In this post, Castle’s Head of Social Media Elena Rosewell talks you through one of the biggest steps a brand can take when it comes to their social media activity – how to get verified on Instagram.

An active and engaging social media presence is a vital way for businesses to increase their brand awareness and draw in new customers – and its importance is only likely to grow in the coming years.

When it comes to making the most of your use of social media, getting verified can be hugely beneficial. It’s a great way of increasing consumer trust and giving your brand a sense of exclusivity. In this post, I’ll explain the process of getting verified on Instagram, one of the key platforms for reaching younger adults in particular.

What does it mean to be verified on Instagram?

In the simplest terms, Instagram verification means you have a blue tick next to your name, either on your brand page or your personal page. This tick tells users that you’ve been verified by the Instagram domain. By adding the blue tick to your account, they are essentially confirming that they have verified who you are and that you are who you say you are.

There are many advantages to getting verified on Instagram. It’s a great way of avoiding brand theft and increasing trust in your account. It also adds an element of exclusivity to your page, as verification is generally associated with famous people and big brands. So, when someone visits your profile who hasn’t heard of you or your brand if you’ve got a blue tick, they’re going to recognise it and see that you are a trustworthy source.

Additionally, verification also gives you access to beta tools on Instagram, so you get to try out new features before the rest of Instagram users as well.

The Instagram interface on an iPhone to show how to get verified on Instagram.

Who can get verified on Instagram?

In principle, almost anyone can apply for Instagram verification, but who gets verified is down to Instagram themselves.

The basic requirement is that you have to have over 500 followers, Realistically, however, over 10,000 is what they actually look for. So, as long as you have over 10,000 followers on a page or a personal profile, you will have a good chance of being verified.

There are exceptions to this. If you are a celebrity – if you’ve been on X-Factor, for instance, or you’ve been on a reality TV show – Instagram will potentially verify you even if you have fewer than 10,000 followers.

When it comes to getting verified as a brand, you’ll also need to be able to prove that you actually are that brand – you may need to prove that you own the trademarks, for instance.

Castle's Head of Social, Elena Rosewell explaining to a colleague how to get verified on Instagram.

How to get verified on Instagram?

The first step is to go to your settings on your Instagram account. You’ll have to do it from a mobile device or a tablet rather than on a desktop browser. In your settings, go to the account section and you’ll see an option that says “request verification”.

Pressing this will take you through to a form that you’ll need to fill out. That form will ask for a variety of information. It’ll ask for your Instagram username and your full name, which will either be your personal name or your business name if you’re doing it on behalf of a business. It also has a “known as” section, in which you’ll put what you are generally known as or what your business is known as – this may well be different from your personal name or your username. You’re also asked for your account category – for example, are you a blogger? Are you a retail store? Are you a law firm?

Finally, it will ask for photo identification. If you are doing this for your personal page, you will need to provide your driver’s licence, passport, or another identification document containing your photo.

If you’re a business you’ll need to provide legal things such as utility bills, incorporation documents, VAT documents, just to prove you are who you say you are.

To help with the process, you can also provide links to news articles that are about yourself or about the business. These can be really beneficial to your verification request, particularly if they’re from trustworthy sources. The more links you provide, the more likely you are to be verified.

Then you press submit and wait! It can take Instagram up to thirty days to process the verification claim. You’ll either be accepted or rejected. If you’re rejected, you can apply again in thirty days’ time.