The verification of social media is one of the most searched icons on the web. Almost anything else you can get with a bit of tenacity or a little tricks. Security badges? Easy. Restricted accounts? It can be a bit expensive, but they are not scarce. Verification, however, requires an overview of the social network involved, and often requires jumping through hoops to obtain. That is if you can get it at all.
The problem with social media verification in my mind is that it does not do much for you. Yes, it makes your profile the official profile of your brand, but how much is it really worth?
There are some advantages for verification in some networks , I admit it. Possibly the biggest of them is Pinterest, which requires you to verify your account before you get access to the analytics. On the other hand, that really makes Pinterest verification less valuable, because it’s open to anyone. It is a much less exclusive club, so it is unique and valuable to be verified.
One of the biggest problems with verification is that to be under consideration for verification, you usually have to be a very popular account with a lot of followers. I’m talking in the hundreds of thousands here, not “I’ve accumulated 10,000 followers” big. At the moment you have to any followers, the advantages of verification are minimal. An imitator account is going to be pretty obvious, since you will have half a percent of the number of followers you have. People will have no difficulty in identifying what the real account is. It is not so useful.
In any case, let’s take a look at Instagram specifically and what they have to say about verification. Maybe it’s an easier process than normal, or maybe it’s more valuable than checking Facebook or Twitter.
What Instagram says
Instagram has a basic help page that is more or less taken wholesale from the Facebook version, which does not bode well for its value. This is what it says specifically.
What is a badge verified on Instagram? It’s a small check mark , blue as in almost all networks, next to the user’s name in the search and in their profile. The only accounts that can be verified are those that represent well-known public figures, celebrities and “global brands” on Instagram. The verification is given to these accounts to combat the high probability of impersonation, which Instagram does not like or want to deal with if possible. Of course, yes they have a process to report the identity theft.
What makes an verified Instagram badge? The only thing that makes for this network is that it is easier to identify yourself as you, instead of someone who shares your name or who is making you pass through you. It’s just an icon, and it has no special powers, access or security. Verification will not make it harder to hack or access your account, nor does it give you access to special tools like Pinterest.
Can you request verification? According to the Instagram help page, no. “At this time, only some public figures, celebrities and brands have verified badges. Currently, it is not possible to request a verified ID card. “Instead, Instagram recommends that you provide other forms of social proof of your identity, such as linking your other social accounts.
Some people also wonder, if they have a verified account on Facebook and Facebook has Instagram, why do not they have an account verified on Instagram? The answer is because they are different systems in different places. Maybe if they had a unified login they would be able to do that, but there is no such unified system in place.
That said, checking on Facebook and Twitter can be useful. You can link from those pages to your official Instagram, which gives you credibility. An imitator can not do that, so verification gives a little more of, well, verification. One thing it will not do, though, is make it easier to verify an Instagram profile.
Verification on Instagram is relatively new. It was only launched in December 2014, so it is still less than a year old. Consider it more as a pilot program than as a public access program at this time, and you will have the right attitude. It is simply not possible to make a specific set of steps to achieve verification.
That said, you can certainly do things to make it more likely to be verified the next time you go through and verify the accounts.
Instagram verification issues
In February, Instagram had problems with account verification. Namely, they came across “serious legal problems” with their verification process. At that time, they paused in their verification efforts until the process was refined and the problem disappeared.
No one is quite sure what the verification process involved or why it was causing problems. My speculation – and this is all it is, speculation – is that celebrities do not like being asked to present legal documentation of their identities, not even to a business as concerned about security as Facebook.
The message I just reported reported that four accounts specifically – all the actresses – had not yet received the verification. Of these four, two of them have since received verification. Why is that? Who knows. They are all great name actresses with active accounts, so it seems that all must be verified. I am not aware of the process or requirements beyond what I know about verification in general.
So, What can you do to increase the chances of verification , if and when Instagram choose to look your way?
1. Accumulate a large follow-up
The first and most obvious means to get verified in any social network is to be very popular. I’ve talked before about the number of people required to be verified, and dramatically changes from one platform to another. I’ve seen verified Facebook accounts with only 1,000 followers, and I’ve seen unverified brand pages with more than 1 million. It is really unpredictable and seems to depend on how administrators feel that day.
The thing is, you really can not go wrong by getting more followers. I’m not even saying that as a representative of a service that sells them; It is true. You need more followers so you can make better use of the site in general, both organically and with your marketing.
In addition to being useful for marketing, a greater number of followers puts you higher in search results and makes it easier for you to differentiate yourself from people who might try to personify you, either maliciously or as a troll.
How can you get more followers? We have included some basic tips here:
- Stick to a theme, voice and personality . For many celebrities this is easy, but brands often try a shotgun approach to see what works. This is very early, but as you go and grow, you will need to refine your messages to maintain a theme.
- Publish in a schedule . Like any social network, the more active you are, the more likely people have to get involved with your account and the more you will grow.
- Use hashtags correctly . This includes the use of the occasional brand tag, but it also means that you must use unusual hashtags. Using too common hashtags is not going to get you more exposure, it’s going to get you lost in the flood of content on that tag.
- Contract . Social networks are social, and that means you need to be socially back. You can not treat Instagram as an image hosting site, it is necessary to treat each image as an opening to a conversation.
- Publish good content . Instagram is very focused on the image, which means you need good quality images. You can not hit something together in a meme generator and I hope it works. I’m talking about professional photographers and real image editing software here.
- Follow all the image composition tips presented in this article . Everything is under point number 10, and includes tips on how to use the “right” colors and not use filters.
2. Represent a celebrity
Unfortunately, this advice is not very useful. Instagram is very similar to Facebook in terms of verification, which makes sense since it is the same company behind the scenes. That means that people who can be verified are very limited. Many brands, including large national brands, they are not able to obtain verification due to their approach or their industry . The only accounts that can be successfully verified on Instagram are those of public figures such as politicians, executive directors, sports stars, celebrities and prolific journalists. In addition, accounts of global brands such as NBC or the BBC or ESPN could be verified, although it is almost entirely on the backs of “if we do not verify these people that it will be bad for us”.
I do not recommend changing your business just to get Instagram verification. It is not valuable enough to be worth it. I’m just putting this “tip” here to let you know that whether you’re a small business, a band, a store, an online retailer or really anything other than a high profile celebrity, you’re going to have a hard time getting verified.
That said, it’s always possible that Instagram will expand its requirements in the future and include any entity that could be damaged by phishing. A small company is certainly more vulnerable than a celebrity when it comes to malicious impersonation, so it makes sense that they can do this. You know, once the twists in the process are resolved.
3. Being supplanted
Well, so this is not really an actionable advice either. But it is logical. Verification is a mechanism that exists only – according to Instagram – to be a layer of security for people who impersonate themselves. It is there so that users can count between two accounts with the same name and the same profile image, identifying which one is the true one.
Therefore, it is logical to think that the safest way to receive verification is have someone doing you go through you The problem is that this is not really safe. Yes, verification is a preventive measure against the damage that an imitator can cause. However, it is not the process to solve the problem of imitators. There is a process, a way, that you have to prove that you are who you say you are and that the imitator is negatively affecting your business.
When that happens, you do not receive verification. You just have to keep your account while the mimic is removed or forced to change. The only benefit you get from the process is to eliminate the confusion that your users may feel when they see two identical accounts and not know which one is yours.
While you will not get verification out of the deal, I think it is a “beneficial” appointment to be supplanted once, for verification purposes. I imagine that it probably puts you on a short list such that, if it meets the criteria, it will be verified in the next wave. That said, it’s all speculation on my part and there’s no real factual basis for that speculation. So, you know, do not go out and create an imitator of yourself, you can end up forbidden IP, and then would it be you?
4. Stay Active
Never verify if you do not use the platform . If the Instagram administrators came to see if you are worth checking, and they see that they have not published in a month, they will spend more. They do not care if you have been personified before. They do not care how active they used to be. Especially do not care how much they want verification. If you are not actively using the platform, there is no reason for them to bother to initiate the process for you.
It also goes to the other side. Why do you want to verify if you are not actively using the platform? It does not do anything to you just to have it. There is no reason to see if you are not using the site, period.
5. Avoid Negative Actions
This is a bit more hazy, and I have no way of knowing if it is really a factor, but here it goes. I recommend that you avoid buying fake followers, both in general and for this purpose.
On the one hand, Instagram does not like it. They have been known to purge fake fans, and the results have been devastating for many high profile users. Of course, most of these users were already candidates for verification and may have already been verified. In fact, I would dare to guess that the purge was aimed at the users who wanted to verify. Something like an audit; If you want verification, let’s make sure that your audience is really as big as you say it is .
As far as I know, no one was de-verified in the purge. On the other hand, verification had only existed for a week when the last major purge occurred.
False followers, of course, also hurt their ability to succeed on the platform. They make you look worse. If two different accounts each have a million followers, and one of them gets 10x the commitment of the other, the one that has less commitment has something with its audience. False followers often explain that.
All that said, I’m sure you’re leaving this post with a bit of a sour expression. I introduce myself to take steps to get verified, and then give it nothing to use. The reason for this is that there is no process. There is no way to request or request verification , you just have to wait for Instagram to notice it and decide to offer it to you and grow a large audience to increase your chances. The best you can do is grow and be noticed.