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How To Claim Vanity URLs For Your Social Media Accounts

Inbound Marketing Design
October 29, 2015

What's in a name? Everything. One of the most important branding assets your business can own in today's digital age are your vanity URLs. Through personalized vanity URLs, you can establish your brand presence, forge a solid brand identity, give your prospects and customers a means to interact with you, and enable them to reference and help promote your business easily.

claiming social media vanity urls

A vanity URL is the unique user name that you assign to your social media account. For example, www.facebook.com/nameofyourbusiness instead of the generic and forgettable www.facebook.com/12iuhwudt73teg. Vanity URLs should be easy to remember, share, read, and use for various social media marketing campaigns. Most importantly, your vanity URL should reflect the name of your brand or campaign -- and by reflect, we mean "contain" if possible.

Before we get started on the how-to guide, let's take a quick look at some of the social media marketing benefits that vanity URLs can provide to your brand.

  • Search Engine Optimization - Social media platforms tend to rank very well in search engine results. Adding vanity URLs to your social media accounts can help your brand to rank higher in organic search results.

  • Enables Verbal Sharing – Vanity URLs encourage brand sharing amongst your followers. It is much easier to tell someone to go to a certain Facebook page when the URL specifically matches the brand's name, rather than the standard "www.facebook.com/profile_1239832." Making your vanity URLs into the same name can also encourage brand-name recognition.

  • Brand Recognition – Changing your vanity URLs to match the name of your brand can improve brand recognition. Now, it is much easier for people to find you via your website or social media accounts.

  • Strengthen Your Brand Identity – By acquiring vanity URLs across all your social media channels, you are solidifying your brand's foothold in the digital world. You are establishing your presence and making your name known.

Choosing Vanity URLs for Social Media

Before you can pick out your new vanity URLs, you should consider the following factors.

  1. Use real names. Create a username that is as close as possible to your brand or business name. If the name of your brand is taken, try to investigate if there is a way to acquire it from the current user. If not, don't deviate too much from your brand name and don't pick a complicated replacement either. 

  2. Think long-term. Choose a username that will resonate strongly with your constituents, and that you can keep for the long term.

  3. Check spelling. Before you finalize and agree to your vanity URL, carefully check for any spelling mistakes.

How To Get Your Google+ Vanity URL

Google+ profiles and business pages can be given vanity URLs. Generally speaking, your Google+ profile will be assigned a custom URL that is based on your name. For example, google.com/+YourName. The Google Team also has a few rules that users need to keep in mind when they are trying to acquire a custom URL:

  • You need to have ten or more followers (people who have added you to their circles).

  • Your account must be at least 30 days old.

  • Your profile must have a profile photo.

  • Your account is in good standing.

Google+ Business pages have six easy steps to follow, before they can acquire a vanity URL.

  1. Sign-in to Google My Business and choose the page you'd like to manage. Click the Google+ Page icon.

  2. Click the About tab, and under "Get your custom URL", click "Get URL."

    • NOTE: If your page is ineligible, you won’t see the above message.

  3. Next, you will see the automatically assigned custom URL. This URL will be based on your business name.

  4. Click “I agree to the Terms of Service," then click Change URL.

  5. Some accounts will ask you to verify your account via a mobile phone number.

  6. To permanently add your URL to your profile, click Confirm Choice.

How To Get Your Facebook Vanity URL

Creating a Facebook custom vanity URL is a fairly easy process for the page administrator(s).

  1. Go to your Facebook page. Click on "edit page," followed by "update info."

  2. Pages with vanity URLs in place, will be offered a chance to change it to something new.

  3. Enter your new username.

  4. Facebook will check to make sure that the name is available. If it is is, then the name will be changed.

  5. Voila, your Facebook Page now has a new vanity URL.

How To Get Your LinkedIn Vanity URL

Like the other social media networks, LinkedIn allows users to choose short vanity URLs for their profiles.

  1. Click on “Settings." Next click on “Edit your public profile.”

  2. Click the “Customize your public profile URL" button.

  3. Type the last part of your new custom URL into the text box.

  4. Click “Set Custom URL.”

LinkedIn requires your vanity URL to contain between 5 and 30 letters or numbers, special characters are not allowed.  

How To Get Your Twitter Vanity URL

Choosing your Twitter username is akin to choosing your vanity URL. Your username will appear in your profile URL, it is also unique to you. This is the name that will be used for logging in, direct messages, and any @replies. If you want to change your username, simply sign into your Twitter.com account. Click on the settings page and change the username that is listed in the username field. Before the change is finalized, Twitter will check to make sure that the name still exists.    

How To Get Your Pinterest Vanity URL

Pinterest also offers a straight-forward method for users to change their vanity URLs. Like Twitter, Pinterest vanity URLs are based on your username.

  1. Login to your Pinterest Account.

  2. In account settings change your username. Your username must be 3 to 15 letters or numbers, special characters aren't allowed.

  3. Once you have changed your user name, your vanity URL will be updated. 

How To Get Your Instagram Vanity URL

Instagram allows users to create customizable profiles that include a custom URL. Your Instagram vanity URL is based on your username. For example, www.instagram.com/youruniqueusername.com. If you are ever unhappy with your username, simply login to your account, go to settings, and select change username. Instagram will automatically tell you if your new username is available.  

Get found and connect with your audience using vanity URLs. If you can acquire a vanity URL that is uniform throughout all your social media channels, do so. If not, try not to deviate from the name of your business and do not pick overly complicated URLs. Stay true to your name and do not be esoteric. Don't forget that social media marketing doesn't end here -- by acquiring your vanity URLs, you are giving you brand a voice and you are sending an invitation to your audience to interact with you.  

Discover the truth about seo.

Inbound Marketing Design

October 29, 2015 As the Marketing Manager for Adhere Creative's business services vertical, Ericka Lewis leads her clients and team towards inbound marketing success. When not generating leads and cracking the latest Google Algorithm update, she can be found cooking up a (yummy) storm in the kitchen! See All articles
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