Today, we live in a world where people around the world are consuming more content than ever before, and in a bid to keep up with this demand, brands everywhere are competing to create engaging content at rapid speed. But with online channels becoming saturated with content, it’s now harder than ever before to produce content that drives engagement and produces leads.
Many social media managers and content marketers around the world would agree that, in the journey to creating engaging content, especially when it comes to reactive marketing, having too many systems and rules in place can totally kill creativity. But for teams and brands across industries, having some sort of system in place to approve content is preferred in order to monitor quality and ensure better outcomes.
What is a content approval workflow?
Enter: the content approval workflow. This refers to the steps that a piece of content goes through, from the ideation stage to distribution. It’s essentially a brand’s roadmap that leads you from the moment that marketing brief is first received right until the final, ‘signed, sealed, delivered’ stage of final approval.
An approval workflow has all kinds of benefits for brand marketing. It helps keep everyone in the team on the same page by making it clear what each person is required to do as well as the status of the project. It improves quality of work by guaranteeing attention to detail – ensuring nothing is missed or no mistakes are made. Teams are able to meet deadlines more effectively since the organized workflow cuts down on interruptions and streamlines the path toward approval. And finally, a content approval workflow is likely to lead to more profitability and success. With a process that is so consistent, you’ll be able to produce more high-quality work in less time by working smarter.
What are the general steps in a content approval workflow?
Specific details of a content approval workflow will inevitably vary depending on the preferences of individual marketing teams and the content form. However, generally, teams will typically follow a process similar to the below:
#1 – Content request: A request for a specific piece of content will come in from leadership, the marketing team, the sales team, the client, and so on.
#2 – Content creation: Once the request is approved by the marketing department, the creatives will design and execute based on the specified brief.
#3 – Content review: Once the first draft is ready, key stakeholders will review and share feedback.
#4 – Content Distribution: If everyone is happy at the review stage, the marketing team will publish the piece of content or schedule it in line with the content plan. If not, changes will be made according to feedback until the content gets final approval.
Common issues with approval workflows
Whilst the above sounds relatively straightforward, if you work in marketing you’ll probably understand all too well that approval workflows aren’t always so simple.
Whether it’s a last-minute tweak to a graphic, a revised client specification, or a new asset request — sometimes even the simplest of changes can become a pain with a poorly executed marketing approval process. Just some examples of the common obstacles associated with approvals include:
Lost or missed feedback: With many teams using email as a means to share feedback, it makes it extremely easy for issues such as accidentally excluding someone, feedback getting lost, or confusion when adding somebody new into the chain.
A decentralized process: Using multiple systems can lead to absolute chaos when it comes to effective collaboration. For example, maybe someone from the design team is using Adobe Photoshop to create a graphic, your copywriter is using Microsoft Word to draft a social caption, and your video editor is using Premiere Pro to create a Story. This decentralized process makes it difficult for everyone to access each program to be able to evaluate each asset and provide feedback.
Poor status tracking: Another issue relates to the problem of tracking the status of approvals. A decentralized system for approval workflows can lead to all sorts of issues such as disarray over who has approved an asset and a lack of tracking when it comes to the latest asset version and feedback notes. Ultimately, this means that your team may end up spending more time chasing feedback than actually creating the content.
Streamline your approval workflow with Slate
Fortunately, approval workflows don’t have to cause headaches. Here at Slate, we work with social media managers and content teams all around the world. From our experience, we really do understand the negative impact that long and stringent content approval workflows can have on performance.
That’s why we’ve created our new Approvals feature to compliment our all-in-one content creation platform. Our new feature solves the problems of a difficult and lengthy workflow feature by completely streamlining the process for brand managers, content creators, and third parties.
The Approval Workflow feature makes it easy to track and review progress from a single dashboard, ensuring both internal and external teams are clear on what stage a piece of content is at and what actions are outstanding. You can say goodbye to clunky, disconnected approval processes and hello to:
- Straightforward status tracking for creators
- Enhanced safeguarding of brand identity and compliance for brand managers
- Easy reviewing and collaboration with external parties
How it works
- Content Creators have the ability to submit an asset created in the Slate Mobile App for review to selected Content Reviewer.
- Once selected for review, the asset is then exported, uploaded, and emailed to the person to review.
- The Content Reviewer will receive an email with the ‘Approval Request’ and is then prompted to review the asset after logging into their Slate Web Portal and viewing their Review Portal.
- The content can then ‘Approve’ or ‘Reject’ an asset with comments. The status will then update in the Mobile App.
- Meanwhile, once the Review Request is submitted, the asset within the Slate Mobile App is simultaneously moved to the Drafts Tab where it will be listed under Pending.
- Once an asset is approved, it can then be directly shared to appropriate social channels via the Slate Mobile App. If an asset is rejected, the Content Creator will receive a notification and the asset will be moved to the Rejected tab under the Drafts Tab.
Ready to remove the headaches from your content approval process? Let our team show you how companies are streamlining content creation and distribution with our new Approval Workflow feature. Schedule a demo call here.