As you upload and tag media, you might notice that your taxonomy is becoming a bit overstuffed. An overly broad data set isn’t helpful to anyone; too many similar or convoluted terms can make it difficult to retrieve the media you’re after. If this is happening for your organization, it’s in your best interest to address it.
As soon as you notice this problem, try to pump the brakes. Simply notice how this overcomplication is manifesting and make a few notes. Specifically: what kinds of terms are proliferating, and – most importantly – which areas of your library are being underserved by the current data set?
Follow these steps:
- Put a pause on the area of your taxonomy that’s creating issues – stop adding more terms, thus adding to the problem.
- Reach out to your DAM end-users with a survey and/or open communication to understand their needs and frustrations. Regular outreach to your DAM end-users is a good idea under any circumstance, and this particular challenge provides a good excuse to re-engage in two-way communication.
- Mindfully trim the overburdened taxonomy, focusing on the immediate needs for your DAM; don’t try to anticipate all future problems. Can synonyms be merged? Have typos snuck in? A ‘back to basics’ mindset will help you develop a clear-eyed POV for this step.
- Maintain your connection to your end-users. Their needs will always be your best guide.