Before implementing Canto, content was bottlenecked at various levels across the organization. Eva recalls, “Before, I would ask my manager where something was, and she’d tell me to ask a certain person. And then that person would point me to someone else, and it just became a game of telephone. Eventually you’d find your way to the content, but then you’d have to remember that location for next time, because nothing about that location was intuitive. It was a lot of investigative digging.”
Eva joined KBAA shortly after the company had selected Canto for its digital asset management needs and was the primary person responsible for implementing it across the organization. She soon realized the impact that Canto could make, not just for the marketing team, but for the art consultants and graphic designers as well.
These teams needed to be able to easily find project photos of previous art installations, and they needed a centralized place where they would always have access to the most up to date logos, client presentations and style guidelines.
“It was like opening a whole new world and I was so excited,” Eva says about learning how to use a DAM. “It was everything that I needed it to be, and we could make this really work.”
As Eva learned more about Canto’s Portal and metadata features, it became clear that Canto could function not only as a library of the company’s own branding and project photos, but as an “internal Pinterest,” in her words, for navigating in-house and third-party artwork.
Using Portals for artwork and project photos
Kevin Barry Art Advisory works with a network of artists, as well as a team of in-house graphic designers, and their clients depend on the company’s art advisors to know which pieces are perfect for each client’s unique project. Tasked with advising and placing the artwork, advisors need to be aware of which artworks are available, and be able to easily source that information, along with the associated rights and privileges.
The graphic designers and marketing team have full access to the backend library in Canto. The visual interface is easy for these creative teams to navigate, simplifying their production and uploading workflow. To ensure that their art advisors have access to a curated view of all the available artwork, Eva uses Canto’s Portals. When the graphic designers finalize an asset, they upload that final, approved version of their artwork to a folder in the Portal.
When the art advisors need to find the perfect piece of artwork for a client’s project, they go directly to the Portal. This internal Portal also includes all the assets by the third-party artists with which KBAA has a relationship. Within these folders in the Portal, Eva relies heavily on a metadata strategy of tags to keep things organized and easily searchable. Works are tagged by artist name, but also by art style, medium, size and setting.
As with the artist folders in the Portal, Eva uses extensive tagging to keep KBAA’s project and site photos organized. These photos are tagged to indicate the client’s industry vertical, as well as the location and property information.
If the project was a collaboration with an architect or other design company, those names are tagged as well. With project photos, Eva is even more granular with tagging, recognizing primary colors or motifs of the installation, so that users can find the content they’re looking for through a variety of search styles.
These photos are uploaded to their own folder in the Portal, creating a curated view for the sales team. “I have folders for project photography, and they know all of these photos are approved, and we can indicate the usage agreements,” says Eva, highlighting the utility of DAM in communicating DRM across an organization. “The sales team knows that the content is there, and they’re hungry for more. They can create things that are worth sharing.”
Rebranding and sales enablement
Concurrently with Eva’s implementation of Canto at the company, they also launched a full rebranding. Having a DAM in place allowed her to ensure that the rebranding went smoothly while encouraging each team member to regard Canto as the primary tool for asset delivery.
“We knew the Canto implementation and rebranding were going to stack on top of each other,” remarks Eva. “So, we set up our Canto library in a way that would encourage people to see Canto as their one stop shop. Having a clean delivery system for our new assets meant that the rebranding, which could have been tricky, worked out really well.”
Making Canto an integral part of their rebranding also ensures that each team member truly understands how having a clear and efficient digital asset management system can make a positive impact on their workflows. “People didn’t need to become brand experts,” Eva explains. “Our people are really busy; we wanted things to be simple for them, just plug and play.”
Because Canto played a big role in the rebranding process, it was easy to encourage adoption of the platform across the company. Regarding how having a DAM in place changes the way teams view content creation and deployment, Eva says, “Having Canto as a system has really encouraged us, as a company, to think and behave more strategically.”
Getting everyone at Kevin Barry Art Advisory excited about digital asset management has also led to more employees thinking creatively about content. “They’ve found photos in the system that they want to use in their projects,” Eva says. “Canto has been an idea springboard for members of the team.”