Brand & Advertising

Brand asset management made easy: the power of brand portals

Written by Pim van Helten on 1, Seth 2021

Picture this, it’s Friday afternoon and the weekend is on the horizon. You’re about to wrap up when you get a Slack notification. Your colleague needs help finding a bunch of source files urgently. Instead of calling it a day, you’re now rummaging through hundreds of folders in search of these files.

Among the dozens of tasks marketers deal with everyday, it’s managing brand assets that can often take up the most time. That’s why it probably comes as no surprise that brand portals are becoming increasingly popular. Brand portals are designed to take the hassle out of brand asset management. They help scale marketing processes and make it easier for stakeholders to access, share, and use brand assets anywhere and at any time.

A single source of truth

In basic terms, a brand portal is a digital resource center that all your brand assets can call home. Acting as a digital library of sorts, it makes it easier to store, organize, and distribute your digital assets. This can be anything from graphics, logos, fonts, and marketing collaterals to brand guidelines and source files. 

I should point out that a brand portal is more than just a place where you dump your brand manual and guidelines. This is a common misconception I stumbled upon more than once. To be fair, all brand portals store brand assets, but it’s so much more than a place for storage. Not only does a brand portal simplify brand management, it also increases brand consistency, facilitates  collaboration, improves efficiency, and can even act as a source of inspiration for creating new content.

What can a brand portal do for you?

I’m not exaggerating when I say that brand portals can be a gamechanger. They are the single source of truth for teams of all shapes and sizes and function as a central hub for everything brand related.  

An ideal brand asset portal covers four main principles: 

  • Consistency

Delivering a consistent brand experience is on top of every marketer’s wishlist. Staying on brand becomes much easier when internal and external stakeholders can access all your brand assets on one cloud-based platform. The portal functions as your single source of truth and enables easy search, distribution, and reuse across marketing campaigns and content. 

What you need to know about brand consistency

Let’s go
  • Security

Who doesn’t want a safe and secure space to store their assets? Brand portals provide exactly that with 24/7 access. You manage the access and sharing rights and control who can enter your portal. This can be especially handy when working with external partners. 

  • Efficiency 

A brand portal greatly reduces the time spent on organizing, sharing, and finding your digital brand assets. By bringing together everything in one centralized location, you’ll be able to find what you need immediately. 

Streamlining marketing processes and maintaining quality control becomes simpler, which can be particularly useful when working remotely and across different locations. Assets are easily localizable, and portals can support multiple languages. 

  • Scale

Increasing your efficiency, security, and consistency will help you accelerate on-brand content creation and launch campaigns faster and better. Scaling becomes easier and cheaper.

When not to use a brand portal

Brands building single products or designing on a smaller scale will find little reward in setting up an entire brand portal. It is often system overkill and will not add value or impact efficiency. In this case, setting up a shared online drive might be a better solution. 

Obviously, brands that build multiple products and run extensive campaigns across different channels and locations will greatly benefit from a brand portal. Consistency of branding, messaging, and experience across touchpoints can become challenging, if not impossible, without one.

What happens next

After getting it off the ground, the biggest hurdle to overcome is ensuring your portal thrives and matures. It helps to have a dedicated team in place to manage all things portal-related. I like to think of this team as the brand portal guardians. They keep assets organized and up-to-date, manage access and onboard new users. Keep in mind that familiarizing yourself with new software can be challenging, so onboarding your team and other stakeholders is key. 

At DPDK we also use a brand portal for asset management and we’ve built countless others, like the one we made for Digital Realty, the largest global provider of cloud and IT solutions. We helped Digital Realty differentiate their brand from competitors and position them as an industry leader. We built a new corporate website, followed by a product design system and brand portal, which Digital Realty continues to use to this day. 

Having a secure, easy to use portal that acts as a single source of truth for all your brand assets can make the lives of anyone on the marketing team much easier. No more questions about where your logo is, what font you use again, and where your design templates are. A lot of stress will be eliminated, time is going to be saved, and brand consistency can be maintained. Now you tell me, who doesn’t love that? 

Pim van Helten

Pim van Helten


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