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The Blue Checkmark on Instagram – Everything You Need to Know

The Blue Checkmark on Instagram – Everything You Need to Know

Home Blog Social Media Instagram The Blue Checkmark on Instagram – Everything You Need to Know

Instagram is so much more than a mere photo-sharing social site. With over a billion monthly active users, this platform is a powerful tool for growing your business.

Active Instagram Users
Source: oberlo.com

In recent years, the platform has expanded the ways of Instagram growth in which content creators, business owners, and marketers can garner attention for their products and services. 

On Instagram, the blue check opens up even more opportunities to grow your business by giving you more exposure on the platform. However, the status symbol comes with some caveats. 

This article covers everything you need to know about the blue checkmark on Instagram, including what it is, the benefits of having one, and what you can do to get it on your account.

So, if you’re committed to taking your Instagram game to the next level, read on to discover everything you need to know about the blue checkmark on Instagram.

Table Of Contents:

Instagram Engagement Report 2020

What is the Blue Checkmark on Instagram?

Also known as the Instagram verified sticker, the blue checkmark appears next to the account name, as well as in searches, and when the Instagram account owner comments on posts.

Instagram Verified Badge Example

The badge has one simple use, and that is to recognize the account as the brand’s official profile. Verification on Instagram prevents impersonation, which is why it’s reserved for celebrities, global brands, and public figures. 

The platform offers a verification program for accounts that represent well-known brands and influencers where there is a high likelihood of the account being impersonated. This is to help ensure that users in the Instagram community are dealing with authentic brands and people that they want to follow. 

Instagram first allowed users to request for verification in August 2018. And for those that have the sticker, it means that the platform has confirmed that the profile belongs to a public figure. 

When someone makes a request, Instagram takes into account a variety of factors in determining whether or not to grant the request for verification. 

One of the main factors they consider is if there’s a high probability of the accounts being impersonated. Applicants need to be public figures, such as brands, celebs, or influencers in order to receive the blue checkmark verification.

Advantages of the Blue Checkmark on Instagram

If your business or brand is at risk of being impersonated, then you need to get the verification mark. There are many advantages to getting the Instagram verified sticker, some of which are listed below:

  • The checkmark on Instagram helps to showcase the exclusivity of your brand
  • It’s an easy way to increase brand awareness and grow your follower count
  • It is an effective strategy to protect your brand from impostors
  • It increases trustworthiness between your brand and your followers
  • Brands prefer to work with influences or marketers with verified Instagram accounts
  • The check also helps users to easily find your brand on social media

Accounts with the checkmark also get early access to other special features on Instagram, such as the “swipe up” feature on Instagram stories which requires a brand to have upwards of 10,000 users in order to gain access to the tool. Verified accounts owners are exempted from this rule.

As you can see, having this simple checkmark on your Instagram business profile can make a massive difference in your efforts to build brand awareness and increase your followers.

Now that you understand the advantages of the blue check on Instagram, it’s time to look at who is eligible to apply for verification on the social platform.

Understanding Eligibility

In order to be eligible to apply for the blue checkmark, your Instagram account must meet the following criteria for verification:

The Account Must Be Authentic: In order to be considered for verification, your Instagram account must represent a registered business or entity, or it must belong to a real person. 

The Account Must Be Unique: The Instagram account must be the unique presence of the business or person that it represents. This means that only one account may be verified per person or business. 

There is an exception for language-specific accounts, but general interest accounts will not be verified. This includes fan accounts, feature accounts, and meme accounts (e.g. @puppymemes).

The Account Must Be Complete: The blue Instagram badge is only for public entities and celebrities, which means that you cannot have a private profile on the platform. 

Also, your profile must be complete, meaning that it must have a profile photo, bio, and at least one post in the feed. Furthermore, your profile cannot include “add me” links to any other social media platforms.

The Account Must Be Notable: In order to get verified, your Instagram account needs to represent a well-known figure or brand. It must be highly searched and/or featured in multiple news sources. Instagram does not consider promotional or paid content associates for account review.

In addition to meeting the criteria outlined above, you must also follow Instagram’s Terms of Service as well as the platform’s Community Guidelines.

Important Note: If you provide misleading or false information during the process of verification, Instagram will remove your verified badge. They may also take additional action, such as deleting your account. 

So make sure that you are honest in your application. 

Include only accurate, relevant, and truthful information during all the stages of the account verification process. 

  • Use your real name
  • Choose an accurate account category
  • Use real documentation and photos to prove your identity.

How to Apply for the Checkmark (Step-by-Step)

Anyone can apply to get verified and Instagram. Below are the criteria for applying, as well as the verification process for getting the blue check next to your name on your Instagram profile.

Step 1: Log Into Your Account

Log into your Instagram account. If you own more than one, make sure that you log into the account that you want to verify.

Step 2: Request Verification

1. Once in your Instagram profile, tap the Menu button located in the top right corner and then tap the icon for Settings (it’s the one that looks like a little gear).

Step 1 Go to Instagram Settings

2. Tap the Account icon:

Step 2 Go to Instagram Account

3. Tap Request Verification located near the bottom.

Step 3 Click on Request Verification

Step 3: Confirm Your Identity

1. Fill in the required details, including your full name, professional name, and the correct category.

Full Name: This is your full, legal name exactly the way it appears on your government-issued ID.

Known As: Here, you can enter the name of your company or the name that your audience generally knows you as. For instance, if you have a nickname or if you use a middle name rather than your first name, this is where that information goes.

Category: There are various categories to choose from, and it’s important to ensure that you pick the one that is most accurate for your Instagram account. Categories include news/media, sports, music, fashion, entertainment, government/politics, business/brand/organization, blogger/influencer, or other.

Step 4 Fill in the required details

2. Upload your official business documents or government-issued photo identification. If you are an individual, you can use your passport, ID card, or driver’s license. 

For businesses, you can use a utility bill with your company name, your articles of incorporation, or a tax return. Make sure that the name you entered above matches the name on your documents.

Step 5 Upload official business documents

3. Tap Send when you’ve completed your application. 

And that’s it!

Once Instagram has reviewed your request, they will let you know whether or not your application has been approved. The official reply will come within a few days.

If at first you don’t succeed, don’t give up after the first try.

There are many reasons why Instagram may decide to reject your application for the blue checkmark. 

If your first application is denied, take the time to find out how you can improve your profile, grow your audience, and further establish yourself as a noteworthy person online. 

Once you’ve made those changes, simply apply again. You can submit the next request 30 days after the previous request was denied.

How to Increase Chances of Approval

Instagram is very clear on the fact that even if your Instagram account meets the criteria for verification, it’s still not a guarantee that you will get the blue checkmark. In order to give yourself the best chance of getting approval, it’s a good idea to implement the following tips: 

Complete Your Bio: One of the first things Instagram looks for when determining whether or not to verify your account is a complete profile. Make sure you fill in all the information required in the bio fields. 

Include a photo, at least one post, and accurate information about yourself, your business, or your brand.

Become Newsworthy: Yet another core requirement for getting verified on Instagram is that your account must be newsworthy. One way to achieve this is by getting your name in the news. You can send out press releases and media kits to get your name in the media. 

You can also connect with local news agencies and other large publications for even more visibility. 

As an example, Ryan Grant (pictured below) has used his retail arbitrage business to gather a substantial amount of press.  Placements like these allow people to prove to Instagram that their story is newsworthy and they have a substantial online presence.

Ryan Grant Substantial Online Presence

Optimize Your Online Presence: Work on grooming your online presence to make it highly searchable. If your name only appears on Instagram, it makes it less likely that your account will be verified. 

Increase your visibility online by optimizing your own website with a tool like Thrive Themes, as well as your presence on other social media profiles so that you have a notable presence in web search. You can also guest post on different authority websites and appear as a guest in videos and podcasts. 

Due to Linkedin being a very important professional network, it’s a good idea to connect with all professional folks you’ve worked with in the past.  When you do this, some of these LinkedIn message templates can help you connect with those individuals and add personalization to your outreach campaign.

Grow Your Following On Instagram: Although there isn’t a required number of followers for Instagram verification, a higher number of followers does make you seem more notable. Continue to build your reach and grow your followers if you want to secure the blue check on Instagram.

Post Regularly: The guidelines state that you only need one post to be considered for blue check verification, but ideally, you don’t want to apply until you have an Instagram presence that is more robust. 

To be a notable person online, you need an active account with lots of followers. This is a key indicator of how noteworthy you are, and it will greatly boost your chances of being approved.

Increase Engagement: Another way to increase your chances of approval for the blue checkmark on Instagram is to get your followers involved. On most social channels, engagement is considered a strong signal of authenticity. 

Instagram suggests encouraging your customers to tag your brand in their posts so that other people can see posts from customers who use your products or services.

Mistakes to Avoid

When trying to get the blue checkmark on Instagram, there are certain mistakes that should be avoided at all costs. 

Here are some of the things that you should not do if you want to get approval:

Don’t use third-party services to apply: There are a lot of people online who will attempt to sell you fast and easy Instagram verification. These are all scams. The steps to apply for blue check verification are very simple. Anyone can follow them, and there is no need to attempt to verify your Instagram account using a third party service.

Don’t add links in your bio to other social media channels: Don’t use your Instagram bio to cross-promote other social media accounts. Also, don’t ask your followers on Instagram to follow you anywhere else. Instagram will not approve your profile if it contains “add me” links to other social media channels. 

Don’t break Instagram’s rules and policies: The last thing you want to happen is to lose your verification badge after you get it. To avoid this, you must continue to follow Instagram’s Terms of Service as well as the platform’s Community Guidelines. 

Some of the things that may result in your badge being taken away include transferring or selling your badge, using your bio, profile picture, or Instagram name to market or promote other services, and so on.

Instagram Blue Checkmark Q&A

How Many Followers Do You Need for the Blue Checkmark on Instagram?

There is no required number of followers that you need to be verified on Instagram. 

Having said that, one of the core requirements for getting approved is having a notable account. This means that your account must represent a well-known and highly searched-for person, brand, or business. 

So while there is no official number of followers you need, the more followers you have, the more notable Instagram considers you to be.

Can You Create The Blue Checkmark For Your Profile?

You cannot create the blue checkmark for your Instagram profile. It needs to be granted by Instagram staff after they have manually reviewed your profile and information to verify that you meet all the criteria for verification. 

When Do You Get the Blue Checkmark on Instagram?

There is no specific timeframe as to when you get the blue checkmark on Instagram. It is chosen by Instagram staff and they determine when you receive the blue check if your application is approved.

Can I Still Show That I’m Authentic if I Can’t Get Verified?

Getting verified is not the only way to prove that you’re authentic on Instagram. There are many other ways that you can establish a strong and credible presence on the platform. 

Here are some ways you can show your authenticity to your audience if you fail to get Instagram verification:

Leverage Your Bio: One of the most important things you can do to show your audience that you are authentic is to use your Instagram bio effectively. Taking the time to complete your bio in full will not only increase your chances of verification, but it also helps you even if you do not get verified.

A great description of your business or brand will go a long way toward showing your audience that your account is credible and authentic.

Link From Official Sources: Link to your Instagram account from other official sources, such as your Facebook page, Twitter account, YouTube channel, and website. Doing this is especially helpful if you already own a verified account on any of the other channels. Just remember not to link to any of your other social media profiles from your Instagram bio.

Use Instagram Stories: Yet another effective way to show your authenticity on Instagram is to go behind the scenes with Instagram stories. This will give you a chance to give your audience a peep behind the scenes so they can get to know the people behind your brand. 

Giving your followers this type of insight is something that is very hard for anyone else to imitate and it will definitely boost your authenticity on the platform.

For instance, if you’re like me and focus on making money from blogging, you may want to include numerous screenshots and “proof” images showcasing the earnings you’ve acquired.  This helps to build your credibility and solidifies your credibility.

Instagram Engagement Report 2020

Summary

Getting verified for Instagram certainly has its perks. Use the information in this article to help you increase your chances of getting approved so you can start enjoying the many benefits that come with having the blue checkmark next to your name on Instagram.

And remember, whether you get the blue check or not, you can still experience phenomenal results on the platform by focusing on producing high-quality, engaging content that your audience will love and appreciate. For best results on Instagram, you can also try out tools like Instagram automation tools, Instagram marketing tools, etc.

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Ron Stefanski

Ron Stefanski is an internet entrepreneur and marketing professor at National Louis University who has a passion for helping people create and market their own online business. You can learn more from him by visiting OneHourProfessor.com

Guest Blogger @ One Hour Professor