How to Ace Social Media Collaboration: An Enterprise Guide

Managing social media is a complex process for any business. But it's especially complicated for enterprise brands who have multiple social media teams scattered across different offices all around the world.As a person overseeing your company's marketing activities, how do you bring all of these teams together and facilitate cross-department collaboration to reach targets?Read on to learn how to set up your social media teams up for success with hands-on social media collaboration tools and tips:

How to Ace Social Media Collaboration: An Enterprise Guide

First Things First: The Team

Building and managing an effective social media team can be a daunting prospect.

Why?

The team needs to be large enough to manage your company’s entire social media identity, but not so large that it becomes inefficient.

The key to keeping your team on track is maintaining a focused social media presence. Sure, you could create an account for every subsidiary or product launch, but it would only bloat your teams, hinder communication, and increase costs.

Instead, try taking a centralized approach to organizing your social media teams. The team in your headquarters should be the main hub, responsible for the overall strategy and messaging.

The teams based in your regional offices should follow the central team’s plan, and amend it to the specifics of their given region – for example, by executing local holiday campaigns.

This approach will improve the social media collaboration process across your teams and help them maintain velocity.

To show you that there’s a benefit to centralizing your social media management workflow, here’s a real-life example:

Reebok, an athletic footwear and apparel company, decided to consolidate their 200 Facebook pages, 100 YouTube channels, and 30 Twitter accounts. On Facebook, for instance, they left only 3 active pages.

Despite these seemingly drastic cuts, the company managed to grow their Twitter following by 17% and claimed they were able to focus more on customer engagement, as opposed to product marketing.

Moral of the story? A large, overly complex social media presence doesn’t always pay off. On the other hand, maintaining a smaller number of social media profiles will simplify the social collaboration process and help your teams focus on what matters most – your audience.

Facilitating Social Media Collaboration With the Right Tools

Managing your company’s social media presence is costly and time-consuming if your teams don’t collaborate properly.

The good news is that you can help them work more efficiently (and save resources!) by utilizing tools designed to streamline your company’s social media management workflow.

Here are some of the top collaboration tools your teams will find handy:

  • Slack – when it comes to efficient collaboration across teams and departments, seamless communication is a must. Slack enables your team members to easily send group messages for larger projects or chat in task-specific channels.
  • Trello – Trello is a great tool for gaining a bigger picture of your team’s ongoing projects. It is highly visual, fully customizable, and comes with a great option of attaching files, so you can keep an eye on all tasks and assets at the same time.
  • Dropbox – if your teams need to store large amounts of social media images and videos, they will love Dropbox. This easy-to-use app allows users to store up to 2 GB of files free of charge, and can be easily accessed by everyone on the team.

Help Your Teams Reach Targets by Collaborating More Efficiently

Tools like Slack, Trello, and Dropbox will help you cut the inefficiencies in your team’s project management flow.

But what about your social media collaboration and tasks related specifically to managing your social media presence – such as publishing content or measuring performance? How do you ensure these tasks are being completed effectively across your team and on a global scale?

The answer is to provide your team with the right social media marketing tool that will enable you to achieve the following:

  • Equip your team with an integrated solution – using a single social media management tool will largely improve workflow velocity in your company. That’s because having all the tools in one place and being able to access them easily, without having to switch between apps and platforms, is a major time-saver. 
  • Make sure all team members can access the tool instantly – many teams have trouble utilizing provided tools efficiently because of the multiple logins and passwords they use. To avoid this problem and to ensure each team member can quickly access the tool, provide them with a solution that can be accessed with one login and password. In other words, aim for software that comes with a single sign-on feature.
  • Verify that your teams work together seamlessly – to ensure that all tasks are completed on time and targets are met, it’s critical for all your teams to work hand-in-hand using the same software. Having shared access to an editorial calendar, data dashboards and performance reports is key to collaborating efficiently across teams and departments around the globe.
  • Build optimized workflows tailored to your business needs – another important ingredient of successful teamwork is knowing one’s exact scope of responsibilities. Being able to assign clear roles and responsibilities within your teams will improve the way they organize and prioritize their tasks.
  • Accelerate communication between teams and departments – although Slack is great for broader project discussions, your teams should also be able to communicate within the social media management tool they’re using. Why? Exchanging messages directly within the task space will accelerate the feedback loop and make it more accurate.

Having a solution that allows you to accomplish all five of these objectives will help your teams work together easier and faster. As a result, you’ll be able to successfully achieve your social media marketing objectives.

Now, let’s take a look at some processes you can introduce to further improve the social media collaboration process in your organization.

Getting Into the Flow: Your Efficient Collaboration Process

You have the team, you have the tools.

Now it’s time to come up with an effective social media workflow plan. It won’t come together magically, of course; there’s still work to be done. But at this point you have everything you need to set up an optimized collaboration process.

Go to your brand new social media collaboration tool, because there are three things you’ll want to establish to get your team or teams working together efficiently:

Set up your team processes to facilitate collaboration.

You’ll want to get started assigning your team roles, responsibilities, permissions, and developing approval workflows.

This exercise will help everyone on the team understand their exact scope of responsibilities. As a result, the communication barriers between teams and offices will decrease, and the workflow will run seamlessly.

Specifying roles and responsibilities is also a proven way of securing your brand’s reputation. It enables you to ensure that all tasks are completed by authorized team members only, and that no message or post is sent without the right person’s approval. 

Because each company’s structure is unique, it’s important that you set up a custom approval structure that’s tailored to your business needs – and that can be easily adjusted or scaled. Developing a custom workflow is a great way to facilitate collaboration across teams and offices – even if they’re a thousand miles apart.

Create custom dashboards to keep track of KPIs for your business at a glance.

Shareable dashboards will allow your whole team to easily stay on top of the data and understand what they need to do to hit their targets. 

By using shared dashboards, your team will be able to get an overview of your company’s social media performance, understand where you stand, and make faster, more informed decisions about how to move forward together.

Automate your reporting to easily keep everyone up-to-speed.

One of the premises of effective communication across teams is having access to the same data and insights. 

To make sure that all your teams and offices are on the same page, keep them updated with automated reports. This way, you’ll be able to accelerate information flow and ensure that everyone can access identical overview of KPIs, which is critical to moving projects forward successfully. 

At the same time, reports will help you gain an oversight of your teams’ marketing activities and monitor their progress. And thanks to automation, you can receive reports regularly without having to think about it – one thing to cross off your busy to-do list.

Explore These Features and More

5 Most Common Social Media Collaboration Mistakes (And How to Avoid Them)

1. Mistake: Creating too much or too little content

Getting just the right amount of content out can be a tricky business – you don’t want to starve your audiences, but you also don’t want to flood them with content.

How to avoid it: Whether it’s missed deadlines, poor choices on publishing times, or content droughts, publishing mistakes happen when your team isn’t working in sync.

Avoid this common mistake by using a robust editorial calendar your whole team can access. You’ll be able to stay on top of your publishing schedule so just the right amount of content is always going out to your audiences at all times.

2. Mistake: Losing velocity waiting for approvals

We’ve all been there – you want to make sure that everything you publish is up to standard and that means double checking each post. But your queue can build up quickly and then you have team members waiting on approvals and edits.

How to avoid it: Use a solution that allows you to manage your content on the go to cut down on the delays and missed communication that can arise between teams working from different locations around the world. With convenient mobile approvals, you can give the green light and add internal comments on posts from anywhere so your team won’t be left waiting.

3. Mistake: Publishing at the wrong time

Publishing at the wrong time can limit your reach and result in embarrassing mistakes that can damage your brand’s reputation and credibility.

How to avoid it: Whether it’s time zone changes or just unclear publishing deadlines, better team communication will help you avoid this major faux pas. Dive into your analytics to see when your audiences are most active on social media and share with your team to boost your reach and engagement.

Better yet, automate the process with precise recommendations on the best publishing times tailored to each of your pages, so you never miss that prime time again.

4. Mistake: Leaving your customers’ questions and comments unanswered

This is one of the fastest ways to lose customers. If your brand is distant and uncommunicative, the minor issues and frustrations your customers may have will build up.Then, before you know it, the customers will have taken their business to one of your competitors. Managing your social media accounts individually is the easiest way to make this mistake.

How to avoid it: Especially with larger social media teams, it’s important for you to use a community management tool that brings your team and all your social media channels together into one platform.

This will help you avoid many of the pitfalls that you might encounter when multiple people manage social individually across channels. Template answers for your frequently asked questions can help you save even more time and maintain consistency in your tone and response.

5. Mistake: Getting caught up in a social media crisis

There are all sorts of reasons why brands get involved in social media crises. Sometimes, it’s a wrong response to a customer’s question, an ill-advised advertising campaigns, or something as unpredictable as a technical error.

Whatever the reason, social media firestorms around a slip-up can do real damage to your business if not handled correctly.

How to avoid it: Keep a finger on the pulse of your social media audiences and track the sentiment in conversations around your brand they’re having. It is also important for your team to have access to this information, so they can coordinate responses together. This will not only help you deal with any crises if they do come up, but will help you to avoid them in the first place.

The Takeaway

An efficient social media collaboration process is a must for any business – but especially for enterprise brands whose teams need to work together across borders.

Even though it might seem like a daunting task, developing an optimized collaboration plan is easily done with the right tools. Ensuring that each team member knows the tasks they’re responsible for, can access dashboards with key data points, and stays up-to-date with regular reports – regardless of the region of the world they’re based in – will largely improve your workflow and help meet your social media marketing objectives.

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