Having trouble figuring out how to get verified on Instagram? Well, my friend, you are not alone. Getting that blue checkmark badge on Instagram or any other platform is one of today’s greater mysteries, made ever more elusive given the verification process is less than transparent. And, at this moment in time, specific to Instagram, “It’s not currently possible to request or purchase a verified badge.”
So what is a badge and why does it matter?
The verification checkmark is a proof of legitimacy. Three years ago Instagram introduced verified badges to brand and celebrities to make it clear which account were “real” vs fakes. In addition, verified accounts offer the following perks:
- Brand credibility. Consumers need to be wary of scams, and a verified account indicates an offer is coming from a vetted source.
- Increased reach. Consumers will go directly to the “real” brand account so a brand isn’t potentially sharing traffic with the fakes.
- Verified accounts sit at the top of search. With that blue checkmark a consumer can see the difference between the real account and the fan and/or the fakes.
- Verified accounts are also rumored to be supported by Instagram’s algorithm, giving their content potentially better placement and thus more engagement.
- Bragging rights.
With no official system in place for verification, and frustration mounting, what is a brand to do? Unfortunately, there isn’t one magic bullet, although the experts hint that the easiest way to get verified is to spend advertising dollars on the platform. If you are a small brand, unfortunately, spending your way to verification isn’t exactly helpful advice. So, let’s focus on what Instagram might look for as part of their verification process. Keep in mind these are only assumptions, but they are also just good Instagram habits.
- Ensure your brand is an Instagram Business account.
- The Business account will give you access to insights on your posts, Stories, and followers. Use this data to inform the content you post.
- Curation is key. Don’t post for posting’s sake. It is about having a strategy and a purpose for what is being posted, with an ultimate aim of providing an aesthetically pleasing experience.
- Crisp, beautiful content wins, simple as that. This is a highly visual platform, and consumers look for content that stands out and captivates
- Hashtags matter. They help your brand and content be discovered. Be strategic, see who your competitors tag, and keep your branded tags short and relevant.
- Nurture your community and engage your followers. Respond to comments, “like” comments, and explore Instagram and engage users that you think would find your brand interesting.
- Total followers matter. Speculation is the larger the following, the closer an account is to earning verification. Please note, the followers have to be real and not garnered through click farms.
See Digiday to learn more on the struggles for Instagram verification.