What is a Marketing Approval Process: How to Set up Review and Approval Processes?
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What is a Marketing Approval Process: How to Set up Review and Approval Processes?

What is a Marketing Approval Process: How to Set up Review and Approval Processes?
June 6, 2023

Before launching any new marketing initiative, companies should have a well-defined process for reviewing and approving marketing materials. From simple social media posts to complex advertising campaigns, all content that publicly represents a brand should go through stages of scrutiny, feedback, and sign-off. A formalized marketing approval process ensures quality, compliance, and success for the company's messaging. Yet many businesses lack a structured procedure or governance around marketing approvals. This can lead to inconsistencies, mistakes, and exposure.

To reap the benefits of a marketing approval process, companies must first understand what it entails and how to set it up properly. This begins with defining clear roles, requirements, timelines, and documentation for moving materials through review stages and obtaining final approval. With the right people, processes, and AI-powered DAM in place, a marketing approval process can optimize content, limit risks, and improve campaign results.

What is the Marketing Approval Process?

A marketing approval process is required before a company can launch a new product or service. Different organizations are involved in this process to ensure the product meets legal and safety requirements. Obtaining marketing approval can be a lengthy process.

The company must first decide if a product needs approval. Then research is conducted to understand market needs and identify target customers. Next, a prototype is created and tested. The product is tested for safety and functionality. Any risks are identified and addressed.

The company then applies for approval from government agencies as needed. Applications include detailed product information, test results, and safety analysis. Regulators examine applications to determine if legal standards are met. They may request additional information or tests before approval is granted.

Once all approvals are obtained, the company can officially launch the product and begin marketing and advertising campaigns.

Importance of Having a Structured Review and Approval Process in Marketing

Companies need to have a structured and formalized marketing review and approval process. This helps ensure marketing strategies, campaigns, and materials meet standards before launch. There are several benefits:

  • Consistency and quality control: A structured process ensures consistency in the style, tone, and quality of all marketing outputs. It helps enforce brand guidelines and style manuals.
  • Compliance: A formal review helps identify any issues related to legal and regulatory compliance. This reduces the risk of non-compliant marketing materials being released.
  • Objectivity: Having multiple people review and approve marketing materials brings more objectivity and a fresh perspective. Small details that one person misses can be caught.
  • Optimization: Feedback from the review process can help optimize marketing strategies and tactics before rollout. This improves the chances of success.
  • Accountability: Assigning clear roles and responsibilities in the approval chain defines who is accountable for decisions and sign-off.
  • Cost savings: Catching issues early in the review process avoids costly changes, reprints, or corrections later on.

The key is to establish a formal process with clear stages, roles, and criteria for approval. Marketing materials should go through planning, development, review, and revision stages before final sign-off. Documentation should track the process for future reference.

Benefits of a Marketing Approval Process

Businesses must have a well-defined marketing approval process in place. There are many benefits such a process provides:

  • Ensures quality control: An approval process helps maintain the consistent quality of all marketing materials and messaging. It reduces errors and mistakes from moving forward.
  • Improves compliance: Having multiple levels of review helps catch any legal or regulatory compliance issues before materials are published. This limits the business's risk and exposure.
  • Allows for optimization: Feedback received during the approval stages can help identify ways to optimize marketing strategies and tactics. Initiatives can be improved before launch.
  • Promotes brand consistency: An approval process that incorporates brand guidelines helps ensure all marketing efforts align with and reinforce the brand's voice, tone, and image.
  • Reduces costs: Catching issues earlier in the approval stages avoids the costs of reprinting marketing materials, making large changes after launch, or facing legal fines for non-compliance.
  • Increases accountability: Having a structured process with clear roles and responsibilities assigned for approval makes it clear who is accountable for sign-off decisions.
  • Provides documentation: Templates and approval forms used in the process provide a record of what was reviewed and approved. This can help resolve future issues or disputes.

When implemented properly with roles, criteria, timelines, and resources clearly defined, a marketing approval process can significantly improve the effectiveness of a company's marketing communications and initiatives while managing risks. Regular reviews of the process can ensure it evolves with the business over time.

4 Steps to Develop a Solid Marketing Approval Process Using DAM

Developing a solid marketing approval process using AI-powered DAM (Digital Asset Management) can significantly improve efficiency and streamline the workflow. Here are four steps to consider when implementing such a process:

1. Assess Your Current Workflow

Evaluate your existing marketing approval process to identify pain points, bottlenecks, and areas for improvement. Understand the roles and responsibilities of different stakeholders involved in the approval process and map out the steps involved from asset creation to final approval. This assessment will serve as a foundation for implementing AI-powered DAM effectively.

2. Define Approval Workflow and Criteria

Collaborate with your marketing team and stakeholders to define a clear and streamlined approval workflow. Identify the key stages, milestones, and decision points in the process. Determine the criteria for approval at each stage, including the review process, feedback channels, and necessary revisions. Ensure that all stakeholders are aligned on the workflow and criteria before implementing the AI-powered DAM.

3. Implement AI-powered DAM

Select an AI-powered DAM solution that meets your organization's needs and integrates well with your existing marketing infrastructure. Ensure that the DAM provides features such as automated metadata tagging, intelligent search capabilities, version control, and collaborative review and approval workflows. Customize the DAM to match your defined approval workflow, configure user roles and permissions, and establish access controls to maintain data security.

4. Leverage AI Capabilities

Utilize the AI capabilities of the DAM to optimize the marketing approval process. Here are some ways AI can enhance the process:

a. Automated Metadata Tagging: AI algorithms can analyze the content of assets and automatically assign relevant metadata tags. This makes assets more discoverable, reduces manual effort, and improves searchability within the DAM.
b. Intelligent Search: AI-powered search algorithms can provide advanced search functionality, enabling users to find assets based on specific criteria, including metadata, keywords, and even visual similarity. This helps streamline asset retrieval and accelerates the approval process.
c. Content Analysis and Compliance: AI can analyze assets for compliance with brand guidelines, copyright restrictions, and regulatory requirements. This ensures that only compliant assets are used in marketing campaigns, reducing the risk of legal issues and maintaining brand consistency.

By following these steps, you can develop a solid marketing approval process that is efficient, effective, and compliant.

Best Practices for an Effective Marketing Approval Process Using DAM

Implementing an effective marketing approval process using DAM (Digital Asset Management) involves adopting certain best practices. Here are some recommendations to help you establish a streamlined and efficient workflow:  

  1. Standardize Naming Conventions and Metadata: Establish consistent naming conventions for assets to ensure clarity and easy identification. Additionally, define and enforce metadata standards to categorize assets based on relevant attributes such as campaign, product, region, or format. Consistency in naming and metadata makes assets more searchable and helps users find the right content quickly.
  2. Establish Clear Roles and Responsibilities: Clearly define the roles and responsibilities of each stakeholder involved in the marketing approval process. This includes identifying reviewers, approvers, and content creators. Ensure that everyone understands their responsibilities and the order in which approvals should be obtained. Document these roles and responsibilities to avoid confusion and streamline the workflow.
  3. Design Customized Approval Workflows: Tailor your approval workflows to match your organization's specific needs. Consider the complexity of your marketing campaigns and the number of stakeholders involved. Define the sequence of review and approval stages, set deadlines for each stage, and establish rules for escalation and feedback. Customizing the workflows ensures that assets move through the approval process smoothly and efficiently.
  4. Implement Version Control: Maintain a clear record of asset versions and revisions within the DAM. Version control ensures that stakeholders are working on the latest iteration of an asset, avoids confusion, and reduces the risk of using outdated or incorrect content. Clearly label and track versions, allowing users to refer back to previous versions if needed.
  5. Facilitate Collaboration and Feedback: Leverage the collaborative features of the DAM to enable efficient communication and feedback among stakeholders. Incorporate commenting and annotation tools within the DAM platform, allowing reviewers to provide feedback directly on the assets. This eliminates the need for lengthy email threads or separate feedback channels, streamlining the review and revision process.
  6. Set Automated Notifications and Reminders: Configure automated notifications and reminders within the DAM to keep stakeholders informed about pending approvals and approaching deadlines. This helps ensure that reviewers and approvers stay on track, reducing delays and bottlenecks in the approval process. Customizable notifications can be sent via email or within the DAM platform itself.
  7. Provide Training and Support: Offer training sessions and documentation to educate users about the DAM system and the marketing approval process. Ensure that all stakeholders understand how to navigate the DAM, access assets, review and approve content, and use the collaboration features effectively. Provide ongoing support to address any issues or questions that may arise during the implementation and usage of the DAM.
  8. Continuously Evaluate and Improve: Regularly review the marketing approval process using DAM to identify areas for improvement. Collect feedback from stakeholders, assess the efficiency of the workflow, and analyze data generated by the DAM to gain insights into bottlenecks or areas of optimization. Implement necessary changes and iterate on the process to enhance efficiency and effectiveness over time.

By following these best practices, you can establish an effective marketing approval process using DAM that improves collaboration, reduces errors, and accelerates time-to-market for your marketing assets.

Challenges of a Marketing Approval Process

Marketing approval processes can be a complex and challenging aspect of marketing operations. With multiple stakeholders involved and various regulatory requirements to adhere to, it can be challenging to streamline the approval process while maintaining compliance. In this blog section, we will discuss the common challenges of a marketing approval process and provide insights on how to overcome them. Some of these challenges are as follows-  

  • Delayed approvals: The approval process can be too slow, delaying campaign launches. This can happen when there are too many review stages, reviewers take too long to provide feedback, or changes take too long to implement.
  • Unclear roles and responsibilities: Roles and responsibilities in the approval process are not well defined, leading to confusion and lack of accountability. Reviewers may be unsure what they should be approving or may overstep their roles.
  • Lack of training: Reviewers are not properly trained for their roles in the approval process, resulting in inconsistent standards and missing important issues that need to be caught.
  • Insufficient resources: There are not enough resources to manage the workload of the approval process efficiently.
  • Insufficient documentation: A lack of documentation, templates, and forms leads to inconsistency over time as personnel and approaches change.
  • Inflexibility: The approval process is too rigid and does not adapt easily to changing needs and different material types.
  • Lack of senior leadership support: Senior leadership does not properly prioritize or buy into the importance of the approval process, so it is not taken seriously throughout the organization.

ioMoVo’s DAM for Marketing Approval Process

ioMoVo offers a DAM (Digital Asset Management) solution specifically designed to streamline the marketing approval process. The ioMoVo DAM for Marketing Approval Process provides a range of features and functionalities tailored to facilitate efficient collaboration and approval workflows. Here are some key aspects of ioMoVo's DAM for the marketing approval process:

  • Centralized Asset Repository

The DAM serves as a centralized hub for storing, organizing, and managing all marketing assets. It allows users to upload and store various file types, including images, videos, documents, and more. This centralization ensures that all stakeholders have easy access to the assets they need for the approval process.

  • Customizable Approval Workflows

ioMoVo's DAM enables organizations to create customized approval workflows based on their specific requirements. Users can define sequential or parallel review and approval stages, set deadlines, and assign responsibilities to different stakeholders involved in the process. This ensures that assets progress smoothly through the approval chain.

  • Collaboration and Communication

The DAM platform includes collaboration features that facilitate communication and feedback among reviewers, approvers, and content creators. Users can leave comments, annotations, and markups directly on the assets, eliminating the need for separate feedback channels or email threads. This improves efficiency and transparency in the approval process.

  • Version Control and Audit Trail

The DAM tracks versions of assets, providing a clear record of revisions and changes. This ensures that stakeholders are working with the most up-to-date versions of assets, minimizing errors and confusion. Additionally, the DAM maintains an audit trail, offering visibility into the entire approval process, including who made changes, when, and why.  

  • Metadata and Search Capabilities

ioMoVo's DAM allows users to add metadata and tags to assets, making them easily searchable. This feature simplifies asset discovery and retrieval, reducing the time spent searching for specific content. Users can search assets based on keywords, metadata attributes, or other criteria, ensuring efficient access to the required assets.

  • Role-Based Access and Permissions

The DAM provides role-based access control, allowing administrators to define user roles and permissions. This ensures that only authorized individuals can access and modify assets, maintaining data security and privacy. Different user roles can be assigned specific permissions, such as viewing, editing, or approving assets.

  • Integrations

ioMoVo's DAM can integrate with other marketing tools and systems, such as Google Drive, One Drive, Box, FTP, SharePoint, AWS, and many more. This integration allows for seamless data exchange and workflow synchronization between different tools, further enhancing efficiency and collaboration.

By leveraging ioMoVo's DAM for the marketing approval process, organizations can streamline their workflows, improve collaboration, and ensure a more efficient and effective approval process for their marketing assets.


A well-designed marketing approval process helps ensure quality, compliance, and success for new marketing campaigns. Though setting up an effective procedure takes planning and resources, the benefits far outweigh the costs. With proper roles, documentation, training, and governance, a structured approval process can significantly improve marketing outputs while managing risks. Regular reviews and adjustments keep the process relevant over time. The goal is to implement a process that empowers teams to create great marketing while maintaining the standards that make the company proud to publish those materials. Proper review and approval processes enable truly excellent marketing.

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