How Image Relay Provides Champlain College Unified Access to Digital Assets

The Challenge

  • Central repository for all creative assets accessible by the entire College community, including student workers
  • Robust search options to quickly find the right material
  • A secure DAM and reliable service to replace a broken system

The Solution

  • Access to a community of 3,000 through College credential single sign-on
  • An easy-to-use system that works like a “stock” search
  • Responsive service when something happens off the platform

The Numbers

  • 3,000 community members
  • 18,000+ assets
  • Entire library duplicate provided in less than 24 hours

About Champlain College

Champlain College is a private, not-for-profit college founded in 1878. Located in Burlington, Vermont, with additional campuses in Montreal, Canada, and Dublin, Ireland, Champlain College is known for its innovative majors and holistic approach to education that puts emphasis on professional development and real-world experiences. Besides their scenic hillside campus overlooking Lake Champlain, they also offer a growing number of online degrees and certificates.

Combined with their national marketing reach their digital footprint goes well beyond this small college town. As such Champlain College, and its network of chosen vendors, leverage a robust library of highly organized brand assets and photography to help communicate with prospective and current students alike. Keeping this expanding library organized, accessible, and relevant led the College to Image Relay.

Before Image Relay - A Broken DAM

Champlain College had an older dedicated cloud-based digital asset management system in place, but its poor user interface, lack of control and customization, and its unreliability (and eventual crash) led the marketing team to a last resort of storing their assets on the school’s network, local hard drives, and on DVDs. This created a nest of unorganized photography, duplicate assets, and version control issues. And because they couldn’t rely on a photo’s metadata it became the job of the designers to go searching for brand assets and imagery. Searching for a requested image could sometimes take up to half an hour.

It was a painfully slow and frustrating way to work.“In order to locate a photo or a graphic we had to rely on legacy knowledge. Trying to find images meant going on a wild goose chase. Thankfully those days are well behind us, and the designers can be much more transparent and collaborative with the rest of our team.


What They Needed - Security and Ease


Based on their previous experience, the college went on the search for a platform that was easy to customize and maintain, and that could serve the needs not only of the marketing team but the whole institution. Most importantly the new platform had to be secure and reliable. Champlain College could not worry that their assets could be lost or that a system would have constant down-time when they needed it the most.

Image Relay’s security, redundancies, and 99.9%+ uptime convinced Champlain College that they would not have to worry about the problems that affected their previous system. Champlain also needed an easy-to-use system so that a large community of users could find what they needed, when they needed it. Something that required a lot of user training or complicated user management would not suffice. That made Image Relay’s award-winning intuitive design attractive.

The Results

A Consistent Brand On All Channels

Adoption of Image Relay across the entire College community has been an added benefit for the marketing team. Everyone across the greater Champlain College community knows that Image Relay is the source for all approved College imagery. That means there is a consistent brand message everywhere, from the College’s central website, official social media accounts, web properties, newsletters to everywhere email sent. Users across the Champlain College community leverage approved final content from the Image Relay library.

“Brand imagery has permeated to all formal and informal channels.”

No More Scavenger Hunts

What used to take hours to find the right images for a piece now only takes moments. Champlain College utilizes Image Relay’s Keywords tool to add metadata descriptions to images based on the facts of the image, rather than the subjective interpretation of a photo. This allows a team of two designers to quickly process photoshoots and keep images organized for the whole institution.

“It’s like searching for stock photos now”

Superior Service

It’s not always easy to get the help you need just when you need it. Image Relay champions top-notch support and prioritizes client relationships. Champlain College appreciates the culture of customer service at Image Relay and knows that the support team will always be there if they need them. Using the in-app chat feature, Champlain users can get answers to their questions in less than a couple of hours.

“The [customer] team is always super responsive.”

Continued Success

Image Relay has been an innovator from the start and values customer suggestions and feedback that inspires change. Champlain College appreciates the development of the Image Relay platform over time and how the team at Image Relay responds to feedback. “Early on there were some issues with speed but that has been ironed out. Now the interface is very fast.” Champlain College also wanted to see improvements in the Collections feature and “Image Relay promised and made it happen”.

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