Being part of a creative team at a large organization means working with lots of assets, lots of resources, and lots of partners. This is great because it means that work can happen on multiple fronts at once. One agency is making video for a new campaign. A studio is working on a thought leadership eBook and an executive's accompanying speech for an upcoming conference. A digital marketing firm is creating a sponsored content package that will launch on a popular magazine's website and social platforms.
But it also makes things more complex because there are so many moving parts. Assets need to be thoughtfully organized and easily findable. The right people need to be able to access them, and nefarious actors need to be prevented from seeing anything they shouldn't. Outside partners need to know they have the correct logo, font, and deck template. If these simple pieces and assets aren't in place—and secure—creating high-quality work grows more difficult, especially as the number of external partners grows.
If you’re part of a creative team at a large company and work with a number of agencies on marketing assets, you want to set up a smart process. Luckily, Dropbox can help systematize collecting, collating, and distributing brand resources.
The first thing to consider when creating an asset repository is what exactly should be included. Make a list. Consider things including logos, taglines, style guidelines, messaging documents, document templates, and more. You’re better off giving your external agencies more assets than you think they might need—then waiting on an approved tagline or SVG file won’t be a bottleneck during production.
From there, it’s all about setting up the folder structure. Consider top level folders, then subfolders where specific assets will live. Perhaps a top level folder is called Digital assets with one subfolder for logos and another for graphic taglines. Going a step further, the logo folder could have subfolders for logos by size or usage—sure, you told them that this secondary mark is what the team uses for social, but it’s best to label that and systematize it so there are no questions in the eleventh hour.
Tagging and collecting assets
Make sure to use tags for folders, too. It’s easy to create an automated folder that will automatically add the tag to anything placed in that folder, making locating assets easy in the future. For example, adding a #DigitalAsset tag to the Digital asset folder means that every asset in the folder will get that tag, as well as anything added to any sub folder in the future. A #Logo to the Logo folder will do the same for everything contained in that subfolder. An intelligent tagging system saves time later.
Now, about getting assets into the correct places. By using a file request, it’s possible to ask colleagues to upload specific files—which will automatically go to the correct place—even if they don’t have their own Dropbox. (Although they should!) Simply make the file request, send it on its way, and watch as the assets end up where they should be. Everything in its right place.
For your eyes only
Managing permissions—i.e., determining who’s the owner, who can edit, and who can view—is a case-by-case basis, but whatever the decision, it’s easy to implement. Changing access level, unsharing, letting others share with new people, and additional functionality is just a click away. Plus, the enterprise-grade encryption at Dropbox as well as password-protection options help keep assets safe and secure—no matter who has access.
Sending assets safely
Asset repository created. Alright, alright, alright. Next step, distributing the assets to partners who need to use them or providing access to an organization's internal Dropbox; so external agencies can use the resources. There are multiple ways to do this, safely and securely.
With Dropbox, it's easy to share a folder or file. Better yet, the person who is sharing can control who can view and edit the folder or file—those with the link, team members, or only those with an invite—as well as who can provide further access. It's also possible to password-protect folders or files, set expiration dates for links, and disable downloads so no one can download the shared material. And, of course, it's always possible to see who has viewed any folders or files in a Dropbox account.
A second option is to use Dropbox Transfer to send a copy of a file or folder to an external partner. Simply click "Send a copy" in the Share dropdown, then send via link or email. With Transfer, there's also an option to make it password protected, set an expiration date, and receive download notifications for further security and visibility into the status of the assets.
Organizing and distributing brand resources doesn't have to be difficult or scary. A thoughtful method, smart tagging, and secure sharing will help any organization and its marketing partners create beautiful, impactful work together.