Social media marketing is often a collective effort – whether it’s an entire team managing one (or several) social media accounts together or you need to run all of your ideas by a manager. And that presents quite a few issues to social media marketers;
In this blog post, I’m going to show you how to set up an effective social media workflow.
Why Do You Need to Set Up a Social Media Marketing Workflow?
If you’re not completely alone managing a social media strategy, then you would need to set up a workflow to help you save time and, perhaps even more importantly, to help you avoid any mistakes and confusions.
Whether you’re managing social media for clients, you work as part of a team, or you’re managing a team, a good workflow will be of huge help:
- In the planning/ideas stage: make sure everyone on your team can easily share their ideas, check out others’ ideas, and share their thoughts on these ideas to help you come up with the best possible social media updates and marketing campaigns
- The approval stage: not every idea will make it to publishing. You need to create a clear, easy to follow workflow to make sure you get the approvals for any content you schedule or publish to avoid any problems later on. Using a good planning tool, you can make sure that any content is clearly approved by the right person before publishing or scheduling it
- The calendar planning stage: you’ve got the updates, but when is the right time to publish them for maximum impact? Collaborate with a team to create a social media calendar ahead of time so as to avoid any mistakes and publish each update at the right moment
Setting up a workflow requires tools – whether it’s one tool to help you manage the entire process or a collection of different tools for different stages of the process. ideally, try to use fewer rather than more tools as the more tools you use, the more difficult it gets to manage this workflow. Use one tool or 2 at most to plan all of your social media in one place, as well as collaborate with your team, clients, and/or managers.
ContentCal is a planning and scheduling tool for social media teams (business and agencies). To get started with it, the first thing to do is to add all of your team mates, clients, and/or managers and give them specific roles.
Based on their assigned roles, the users can only take certain actions on the platform. For example, the creator can only come up with content ideas, but they can’t schedule or publish them; that’s where the approver comes in who can be a client or a manager who needs to give the green light to any scheduled content.
You can set up a workflow to suit your needs and make sure that every piece of content that is scheduled to be published is checked by the right parties.
Apart from workflows, you can also use this platform to actually plant all of your social media content; create as many calendars as you need, write down your ideas in the Pinboard (and other team members can leave comments and suggestions too), drag and drop the best ideas in the calendar, and schedule all of your social media with one tool.
Plus, you also get access to detailed social media analytics and you have the ability to respond and comments and messages within the tool’s dashboard.
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If, on the other hand, you’re looking for a full suite social media management tool, Agorapulse is a great option; you can use it to manage all of your social networks, as well as to collaborate with team members and plan your social media content together.
First, you set up the users and assign their roles (admin, editor, moderator, or read-only).
Then, you can start planning your content using the built-in social media calendar for each of your social media accounts. The calendar is color-coded so that you can see, for example, only what content is assigned to you, or only what content you need to approve.
One of the really cool features though is that you can see in real time who is doing what, like what comments they’re responding to.
When planning your content in the calendar, you can save updates as drafts and send them for approval to your manager or client; once approved, schedule them easily, as well as queue them up to republish them automatically several times.
Sprout Social is another social media management tool with some very useful planning and collaboration features. In fact, the collaboration features are quite similar to the previous tools’.
Like with the other tools, you can add multiple team members and assign them specific roles with custom access levels for each person; you can then assign tasks to each other and see what everyone is up to, in real time.
The tool also stores this information so you can easily check the audit trail and see exactly what each team member has done.
In terms of planning, you can use the calendar to jot down your ideas and create a message approval workflow to follow every time you publish or schedule an update. And, if you want to submit an update or message for approval, simply write down your ideas and select the approver you need.
And finally, you can of course also schedule or queue your updates or publish them directly, once approved.
Buffer for Business
Buffer is well-known in the industry as one of the top scheduling tools; however, if you get Buffer for Business, you also get team collaboration tools that are great for marketing teams, businesses, and agencies.
Once you add all the people needed to your Business account, you can start by assigning their roles.
And here you have quite a few customization options; for example, you can give access only to certain social networks and, what’s more, you can set their access level. For example, you can give someone full posting access if they are allowed to draft and publish ideas, or you can set “approval required” if you only want them to write down content ideas, and not be able to publish them.
Then, simply use the calendar to schedule your posts and queue them up and check your analytics to understand your performance and adjust your social media presence.
Another well-known player in the social media marketing world, Hootsuite also offers several team management features on certain plans.
As with the other tools in this list, once you’ve added the relevant team members, you can start assigning them custom roles (unless you set them as admin).
This way, you can control who has access to what profiles or social networks, as well as what actions they can take using the platform.
With some of the plans, you can build a shared library where you can add all of your assets (images, videos, etc.) as well as plan your social media drafts.
As it’s a social media management tool, you can also schedule and publish updates, and check to see who exactly has created each update.
Setting up a good social media workflow will help you save a lot of valuable time – and your sanity. Get your whole team involved in the process and make everyone’s job’s a bit easier, from planning your social media strategy to actually getting your updates approved and scheduled or published.