Snapchat Adds “Official Stories” Verification For Celebrities & Others

Service also improves ability to search and find celebrities, even if they have unusual account names.

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Not sure if you’re following an actual celebrity versus a fake on Snapchat? It can be hard given the difficulty of knowing who anyone really is on Snapchat. But the social media service is solving this with new “official” status for celebrities.

Snapchat posted the news about “Official Stories” apparently today, saying:

Official Stories help Snapchatters more easily discover and identify interesting Stories.

If a Snapchatter has an Official Story, their name will appear under an Official Stories header when you search for them. Also, an emoji will appear next to their name so you know they’re the real deal!

At this time, Official Stories are being rolled out to a small group of Snapchatters. Over time, Official Stories may become more widely available.

The change was spotted by several outlets, including The Verge, which in turn spotted the change via Sam Sheffer, who works for Snapchat Discover.

Official Stories In Action

Here are some examples of how it works. Say you used the “Add Username” feature to search for Jared Leto, who’s on Snapchat. Typing in his name as “Jared Leto” brings up his official account under the “Official Stories” area along with an emoji:

jared leto snapchat

The profile pop-up also includes an emoji:

jared leto snapchat

Improved Search

What’s impressive is that Snapchat has also improved things so that even if a celebrity uses a Snapchat name much different than their real name, it can locate them — something Snapchat often fails at for non-celebs.

For example, a search for the first few letters of Kylie Jenner finds her account despite it having the name of “kylizzlemynizzi,” as shown below:

kylie jenner

And if you don’t know Justin Bieber is “rickthesizzler” on Snapchat, that’s OK, it’s got you covered:

justin bieber

It’s not clear why celebrities have different emoji or who picks them. My guess is that this is something Snapchat allows them to do.

No Recommendations; No Love For Brands & Advertisers

Snapchat still lacks any type of recommended feature to suggest celebrities or brands to follow. It remains up to individuals to actively seek them out, unlike the ways that both Twitter and Facebook recommend.

The verification doesn’t appear to extend to brands that are popular on Snapchat. For example, neither Taco Bell or McDonald’s have verification. Nor do Snapchat Discover partners get any special treatment, it seems. Places like Mashable or Comedy Central, for instance, don’t show this way.

Still not familiar with Snapchat? Be sure to check out our story from earlier this year, A Marketer’s Guide To Snapchat.

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About the author

Danny Sullivan
Danny Sullivan was a journalist and analyst who covered the digital and search marketing space from 1996 through 2017. He was also a cofounder of Third Door Media, which publishes Search Engine Land, MarTech, and produces the SMX: Search Marketing Expo and MarTech events. He retired from journalism and Third Door Media in June 2017. You can learn more about him on his personal site & blog He can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.

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