The Proven Step-By-Step Formula For Getting Verified On Instagram

Do you want to know how to get your Instagram account verified with the least amount of stress and unnecessary work possible?

Don’t worry – your endless search for all of your answers ends right here!

We’ve helped numerous influencers and ordinary users across virtually every single niche imaginable get their accounts verified.

Exactly how the process works, what it takes, the untrue myths that spread like wildfire…we got everything you need to go from “nobody” to “somebody.”

But first, you need to know what it means to get verified. More specifically, you probably want to know what advantages come with it.

What Does Having A Verified Instagram Account Mean, Exactly?

Instagram’s Help Center provides a very concise definition on what it means to have a verified account on Instagram.

Specifically, they refer to an approved account as having a “Verified Badge”:

“Verified badges help people more easily find the public figures, celebrities and brands they want to follow.

A verified badge is a check that appears next to an Instagram account’s name in search and on the profile. It means Instagram has confirmed that an account is the authentic presence of the public figure, celebrity or global brand it represents.”

In other words, a verified badge tells your audience (and people who don’t know you) that you are exactly who you say you are.

Obtaining your verification badge confirms your legitimacy on the platform, which adds towards your credibility.

See that little blue checkmark? That’s exactly what you’re looking for.

What Are The Benefits Of Being Verified On Instagram?

Believe it or not, having your Verified Badge can be a very useful asset on your journey towards becoming a highly effective Instagram Influencer.

You’ll also be surprised to discover that getting your account verified acts as a security failsafe to prevent people from pretending to be you!

1 – Stronger Perception Of Your Brand’s Authority

When your followers and newcomers see your verified profile, they will instantly perceive you as a more authoritative and credible figure within your space.

Sure, there are tons of people posting the same type of content as you, but they don’t have the cherished blue checkmark. That verified badge is your status symbol of approval!

The verification badge will indirectly boost your follower count because people will perceive you as more trustworthy and powerful.

This isn’t something exclusive to Instagram – it’s an extension of the basic Rule of Authority successfully used in direct response marketing for the past 100 years:

“…the Rule of Authority — the principle that people are instantly deferential to those in positions of power.

It’s not just security guards and people in uniforms who command our obedience, though, it’s anyone with authority, special knowledge, impressive credentials, or even an air of confidence…it’s anyone with the “symbols” of authority.

In other words, when someone “appears” to be authoritative, we act as if they are, regardless of their actual position.

…since our reaction to authority is so powerful and immediate, those “in the know” can use this principle to get a “yes” response more often.”

2 – Prevention Of Identity Theft

Unfortunately, some people take the golden rule of “model yourself after people who are already successful” a bit too far.

Instagram is rife with copycat competitors who attempt to steal the hard work of other people – photos, social media strategy, names, and more.

It’s one thing when imposters get called out for their shady practices and they get what’s coming to them.

But it’s another thing when your online business is damaged. When there are multiple accounts that appear to be yours, your current and potential followers get confused.

Not only do they not know who the “real” you is (and therefore who to follow), but your copycat competitor might post something that hurts your reputation!

While this is unlikely to happen to you if you have fewer than 10,000 followers, it’s something to look out for.

The verified badge is the official piece of proof that you are the real human being associated with the account and nobody else.

And with that out of the way, you start to become a more trusted figure amongst your followers. They will have the peace of mind in knowing that they are following YOU, and nobody else.

WARNING: Creating fake imposter accounts to give off the appearance of needing verification is instant grounds for a suspension or permanent ban from Instagram. DO NOT DO IT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES!

3 – Improved Visibility In Instagram’s Algorithm

The marketing team at Oberlo was quick to discover that Instagram users with verified accounts not only show up higher in the search engine, but also pop up more often when people are provided with recommendations of people to follow.

Fascinating, isn’t it? It’s almost like being verified is a search engine optimization tactic which organically leads to better long-term growth.

4 – Increased Networking & Monetization Opportunities

This one comes purely from our own experience of having worked with multiple 6-figure and 7-figure businesses who rely almost entirely on Instagram to generate revenue.

With a verified badge on your side, your perceived monetary value increases. We personally know influencers who easily doubled or even tripled their fees for sponsored posts, promotions and shoutouts.

We also know of several Instagram pages that started receiving more networking opportunities and brand deals with high-profile companies soon after receiving verification.

So if you’re looking for a way to better monetize your profile on Instagram, this is definitely it!

Who Verifies Accounts On Instagram?

Instagram’s verification process is 100% done by real human beings – no algorithms are involved whatsoever in the decision-making process.

They are the ones who will review your request for verification and see if your account does not violate any of Instagram’s rules within the Terms of Service and Community Guidelines.

Additionally, the reviewers will seek out the following information:

Authentic: Your account must represent a real person, registered business or entity.

Unique: Your account must be the unique presence of the person or business it represents. Only one account per person or business may be verified, with exceptions for language-specific accounts. We don’t verify general interest accounts (example: @puppymemes).

Complete: Your account must be public and have a bio, profile photo and at least one post. Your profile can’t contain “add me” links to other social media services.

Notable: Your account must represent a well-known, highly searched for person, brand or entity. We review accounts that are featured in multiple news sources, and we don’t consider paid or promotional content as sources for review.”

Put another way, being verified on Instagram certifies that you belong to an exclusive group of important people who have organic followings.

Since the verification process isn’t handed out to any ordinary person, it makes the blue checkmark that much more valuable.

Does Instagram Pay Verified Account Users?

No, Instagram does not provide any kind of payment whatsoever to users who have verified accounts.

Moreover, the verified badge is not permanent. Instagram reserves the right to remove your badge and even delete your account if you are caught submitting false or misleading information while your account is being reviewed for verification.

What Does It REALLY Take To Get Your Instagram Account Verified?

There are two parts to getting your account verified on Instagram.

The first part involves the actual act of submitting a request for verification to Instagram. You’ll find that the entire process takes a couple of seconds.

The second part involves all the work you do BEFORE submitting the actual verification request. This is the trickier part that takes some upfront work in advance, and the part which throws everyone off course.

PART 1: Asking Instagram To Verify Your Account

NOTE: While these instructions are being shown using an iPhone, they are very similar for people who are using Android smartphones.

1. Click the “Profile” icon (that looks like a person) on the bottom left corner of your screen.

2. Click the icon on the top right corner that looks like 3 parallel lines.

3. Click on “Settings” at the bottom right corner (the icon that looks like a gear).

4. Click on “Account.”

5. Click on “Request Verification.”

6. Enter the following information: “Full Name,” “Known As,” “Category.” You also need to attach the proper photo identification, depending on whether you own a personal account or Business account (see image below for details).

7. Click “Send” and wait for Instagram to get back to you (via your notifications) and tell you whether your verification request was approved or denied.

Sound easy enough? Don’t be fooled – this next part may be a bit trickier, but it’s a tried and proven process.

Stick to the plan without deviation and you’ll get your account verified in no time!

PART 2: Setting Up Your Instagram Account In Advance For Fast & Easy Verification

“How do I get verified on Instagram if I don’t know all the steps I have to take in advance to improve my chances?”

As long as you have a professional Facebook page and the willingness to create epic content, your chances are far better than the majority of people attempting to get verified on Instagram.

1. Make sure you clean up your Facebook profile or page to make it appear legitimate.

Canva released an epic compilation of their 30 best practices for creating an engaging and attractive Facebook Business Page.

A lot of the tips may be common-sense to you (Have an attractive bio, make your cover photo visually appealing, have a recognizable profile picture, etc.), it’s very important to review the fundamentals.

2. Search for major publications that are read very widely.

While there are some publications which are niche-specific, your best bet is to focus on the business publications that get an incredible amount of traffic.

Here are the tried and true ones we’ve always advised people to go after, while giving their Instagram accounts the strongest chances for verification:

  • Entrepreneur
  • Fast Company
  • Huffington Post
  • Forbes

Yes, these are indeed the hardest ones to get published on. It’s even harder when you consider that you’re trying to get your very first article published on these websites and you don’t have any relationship with their editors.

However, it has never been easier for you to get published as sites like Huffington Post have recently experienced a massive layoff of contributors.

More than ever, these publications are hungry for somebody (yes, you!) to submit content that is unique and interesting for their audiences.

Awesome stories bring more people to their websites, and bringing more people to their websites gives these publications the freedom to charge more money for advertising and therefore stay profitable.

Starting off, make sure you choose ONE publication that is most relevant to your niche. It will make the next few steps far easier.

3. Come up with original, unique content that is specific to the audience of your chosen publication.

Got your publication chosen? Good – you’re going to need the email address of the person who takes in pitches from writers.

We’ll help get you started!

Entrepreneur: Read over these Contribution Guidelines and submit your final pitch to Jason Feifer (Editor In Chief) at [email protected].

Fast Company: Read over these Submission Guidelines and submit your final pitch to Kathleen Davis (Leadership Editor) at [email protected]. Submit your pitch to [email protected] (or [email protected] if you want to become a regular columnist).

Huffington Post: Read over these Pitch Guidelines and submit your final pitch to [email protected].

Fobes: Submit your final pitch to [email protected].

It’s important for you to spend some time reading through your chosen publication to ensure you aren’t pitching anything that’s already been written about.

This will take time!

It’s perfectly OK if it takes more than 15 minutes for you to come up with an engaging hook, as some major A-list publications have very specific processes for submitting guest posts.

4. Craft your pitch and send it over!

The experts at content marketing software solution Skyword describe an effective pitch as something which specifically shows how a need is met by a solution, and why the reader will not be able to find the information elsewhere.

Specifically, your pitch must be able to answer these four questions:

“What is the purpose of your article?

Are you educating your audience about something new?

Are you introducing readers to a recent development, to thought leadership, or to new ideas?

Are you showing readers how to do something differently or more efficiently?”

We’ve found that the general framework works well within an effective 200-300 word pitch:

  • A catchy, persuasive headline.
  • 2-3 sentences explaining a problem/need, why it needs to be solved and how it will be solved (using sources where appropriate).
  • 3-4 bullet points that discuss the main talking points of your article (you will fill these out when you get approved to write the actual article).
  • 1-2 concluding sentences that talk about the benefits the website will get out of publishing your article. In other words, what’s in it for the readers?

This is not your typical sloppy pitch where you just send a quick email saying “Here’s my content!” and pray for things to work out.

If you send the initial email and you don’t get a reply, follow up 3-4 days later. If nothing, keep on following up once a week until you hear back.

5. If you get the OK to write your article, get your “tribe” ready to promote the article like crazy when it gets published!

It’s one thing to provide value with your content, but now you have to provide value with ATTENTION.

You need to actively find influencers who will be willing to give you and your newly written article a public shoutout when it’s published.

You need to run Facebook ads so you can draw as many people towards your article as possible.

If possible, you can even use an ethical bribe where you offer people something valuable for free in exchange for visiting your article.

The point is to get as many shares as possible on your article.

And you’ll see why in the next step…

6. With your first published article in hand, get a SECOND published article in a DIFFERENT publication by following Steps #2-5 again.

Now that you have your very first article published and a ton of shares to go along with it, it will be WAY easier to get published in any major publication you want.

When you reach out to an editor this time, you’ll have actual social proof that backs up your ability to provide value:

“Look, I wrote for [Forbes Magazine] and this article got 690 shares within 24 hours of publication. I would love to write an article for your publication! I’ll use my massive tribe to promote and share it, and we’ll get hundreds of shares and lots of exposure for you publication as well.”

Bingo! You’re already a shoe-in.

7. Get your Facebook profile/page verified.

With your page professional and clean-looking, along with your two major publications, you are now ready to get verified on Facebook.

NOTE: It’s no longer mandatory to have your Facebook page verified first to get your Instagram page verified.

With that being said, it is much easier to get your Facebook page verified than it is to get your Instagram page verified. Not only that, but getting your Facebook page verification completed will give you a major advantage towards getting your Instagram page verified.

HootSuite has compiled an epic guide that tells you everything you need to know about the Facebook verification process, and how it differs for getting a blue or grey checkmark.

In short, the blue checkmark is designated for celebrities, large brands and major companies. Facebook has a specific process through which you qualify and apply for this type of verification.

The grey checkmark is designated for local businesses and smaller organizations. Again, Facebook outlines a process through which verification is granted.

Regardless of the type of verification you are going for, being published is virtually mandatory if you are going to get through their vetting system.

And don’t forget to link to these two key things upon submitting your application:

If you do this right, you’ll be surprised at how fast Facebook will verify your profile. We have personally seen some accounts get approved 30 minutes after submitting all the necessary information.

8. (FINALLY) Attempt to get your Instagram account verified.

There are two critical factors which will make or break your chances of getting verified on Instagram, more than anything else:

  • Having your Facebook profile/page verified.
  • Having large publications in which you have authored some form of widely read content.

Now do you see why all of the other steps were so important? We had to lay down the groundwork first before applying for a verified badge on Instagram.

Facebook, despite what you may have heard, does NOT verify accounts on both Instagram and Facebook.

With that being said, it is important to establish and verify your identity on other social media platforms, and Facebook is the easiest one to get verified on.

Furthermore, as you already saw in Part 1, there is no text box which allows you to submit links of your published articles when you apply for verification.

The reviewers at Instagram are responsible for doing a Google search on you and finding the articles themselves (hence the importance of having an article where YOUR personal/business name is directly featured).

And before you submit your profile to Instagram for verification, it would be wise to look over these final points…

Overall, you want to avoid any practices where you attempt to “game” the Instagram algorithm.

One major way that people fall into this trap is through hiring “companies” that claim they will verify your Instagram page if you send them thousands of dollars through Paypal.

Trust us, this DOES NOT work! Stay as far away from these shady people as possible.

Does It Matter How Many Followers I Have?

How many followers on Instagram do you need to get verified?

The answer may surprise you!

You can get verified on Instagram with the least amount of followers possible, and you absolutely do not need a massive following to receive the blue checkmark.

While the number has not been revealed or hinted at by Instagram, real-life examples show that there is no set number which guarantees verification.

Forbes contributor Tom Ward learned this himself when he discovered that a comedy page with nearly 10 million followers did not have a verification badge.

But more shocking than that was a page he found of an everyday citizen who had (at the time of writing) 5,000 followers and ZERO posts on Instagram!

Want to go even lower?

The Stock Room, an online eCommerce store selling inspirational products to entrepreneurs, managed to get verified on Instagram with only 311 followers and a whopping total of 8 posts!

For this reason alone, you should NEVER buy followers as an attempt to make yourself look bigger and better than you are.

Not only does it show in the form of abysmal engagement rates, but you can get caught and have your account shadowbanned.

Can I Just Copy And Paste An Instagram Verified Logo To My Username?

It is not possible to copy and paste a verified badge on Instagram into your username (and even if you could, it would likely lead to an instant perma-ban).

Can I Buy A Verified Badge On Instagram?

Absolutely not! And just like attempting to paste a fake badge onto your username, you’re putting yourself in some serious trouble if you do.

We’ll let the folks at Instagram take it from here:

“Keep in mind that Instagram can remove verified badges at any time, and may take away your badge or disable your account if you:

– Advertise, transfer or sell your verified badge.

– Use your profile picture, bio or name section to promote other services.

– Attempt to verify your account through a third party.”

What If My Application For Getting Verified On Instagram Is Accepted Or Rejected?

To be clear: Submitting an application does not automatically mean your account will get verified on Instagram.

Instagram’s team of reviewers will go over your application, and you will receive the final results directly in your notifications.

While we’ve noticed that Instagram takes roughly 3-4 days per application, some people have reported waiting weeks before they heard anything back from Instagram.

Considering that there are tons of people just like you wanting to get verified, it would do you well to be patient! 😉

You will get a message saying that your application was either approved or rejected.

If Your Instagram Page Gets Accepted For Verification

Congratulations! You’ll see the message above, and a blue checkmark right beside your name.

If Your Instagram Page Gets Rejected For Verification

Shucks! That’s not the news you want to hear, but sometimes this can happen.

Instagram does not provide people with feedback that specifically relates to why their individual application got rejected.

Unfortunately, you will have to go back and take the time to see what you could have done differently to improve your odds of getting verified.

The good news is that you can re-submit a new application every 30 days and try again. This will give you plenty of time to troubleshoot your application and make changes as needed.

What Are You Waiting For? Go Get Verified!

While Instagram has made it much easier for people to request a verified badge, they still make it difficult for people to get approved.

Yes, it’s difficult if you attempt to blindly submit an application without much thought or effort.

But if you take the time to read this article BEFORE you request verification status…

Who knows? You might see a blue checkmark across your name very soon! 🙂