State of Brand Management Tools 2024

What is Product Content Management?

PCM blog post

FACT—No one ever bought a product because of its SKU or because they liked the barcode or the product’s serial number. 

However, thousands of people each day choose products based on their presentation. 

They get enchanted by those products’ images. Product videos give them a sense of ownership and increase their desire to experience what they see in real life. And product descriptions connect with customers emotionally and make them feel the sudden urge to buy…

But for you, all this poses an incredible challenge. You have to create and deliver all this excellent product content month after month after month… 

Well, that’s where product content management comes in.

In this guide, you’ll learn exactly what product content management (PCM) is, how it helps drive your product content strategy, and how to start implementing PCM into your workflow.

Let’s begin.

Table of Contents

What exactly is product content?

True—on its own, the term product content is quite ambiguous. It doesn’t make it easy to grasp its meaning.  

So, when we talk about product content, we refer to any type of content that helps present the product to the target audience

This means that not all content mentioning a product is product content. However, all content aimed at introducing or explaining the product would fall into this category.

I like to think of product content as the story behind each item. This is what tells customers what the product is, why it’s amazing, and why they absolutely should have it. 

And you see product content practically everywhere you go.

Product descriptions tell you everything you need to know about the item – From a general overview to detailed specifications and more.

Product images or even 3D renderings show you what it looks like, often in the context of how you’d be using the product.

Videos take that even further and give you a greater sense of what it feels like to own the product.

User guides and manuals provide you with instructions on how to use the product and how to overcome issues you may encounter while using it. 

Product comparisons, use cases, and more give your customers more information to make a better buying decision, and so on.

What is product content strategy, then?

The best way to understand what product content strategy is as a roadmap for how you want to present and manage product content across all marketing channels. 

A typical product content strategy defines the assets needed for each item in the inventory. It also outlines the process of creating those assets and organising them for future use, etc. 

In other words, product content strategy is quite a complex endeavour. Still, it is also necessary to ensure that your brand has all the content needed to present your products and stand out from the competition.

The challenge with product content strategy

Product content is exciting for customers. It’s one of the factors that makes shopping, both online and offline, so exhilarating for them, after all.

90% of all purchase decisions involve the digital experience of a product. Only products that stand out on the digital shelf are winning the fight for the customers attention.

They watch videos, look at images, and read product descriptions, and with each such product content asset, they become more and more excited about owning the item. 

In fact, solid product content can make an item irresistible to buy. 

But the situation doesn’t look the same from your perspective, doesn’t it? 

For you, the term – product content – often means challenges, looming deadlines, complex workflows, and stress.

It remains a major challenge to create and manage multimedia product content at scale, and to organise what content is needed to sell or to meet regulatory requirements. In addition, many product marketing teams find it virtually impossible to cost-effectively deliver higher volumes of content to digital frontends.

Well, that’s where product content management comes in.

What is Product Content Management (PCM)?

I like to think of the term product content management as describing everything that happens behind the scenes in the typical content production process.

Following that understanding, we can further define product content management as:

A centralised platform as a single source of truth for all multimedia product content, including efficient collaboration, content creation and approval. A unique system that tells you exactly what content is needed. Plus product download areas and insight into which product content is performing best.

In other words, product content management helps you streamline the process of creating new product content assets, making changes, and keeping everything up to date across your multiple frontends.

Why is it so important to have a product content management strategy?

Think of it this way – How many content assets do you typically produce for every product? 

Probably many: Images, videos, product data, product sheets, manuals, sell sheets, and that’s not even the top of the iceberg…

All these projects require information and assets from different sources in your organisation – product teams, sales, marketing, and so on. 

What’s more, many of these assets come at different times in a project lifecycle, and they come in different formats, file types, etc. 

This means that producing each asset requires a long and cumbersome process, one that is also prone to errors, costly mistakes, and delays.

A product content management strategy helps you streamline this entire process. 

The PCM strategy not only brings order but also improves it to the point where projects simply happen—always on time, always on budget, and without much stress.

But isn’t PCM the same as PIM? If not, what are the differences between them?

It’s true that at first sight, both terms – product content management and product information management – seem practically synonymous. 

But they’re not. 

In fact, aside from similarly sounding names, they differ in pretty much every other aspect.

Product Information Management (PIM) is the process of centralising and managing product data across various channels and touchpoints. This product data may include technical specifications, pricing information, product descriptions, and attributes such as SKUs or product categories.

A PIM system, in turn, works as a central repository of all this product data. Anytime any team needs such information, they use PIM to retrieve it, knowing that they’ll find the most accurate information and data there. 

As a result, PIM ensures consistency and accuracy across all sales channels such as e-commerce websites, marketplaces, mobile apps, and printed catalogues.

Product Content Management (PCM), on the other hand, helps companies to efficiently create and publish multimedia product content. The linking of product content to products enables convenient asset management and an optimised and consistent presentation of products across all channels.

This multimedia product content includes images, videos, marketing copy, manuals and any other assets the company creates for customers, distributors and other stakeholders, as well as other rich media content.

PCM ensures that

  • All product data is consistent, with all product content assets in one place and all connected to your marketing channels.
  • Each product is accurately presented to stakeholders, including customers.

How to manage product content?

We’ve already covered a lot of information about PCM. But let’s also examine how the process happens in practice. 

The first thing to understand about PCM is that it doesn’t happen in itself. PCM is not a set of principles or guidelines that your teams could keep in mind, nor is it just a process that they could follow instinctively. 

PCM is a complete framework and solution that organises the entire product content and requires a dedicated tool.

We refer to such tools as product content management platforms. In summary, these tools aim to help implement, streamline, and manage all aspects of the PCM process. 

Wondering how product content management tools work? Check out this overview of how Danfoss manages product content with a PCM platform

But naturally, these tools have more to them, so let’s review the core capabilities of a typical product content management platform.

Product media asset management

Your product content aims to help market the item successfully. It’s how you introduce the product to the audience, tell them why they should have it, and even tap into their emotions to connect with them further. 

But to do it all, you need assets. Lots and lots of assets. 

A solid product content management platform will help you manage hundreds of thousands of pieces of multimedia product content effectively. From managing product photography and ensuring you have all the correct angles (front, back, and side), videos highlighting your product’s key features, down to product information sheets, and more. 

By allowing you to set up and manage comprehensive sets of assets, the PCM platform will help ensure that you present every product in the best possible way.

Multiple assets

Product content availability management

With so many product content assets to create, it’s easy to lose track of what has been completed and which assets are still pending. 

A product content management system gives you a clear view of all assets, including items still in production, ensuring an accurate and compelling presentation for each product and compliance with regulatory requirements.

Product asset placeholders

It is often the case that you do not have all the media files you need to complete a project. CELUM, our product content management platform, offers compound objects. You can easily add temporary asset placeholders, add the necessary metadata and continue working on the project. The asset placeholders are replaced with the final content when it is available, resulting in a faster time to market.

Bulk asset management

Most product content projects require you to upload and manage a significant number of individual assets. These could be images from a photo shoot, different stills for animations or videos, etc. 

A product content management platform allows you to manage all these assets in bulk – uploading them, adding the necessary information to each asset, linking them to products, organising them properly and more.

Metadata management

Metadata helps you organise assets and ensure that you can quickly find relevant files. Every asset has at least some metadata, meaning that without a relevant tool, the whole structure can become quite complex to manage. 

A PCM platform like CELUM will give you access to powerful metadata management capabilities:

  • Displaying the structure of asset types and their metadata. 
  • Uploading and managing metadata in bulk.
  • Link content assets to their products and more.

Content production management and online proofing

Most content projects require complex and often lengthy production processes. They also involve multiple stakeholders, often across multiple departments and external partners. Without a proper way to visualise and manage the work, projects can easily get off track, delayed and cost the company more money to complete.

Product content management tools such as CELUM include powerful Kanban-based task management and tactical work management and allowing you to manage work at all stages of the production cycle.

Similarly, CELUM provides you with all the tools you need to share precise and actionable feedback on each product content asset, and annotate images, videos, audio and docs with markup tools.

Feedback annotation

Seamless integrations and self-service portals

You never create product content just to have it sit on your hard drive. In fact, a significant part of the process is getting those assets to their final destination – your webshop, social media accounts and any other channel where you publish product content.

PCM tools like CELUM integrate seamlessly with your marketing channels, allowing you to route and deliver finished content to them in a snap.

But CELUM goes even further. With CELUM Portals, you can easily create sales and channel self-service portals, allowing your audience to conveniently access, search and download the exact product content they need. Tailored self-service portals by region, location or product cluster ensure maximum efficiency.

 

 
Tools Portal

And that’s it…

That’s everything you need to know about product content management. 

Looking for a product content management solution for your brand? Check out CELUM, the no.1 PCM platform on the market today. Book a demo now.

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Live Webinar

How DANFOSS engineers the future of product asset data management.

5 December 2023 @ 16:00 CEST

Join us and learn how Danfoss excelled in the realm of asset management.

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Guest Speaker:

Mia Rasmussen

Senior Product Owner at Danfoss

OVERVIEW

Streamlining content creation and management of assets, simplifying online proofing and collaboration, to facilitate a content exploration experience that wows your audiences.

Asset 20
Why CELUM

A platform for global brands to manage their digital content, deliver omnichannel, personalised marketing strategies, and overcome complexity in product assets, audiences, integrations and more.

Products
High-End Digital Asset Management

Specialised in mastering the complexity of assets, audiences, integrations and more.

Product Content Management

Centralise, connect, manage in bulk product assets.

Creative Content Collaboration

Give concise feedback. Create workflows. Collaborate efficiently.

Integrations

100+ applications and extensions accessible via integrations.