MediaValet Alternatives: Which DAM is better for your brand?

Faith Uzuegbu
9
minute read
Written By
Faith Uzuegbu
September 27, 2023

We’ll get right into it: If you’re a growing ecommerce business considering MediaValet as your DAM, you’ll want to think again. It’s just not built for growing brands. 

More than 500 enterprise businesses use MediaValet to manage and share their visual assets—making it one of the most popular DAMs around. It has many features that work great for massive businesses, but its pricing, user experience and complex user interface can quickly overwhelm smaller companies. 

But don’t worry. There are digital management software tools, like Dash,  built for a growing business's unique needs. We’ll discuss them in a moment. First, let’s look at some reasons enterprise businesses lean towards MediaValet as their DAM of choice. 

MediaValet pros

Here are some MediaValet features that really stand out for enterprise businesses:

  1. Branded portals: MediaValet lets you create customised branded portals which you can make public or keep password protected. They’re particularly handy when sharing images and videos across a large network of internal and external teams.

    Let’s say you’re planning marketing campaigns for different products and working with different agencies. You can create branded portals for each and share them directly with the stakeholders instead of lumping all campaign images and videos in a Dropbox or Google Drive. It’s a more streamlined way to organise your creative assets. 

    💡 Dash also has a branded portal feature. You can use it to create and share a permanent, public, searchable view of selected folders from your Dash account. This is a particularly important feature for brands who work with retail partners. Just read how Haws uses Dash portals to help 100 + retailers sell their products. 
  2. High-level security: Most DAMs have strict security features, and MediaValet is no different. For example, it has a role-based access control system that you can use to assign permissions and restrict access levels to different users and groups. 

    Enterprise businesses will also benefit from MediaValet’s forensic watermarking feature. Forensic watermarking lets you protect your visual assets with unique, invisible and irremovable identifiers. You can even add these forensic watermarks to video timestamps and screenshots taken from your digital asset management platform. 
  3. Support for multiple integrations: Enterprise businesses usually have a huge tech stack—from project management software to communication tools. And they need digital asset management software that syncs easily with the entire tool stack for a smoother and more creative workflow. 

    MediaValet integrates with over 50 software tools, including content management software like Contentful, cloud storage software like Dropbox and Google Drive, and project management tools like Asana. It’s important to note, however, that MediaValet doesn’t integrate with some key ecommerce tools like Shopify—but more on that later.

MediaValet cons

No tool is perfect. Despite having loads of features, MediaValet might not be ideal for growing brands because:

  • Its pricing isn't transparent: No matter the size of your budget, you need accurate and transparent pricing information. You don’t want to waste time researching a tool and spending hours on sales calls only to discover it's too expensive. (This is what happened to one of our customers, Kelly Wynne, before they discovered Dash).

    Unfortunately, MediaValet drops the ball here. Like most DAMs that cater to enterprise customers, you'll need to contact the MediaValet team for a custom quote. One user also suggests that pricing can quickly build up as you add more users and integrations. 

    You need all the information about the DAM’s pricing and features to make an informed decision. Ideally, you should be able to try the DAM for free—to see how well it meets your needs—before committing to a paid subscription. 

    With Dash, you can get a 14-day free trial where you’ll get to try out all features and invite all your teammates to decide whether they like the system. After your trial, you can sign up for just £79/$109 per month—and we’ll never charge you for extra users or integrations. 
  • Generic search function: The whole point of using a digital asset manager is to find visual content quickly. Unfortunately, MediaValet’s search function still needs work. 

    As one user puts it, “MediaValet sometimes shows results that have nothing to do with the search parameters, and that causes a lot of irrelevant results to be combined with the legitimate results. It means you have to weed through a lot of extra items to find what you're looking for.” 

    This might be easy to deal with initially. But as your visual asset library grows and your tags become populated with images and videos, you'll waste a lot of productive hours searching for brand assets—which defeats the purpose of having a DAM in the first place. 

    Dash, on the other hand, lets you filter image searches with custom tags and keywords to find them faster.
keyword and filters in Dash

  • Complex user experience: MediaValet is hard to navigate, especially when adding, deleting, moving and tagging files and folders.

    Also, it takes some time for new users to grasp how the features work. As one customer explains

    “MediaValet is a bit limited in terms of UI/UX and can be a little challenging to set up for specific use cases. We do spend a little bit of resource explaining how to use it and where stuff is for first-time users, but once they're up to speed it functions well and they usually catch on.”
  • Generic file naming convention: Images saved in MediaValet don’t retain their naming conventions after downloading them. Instead, they revert to their original file names. 

    This isn't a problem on the off chance that the original file names actually make sense. But, if the original image came from Dropbox, your computer's file manager or smartphone, then you might end up with file names containing numerical gibberish like IMG.17388488 and Untitled.164868486.PNG.
     
    This makes it difficult to keep track of what’s in a downloaded image file and to organise these files effectively. 

MediaValet alternatives for small and growing businesses 

MediaValet might not be the best digital asset management solution for small businesses. But that doesn't mean you have to retrofit your cloud storage system to serve as your digital asset management tool. 

Check out these other DAMs you can use to organise and manage visual assets for a small brand. 

1. Dash: For growing ecommerce brands

Growing ecommerce businesses like RJ Living and Goodrays rely on Dash (yes, that’s us! 😎) to organise, store and deploy their digital assets seamlessly. It’s built for small businesses so you get all the features you need at a reasonable price. 

Dash is easy to use. It has an advanced search function that helps creative teams find assets quickly. It also integrates with most of the other tools you use for your business, including social media software like Hootsuite, design tools like Canva and ecommerce store builders like Shopify

Dash is also super affordable because we know you’re working with a small budget. For £79/$109 a month, you can enjoy all of Dash’s features for unlimited users. 

We'll tell you more when Dash goes head-to-head with MediaValet further down this article.

2. Canto: For a wide range of industries 

Canto is built for mid-market businesses in a wide range of industries. It lets you search for images with keywords, deploy content to your website and other social platforms and control how people access and view your files. 

However, like MediaValet, Canto isn't clear about pricing—although some websites say it costs as much as $600 a month. Also, its interface is clunky and uninspiring, so navigating the platform might be challenging. 

You can read our comparison article to learn more about Canto’s features and alternatives

3. Image Relay: For a market delivery platform 

Like Canto, Image Relay serves mid-market businesses across multiple industries, including ecommerce, tourism and hospitality. 

One feature that stands out is its Market Delivery Platform. It lets you link product information with your digital assets. It also has basic DAM features like AI tagging, user access controls and collections. 

When it comes to pricing, Image Relay is better for teams with a larger budget. Its cheapest plan starts at $300 per month and only accommodates 50 users. Dash, on the other hand, starts at $109 per month for all features and unlimited users.

We explore Image Relay’s features and limitations in our Image Relay alternatives article

4. Brandfolder - for enterprise companies

 Although not ideal for smaller companies, Brandfolder is one of the most well-known digital asset management solutions on the market. It has a huge range of features and in-depth analytics that might come in use if you’ve got hundreds of team members around the world. 

The biggest drawback to Brandfolder is that you will probably end up paying for features you don’t need. And at a minimum estimated cost of $1600 per feature, that’s a price many small brands are not willing to pay. 

Have a look at our full analysis of Brandfolder and its alternatives

5. Bynder - an alternative for enterprise businesses 

Bynder is almost a direct competitor of Brandfolder and is equally as popular for enterprise companies. With loads of features and a host of templating options, this DAM tool is a good alternative if you’re working with a massive team. 

Again, pricing is expensive and starts at around £450 per month for a basic DAM package. You can read more about this in our article that compares Bynder alternatives

Dash vs MediaValet: Which one should you choose for your business? 

Let’s delve into how MediaValet and Dash stack against each other for growing ecommerce businesses. 

Dash vs MediaValet: Features

Dash is built for growing brands, so we’ve created features that meet the needs of your business. It stacks up pretty well against MediaValet’s features. For example, both tools support AI tagging, meaning they automatically add relevant keywords to uploaded assets so you can find them faster. 

The key difference, however, is that Dash really digs into the needs of the ecommerce industry. Whilst MediaValet caters to a wide range of industries including government, higher education and manufacturing; Dash is designed for ecommerce brands with agile teams. 

For example, Dash has lots of ways to collaborate with external agencies and freelancers. You can ask content creators to upload assets using a guest upload link. And you can add feedback to assets and videos awaiting approval. For teams relying on external partners, this is a super important part of your workflows. 

Dash vs MediaValet: Integrations 

Dash’s integrations are better tailored to the needs of ecommerce businesses. For example, you can deploy visual assets to your Shopify store with the click of a button or publish images from Dash to your social accounts via Hootsuite. MediaValet doesn’t integrate with any of these apps, meaning you’ll need to download and upload images manually. (Also, remember that these images revert to their original file names once downloaded, so things can easily get mixed up or deployed wrongly.) 

MediaValet has an open API you can use to build and connect your in-house apps with their DAM. While this is a great feature, it isn’t beneficial for brands with limited time and resources to take on in-house app development. In contrast, Dash integrates with Zapier—a workflow automation tool that lets you connect your Dash with over 4,000 apps. It’s a faster and more affordable way to build a robust workflow. 

Dash vs MediaValet: User interface and experience 

MediaValet’s folder structure is quite similar to Google Drive’s. If you currently use Drive to manage digital assets then you’ll know how difficult it is to find anything (and it’s probably the reason you’re comparing DAM vendors). 

Pair that with MediaValet’s basic search function, and you get a clunky digital asset library that feels like a maze. Images can get buried under heaps of folders, and your team might end up spending hours reviewing thumbnails before they find what they need. 

MediaValet interface

Dash, on the other hand, is design-led—which means the interface is simple, easy to use and it does your visual content justice. You get bold, eye-catching image previews instead of small and boring thumbnails. Most of our clients’ Dashes can easily pass for Instagram and Pinterest feeds. For example, take a look at how beautiful COAT’s Dash is. 😍

COAT Dash homepage

But Dash doesn’t sacrifice functionality for beauty. Check out some of these G2 rewards we won for usability and easy set-up. 

Dash vs MediaValet: Pricing

As we mentioned earlier, MediaValet isn’t upfront about its pricing plans, meaning you’ll need to contact the team for a quote. This makes sense for its target audience (mid-market and enterprise businesses) because of their custom needs, but it’s a time-waster for small teams that need to make a DAM decision quickly. 

Things are much different with Dash. We know a DAM is an important part of running your marketing strategies and we want to help you set things up as quickly as possible. We have a transparent pricing page so that you can make better decisions for your budget and your ROI

Of course, we’re open to chatting about your specific needs if you like (you can always book a demo). Or simply sign up to a free trial and play around with the system yourself. 

We don’t know exactly how much MediaValet’s plans cost. But being an enterprise DAM, you should expect to make quite the investment. For context, enterprise digital management software like Brandfolder costs around $1600/month 😳. 

On the other hand, Dash's plans start at £79/month or $109/month. With this, everyone on your team gets access to all of our features, including auto-tagging, customisations, Portals for external collaborators, and so much more

Choosing the right DAM for your business

It might not be feasible to splurge loads of money on a massive DAM like MediaValet. Every penny counts and you need to optimise for the highest ROI on every software investment.

Our best advice? Don't get distracted by fancy features. Instead, prioritise choosing DAM software that provides the core visual asset management functionalities. The best DAMs for small and growing ecommerce brands:

  • Support advanced search so that you can find images and videos quickly
  • Are aesthetically pleasing with functional and easy-to-navigate interfaces
  • Integrate with the essential tools you use for your business, such as social media scheduling tools, design software and content management systems. 

Obviously, Dash checks all of these boxes, and we think it is the right choice for your DTC brand. But there’s no rush; take Dash for a free spin, and let us know what you think. ✨

Faith Uzuegbu

Faith Uzuegbu is a content marketer and freelance writer for B2B SaaS and tech companies like ClassPass, PlayPlay, and Thinkific.

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Faith Uzuegbu

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