How to achieve a multi-functional Brand Asset Management system with minimal fuss

Posted: 24 October 2012

You formulated your RFP months ago and after a careful selection process have found the right partner to help you control and manage your digital brand assets through an integrated brand asset management system. Getting everyone to agree on the functionality, modules and workflow was a tough process, but eventually your scope is finalised and the look and feel decided upon. Your newly appointed partner will build your site as per the Gantt chart and in 3 months' time it will roll out across the business. What can go wrong?

  • What happens if the site is not what you were expecting?
  • What if the permissions structure doesn’t work?
  • What if it doesn’t fully reflect your brand?
  • What if the navigation and keyword structures make your brand new assets impossible to find?
  • If you have to wait 3 months for the big reveal you’re going to be a bag of nerves.

This is where using an Agile development methodology can be helpful. What’s it got to do with your Brand Asset Management system and what is it exactly? In a nutshell, it’s a method of developing your solution in an iterative and incremental fashion where requirements evolve through collaboration between teams. Success depends on regular and focused updates, where you have the chance to review and provide structured feedback on what’s been developed rather than waiting until the end of the project.

We’ve evolved these 7 steps to Agile success:

  1. Appoint a dedicated Project Manager:

    Assign a project manager to run the implementation as soon as it’s commissioned. The project manager will provide updates and demonstrations at regular status meetings or forums.

  2. Schedule regular updates/demonstrations/forums:

    These meetings/sessions – in person or remotely - are scheduled at the beginning of the project to ensure that everybody you need to be there can attend.

  3. Break down the project into bite sized chunks:

    It’s critical to break down the project into manageable bite sized chunks. The delivery of each chunk should be clearly flagged on the project plan and there should be no surprises about what will be delivered when.

  4. Gain early agreement on look and feel:

    Ensure look and feel is consistent with the overall brand identity. For the Marketing team, consistency with the overall brand experience can make the difference between success and failure.

  5. Know your stakeholders:

    The key here is no surprises! Make sure all the important stakeholders are involved in the demos and have access to the test environments. Checking and validating deliverables with all stakeholders may be time-consuming but will be worth the effort.

  6. Create regular flow of mini launches:

    Make features available as soon as they are complete and encourage teams to start experimenting with them – there is no substitute for getting people to use the system as early as possible.

  7. Test, test, test:

    Make sure the power users give the site a proper test drive during this phase too, so that you can guarantee that the wider user group will get a great first impression the first time they login.

Follow these steps and you’ll deliver the project on time with no nasty surprises. You’ll be able to relax and look forward to the launch day rather than dreading it.