On August 28, Instagram rolled-out a new option for users who may be itching to score that little blue check on their profile. Verification on Instagram is considered by many to be the new level of fame. Before August 28, it was a bit of a mystery how Instagram would choose users to verify. Popular users would often have to wait months (or years) for a verification that might never happen, or secretly pay for a black-market verification themselves. Now, there is an option under Settings for all Instagram users to have their account reviewed for verification. Yes, even for those of us who aren't traditionally famous.
According to Forbes, the previous way to get verified was a bit tricky. The article instructs, "be famous and have a ton of followers, work with a digital agency and have them submit a request for you, or pay a third party or someone at Instagram to get you verified." Most verified people (think of celebrities or famous athletes) have a publicist or an agency that is able to pull a few digital strings to get the ball rolling. This is called "Media Partner Support" and usually involves the account of a large public figure.
Don't have a fancy publicist to do your social media bidding? Never fear, there's a solution for everyone. To get your account verified, simply go to Settings and click Request Verification. After selecting, you will be prompted to give your Instagram handle, full name, and a copy of government-issued identification (such as a passport or license). It's that easy. But just because you submitted a form doesn't mean that blue check mark is just going to pop up. It's common for Instagram to reject verification requests based on, well, no one really knows. Instagram still stands firm that account verification is usually saved for a "notable public figure, celebrity, global brand or entity it represents." How they determine such a standing remains a mystery.
Instagram has made a point of keeping its reasons for verifying some users and not others a well-kept industry secret. Some think verification has to do with followers but that may not be the case. Accounts with more than millions of followers are sometimes not verified while some smaller profiles are. But the one-step verification process can mean good news for influencers who make their living on sponsored posts and curated content. A verified account means a stamp of validity for those trying to make social media into a full-time job. Instagram verification isn't just for celebrities posting salad and baby photos (at least, not anymore). The growth of Instagram shows no signs of slowing down and is basically the new way to market. Videographers, models, and photographers alike can now rejoice over their newly claimed check marks (if they're lucky enough to get one).