Instagram attracts a remarkable 1.21 billion monthly active users worldwide. And that makes this user-friendly social media platform the fifth most visited website in the world.
Among an endless sea of Instagram accounts, there are a lucky few who have received a verification badge on their profile. Coveted by many, this blue tick helps users stand out and validates their authenticity.
Getting Instagram verification is far from easy, but it’s also not impossible. Continue reading to learn everything you need to know about obtaining a blue badge on Instagram.
What Does Instagram Verification Mean?
A verified badge on Instagram shows that the user is an official account. A verified Instagram account receives a blue tick next to the account name, and users see the blue badge of authenticity when the account comments on others’ posts.
Instagram was initially launched in 2010, and they introduced the blue tick four years later. In August 2018, the hugely popular social media network made the verification process much more accessible by allowing users to request a blue badge.
It’s given to certain individuals and brands, and helps users find the real account when searching for a specific person or brand. In Instagram’s own words, the “verified badge is a tool to help people find the real accounts of public figures and brands, and it means that we have verified that this is a notable and authentic Instagram account.” They add: “A verified badge is not a symbol to show importance, authority, or subject matter expertise.”
In simple terms, the Instagram blue tick is to let users know that they are visiting the real person, rather than a fan account or an impersonator.
The Advantages of Getting Verified on Instagram
As users grow their Instagram profile, it’s only natural to crave an illustrious blue tick. The most valid reason for requesting verification is having an account that’s at risk of being impersonated. But there are a variety of reasons why people choose to begin the verification process.
1. It Will Protect and Improve Your Brand
A blue tick is an effective strategy for protecting your brand and its reputation from impersonators and potential saboteurs. It distinguishes your account from competitors, boosts your brand awareness, and will likely help increase your number of followers.
2. Access to Special Features
Accounts with a verified badge get access to exclusive features on the social network. For example, the “swipe up” feature on Instagram stories allows users with more than 10,000 followers to share links, thereby boosting engagement and conversions. However, those who are Instagram verified can use this feature regardless of how many followers they have.
3. It Lends Credibility and Trust
Another undeniable benefit of the blue badge is that you instantly become more credible and trustworthy in the eyes of innumerable Instagram users. While it may not have been Instagram’s intention, the blue badge is a status symbol that shows the world that you’re worth following.
4. Higher Engagement Rate
The advantages don’t stop there. A comprehensive Instagram study found that verified accounts have a 30% higher engagement rate than non-verified accounts. It’s unclear why this happens, but it could be because users are more open to engaging with accounts that are credible and authentic.
5. People Will Find You Easier
A significant benefit of having an Instagram verification badge is that you’ll appear higher in search results when users are browsing content on Instagram. They’ll also have no difficulty finding you, and won’t be directed to fake accounts instead.
6. Other Brands May Want to Work With You
Brands and Companies are more interested in collaborating with influencers or personalities with a blue tick. A verification badge can open many doors.
Can Anyone Get Verified on Instagram?
In short, yes and no.
Instagram’s terms clearly state the four verification criteria that determine whether an account is eligible for a blue checkmark. Anyone who can fulfil these criteria has an excellent chance of receiving Instagram verification, but you’ll have to provide supporting evidence to prove it.
- Authentic. The user must represent a real person, business, or entity.
- Unique. The user must represent the unique presence of the person or business.
- Complete. The account must be public, active, and include a bio and profile photo.
- Notable: The account must represent a well-known, highly searched for person or business that has featured organically in authentic news sources.
According to Instagram, the primary reason for blue ticks is to help users find the genuine accounts, so they’re likely to consider applications if there’s a high probability that an account will be impersonated.
You don’t need to be a celebrity to get verified, nor do you need a high follower count. You’ll be assessed on the criteria above whether you have 500,000 Instagram followers or 50. While this is true, you’re more likely to be considered a “notable” person if you have a significant number of followers.
A 2020 research study examined 6.5 million Instagram accounts, each with over 1000 followers. They found that only 3.26% of these popular accounts had a blue tick. To receive the blue badge, all users must go through a thorough manual verification check to prove they are indeed a “notable” and “authentic” Instagram account.
How to Apply For Instagram Verification
Now that you have a better grasp of the Instagram verification process, it’s time to get down to business. The option to apply for a blue badge is open to every user on Instagram. Here are the steps you need to follow:
Step One: Login to Instagram
Open Instagram on your phone or computer, logging into the account from which you hope to verify.
Step Two: Navigate to “Request Verification”
Once logged in, go to your Instagram profile page and click the menu button in the top right corner. Choose the ‘Settings’ icon, tap ‘Account’, and then scroll down to ‘Request Verification’.
Step Three: Fill Out the Form
It’s time to prove you’re worthy of a blue tick.
First, you must ‘Confirm Authenticity’ by uploading an official identification document that features your full name and a photo, such as a passport or a driver’s license. If you’re applying from a brand, you can choose official business documents instead. This may be a tax filing, a recent utility bill, or articles of incorporation.
Next, you’ll have to ‘Confirm Notability’ by selecting your industry category, country, and target audience (optional).
Lastly, you’ll be given the option to include ‘Links’. Instagram encourages you to add news articles and other social media accounts to support your application. Be aware that paid or sponsored promotional content won’t be accepted by Instagram.
Although this last step is optional, it’s highly recommended to provide supporting evidence. This is your chance to convince Instagram that you’re worthy of a blue tick.
There’s no timeline for when Instagram will notify you regarding the success or failure of your application. However, if denied, you’ll have to wait 30 days to apply again.
Seven Great Tips to Boost Your Chances of Getting Verified
But wait! Before you rush to send off your application, we strongly recommend going through our professional advice to give yourself the best chance of success.
1. Complete Your Instagram Profile
Don’t stumble at the first hurdle. As noted earlier, Instagram won’t give out a blue checkmark if your profile isn’t complete.
Thus, you should ensure you’ve uploaded a profile picture and filled in all the required information in the Instagram bio section. Include accurate and concise information about yourself or your business, and make sure your account isn’t set to private. You can also choose to add a link to your website.
As well as helping you gain more followers, a strong profile is essential for impressing Instagram when they review your case.
2. Get Publicity
You’ve got to get your name out there organically if you’re to be considered a ‘notable’ person by Instagram. And this may require you to do a little PR work.
You might want to guest post on an authority website, or make appearances on popular podcasts. Getting involved in a wide range of activities can earn you coverage in the media. An example would be creating or participating in a local charity event.
Get your name in news sources or press releases, and you’ll stand a much better chance of being considered a public figure.
It’s also an excellent idea to optimize your website and your social media profiles to rank higher on internet searches. If you’re not highly searchable, you’re unlikely to get that coveted blue tick.
3. Build Up Your Follower Count
Although Instagram does not specify any minimum number of followers, it will definitely help your application chances if you have a high follower count. To put it simply, more followers make you more notable. Plus, there will be a greater chance of impersonators running scams under your name, which is something Instagram want to avoid.
Regardless of the success or failure of your application, followers will help strengthen your brand, increase conversions, and send more visitors to your site.
Good practices to increase followers include using the right hashtags, adopting a consistent voice, and, most importantly, posting quality content on a consistent basis.
4. Be Active and Personalize Your Posts
Instagram accounts only need one post to be considered for a blue badge, but a stronger presence featuring regular posts is likely to boost your chances. When they come to check your account, they’ll be looking to see if you’re active on the platform.
And remember that Instagram will only verify an account that is “authentic” and “unique”. So your posts should be new and original, varying your output with a mix of images, videos, reels, and Instagram stories.
Personalizing your posts, with a consistent voice, aesthetic theme, or hashtag strategy can also distinguish your account from impersonators and fake accounts.
5. Post at The Right Time and Engage With Your Audience
You’ll want to find various ways to boost your profile, and it’s a good idea to share content when your audience is more likely to be online. Knowing when to post will help you further your organic reach and stand out among the crowd.
You can get a better understanding of your audience’s activity by using social media tools like Hootsuite or Iconosquare. Your timing can make a big difference, and using popular hashtags is another proven way to maximize the potential of your posts to reach a wider audience.
Don’t forget to make some time to like posts, respond thoughtfully to comments, and explore relevant hashtags. Engagement rate is considered a strong signal of authenticity on Instagram.
6. Work on Your Social Profiles Across Platforms
In 2022, the overwhelming majority of influencers and public figures boast a variety of active social media profiles. Although it’s not a requirement for getting a blue badge on Instagram, a big following on Facebook, YouTube, and TikTok will surely boost your chances when they come to review your case.
Cross-promote your other social media accounts because establishing popularity across a range of sites will make you a better candidate for that prestigious blue tick.
LinkedIn is a popular social network for professionals. And it’s considered to be the easiest platform to get a blue checkmark, making it a great opportunity to boost your credibility online.
7. Only Apply When You’re Ready
Let’s not rush into failure. Before firing off your application, set aside some time to put these six tips into action to give yourself the best chance of getting verified. A caterpillar must make a strong effort in the cocoon before it emerges as a beautiful butterfly.
Even if you’re desperate to get that blue badge, try to remember that just because you can apply does not necessarily mean you should.
Crucial Mistakes to Avoid
Take all this information on board, and you’ll be in a much stronger position to get verified. However, there are also certain mistakes you need to avoid.
Don’t include Cross-Platform Links in Your Bio
We’ve indeed encouraged you to cross-promote your social media accounts, but you must not do it in your Instagram bio. Instead, you can add a link to your website or other web pages in your bio.
Don’t Try To Buy a Verification Badge
Spoiler: It’s a scam. Instagram does not let users buy, sell, or transfer their verification badge, so don’t bother trying to take any shortcuts.
Getting a blue checkmark will not cost you a dime. Meanwhile, attempting to buy a verification badge is 100% ineffective and can end up getting your account banned for violating Instagram’s Community Guidelines.
Don’t Provide False Information
Bruce Lee once said, “If you don't want to slip up tomorrow, speak the truth today.” And providing Instagram with false or misleading information during the verification process can cause your account to be removed.
The information you provide must be truthful and accurate. This means uploading genuine documents and being honest about your identity. Lying can undo all of your hard work, and you may find yourself back at square one.
Don’t Break Instagram’s Rules and Policies
Instagram set out detailed Community Guidelines, which all users are expected to follow. The short version reads as follows:
“We want Instagram to continue to be an authentic and safe place for inspiration and expression. Help us foster this community. Post only your own photos and videos, and always follow the law. Respect everyone on Instagram; don't spam people or post nudity.”
Simple enough, right?
What to Do if You Get Rejected
All is not lost if Instagram decides not to approve your application. You can apply again after 30 days, and you can use this window of time to figure out what can be done to boost your chances of success.
Delve deeper into the seven tips outlined above. You must consistently work hard to build your audience while establishing credibility, authenticity, and notability.
And don’t give up! Earning a blue badge may not be easy, but it will bring significant benefits to you or your registered business.
Instagram Verification FAQ
1. Will My Facebook Account be Automatically Verified Too?
Instagram was acquired by Facebook, now known as Meta, in 2012. Yet, the verification checks on each social media platform are done separately. Receiving a verification badge on Instagram does not mean your Facebook or YouTube account will automatically get a blue tick too.
However, the chances of getting your Facebook account verified are sure to improve if your Instagram verification request is successful.
2. Is the Verification Badge Permanent?
It’s therefore recommended to play by the rules and ensure your account remains public.
3. How Much Does it Cost to Get Verified on Instagram?
It’s absolutely and unequivocally free. If someone tells you they can help you get a blue tick for any sum of money, run.
4. How Many Followers do You Need to Get Verified?
There is no minimum number of followers required to get a blue badge. Anyone can apply. However, you will have to prove that you are a ‘notable’ person or business.
Not just anyone will get approved, but Instagram verification is an effective strategy to grow and protect your business or personal brand. Having a blue checkmark next to your name brings many perks, boosting your credibility, searchability, and your conversion rates. You just have to convince Instagram that you’re worthy of it.
Take onboard the advice shared above, and you’ll make yourself a stronger candidate to get that coveted blue tick.
Does someone else manage your Instagram account for you?
If someone else manages your Instagram content and ads for you, they will need to get access to your Instagram account. Want to give them access without sharing your password?
You can use Leadsie to grant access to your Instagram account and more! Ask your agency or freelancer to sign up for Leadsie, granting access is as easy as a few clicks- they send you an access link, you log in and confirm. Who knows, they may be able to organize the blue tick for you too!
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