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PhotoShelter is a Lifeline for Texas A&M AgriLife

The program streamlines its workflow and uses content metrics to prove ROI.

  • 5k+ employees with access to PhotoShelter
  • 52k+ assets housed in PhotoShelter
  • 30k+ assets downloaded in the past 12 months

Connecting Agriculture and Healthy Lives

Texas A&M AgriLife is the largest comprehensive agriculture program in the U.S., bringing together Texas A&M University and several state agencies focused on agriculture and life sciences. The organization’s multimedia department leverages engaging visual content to aid Texas A&M AgriLife’s mission to restore connections among people, agriculture, food, science and the economy.

The Challenge: Secure Content Distribution for a Massive Organization

With more than 5,000 employees, managing and distributing content was a major undertaking, making it difficult for internal agencies to track down the visual assets they needed to fuel their marketing campaigns. Before implementing PhotoShelter Brands, Texas A&M AgriLife was using a combination of makeshift internal systems and Flickr to store photos, which resulted in various problems:

  • Lack of security and control: Texas A&M AgriLife needed to widely display its digital assets while also maintaining control over who downloads their content. Before PhotoShelter, Texas A&M AgriLife was using a consumer solution, Flickr. This meant that Sam Craft, Assistant Director of Visuals and Multimedia, couldn’t customize permissions or require logins to access Texas A&M AgriLife’s image libraries.
  • Risk of file loss: If internal servers failed, the organization’s image libraries, with tens of thousands of photos, could have disappeared in an instant. Sam recognized that transitioning to a cloud solution would help protect Texas A&M AgriLife’s assets.
  • Difficulty searching for assets: With only basic search tools, consumer photo platforms made it a hassle to find the types of imagery they needed quickly and easily. That meant internal stakeholders either didn’t get what they needed or had to reach out to the multimedia department directly, slowing projects down.
  • No analytics: Without security or login controls, Sam couldn’t track important metrics like download history or search queries to get a better understanding of the impact of his team’s content.

“We had an internal system that ran on a free server. It was out of date. Servers fail, and when you don’t pay attention to it, retention is gone and assets are lost.”

Sam Craft, Assistant Director of Visuals and Multimedia, Texas A&M AgriLife

Students compete in a Texas 4-H landscape design contest on Monday, Jun 05, 2023 in College Station, Texas. (Michael Miller/Texas A&M AgriLife Marketing and Communications)

The Solution: A Complete Suite of DAM Tools to Drive Results

As a photographer with decades of experience, Sam knew that a comprehensive digital asset management solution would give his team’s workflow a much-needed boost. Here’s how PhotoShelter helps Texas A&M AgriLife get things done:

  • A single, centralized solution: Texas A&M AgriLife relies on PhotoShelter’s secure network to store their assets and control who has access to content. Sam can configure permissions and have peace of mind knowing that the organization’s photos are secure.
  • Smart AI search tools: Sam has been impressed with the quality of PhotoShelter’s AI Visual Search, which has helped employees easily find images they didn’t even know they had. “AI Visual Search has really changed the game for us,” Sam said.
  • Faster workflows: With the help of PhotoShelter’s Canva integration, Texas A&M AgriLife’s designers can build out content templates to aid the marketing staff with the 15 departments they support in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences as well as hundreds of county extension agents across Texas. Having the Canva templates ready to go, removes a step from their workflow, helping internal processes run faster and smoother.
  • Proving content impact with numbers: Sam checks the top 10 search terms in PhotoShelter Analytics at least once a week to determine what is trending. Knowing those trends helps him plan potential new shoots and stay on top of what people need. Plus, key metrics like monthly downloads help the department prove the value of the content they produce, which can help them obtain additional resources.

“PhotoShelter is our bread and butter. It’s what keeps us in business. It’s my lifeline to my people, my services here, my job. It’s how I push content out and show my results. It’s how we transfer our assets to our 5,000+ people.”

Sam Craft, Assistant Director of Visuals and Multimedia, Texas A&M AgriLife

Getting the DAM Solution Texas A&M AgriLife Needed from a Team That Cares

In addition to the top-notch asset management tools, Sam loves PhotoShelter because of its team. Whether he’s speaking to his PhotoShelter account manager or a software developer, Sam knows that his feedback will be heard and customer support will respond quickly when he needs help.

“For me, relationships and networking are everything. It’s all about the personal touch — that you actually get to talk to a person. Everyone at PhotoShelter is great. I don’t feel like a number, and that’s always appreciated.”

Sam Craft, Assistant Director of Visuals and Multimedia, Texas A&M AgriLife

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