Meta Verified gets a business upgrade

Meta is expanding its paid verification program, allowing businesses to buy their way into the once-exclusive club. 

The paid verification program for businesses was launched last year in Australia, New Zealand, and Canada. Now, businesses of all sizes in additional countries can subscribe for a monthly fee, ranging from $14.99 to a whopping $349.99 to secure that elusive blue checkmark. 

Each subscription covers a single Facebook or Instagram account, and the program is expected to roll out to WhatsApp as well.

According to Meta, verified businesses will receive a number of benefits, including:

  • Verification flex: Essentially, a digital ID card for your business, signaling legitimacy.
  • Impersonation protection: Meta promises to crack down on fake accounts trying to mimic your brand and steal your customers.
  • Fast pass to customer support: Need help with a glitch or a disgruntled follower? Verified businesses get priority access to Meta’s customer service team.
  • Mysterious “stand out” features: The specifics here are a bit vague, but Meta hints at potential visibility boosts and access to exclusive tools.

Smaller businesses with limited budgets might find the monthly subscription fees a steep price to pay. However, for larger companies with an established online presence, the benefits could be valuable.

Some users worry that this move signifies an even steeper shift towards a “pay-to-play” model for social media. Could a system where money dictates visibility eventually drown out organic content and genuine engagement? 

And what about the blue checkmark itself – won’t it lose its shine if it’s readily available to anyone with a hefty credit card?

You can read more here.