Digital Asset Management Glossary

If you are new to Digital Asset Management (DAM) and related concepts then these explanations may help:


Within the world of Digital Asset Management (DAM), an asset is a digital file. For example an image, a document, a PowerPoint presentation or a video. Anything digital that your company owns (or licenses).


An attribute is a metadata field that is related to an asset. E.g. the 'Title' attribute would contain the title related to each asset. Attributes can be of many different types including:

  • Text field
  • Rich text (allowing you to enter html, change font colours, etc.)
  • Numeric
  • Check lists
  • Drop down's

In Asset Bank the admin users can manage the attribute list, creating new attributes that help make sense of the data they have.

Controlled Vocabulary

A controlled vocabulary is a fixed list of terms that a user can select from, e.g. when adding metadata to an asset. This can be a check-list or drop-down containing fixed values for example.


In Asset Bank every registered user must be in one or more User Group. Groups define the following:

  • What assets a user can or cannot see
  • What permission the user has (upload, download, edit, approval required, etc.)
  • What attributes are visible
  • Which download options are visible (e.g. download original)


A synonym is a word the means exactly the same as (or nearly the same as) another word in the same language. So for the purposes of DAM, you may want to add synonyms to controlled keywords in order to increase the chances of finding relevant matches. So you may have a keyword structure as shown below, with synonyms shown in brackets.

Person (human) > Female (woman, lady) > Girl

So for an asset tagged with 'female' for instance, you would find this in search results when you searched for 'woman' or 'lady'.


A taxonomy is a hierarchical version of a controlled vocabulary. A classification of terms that start at the broadest term, but then narrow as you move into successive sub-terms in the hierarchy. So for example, a category structure can be a taxonomy, or a hierarchical keyword structure.

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Stew, Professional Services

“With so many settings available, and such a flexible system, do not hesitate to get in touch with one of our knowledgeable consultants to help you configure your Asset Bank.” Stewart, Professional Services