If you want to know how to get verified on Instagram, you've come to the right place. This guide will tell you how to apply for an Instagram review (that's the easy part), and some tips to help you qualify (that's the hard part).
Let's start with the easy part.
Bonus: 14 time-saving hacks for Instagram power users. Get the list of secret shortcuts that the Hootsuite's own social media team uses to create thumb-stopping content.
What does Instagram Review mean?
The Instagram Review is a way of proving that your Instagram account is the authentic presence of a notable public figure, celebrity, or global brand.
You've probably seen a lot of verification badges. As with Twitter, Facebook, and, yes, Tinder, the little blue check marks are supposed to indicate that the platform has confirmed that the account in question is trustworthy, or at least who they are.
These badges are designed to highlight the real accounts so Instagram users can be sure they are following the right person or brand. They are easy to spot in search results and profiles and they convey authority.
It's easy to see why verification badges are also a coveted status symbol. They're rare, and exclusivity adds a degree of prestige – which may or may not translate into better engagement.
However, Instagram is clear that verified accounts (just like business accounts) are not specially treated by the Instagram algorithm. In other words, if it's true that verified accounts get higher engagement on average, it's because they post great content that resonates with their audience.
Who can be verified by Instagram?
Anyone can apply to be verified on Instagram. However, Instagram is notoriously picky (and mysterious in many ways) about who will actually be verified. So if you have an account that is close to Noteworthy, how do you know if you meet the criteria?
Just because you have a blue tick on Twitter or Facebook, for example, doesn't guarantee that you will get one on Instagram.
Instagram is blunt, saying, "Only a few public figures, celebrities and brands have verified badges on Instagram." In other words, "Only accounts with a high probability of impersonating."
Here's what we know about eligibility.
- Authentic: Are you a real person, registered company or trademark? You can't be a meme page or a fan account.
- Unique: With the exception of language-specific accounts, Instagram can only check one account per person or company.
- Publicity: Private Instagram accounts cannot be verified.
- Complete: Do you have a full bio, profile photo and at least one post?
- Remarkable: This is where things get subjective, but Instagram defines a notable name as one who is "well known" and "heavily wanted".
When you're reasonably sure that you meet these criteria, or just want to roll the dice, it's time to check your Instagram account.
How to Apply to Get Verified on Instagram: 6 Steps
Verifying on Instagram is actually quite a simple process:
- Go to your profile and tap Hamburger symbol in the upper right corner
- Tap the settings
- Tap account
- Tap Request confirmation
- Fill out the application form.
- Your legal name
- Your name or work name (if applicable)
- Select your category or industry (for example: blogger / influencer, sports, news / media, company / brand / organization, etc.)
- You will also need to submit a photo of your official government ID. For individuals, this can be a driver's license or a passport. For companies, an electricity bill, your articles of association or tax returns are sufficient.
- Tap Send.
According to Instagram, after the team reviewed your application, You will receive a response in the "Notifications" tab. Due to historical and ongoing problems with scammers, Instagram is very clear that they will never email you, ask for money, or contact you in any other way.
Within a few days or a week you will receive a direct yes or no. No feedback or explanation.
This is what a no looks like:
And here's a yes, break the bubbling off:
Tips for reviewing on Instagram
Yes, anyone can request verification on Instagram. But actually getting approved is much harder.
We have compiled all of the best practices that will maximize your chances of success as you continue your efforts to prove your brand's worthiness.
Do not try to buy a verification badge
We're going to get this out of the way first: The guy in your comments who says his friend works for Instagram? Please don't give him any money.
The same goes for any third-party app or random account that offers "full refund".
The same goes for an account that you DMs because they want to sell you their badge because they "no longer need" it.
Instagram scammers know that people and businesses experience oversized emotions about the blue check mark, and some are pretty effective at appearing legitimate. So stay on your guard. And remember, Instagram will never request payment and never contact you.
Tl; dr: The only way to get verified is on the official form, unless you are Jennifer Aniston (in which case scroll down to Tip 7: Work With An Agency, Publicist, Or Stop Doing This Article read in full because you are doing great!).
Monitoring for fraudulent accounts
If you're struggling with stubborn, unauthorized, fake, or fan accounts that epitomize your brand, we have good news for you. You are a prime candidate for review on Instagram. The distinction between real and fake accounts is ultimately the stated purpose of verification.
Your annual social media audit should clarify whether fraudulent accounts are a problem for you. You want to monitor and document these accounts using a social media monitoring tool like Zerofox's Hootsuite integration.
Here is a quick guide on how to use Zerofox to be automatically notified of fraudulent accounts (and other fraudulent activity):
Get more (real) followers
Look, we don't have numbers, but honestly it feels like you need a ridiculous number of followers to be checked sometimes. There is absolutely no evidence that this is a real rule, but – can't it hurt? Or does correlation not imply causality after all?
In fact, it is more likely that the number of followers will increase as people or brands get more noticeable on and off Instagram.
If you want to hedge your bets and play both ways – chicken and egg – here are some ideas on how to get more Instagram followers.
Pro tip: Just don't try to take a shortcut and buy your Instagram followers. (Plus, breaking community guidelines and then asking Instagram to review your account is very effective in closing your account.)
Delete any cross-platform links in your bio
Instagram insists that verified accounts on their Instagram profiles cannot contain so-called "Add Me" links to other social media services, which some consider to be slightly insignificant (we would never dare). You can include links to your website, landing pages, or other online properties. Under no circumstances should you link to your YouTube or Twitter account.
If, on the other hand, you have a blue tick in your Facebook profile but not in your Instagram account, Instagram strongly recommends that you link to your Instagram account from your Facebook page in order to prove your authenticity.
Be very wanted
Social media is all about random, organic discoveries (that's what the Instagram Explore page is meant for anyway – and making it big can have a real impact on your engagement and follower count).
But when it comes to the review, Instagram wants to know if people care enough about you to tear themselves away from the seductions of the feed and spontaneously type your name into the search bar.
While Instagram doesn't provide analytics on this data, we'd put money into the fact that Instagram's verification team has access and look at how often users search for you. Which brings us to our next point …
Apply when your name is in the news
Google itself. Has your brand been featured in multiple news sources? Was a current press release or a white paper picked up? Do you have a good bite or a profile in a large international publication? Paid or promotional content definitely doesn't count.
If PR has not been a priority for your brand, you may find it harder to prove how "remarkable" you are. Mainly because there's nowhere to go to submit your evidence: Instagram does its own research. So it's up to you to make sure your messages are above the fold and cannot be ignored.
If you've recently experienced a loss of attention or are planning a big announcement, then consider taking advantage of that and requesting that tick while your name is still hot.
Work with an agency or a publicist
If you have the budget and the ambition, hire a reputable digital agency that has access to Facebook's media partner support tools. Your publicist or agent can submit requests to request usernames, merge accounts, and review accounts through their industry portal.
Is the verification guaranteed? Of course not. However, a request from an industry professional through the Media Partner Support Panel carries more weight and sets you apart from the crowd.
This tip should be a no-brainer, but since the consequences are dire, we feel compelled to highlight it. Most of all, in order to review your application, you need to be honest.
Use your real name. Choose a suitable category. Under no circumstances should you forge government documents.
If you express the truth anywhere in your application, Instagram says that not only will it deny your request, but it can also delete your account.
Make sure your profile and bio are complete and effective
The review requirements listed by Instagram (a bio, profile picture, and post? Really?) Are a low bar. You don't just want to hit it. You want to race over it.
By optimizing your Instagram bio, not only will the verification team be impressed when they review you, but it can also pay off in the form of new followers and conversions.
If this is your first time getting rejected, please try again
If Instagram comes back with a rejection after all of your hard work, take the opportunity to focus on your goals and redouble your efforts.
Improve your Instagram strategy, build up a committed fan base and earn enthusiasm on the platform too.
Whether you wait the 30 days required or spend a few fiscal quarters meeting your KPIs, you can reapply.
This is how you stay verified on Instagram
How can you keep your badge after you've earned it? It's pretty easy. Instagram endorsement seems to be given forever, even if you stop doing what made you "remarkable". But here are the firm rules.
Keep your account public
A public, unlocked account is required to request verification and required to be verified.
Play by the rules
The review is just the beginning
The rules require an absolute minimum of activity to keep your Instagram verification badge: a profile picture and a post. We don't recommend doing less. We recommend doing a lot more.
Use your new blue seal of approval, implement your Instagram strategy and publish engaging content for your audience. Brands don't just live and die on the tick.
Save time managing your Instagram presence by using Hootsuite to schedule and publish posts, grow your audience, and track success with easy-to-use analytics – all from the same dashboard as you run your other social media profiles. Try it for free today.
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