Should you pay for social verification?
Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock in recent weeks, you will have seen plenty of articles, posts and tweets about the phasing out of account verification (those coveted blue ticks/checkmarks) for legacy accounts on Twitter. Many personalities and journalists have said that they will refuse to pay for the new Twitter Blue subscription service on offer given that there is no longer any editorial decision making about who should or shouldn’t have verification. In the last few days, a spat between Elon Musk and the New York Times has resulted in the removal of their verified account status on Twitter following claims that the entire system has been devalued by Musk’s actions.
Add to that Meta and other platforms offering a similar subscription service and things are reaching boiling point between the social channels and their high profile users and organisations.
So, with all this tick swinging going on…should you get involved or not?
As a quick recap for those of you who are unfamiliar, account verification is the process by which social media platforms verify the identity of users, usually through a blue tick or checkmark next to their name. This helps to establish credibility and authenticity, particularly for high-profile individuals and brands. But, is it worth paying for?
The benefits of paying for verification:
- Increased perception of credibility: Having a verified account can help establish a perception of greater credibility and authenticity, particularly for businesses, influencers, and public figures. This can help to increase trust and engagement with your audience.
- Improved visibility: Verified accounts are often given priority in search results and recommended content, which can increase your visibility on the platform.
- Enhanced security: Verifying your account can help protect against impersonation and phishing scams through Two Factor Authentication (2FA). This can help to safeguard your account information and brand reputation.
- Access to exclusive features: Some social media platforms offer exclusive features (e.g. longer Tweets and fewer ads) and tools to verified users, such as analytics and content creation tools.
- Competitive advantage: In a crowded social media landscape, having a verified account can give you a competitive advantage over others in your niche or industry.
So benefits, yes, but let's take a look at some of the potential negatives of paying for account verification:
- Cost: While it may not be a major factor, account verification can be an unnecessary expense, particularly for small businesses or individuals with limited budgets.
- It's not permanent: Twitter reserves the right to revoke a company's verified status at any time if they violate Twitter's policies or if they change their username or display name.
- It doesn't guarantee credibility: Twitter verification does not guarantee that a company is credible or trustworthy. While it does show that the company's account is authentic, it does not guarantee that the company is legitimate or that its content is accurate.
So, what's the verdict? Will you pay to play?
In the current climate, the best thing you can do is create high-quality, authentic content that engages your audience. Whether you have a blue tick next to your name or not, it is the creative content and your own authenticity that will make you stand out on any platform.
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