Blue tick ick? Are businesses being forced into a pay to play trap?

By rotide
Created 18/09/2023 - 18:53
Edward go up.jpg

The monetisation of the blue tick on various platforms such as X, former Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook, may be the latest controversial development in social media. If you would have asked us a couple of years ago, we would all be thrilled to hear the character count increase to 240 in a single tweet. Now within the realm of social media, it's impossible to guess what's coming next. 

The most recent update surrounding paying for verification seems to be dividing the virtual community: Should you do it, should you skip it? Is it redundant to have a "verified" status when people think you may have paid for it?

If you are a person using social media platforms for business purposes, whether that's talking about projects, networking with others within your industry, connecting with your customers or sharing work-it can be beneficial to become verified. After looking at the algorithm it does seem to favour and give more reach to verified accounts (go figure!). However, on the flip side what comes next? First you pay for the ads, then you pay for the reach, now the tick. Could social media be distracting you from keeping focus on what your audience wants, whilst emptying your pockets.

Another major concern with people now being able to pay for a blue tick is the lack of difference between public figures and people who have paid for a blue tick. Previously, verified accounts had to belong to well recognised individuals or brands, which was based on factors such as news coverage, industry references, and audience size. Now, high-profile accounts will have to pay for verification along with everyone else. This new false authority could allow bad actors to spread misinformation and scam people based on the account's status as a verified profile. 

So... should you opt in? The best way to answer this is to consider the people/ accounts you're hoping to reach. Running a thriving social media account takes a lot of time and effort, so before going all in on a single service, consider where your ideal audience spends their time. A major focus should be on building your personal brand on platforms that you feel your customers or future customers currently engage. Right now, that's likely to be Instagram and TikTok, however both those platform's algorithms are really leaning into discovery, meaning there are lots of opportunities for growth and new fans.

Whilst, the jury is still out for deliberation on paying for verification, what we do know is that the era of "free" social media accounts in exchange for all your data appears to be coming to an end.

Edward Coram-James, CEO Go Up [1]

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