Handling social media content approvals is pretty much part of the job when you’re in marketing. Whether you’re part of an in-house creative team or an agency, there will be times when you need to submit your content assets to clients or stakeholders for feedback and sign-off before publication.

A lot of times, this whole approval thing can be a real headache. There’s too much back and forth, and it can slow down your social media content production timelines.

To find the sweet spot between producing accurate, on-brand content and getting your content approved by relevant stakeholders and out the door quickly, you need a robust content approval system.

In this practical guide, we will explain the role of content approval systems, the benefits of using them, and how to set up your own content approval system using Gain.

But first off, let’s define what a content approval system exactly is.

What is a Content Approval System?

A content approval system is a workflow or software solution used by creative teams and agencies to streamline the review, feedback, and approval process of content before it is published or delivered to clients.

The Role of Content Approval Systems and Processes

Content approval teams play an essential role in optimizing the workflow of both internal social media teams and social media agencies managing multiple social media accounts for their clients.

For in-house teams, these systems offer a structured platform to collaborate, review, and approve content in line with their brand’s voice and compliance standards. They help everyone stay on the same page—literally.

For agencies with multiple clients, content approval systems facilitate the management of content calendars, draft approvals, and client feedback for each account individually.

Unlike internal workflows focused on a single brand, agencies cater to various clients, each with unique brand guidelines, campaign objectives, and content types.

Besides ensuring content quality and brand consistency, agencies must prioritize client satisfaction and transparency in the approval process. Content approval systems enable clear communications and efficient management of feedback. They also provide clients with visibility into the content development process. This transparency helps build trust and maintain strong client-agency relationships.

Benefits of Using Social Media Content Approval Systems

Content approval systems can really help solve a lot of the common problems marketers run into.

For instance, 48% of marketers report that poor communication hampers their ability to scale content production. Additionally, 31% mention the lack of a clear content production process as a major hurdle.

By implementing content approval systems, these problems can be reduced or even eliminated. Here are some other upsides of having content approval workflows:

  • Facilitating collaboration between creatives, managers, and clients
  • Ensuring alignment across departments
  • Cutting down on mix-ups
  • Reducing errors
  • Saving time
  • Helping create content that hits the mark every time
  • Maintaining version control and editing trail
  • Helping tackle the issue of unresponsive clients.

So, how do you go about setting up a content approval system? Continue reading the next section.

Creating Your Own Content Approval System

The best way to ensure that your social media content is reviewed and approved efficiently is by using approval software. Our social media management tool, Gain, can help you with that. Let us demonstrate how.


To build your perfect social media content approval system, you must work out a few things first.

  1. Purpose and Scope:
  • Define the primary purpose of the approval system. Is it to maintain brand consistency, ensure compliance with regulations, or monitor the quality of content?
  • Determine the scope of content that will require approval. Will it include all types of content (e.g., posts, images, videos, comments) or only specific categories?
  1. Stakeholder Roles and Responsibilities:
  • Identify the different user roles within the system (e.g., content creators, editors, approvers, project managers, and clients) and define their permissions and limitations.
  1. Approval Workflow and Notifications:
  • Design the approval workflow, including the number of approval stages, commonly referred to as revision rounds, the criteria for each stage, and who is responsible for each step.
  • Decide on the process for handling content that requires revisions or is rejected.
  • Set up the notification system to alert users about content status changes, comments, or required actions.

Now, let’s move to building your content approval system.

How to Build a Content Approval Workflow Step-by-Step

Setting up your social media content approval workflow with Gain is easy. Follow these seven steps below:

Step 1: Log into your Gain account.

Step 2: Head over to Workspace Settings and select “Approval Workflows.”

Step 3: Click on the +New Approval Workflow button. Name your workflow for easy identification by team members and internal stakeholders (e.g., “Gain’s Social Media Posts,” “Blog Post Topic Submissions”).

Step 4: Click “Add people to this round” to include clients or stakeholders in the workflow.

Step 5: Implement the required rounds of approval. These rounds are the stages your content undergoes for approval.

Step 6: Customize each approval round according to your needs.

Step 7: Remember to save your changes.

Voilà! Your content approval system is ready to go. The good thing is that these approval workflows are templates, so they can be easily reused across your workspace and for different clients if you’re an agency.

How to Send Social Media Content for Approval

After setting up your workflow, you’re ready to start sending content for approval.

Begin by selecting the content asset you wish to submit and click “To Approval.” Next, you have the choice of using a predefined approval workflow or selecting approvers from the People in your Workspace. Once done, click “Send.” There’s also an option to add a quick note for the approvers. If you want to preview your note, simply click on “Preview Email.”

From this point, your content assets will travel automatically from one approver to the next. There’s no need for you to follow up with anyone manually. Gain takes care of this by sending automatic email reminders to everybody involved, encouraging them to review and act on the content promptly.

How to Publish Approved Content

Upon approval, Gain will automatically schedule and publish your content on the date you assigned to it during creation. It’s important to note that content is not published immediately after client approval. Instead, Gain ensures that, following client approval, your content is published on the initially specified date.

If you prefer to manually publish your content, you can disable this automatic feature either before sending your content for approval or by making changes in the final stage of your approval workflow.

Tips and tricks to make the most out of your social media content approval system

1. Test it out

Before going live, it is highly recommended to test your approval workflow. Create a mock content piece and run it through the workflow to identify any potential issues.

These tests are invaluable for acclimating your team and stakeholders to the process, familiarizing them with their responsibilities and how to execute them efficiently.

2. Customize notifications

Gain automatically sends an initial notification when you submit a new content asset for approval.

Later, Gain sends automatic reminders at regular intervals, specifically after 6, 12, 24, 48, and 72 hours following the initial notification. These reminders can be customized according to your preferences. To manage your notification settings, simply navigate to “Notification Preferences” in your profile.

3. Don’t leave your stakeholders in the dark

Lastly, but perhaps most essentially, ensure that everyone involved in the workflow knows what they need to do. This is especially important when onboarding a new client or when a new member joins your team.

Making sure everyone involved understands what’s happening, what they need to do, and what’s expected of them significantly reduces mix-ups, waiting around, and annoyance. This way, you can make the whole content approval process smoother and enhance collaboration.

What’s next?

Content approval systems can save you time, preserve your sanity, and help you get accurate content out the door faster.

Build automated content approval workflows with Gain to ensure none of your social media posts fall through the cracks. Simply send draft content assets for approval, sit back, and let Gain handle the rest.

Try Gain at no cost today.

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