Small businesses with a single social media manager on board may be able to get away with not using a social media process. But for every other organization with more than one social media professional on its team, having a social media approval process in place is essential for the success of their digital campaigns and operational efficiency.
While social media approval processes are widely used, these social platforms are only some of the online spaces in which approval is needed. Most organizations already have a content approval process for their website and blog posts. However, many have not considered implementing a similar strategy for their social media efforts. The immediate nature of social channels makes having a social media approval workflow in place even more critical.
In this guide, we will explore the definition of social media workflows. We’ll also provide the steps needed to create effective workflows for your team and offer tips and tricks on how to use intelligent tools to keep your content-sharing strategy on point.
Learn more: How to Implement AI into Your Social Media
What is the Social Media Approval Process?
Social media approvals are workflows in which social content moves from one organization’s stakeholder to the next until it’s unanimously approved for posting and sharing.
An effective social media approval process clearly outlines all the activities and steps involved in your social media campaigns, from content creation to posting and assessing follower feedback. This process should also create a concise pathway through which your content moves from person to person through your business.
It should specify which stakeholders need to be involved, under which circumstances they should step in, and who has the ultimate authority to approve content before it is shared online.
The Benefits of a Simple and Efficient Social Media Approval Process
Transparent social media approval workflows are essential for a number of key reasons. Establishing them for your organization will help to ensure that:
- You can minimize the disorder and chaos associated with having to follow up with every person in your approval chain. Having a content approval process ensures that you no longer need to check approvals or keep track of multiple ‘to-do’ lists before a piece of social media content can be posted.
- You can eliminate the likelihood of posting misinforming or misleading content, poorly timed promotions and competitions, or off-brand posts. You also limit the risk of broken links on your organization’s official social channels.
You can maintain accountability within your team by making it easier for your social media professionals to identify potential issues before they affect your brand. This lowers the risk of potential problems that could otherwise harm your brand’s reputation or alienate your followers and target audience members.
The Challenges Associated with the Social Media Approval Process
The social media approval process brings with it a number of potential challenges that are vital to address.
Firstly, the approval process can quickly become over-complicated by having too many team members involved in the workflow. If an organization has a dozen social media professionals on board, securing approval for a single post could take hours, days, or even weeks. This costs valuable time and resources.
Secondly, many organizations with larger social media teams need help identifying and appointing key decision-makers in the social media approval process. Without a defined decision maker with veto power in place, conflicts may arise over who has the right to give social content their final approval. This can create posting delays and weaken a brand’s online presence.
Thirdly, challenges associated with social media managers responding to negative reviews online are common. If your organization does not have a specified workflow for this process, you may have a single community manager responding to complaints or poor reviews immediately without consulting other departments, clients, or team members. This can leave the complaint resolution process vulnerable to emotional reactions and can harm your brand’s image in the long run.
Social Media Approval Tools and Techniques
1. Clear and Concise Guidelines
Your social media approval process needs a robust foundation. Once you have clear guidelines in place, you and your team will be better equipped to ensure consistent communications across all of your key platforms.
These guidelines should include factors like brand identity, branding colors, visual styles, tone of voice, style guides, response templates, and more. All your professionals involved in content creation and moderation must know and accept these guidelines to minimize the risk of problems during approvals.
2. Create Roles and Delegate
Reduce the risk of confusion associated with social media approval by determining exactly which of your team members will be responsible for different tasks in your approval process.
Once you have clearly defined roles for each team member, you can create workflows that easily move tasks from one person to the next without losing time or causing delays.
3. Develop a Posting Calendar
Planning and scheduling your social media posts can save your team time and help you to maintain a consistent posting pattern and brand identity online.
Content calendars allow you to map and schedule all of your upcoming posts. At the same time, it gives you a top-down workflow view that can help you to identify potential inconsistencies and adjust them with ease. Your content calendar can be shared with all relevant stakeholders to streamline the social media approval process further.
4. Invite Your Team to Collaborate
Collaboration tools allow you to centralize your communications with your team and track their progress better. They also encourage employee advocacy and ensure that all stakeholders are always on the same page.
Even the simplest of tools like Trello or Google Docs allows you to create, share, edit, and leave comments on documents using a centralized dashboard. This makes for simple and effective communication.
5. Maintain Deadlines
Setting external and internal deadlines will help your organization to maintain an efficient social media approval process. You should allocate enough time for each approval stage (drafting, designing, reviewing, and editing) to ensure your team’s accountability and minimize the risks of delay and irrelevancy.
Communicate clearly about key deadlines using a cloud-based collaboration platform to keep your whole team on track and ensure that deliverables are produced at the correct times. Once your team is aware of your deadlines, set up a notification system to remind your talent of upcoming milestones. This will keep the approval process running smoothly.
Most social media management tools allow you to send out email notifications to your team members when new tasks have been assigned to them and when current tasks are due to be delivered.
How Clearview Social Can Help
Clearview Social can streamline your social media management responsibilities, including social media approval.
Our Social Media solution includes features like social media automation, PeakTime™, which uses Social Media AI to automatically identify the best times to distribute social posts, and Virtual Assistant, which makes it easy for teams to share company content on their own social pages. Save time and team resources with our unique features designed to help you to drive maximum ROI with reduced effort.
To learn more about how Clearview Social’s platform can help, sign up for a free demo today.