Getting verified on Instagram takes a bit more than just asking for it.happydancing/Shutterstock
In today’s social-influencer driven landscape, the coveted blue “verified” checkmark found on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram provides not only street-cred to your base of followers, but gives your posts a seal of authenticity and legitimacy from the platform.
And while this tier of social influence was originally reserved for established celebrities and brands, Instagram has now made it possible for any Instagram user to apply for verification directly from the app – but users still have a few hurdles to jump before Instagram approves the request.
Here’s how to request verification from Instagram, using either the iPhone or Android app.
Applying for verification itself is a pretty painless process. To start…
1. Pull up your Instagram app and navigate to the menu (the three bars in the top right corner) on your account homepage.
2. Look for the Settings gear at the bottom of the menu and click it.
Tap “Request Verification.” Sarah Wells/Business Insider
3. Click the word “Account” on the next page.
4. On your Account Settings page, you should see “Request Verification” at the bottom of the page. Click it.
- Tap “Request Verification.” Sarah Wells/Business Insider
5. From there you’ll be prompted to provide your full name, a photo of an official document to verify it (like a driver’s license, passport, or business tax filing), and a category that best describes your account (such as blogger/influencer, business/brand/organization, or news/media).
Fill in the verification prompts, including your identity and page category. Sarah Wells/Business Insider
And voila! The fate of your Insta-cred is now in the hands of Instagram.
How Instagram decides on applications for verification
Once you’ve submitted your appeal to Instagram, it’s a waiting game to see whether or not you’ll be approved. But, in the meantime, you can take a look at its criteria to see how you stack up against Instagram’s standards.
According to Instagram’s help site there a few key attributes it looks for when designating a verified account.
- Is the account authentic? This one’s easy. As long as you’re being yourself and not purposefully impersonating another person or brand, you should be all set.
- Is the account unique? This might sound a little like the first caveat, but instead of focusing on impersonating accounts, this caveat focuses on how many Instagram accounts you’re operating. For example, an influencer or brand would need to have just one central account that represented them (instead of several different ones) in order to be verified.
- Is the account complete? Instagram stipulates that a “complete” profile must have a bio, profile picture and at least one post. Easy enough. But the trickier part of this caveat might be that Instagram also specifies that the account can’t have links to the user’s other social channels, i.e. a link to the user’s Twitter.
- Is the account “notable?” This is both the most open-ended of the caveats and (arguably) the most important. Instagram defines notable as a brand or entity that is “well-known” or “highly-searched” and in part uses media coverage to determine this status – excluding paid promotional content.
Apart from those criteria, and adhering to Instagram’s community guidelines andterms of service, determining exactly what makes or breaks a verification request is still a bit of a mystery.
And hey, if Instagram denies your campaign for verification this time around, you can always apply again in 30 days.