you just had gone to a folder,” says Sophie.

Extensive tagging helps Sophie and the team find exactly what they’re looking for within global search. These tags help them narrow down to the perfect asset.

“We add a lot of tags and it helps to find content when searching. We tag items within the image, like the weapon and the project or program. We also tag the different pieces of kit the athlete is wearing and then later I can come back and immediately find an image of a glove, for example,” says Sophie.

Content input and output

Upload links allow Sophie to efficiently crowdsource images and videos for their Canto library. She simply creates a link, sends it to whoever she needs content from and reviews the content before adding it to the library.

“I have upload links for team members or athletes who are abroad. They use the upload links, I approve the content and commit it to a library and then team members are able to go into Canto and download the assets that our athletes uploaded,” says Sophie.

Sophie also created a Portal for British Fencing affiliated clubs. This Portal includes content for them to promote club activities, like social media assets, imagery, posters and logos. Club members can access and download everything they need instantly.

“We’re able to provide assets through the Portal that club members can use on their platforms to advertise and get the word out. We can refresh the Portal with different content, and they can go in and choose the assets they want. That’s a really great thing for our clubs as they’re looking to return to fencing after the pandemic,” says Sophie.

She is also planning to create a few public Portals to help the team with content distribution for partners and members of the press.

“As we come up to the Olympics, I’d like to have a Portal where the press and partners can find everything they need to know about our athletes,” says Sophie.

Sharing digital assets between British Fencing team members is a smooth process with share links. Everyone can simply choose assets they want to share and either create a new link or add to an existing link.

“I love that the share links allow us to share files immediately. Those links are whizzing around between the team now. If we want to share a really big video, it’s so easy to access. Being able to share quickly is great,” says Sophie.

Customer support

With dedicated support, Sophie and her team felt confident during the set up and implementation process. Their account manager conducted a training for the team, allowing Sophie to focus on getting the settings and customization just right.

“Our account manager took us through the consumer view – like a training I would have done for the team, but it was great that she could come in and do that for us. She got to meet everyone, answer questions and generally give everyone an idea of using Canto and the value of it,” says Sophie.

It was very evident that Canto was going to solve the problems that I was having out of the box. It is so flexible and the interface is appealing. When I was researching, I was looking for ease of use. Canto is everything that I need, and actually a couple of things I hadn’t even thought I needed that are brilliant.

Sophie DeVooghtMedia and Communications Manager

Results: Breaking down misconceptions with quality content

British Fencing is on a mission to get everyone in Great Britain interested in the sport. They want to break down misconceptions that often create barriers for people to try fencing.

“I think success for me is that more people are aware of the benefits and the fun of our sport or are even able to be more active. I want to see people moving because we’ve inspired them through our sport,” says Sophie.

A great way for the team to break barriers is to visually show how exciting and inclusive fencing is. With Canto, they find and use the best and most up-to-date assets. Sophie and her team are empowered to work quicker and more efficiently with their digital asset library in Canto.

“Before Canto, I was constantly having to search through folders and other sources or make multiple requests just to get permission to use one asset,” says Sophie. “But now it’s just a case of putting a search term into one place and I get a multitude of asset choices.”