Have you seen that blue check next to an account’s name on Instagram? For most people, it’s just no big deal. But for some, particularly popular brands, celebrities, and even agencies that are likely to be impersonated, it’s crucial. What I’m talking about is the Instagram Verified Badge. And it’s one of the hardest things to earn – yes, you can’t purchase it – on the internet today.
What Is the Instagram Verified Badge and Its Purpose?
Basically, it’s a sign to let everyone know that the account is authentic, and it’s more of a status symbol. And that’s just it.
So, what makes it hype? It’s hyped because it can’t be bought nor can you apply for it, making it extremely exclusive.
Are There Benefits?
In the past, it was only helping people follow real celebrity accounts. However, today, it boosts brands’ credibility a lot. Big, international brands now often have this badge, and people are so accustomed to that. It makes them think that every business without a badge isn’t that trustworthy compared to those that have it.
This mentality has made a lot of small brands do whatever they can to get one of these badges even if it defeats the purpose.
One of the things the Instagram Verified Badge offers is a higher ranking on their search engine and Google as well. However, that only happens because there are multiple accounts using the same name – unauthorized copies such as fan pages.
Whenever you search for a famous actor/actress, there will be other accounts displayed, and before December 2014 (when the Verification Badge was introduced), you can’t tell which is which as some of the illegitimate accounts have more followers than the real one.
Now, for brands don’t have an imposter account, whenever someone searches for such accounts, they’ll still be at the top as there are no other contenders. That fact alone really makes you question if small brands (those without the risk of being impersonated) need this badge.
So Do Small Brands Really Need This Authentication Level?
In my opinion, the answer is NO. Although it now has become a challenge of convincing people that your business is legit and worthy enough of receiving trust without the badge, there are still ways to work a way around it.
I, myself, am not verified. But it did not hinder me from getting the trust and love from my audience. You can still stand out by providing quality content and by showing authenticity through your other social media accounts that are verified.