Disclaimer: Twitter is overhauling its verification process and has suspended new applications indefinitely. We’ll be the first to let you know when it’s back!
If you use Twitter for business, you’ve probably wondered what it takes to get verified on Twitter. Because you’ve definitely seen Twitter verified accounts before. They have that blue badge with a white check mark. And accounts will only get this official badge after Twitter verifies the account. In fact, it’s much like getting verified on Instagram.
When you get verified on Twitter, that signals to users that your profile is credible and authentic. Accounts like this one:
A report found that by 2050, the entire plastics industry will consume 20% of total oil production, and 15% of the world’s annual carbon budget. https://t.co/RumnPqTGQa
— David Suzuki FDN (@DavidSuzukiFDN) August 31, 2020
And this one:
Waking up in the wilderness!
Have a happy day! pic.twitter.com/a1LZMyvAVj
— Gurdeep Pandher of Yukon (@GurdeepPandher) August 29, 2020
And this one:
Very happy to join @TaikaWaititi for EP5 of ‘James and the Giant Peach with #TaikaAndFriends’ to raise money for @PIH. TOMORROW, Monday May 25th at 10am PST/1pm EST. pic.twitter.com/Commip6ved
— Ryan Reynolds (@VancityReynolds) May 24, 2020
Basically, any kind of account can be considered for verification. That includes accounts used by businesses, politicians, celebrities, musicians and artists, influencers, journalists and more.
The application program to verify Twitter accounts is currently on hold. But there are still things you can do to make sure your Twitter account is as credible and authentic as possible. And doing them could help you get verified when the program is up and running again.
This article explains:
- What Twitter verification means and why it’s important for marketers.
- Some background details about the verification program.
- Essential things you should do to get verified and stay verified.
- And things you definitely should not do if you’re trying to build authentic reputation on Twitter.
Bonus: Download the free 30-day plan to grow your Twitter following fast, a daily workbook that will help you establish a Twitter marketing routine and track your growth, so you can show your boss real results after one month.
What does Twitter verification mean?
That blue badge signals to all Twitter users that the platform recognizes the account as real, credible, authentic and of interest to the public.
Not sure what an “authentic” Twitter account means? It means you’re not impersonating, manipulating or spamming anyone. And you’re not violating any copyright or trademark laws, either.
Only Twitter can verify accounts and add that blue badge to profiles. Third parties can’t do it. And you certainly can’t add it yourself. (That will get you suspended. Find more details on things not to do below.)
Other things to know about Twitter verification include:
- Verification doesn’t mean endorsement. The blue badge only means your account was deemed credible by Twitter.
- The official verification badge will always show in the same place. Verified accounts will always have the check mark next to their username, both in their profile and any tweet they send. It also shows next to the username in search results.
- The official Twitter verification badge always looks the same. The badges are always the same shape and colour.
- The number of tweets from your account and your number of followers don’t matter. These aren’t taken into consideration for the verification process.
What is the point of having a Twitter verified account?
There are a few reasons:
- It builds credibility. Right away, users know this isn’t an account run by bots or an impersonator.
- It shows your account is authentic. The badge signals you aren’t spamming, manipulating or misleading followers.
- It shows your account is of interest to the public. And this might lead to an increase in your followers.
How to submit your profile for Twitter verification
It isn’t all that simple to verify Twitter accounts right now.
Twitter’s verification process is currently on hold. And it has been for a while. Twitter paused the application program in 2017.
Verification was meant to authenticate identity & voice but it is interpreted as an endorsement or an indicator of importance. We recognize that we have created this confusion and need to resolve it. We have paused all general verifications while we work and will report back soon
— Twitter Support (@TwitterSupport) November 9, 2017
Twitter hasn’t released a date for when users can expect the verification application process to open up again or what a new application process might look like.
Instead of verifying accounts, Twitter has recently been focusing on:
Basically, Twitter is trying to focus on enhancing reliable, real conversations.
We want to help you access credible information, especially when it comes to public health.
We’ve adjusted our search prompt in key countries across the globe to feature authoritative health sources when you search for terms related to novel #coronavirus. pic.twitter.com/RrDypu08YZ
— Twitter Public Policy (@Policy) January 29, 2020
9 ways to increase your chances of getting verified on Twitter
Even though the formal Twitter verification process is paused, these are ways to increase your brand’s credibility and authenticity right now. And following these tips might help with verification down the road, if a formal application process reopens in the future.
Plus, following these tips will help increase your Twitter following.
1. Make sure you account is active
Don’t tweet sporadically. Being active on Twitter is one of the most important ways to increase interest in the content your brand shares.
For example, Wendy’s is known for its fun, cheeky tweets:
Hope your server maintenance is as active as your twitter 😉
(and make sure the crowns aren’t paper) https://t.co/Zdytpf0gAd
— Wendy’s (@Wendys) August 11, 2020
And Wendy’s followers can count on the brand to share those tweets at least once a day.
As well as writing and sharing new content regularly, maintaining an active account also means:
- Engaging with other users’ content by liking it, retweeting and commenting.
- Responding to direct messages, mentions and comments.
- Following other verified accounts and engaging with their content.
- Searching for new Twitter users to follow.
- Using hashtags to participate in what’s trending.
2. Make sure your brand’s Twitter profile is optimized
You want your Twitter account to look good and reflect your brand. Be sure to optimize your account by writing a brief, descriptive bio, including your business’s location and including a link to your business’s website.
An optimized Twitter account will also use high-quality images for the profile picture and heading picture. And both will reflect your brand.
Take optimization one step further by pinning your top tweet. That way users visiting your profile for the first time will see your best, or most timely, content.
For example, Nike uses its logo for its Twitter profile picture. It uses its slogan for the header photo. Nike’s latest ad campaign, “You Can’t Stop Us,” is pinned so it is always easily visible to users visiting Nike’s account:
3. Start engaging conversations and join in conversations
Part of having a credible presence on Twitter comes down to how your brand engages with other accounts. Ask questions, try Twitter polls and mention other verified accounts to bring them into the conversation.
For example, Coca Cola is showing its commitment to the Black Lives Matter movement by participating in the conversation and using the #BlackLivesMatter hashtag. It’s also connecting with another Twitter user that’s part of the important conversation, the non-profit organization 100 Black Men:
4. Keep it real
Buying followers or relying on bots will undermine your account’s credibility — fast. So will posting spammy content.
To appear authentic, credible and reliable, your brand has to be authentic, credible and reliable. Shortcuts won’t cut it. Your brand has to put in the work.
5. Create a marketing strategy for your brand
Having a clear Twitter marketing strategy makes putting in that work a little easier.
Do this to:
- Outline clear, achievable goals.
- Determine what your competition is doing.
- Plan a content calendar.
- Track engagement and growth.
As well as helping your brand determine whether it’s meeting its goals, having a strategy in place will help you monitor what content your audience is engaging with and stay on track to post content regularly.
6. Make sure your tweets are open to the public
Twitter users can change their privacy settings to protect their tweets. But for brands, this limits interaction and engagement. It will stunt growth and will show Twitter that your account isn’t one that’s of interest to the general public.
To maximize engagement and public conversation with your brand, make sure your tweets are set as public.
7. Include photos and video
When you only have 280 characters to work with, using imagery and video can help emphasize what you’re trying to say. Plus, adding a high-quality visual component can boost engagement.
For example, Disney generates excitement for the new Mulan movie by sharing a high-quality trailer on its Twitter account. With an eight-second video sharing the details, less needs to be written:
Start streaming #Mulan in 5 days exclusively on #DisneyPlus with Premier Access. For more info: https://t.co/63CDjZ9UGI pic.twitter.com/cIgOD5h3Gr
— Disney (@Disney) August 30, 2020
8. Write well
Any time you write a tweet or a comment, make sure you’ve double-checked it for spelling mistakes, typos and grammatical errors before you hit publish. Publishing a tweet with errors isn’t exactly professional. And you can’t edit a tweet after it’s been published.
The way you write is also a way to show off your account’s credibility and authenticity. Write in a way that reflects your brand’s tone and its personality. Be original, be sincere and be human!
9. Track engagement with Twitter analytics
Using Twitter analytics will give you an in-depth understanding of who is engaging with your brand’s account. By tracking important analytics like top tweet, new followers, engagement and Twitter reach percentage, your brand will have qualitative data showing what content performs well.
Tracking analytics will also give you an idea of the days of the week and best times of day for your brand to share content and for optimal engagement. Then, use a scheduling platform like Hootsuite to make sure those planned posts are always published at those ideal times.
Find more information on scheduling tweets using Hootsuite’s Publisher here:
How to stay verified on Twitter
Even though the Twitter verification application process is on hold, it’s still possible to lose that blue check mark if your account was previously verified.
Doing any of the following will result in the removal of your Twitter verified badge. And if you lose that badge, you might not get it back.
By the way, doing any of the following is always a bad idea, regardless of whether your account has been Twitter verified or not.
#1: Do not create your own blue badge for your profile picture
Don’t want to wait for Twitter to verify your account? Think it’s okay to Photoshop your own blue checkmark badge over your profile picture or background picture?
Think again. Only Twitter can verify accounts and give accounts the verification badge. Any profile that puts a fake badge anywhere on their Twitter account to imply that Twitter has verified them, will get their account suspended.
#2: Do not mislead followers by changing your Twitter display name
You were verified because your account was deemed authentic, credible and something the public is interested in. Changing your Twitter name or bio is seen as intentionally misleading, especially if the modifications alter the account’s original purpose. Whatever you were verified with, keep it.
#3: Don’t be mean
This is just generally good life advice. But also, promoting hate or violence of any kind, including harassing other Twitter users and sharing gruesome imagery of any kind, will result in your account being suspended and unverified. Just don’t do it.
#4: Don’t do anything that violates Twitter Rules
Not sure about Twitter Rules? Unsure if something you’re planning might violate them? Just take a quick read of the rulebook to be sure. Doing anything that violates the rules will result in your account being unverified and even suspended.
If you’re hoping to get the official Twitter verification badge on your profile soon, you might have to be patient for a little while longer. But in the meantime, make sure you’re using your account in a way that builds a credible, engaging and real Twitter presence for your brand. That will pay off down the road.
Use Hootsuite to manage your Twitter presence alongside all your other social media channels. From a single dashboard you can monitor conversations and lists, grow your audience, schedule tweets, and much more. Try it free today.