How to Get Verified on Instagram: The 10 Essential Steps

13 Jan

For brands and social media creators on Instagram, getting verified is the greatest form of validation. Securing that “blue tick” not only validates your authenticity, it gives you more control over your online presence by ensuring your profile is the only one representing your brand.

Now, getting Instagram verified is not easy, and it’s not something that everyone is able to do. But if you want to earn this recognition, this article will guide you on how to successfully apply for and receive the coveted verification badge on Instagram.

Let’s get started.

What does Instagram verified mean?

In Instagram’s words, getting verified means that the platform has confirmed your profile as “the authentic presence of the public figure, celebrity or global brand it represents.”

So, if you come across an Instagram account that has a blue tick in their bio, it means you’re looking at the official account of that brand or personality, as opposed to a fake, unofficial or fan account.

Here’s an example of Netflix’s Instagram profile showcasing the blue verified badge:

Brands like Netflix showcase Instagram's blue verified badge.

Instagram’s verification badges help brands and creators stand out, look credible and avoid getting impersonated. At the same time, they help Instagram users find the right profile when searching for their favorite brand or personality.

To qualify for Instagram verification, however, you need to meet certain criteria.

What are the requirements to apply for a verified badge on Instagram?

Anyone can request verification on Instagram, but you need to meet certain criteria to get approved for the blue tick.

Although the exact process and requirements for getting a verification badge on Instagram are unclear, the platform offers some guidelines to help you find out if you’re eligible.

First, make sure you’re adhering to Instagram’s Community Guidelines and Terms of Use. Other than that, your account also needs to be:

  • Authentic: Your account should belong to a real person, business, brand or entity.
  • Public: Private Instagram accounts are not eligible for verification.
  • Complete: Your profile should have a bio and photo, and you must be active on the platform. We have a whole guide on how to create an Instagram business profile, if you need to get started.
  • Unique: Your account must be the only one representing your unique self or business. Instagram does not verify multiple accounts for the same person or business. Also, general interest accounts are not eligible, only individuals or businesses.
  • Notable: Your account must represent a publicly known, highly-searched for person or business that has been featured in multiple, authentic news sources. Paid or sponsored media sources do not count.

Keep in mind that there’s no exact number of followers you need to have to qualify for a verification badge. Whether you have 100,000+ followers or less than 10,000 followers, you can still apply if you meet the criteria noted above.

Also, note that even if the Facebook Page that’s linked to your Instagram account is already verified, you will still need to apply for a verification badge on Instagram.

How to request verification on Instagram

  1. Log into your account and navigate to Settings from the menu on the top right.
  2. Inside Settings, click on “Account” and select “Request Verification.”
  3. Complete the required fields and then hit send to start the review process.
Side-by-side screenshots showing where to and how to apply for Instagram verification within your Instagram account settings.

As Instagram states, just because your account may be eligible for verification doesn’t necessarily mean it will be designated as such. Unfortunately, there is no guaranteed timeline for when you’ll be notified whether or not you’ve been verified. But if denied, you’ll have to wait 30 days before attempting to request verification again.

10 Helpful tips for getting verified on Instagram

If you’re ready to apply for verification on Instagram, we’ve got some tips you can implement to increase your chances of scoring the blue badge.

If it doesn’t work out, or if you decide not to go for the verification process, you can still find success on Instagram in general by keeping these best practices in mind.

1. Complete your Instagram profile

One of the ways Instagram verifies your identity is by looking at your profile.

Make sure your profile is 100% complete by adding a well-written bio and a profile photo that represents your business, brand or self. For example, you can add your company’s logo to the profile photo, and your brand’s tagline and website in the bio.

Brands like Equinox fitness showcase the blue Instagram verification checkmark.

Ensuring your profile is complete and authentic can also help you build credibility to your audience, which is a great way to get more followers, engagement and media attention.

2. Build your social profiles

Establishing a strong following on other platforms can help make your Instagram account appear especially genuine.

For instance, there are strong links between Twitter and press announcements. Use that to your advantage! When your name appears in the news or media, use that exposure to build your social profiles and following.

How do you get more followers on Instagram and other platforms? Try these tips:

  • Build your personality with a consistent voice and theme: A lot of brands try a shotgun approach to connecting with their audience. However, it’s much easier to make a strong connection with people if you show your unique voice online.
  • Post frequently and consistently: With any social network the more active you are the more likely you are to convince people to engage with your account.
  • Develop great content: Just as you’d post great pictures on Instagram to improve your following you should be developing insightful content for your other channels too. Find out what your followers are looking for from you and adhere to their needs.

3. Look out for impersonator profiles

While claiming that your identity is at risk might feel a bit like crying wolf–this tip actually comes straight from Instagram:

“Accounts representing well-known figures and brands are verified because they have a high likelihood of being impersonated.”

Your verified badge sets you apart as the one-and-only you. It builds trust in your followers by letting them know that they’re not following a random impersonator. People want to know that they’re following the real deal.

Birchbox's verified account status helps ensure users they're following the right account.

Letting Instagram know that you’re at risk of being impersonated may help push them to act.

4. Stay active on your account

This may seem obvious but you’ll likely never be Instagram verified if you don’t actively use the platform. When admins come to see if you’re worth Instagram verification they’ll be looking for regular activity. If you’re not using the platform, there’s no benefit in initiating the verification process.

It goes the other way, too. What’s the point of verification if you’re not active on Instagram? To improve your chances of getting that blue Instagram verified badge:

  • Stock up on great photos: Instagram is all about aesthetics. Influencers earn followers because they know how to appeal to their audience. Find out what your followers like to see on your page and get snapping.
  • Take advantage of Insights: Head to your Instagram business page and use your Insights to plan content that resonates with people on your feed. Make sure to post at the time when your followers are most active. Use third-party tools like Sprout Social to learn more about your social followers and adjust your campaigns.
  • Engage with your audience: Don’t forget to spend time responding to comments, liking posts and exploring relevant hashtags. Engagement is key on any social platform.
Screenshot of Sprout Social's Engagement Report and your brand's personal response rate.

Sprout’s Instagram Audience Engagement Report provides detailed insights into trends, hashtag usage, likes and other engagement metrics. This is critical for any brand trying to make analysis easier across accounts or brands.

5. Boost your earned media

Want Instagram to give you that seal of approval? Show them you’re worth it.

Google yourself to see what comes up. Nothing? Fix that, because if you don’t have a widely recognized brand, there’s nothing to verify.

Remember, it’s not an algorithm deciding who should get a blue button on their Instagram account. Real people review every request manually and they likely head to search engines like Google to see what comes up for outside credibility.

Ultimately, figuring out how to get verified on Instagram involves putting in the work before you make a request.

It’s tough, but that’s why verification badges are so highly sought-after.

6. Don’t try to buy an Instagram verification badge

The only way to get verified on Instagram is to apply through the app or via Facebook’s media partners. Don’t try to take any shortcuts, like buying your way in.

Trying to purchase a verification badge is not only ineffective and a waste of your money, but you can get penalized for violating Instagram’s community guidelines.

For instance, providing any false or misleading information during the process can get your account removed from the platform altogether.

Instead, try to get more real Instagram followers by creating engaging and useful content. While there’s no proven correlation between a high number of followers and getting verified on Instagram, it doesn’t hurt to try.

Plus, the more followers you have, the more likely you are to become notable and talked about on authentic news or media sources.

7. Remove Any Cross-Platform Links From Your Bio

According to Instagram, verified accounts are not allowed to encourage users to add or follow other social media profiles in their bio, such as Facebook or YouTube.

However, you can still add links to your website, landing page and other web pages in your bio. Think of the Instagram link in bio as another strategy avenue to drive traffic to multiple campaigns, profiles or sites.

Brand's like Nature's Path Organic showcase a custom link in bio to drive traffic to multiple landing pages.

Avoid adding cross-platform links that promote your other social profiles to increase your chances of getting verified on Instagram.

Alternatively, be sure to add links to your Instagram profile on your business’ website, in marketing emails or on your other social media profiles. While it may seem hypocritical to avoid cross-platform linking on Instagram, using your other social profiles to link to you Instagram shows validity in your profile ownership.

8. Improve your searchability

One of the key requirements for getting verified on Instagram is to be well-known and highly-searched for. This means you need to be more active on the PR front and try to get your name out there organically.

For example, you might want to publish press releases for upcoming company announcements or product launches. Instagram does its own research, so applying when your name has recently been in the news can fire up your chances of getting verified.

Another thing you can do to get verified faster is to optimize your posts with branded hashtags.

This can help you appear in organic searches and on Instagram’s Explore page. The more searchable you are, the more likely you are to get verified.

9. Personalize your posts

Creating and maintaining an account that is unique and authentic is extremely important for getting verified on Instagram.

That’s why we recommend personalizing your posts to help you differentiate your account from impersonators.

For example, you could adopt a specific brand voice, visual style, feed aesthetic, content theme or hashtag strategy that’s unique to your account and difficult (or impossible) to replicate.

Other ways you can personalize your posts? Share behind-the-scenes content to give your audience an inside look at your brand! Who else would have this type of unique content besides you?

Alternatively, encourage followers to tag you in posts to increase brand awareness and engagement through user-generated content (UGC) or branded hashtags.

10. Hire a publicist or agency to help

If you’d rather hire someone to help you with the process, look into a professional PR or digital agency that has access to Facebook’s Media Partner Support tools.

They will be able to submit requests for verifying your account, claiming usernames and merging accounts on your behalf through the industry-only portal they’re able to access.

Keep in mind that the method above is a legitimate source of assistance on the process, unlike “buy” or bot tools that provide you with artificial likes, engagement or verification in exchange for money. So while there’s no guarantee that a digital agency will be successful in your IG verification, it can increase your changes.

Losing the verification badge or not getting verified on Instagram

Even if you do get verified on Instagram, know that you can lose that blue tick. This is usually the case if you fail to follow Instagram’s Terms of Use and Community Guidelines, or if Instagram finds that you provided misleading or false information ini your verification application.

To keep your verified status, make sure you play by the rules, stay active on the platform, publish unique and engaging content and keep your account public at all times.

If you fail to get verified for any reason, you can re-apply for verification after 30 days.

If you’re still unable to get verified or aren’t eligible for applying, continue to use these tips outlined above to guide you to demonstrate your authenticity and build credibility in front of your audience.

Remember, getting verified is just the tip of the iceberg. Building an audience, establishing your credibility and demonstrating authenticity takes time. It’s a long-term strategy to regularly engage with your followers and produce unique and helpful content. And by doing so you’ll hopefully earn and keep your verified status on not just Instagram, but also any other social media profiles.

Is getting Instagram verified worth it?

There’s a lot of planning and effort involved in Instagram verification, so make sure you have a good reason before you get started. Fortunately, there are plenty of benefits to being verified, from better brand credibility to a stronger social search presence.

IG verification differentiates you from the crowd and makes it easier for you to reach the people that matter most to you. Used correctly, it makes you more trustworthy on social media and boosts your conversion rates. All you need to do is show that you’re worthy.

Still looking for ways to boost your Instagram strategy? These tips on what to post on Instagram can help guide you.

The post How to Get Verified on Instagram: The 10 Essential Steps appeared first on Sprout Social.

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