In today’s blog, we are going to talk all about username claims. Username claim is simply claiming usernames on social media that are already taken but inactive. For instance, let’s say you just founded a company and you got the logo and the website. And just when everything looked perfect, you find out that the username that matches your brand name is taken on Instagram or Twitter. Well, you can either add a random suffix or prefix and try to register a modified version of the username. Or, if you are really serious about your brand identity, you can try claiming the username. Let us talk about how that works and what options you have.
The first thing to look for is if the username you’d like is an active or an inactive account. If it’s an active account, then things get pretty complicated. You can try and message the owner of the account but it’s highly unlikely they’d give up their account to you if they’re super active on it and have all their friends and family on it. If an account is active, however, the only way is to communicate with the account holder and negotiate with them. It must be noted that this can get complicated as the account owner may try to re-claim their account after they’ve handed it to you by a variety of methods. As you can imagine, the chances of getting scammed are high.
Let us now talk about claiming accounts that are clearly inactive and be easily claimed. In the next section, let’s discuss what makes an account claim-able.
The first and foremost requirement when it comes to claiming an inactive account is the duration for which the account has been inactive. In other words, when was the last post or tweet made? Are there any stories up? Does it look like the account has been active? The minimum duration required for an account to be claim-able is 3 years or more. If you’ve got your eye on an account that you think is inactive for 3 or more years, then you’re in luck! It is definitely claimable.
Account Privacy Status
Well, how do we know the inactivity duration if the account is private? Great question! And that brings us to this point. It’s much easier to claim an account that is publically visible. An account that is public can easily be gauged for its inactivity. And that makes publicly visible accounts music easier to claim. However, this does not mean that it’s not possible to claim accounts that are private – it’s possible to still claim those subject to their inactivity duration.
Well, what about accounts that are public but have nothing on them? Accounts that have no posts and no DP – these are most likely inactive and eligible for a claim.
Here is the deal. Usernames are collectibles. Ever seen people spend millions to get a fancy mobile number or a fancy car number plate? Usernames are the same way. The shorter the username the more expensive it gets and vice versa. And this lead to a market wherein usernames were registered and traded for huge profits. A single letter username can go for as high as $50,000 on Instagram. Yes. We’ve seen those deals happen. And it’s common.
Nevertheless, as social networks are aware of this, they put a limitation in place to curb this. Basically, only usernames that are over 5 characters and not first names or nouns are claim-able. Others are not easily claimable – however, there is always a way. More on this later.
So, make sure the name you’d like to claim is not a first name like ‘Joshua’ or a noun like ‘Police’ or one that is of five-characters like ‘ABCDE’. If your desired name doesn’t fall in these categories then you are good to go.
How to Claim an Inactive Username:
So, you’ve decided on a username that you desire. You’ve made sure it’s not a noun or a first name, and it is above six characters. And, as far as you can see, the account looks like its been inactive for years. What do we next? Luckily, there is only one thing you need to do to have everything in place and ready to make the claim.
Build a Placeholder Account
Note – if you already have an existing account that is all set up then you obviously don’t have to go and build a fresh one. You can directly go to the next step.
As an example, let’s say you’d like to claim a handle on Instagram. Well, the first thing you have to do is register an account on Instagram with a name that is similar to what you’d like but with an added suffix or prefix. So, if you’d like to register ‘sonorous’ but it’s unavailable, go for something like ‘wearesonorous’ or ‘realsonorous’. You get the idea.
Next, you’ll secure the account by adding a strong password, connecting your email to it, and preferably adding your mobile number and turning on 2FA authentication.
Moving on, you’d need to add a professional DP, a professional bio, and a bunch of posts. We’d recommend adding at least 30 or more posts.
Finally, we’d suggest adding a bunch of followers to the profile via organic methods or even simply purchasing a bunch of fake followers. Just a 1000 or more should be good.
To wrap it up you now have an account that is all setup. A good feed going on with 30 or more posts. A great bio, a good DP, and your website mentioned in the bio too. And this is your placeholder account. Keep in mind, that this is the account that you will retain, meaning, the posts, the followers – everything will stay with you after the claim is done. So – don’t rush it, make it good!
Making a Claim
And now we are onto the final step where we do the actual claim. All you need to keep in mind at this stage is your current username and your desired username. It may be a good idea to have multiple desired usernames at hand just to be safe. Continuing from the above example, we’d have:
Current Username: ‘wearesonorous‘
Desired Username: ‘sonorous‘
Applying for a Claim
Every social network gives certain marketing companies what we call a media portal. A media portal allows marketing companies that have high ad-spend on social networks, access to a variety of services like username claims, verifications, and merges. So – in order to make a claim you’ll need to hire a marketing company that has access to these services. At Fresh Engagements, we are able to make claim requests for our clients too, you can find more info about it here.
The process of claim is simple. You simply tell us your current username and your desired username and the platform where you’d like to claim it. And that is basically it. We’d simply make an application if the claim request is eligible. If the request is approved, your current username will be switched to the desired username where all the data of the desired inactive username will be deleted. You’ll keep your placeholder account whilst the name is edited. No login details are required for this of course. And voila, you now have your desired username on your account which can never be reversed as you solely have the access to it, and it’s registered on your own e-mail and mobile number.
And there you go. Now, you know everything that you need to know about claiming inactive usernames. Ready to claim your handle? Click here.
Until next time!