10 Instagram Marketing Step to 10K followers

Author: Pouya Eti

The important 10 steps that can get your Instagram page from zero to 10K in no time.



Sometimes it maybe very challenging to grow your page and attract more followers, but here we will learn 10 step that will help you grow your page much faster. In addition you will learn how to build your Instagram page so you can convince your followers to become your customers.


1. Build a professional profile

In order to become successful at Instagram marketing, you need to take care of all fundamental factors such as username, name, profile image, bio, CTA and so on. That’s why during this section we will focus on all of the fundamental factors. If you can get them right, you have made the very first step to have a successful marketing on Instagram.
But before we start to build a professional profile I want you to follow some of the best and most successful pages in Instagram marketing. Some people get this wrong and they will start to look at pages with high amount of followers. The main difference here is that people who are doing a great job at Instagram Marketing, they started their page from scratch and brought it up from mostly Instagram marketing comparing to the other pages which have a huge amount of followers but their traffic came from some where else.

Successful Profiles in Marketing

After you followed the pages above, think about your topic and look for some successful pages in you niche. Look at what they are doing in the market and how you can use some of their techniques in your own page. You can sometimes find good ideas from you competitor’s page.



Username or handle is one of the most important factors to have a successful Instagram page because username will effect on SEO (search engine optimization) and people can find you post through your username in Google, that’s why it is important to select a username that is connected to your topic and goal.
Because there are tons of users active on Instagram, selecting a suitable username became a tough task. If for example you want to create a page for yourself and your name is John Smith, and you want to select johnsmith as username, it is more likely not available and you have to use different elements and different ways to select your username.
You can use some of the tips written below to find the best username for your page.

  • use “.” or “_”. ex: john.smith or john_smith
  • use initials. ex: JLO or JKRowling
  • use your niche. ex: john.designer
  • use your website domain. ex: johnsmith.com
  • use country or location. ex: nike.uk or nike.us

The best way to check the availability of your username is Instagram itself. Go to your page and select edit. Change the username and if it is not available, Instagram will give you error to change your username again.
One important tip you should remember is that your username must be as simple as possible. If people look at your username for 3-5sec and can’t read it, you are doing it the wrong way. As an example of a bad username is Jim Parsons page. I am one of his great fans but sadly every time I am looking for his page I can’t find it because I don’t remember what did he wrote as his username, which is “therealjimparsons”. Because there is no space in his username it is very hard to read and remember it.



Selecting a name is much simpler and easier than selecting a username, there is no limit and you choose what ever you like. Some people select their profession or niche, some select their name or brand name. You are also able to use capital letter in your name. As an example in my page, my username is “pouya_eti” and my name is “Pouya Eti”.
Name doesn’t have any effect on SEO and it is just visible in your page. If you request Instagram to give you approved page mark, it will appear next to your name.


Profile Image

Profile image must be simple and easily understandable for people. If your page is person focused you can upload an image of your portrait close to your face, and if your page is company focused I strongly suggest to select brand logo or and icon familiar to people.
You can take a look at some of the successful pages on Instagram listed below and how they selected their profile image.
Person focused:

Company focused:



Biography is what people will see under your image and name, you have the ability to write text and use emoji. Same as other places in Instagram links doesn’t work in this area. The most important tip which you should consider here is to use the bio to sell your Instagram account not your products (means use it to convince people to follow you not redirect them to other sites), not at least you get to a huge amount of followers.
Write one or two lines and speak about the rewards of following your profile. Write one or two lines and explain what is your page about, what people will see or find out in your profile. The about section and reward can be the same. You can write one to two lines which represent both purposes.
The final part is to use CTA (call to action) such as, join our newsletter, buy my product, watch the final episode of, follow me and so on. The CTA part is a bit tricky because half of it is inside bio and the other half is a link you can add in your profile edit section. You should use a CTA that doesn’t seem to heavy and big for customers, so they know the value you are giving them through CTA is much more than what you want from them.
Below you can see several good examples of bio from marketing perspective.






2. know your Followers

Before doing anything as Instagram marketing you mast know who your target is, what they like, what they want, where they are and so on. To solve this problem you must prepare a buyer persona.


Buyer Persona

buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer based on market research and real data about your existing customers. When creating your buyer persona(s), consider including customer demographics, behavior patterns, motivations, and goals. The more detailed you are, the better.
Buyer personas provide tremendous structure and insight for your company. A detailed buyer persona will help you determine where to focus your time, guide product development, and allow for alignment across the organization. As a result, you will be able to attract the most valuable visitors, leads, and customers to your business.

  • Name: Jerry
  • Age: 27
  • Location: USA
  • Goal: Launch and grow his business with online marketing.
  • What is his/her problem? He doesn’t know where to start, afraid of failure. He is looking for practical step by step proven way.
  • Places he/she can look for a solution: Google, YouTube, Udemy, …

Now try to write your own buyer persona, think about your followers and how they might be. As much as you go into details, your marketing will be more successful.
If you know about the 4 type of business energy which are practical, action, social and emotional, find that out about your followers too. It is important to know what is the lead energy in them. For example if it is practical, your posts must be mostly facts, numbers, charts and so on, or if they are emotional you should focus on the design more.


Where do your followers hang out

Before we jump into marketing there is another step and that is to find out where your customers hang out. Now that you have your buyer persona, you will know what type of pages on Instagram your followers will follow. Search and find those pages, make a list and follow those pages, pay attention to what they do.
Remember that your main target is their followers and later in marketing section we will learn about couple of techniques which help you to attract those followers to your page and become your follower, but for know just create and keep the list of pages.



3. Content Quality

I can say for sure that the most important factor to attract people and make them your follower is your content quality. For some people their profession is to create high quality images or videos like photographers or video editors, but for most of the people it is very challenging to create high quality content. Even if you know how to use some design softwares like photoshop yet you may not be able to create professional content from design perspective.
During this section we are going to learn several tools which help you to create and design your content in a professional way. Also I will give you some amazing tips that will increase your content quality.
Tools that we are going to learn are:

  • Canva
  • Unsplash
  • Photoshop
  • Dredown
  • Camtasia
  • Repost



Canva is is good platform for people who don’t know how to use designing softwares. There are tons of ready templates that you can use and edit it inside the site or application. They have many different categories and simply you can select the category you want, then search for the design you like the most, and finally edit and download it. As I mentioned above you can access it through desktop or your smart phone, and in this case because we are focusing on Instagram here, using their mobile application is much more comfortable.




Unsplash is an amazing platform for anyone who is looking for very high quality pictures for free!, yeah that’s right for free. You can simply go to their website and search for the topic you want, select your image, download it, use it via Photoshop, Canva or any other software you like. Not only the images on Unsplash are free but also their quality is amazing and it will bring your Instagram post quality to a whole new level.



To be able to use Photoshop to create high quality posts for your Instagram page you must have some basic knowledge about Photoshop an it’s tools. During this lecture I’m going to show you how you can create a theme for your profile, how you can use high quality images for your posts and so on.



Dredown is a great site which let you to download images and videos from almost any platform out there. There are other services but the thing that I like about Dredown is that it gives you the ability to use it on many different platforms. With using it you can increase the amount of good posts for your page by downloading it from other pages or even other platform.
The way it works is very simple. If you see an image or a photo on Instagram simply click on the three dots beside the post and it will let you to copy the post URL. Then paste the post link in Dredown and it will download it for you. You can edit the post with other softwares, improve it and upload it on your page.
Also there are some other applications for smart phones which let you do the same on phone, but I prefer desktop because then you will have the ability to edit the post and make it better, specially for videos.


Camtasia Studio

Camtasia is a fantastic software for video editing specially for people who are not very technical with softwares. It is very easy to use and you can learn the whole software and how to work with it in less than an hour. The importance of Camtasia for Instagram post is that you can easily add elements to your video, change the size, cut and edit it. With Camtasia you can prepare a good video content for your Instagram profile.
Also Camtasia has the ability to record the screen, your camera and your voice all at the same time, so you can also use it for teaching or explaining things to your followers.



Repost is a very useful application for smart phone. You can use it when you see a great post on Instagram and you want to share it with your own followers. You copy the post link and just open the Repost application. It will paste the post automatically and from there you can easily share it with your followers.
The good thing about repost is that in Instagram marketing giving credit to other pages is a good thing and this way their page username will be written at a corner of the image you share.



4. Instagram Marketing Strategies

During this section we are going to focus on different strategies to bring your page to people’s attention and make them follow you. Some of these strategies has a certain time to use on your page depending on the number of followers you have. we will go deep into each of these strategies in their own lecture.
Lectures in this section are:

  • Hashtag strategy
  • Followers attention
  • Give credit
  • Shoutout
  • Competitions

We are going to talk about each of these topic in an order according to the number of followers, meaning if you just opened your Instagram page, you can start with the first strategy and go on.



What is a hashtag?

A hashtag (#) is a type of metadata tag used on social networks, allowing users to apply dynamic, user-generated tagging that makes it possible for others to easily find messages with a specific theme or content. This means that if you upload an image and under it write #holiday , people who search for post with holiday hash tag will see your post, and maybe like/comment/follow your page.
to start a new page on Instagram with no followers, hashtags are the main strategy that help you improve your page. Also if you like when you start a new page you can ask the people around you like your friends, family, relatives and so on. It is always a good start to invite people who know you personally, they will be patient and very supportive which will end up encouraging you to go forward.
But not everyone like to invite their friends and in that case you have to go for the first strategy which is using hashtags. You can always use hashtags but for beginning, at least for the first couple of thousands of followers it is important to you use it with maximum strength. The limit of using hashtags under any post is 30, but there is a trick which let you use 60 hashtags under a single post and this will double your traffic for the beginning. I will tell you about it at the end of this lecture.
Now I want to introduce two useful tool about hashtags which let you to select the best hashtags for your posts.

Tag for Likes

Tagforlikes is a good website to find great tags for your niche. You can simply go to the site, select your field and it will suggest you around 25 tags, but you shouldn’t just copy it, there are some important tips about it which you should consider.

Let’s look a sample of tags about coffee:
Coffee(21 TAGS)
#coffee #cafe #instacoffee #TagsForLikes #cafelife #caffeine #hot #mug #drink #coffeeaddict #coffeegram #coffeeoftheday #cotd #coffeelover #coffeelovers #coffeeholic #coffiecup #coffeelove #coffeemug #TagsForLikesApp #coffeeholic #coffeelife
As you can see in the example above there are 2 tag which does absolutely nothing for you and it is just an advertisement for their site. Replace them with other tags.
Now another tool which you need to know about is hashtagify. With this website you have the ability to analyze each hashtag. This way you can make sure the tags that you are using is the best fit for your profile.



Important tip about using hashtags

When your page is new or the amount of your followers are less than 10k, I strongly recommend to use as much as hashtags you can to attract more people. But after you passed 10k followers I suggest to use less than 5 hashtags. The reason is because more hashtags will start to annoy your real followers and your page will look like a spamy page and not professional. Also there will be better techniques to attract people at that point. If you pay attention to successful pages they don’t use too much hashtags.


How to use 55 hashtags

Normally the maximum amount of hashtasgs you can use under any post is 30 but with a simple trick you can increase it to 55. This trick works now, but maybe later Instagram find out about it and fix it.
The trick is to upload your post with 0 hashtag but keep 2 pack of hashtags close so you can quickly copy paste them. Go to the comments of your new post and comment 30 hashtags. Then click on the edit sign of your post and add 25 more hashtags. You can add 30 hashtags but I recommend add 25 because then Instagram will flag your post as low quality post.
Now as an exercise go and search about your hashtags, find them and keep them on your phone as a note or in some other apps that let you copy paste them immediately.



Followers attention

The next method of instagram marketing is to grab your potential follower’s attention. In this method you can create more loyal followers for your page because of the interaction that exist between you and people.
Before we have talked about finding where your potential customers hang out, and make a list of pages that they follow. Now is the time we use that list. You should go to those pages and take a look at their recent posts (during the last 3-4 hours) and see who have liked those post. The people who liked those posts are your potential followers because they are interested in the same thing that you are providing.
click on each and check if they have the potential to follow you when you grab their attention.


How should you do that?

  • Take a look at their profile, read their bio and see if they really like what you are doing.
  • Take a look at the number of their followers and following. The people you are looking for must have more following than followers.

With the two technique above you can find out if they have the potential to follow you. Now next step is to grab their attention. Some of these pages are private so the maximum you can do is to follow them.

  • some will accept and follow you back
  • some will decline and follow you back
  • some will only decline


if their page is public

take a look at their posts. Spend couple of seconds in their profile and find out the posts that they like it the most. Sometimes it can be an achievement for them or something they proud of. Like that post, and leave a comment. Be careful not to leave a cheezy comment. Think about what you want to write. I strongly recommend to give them a complement and then ask them a question about their post.
Questions always bring interaction and 95% of people will respond and will check out your page. If you build your page well to convince them that you are delivering value, they will follow you. In addition for people who have public profile you can also follow them, it will have a better effect.



Do not do this very fast and quickly, if someone come online and see you liked 4 of their post in less than a minute with 2 comment, they will know that you are just marketing and you are not looking for interaction. Then they won’t believe what you do and you basically waste your time and energy. Give it time, pay attention and the result will be loyal followers.


Give Credit

The next marketing strategy you can use to increase your followers is to give credit to other people. For example let’s say I want to post a quote from Will Smith. I will post my image and tag him both in caption and on the post. This way my post will be visible in his page to, and some of his followers that may check his tagged section will see my post. If the quality of my content is good they will become my followers. In Marketing we call it influence from mere association bias.
Also you may see a post from someone popular and you want to share it. Use the repost application so his account name be visible on the post too. This way you can give credit to the real owner of the post and increase the chance of their followers, following you.



An easy method of these marketing strategies which mostly cost you several messages. Find pages who are in the same topic as you and also have the same amount of engagement. Send them a message and ask them if they like a shoutout. A shoutout is when 2 pages ask their followers to follow the other page. For example you can share a post from the other page and in caption write “please follow this page + a reason”.
Shoutouts are very common and bring a lot of value, it’s free and all you need is to try to contact other pages.



From all of these marketing strategies, I recommend to use this method while you have at least 2k-3k followers, otherwise you won’t receive any result. The way it works is to select a reward (it can be anything, but must be valuable for your followers) and tell your followers that I am giving away an IPhone (or cash, or free coupon of a course, …).
How you can get in to the competition? Just follow me and tag 5 of your friends. I pick a winner by Friday.
The higher value of your reward, the more followers you will receive. Also you can do something smart here. You can release the result of the competition in your other social media like twitter. You can say ” I will announce the winner at Friday in my twitter”. This is a cross social media marketing, to bring your followers from a social media to an other.



5. Posting Time

One of the most common questions that everyone has about Instagram marketing is “When is the best time to post?” or “How often I have to post?”. These are all questions which we will find the answers during this section. I want to make the answer as clear as possible, that’s why I am going to test different posting time to show you exactly which one is the best.
Even though I already know the answer, but I think you will make a better decision when you see the result for yourself. So the test is going to be like this that I will post with different time lines and different number of posts and we will see the result.



During this experiment we are going to see the result of one post per day. The other important question here is that:
when is the best time?
The answer can vary according to

  • How you built your page
  • Who is your target
  • Where are they located

The general best time to post is usually at these three hours during the day:

  • 8am
  • 5pm
  • 10pm

Otherwise there will be other element that influence this time line. If your target followers are living all around the world, then the timing above won’t matter and you have to consider other marketing strategies.

Result of the experiment:

  • Likes: 206
  • Comments: 6
  • Follow: 6
  • Impressions: 1,139
  • Reach: 948
  • Saved post: 8


4 times a day

During this experiment we are going to see the result of posting every 6 hours which will be 4 times per day. This strategy works for international targets. If your followers are from many different locations, this method of posting time will work amazing for you (It will also work for single location profiles).

Result of the experiment:

  • Likes: 420
  • Comments: 15
  • Follow: 25
  • Impressions: 2682
  • Reach: 2229
  • Saved post: 34


Every 2 hour

Doing this method of posting is pretty much difficult to keep the post’s quality at a high level of standards but if you can, the result is going to surprise you. But you have to remember not to sacrifice quality for time.

Result of the experiment:

  • Likes: 964
  • Comments: 39
  • Follow: 65
  • Impressions: 5303
  • Reach: 4432
  • Saved post: 45



Every hour, 1 day/week

This is a great method for boosting your page followers but only 1 day, once a week, otherwise it is going to annoy people and have negative effect on your loyal followers.


6. Story

A very powerful feature on Instagram is story, Specially if your profile is business you can use the linking system a lot to increase interaction and sale on your products. In this section we will learn:

  • Story basic
  • Story marketing
  • Highlight


Story basic

So what is story?
Story is an image or video that will only last 24 hours and it appears in a different section from normal posts. Usually the main concept of story is to show what is happening to you during a day and the most important thing you have to consider is entertainment. If you can entertain people with your stories, they will watch it no matter how many they are, but if the content quality drops, you will lose your followers.
Let’s look at some of the basics on Instagram.


Story Marketing

Most people use stories just for fun, but there are a lot that you can do with stories in Instagram marketing. There are some important elements that you must use in at least 90% of your stories and those are:

  • Hashtags
  • Location
  • Tagging profiles
  • Links


Same as a normal post you can use hashtags here too but the difference is that you have to write your hashtag on your image or video, meaning you have to take care of the quality of what you are posting. Also use the Stickers section at the top to create a hashtag ( you can also write your hashtag as a text, but using sticker will give an style to your hashtag). Same as a normal hashtag, people can find your story through the hashtag, but your story must be attracting to bring them into your page an convince them to follow you.


Another great feature for stories that help to market your story is location tag or sticker. You can create a location tag from the stickers section, and people who are looking for that location can see your story and maybe become your follower and later customer, but you must consider to use a relevant location not just any location you think it fits.

Tagging profiles

Same as tagging a profile in normal posts, here you can do the same for stories and give credit to people, ask other pages to shout out your profile or other marketing strategies that you can apply by tagging people. Tagging a profile is very simple and all you have to do is to write a text and use “@” + “profile user name” to tag a page.


This feature is only available for business profiles, other wise you can not add links to your stories. you can use this feature for many different goals, maybe to invite people to see your new video on Youtube or maybe ask them to buy a new product you released. It’s up to you to direct your followers to where ever you want them to go, but remember not to ask them to take a big step, always go small and little by little bring people to the point you want.
How to add links?
If you notice while you are uploading a story, at the top you can see a link sign (chain), click on it and then you can insert your link, then if anyone swipe up your story they will go to your link.


While you are creating your content to try to design an arrow sign at the bottom of the story. Many people use links in their stories but they forget to ask their views to swipe up, and it has a huge effect if you just ask people to swipe up. So by adding an attractive arrow at the bottom + a call to action text, you can increase the conversion rate.


An other amazing feature of Instagram stories is that you can highlight some of your stories, bring them all in one folder, under one title and show them in your profile. You can act innovative here and create several interactive images and videos that explain an story to people and finally at the last one or two images/videos force them to make an action, join your subscription list, buy your product and so on.
Most people use these features for fun and have no idea how effective they can be in marketing. With a little hard work and innovation you can create amazing highlights in your profile and increase the amount of your followers or customers more and more.



7. Instagram Live

What is Instagram live?

You can use Instagram to share live feed to all your followers, increase the interaction and loyalty in your followers which have a very positive effect on your profile and make more active.
You can share a live video to connect with your followers in real time. Once a live video has ended, it’s no longer visible in the app, unless you share a replay of it to your story.
To start a live video:

  • Swipe left in home page (go to the same place you want to upload a story)
  • At the bottom you can see a list of different type of stories, the first one is “LIVE”
  • select it and start your live stream

To make this a bit more clear we are going to try a test live streaming on Instagram.

What you can do with live streaming on Instagram?

The main goal here is to increase the interaction and entertain people. For example if you have a shoe production brand and you want to use live streaming, you can set a Q&A with your customers or a behind a scene of the production line, or maybe an interview with one of the managers.
The more you increase the interaction and entertainment, the more loyal followers and much easier to convert them to customers. Sometimes you can post and image about when you are going live and ask your followers to be there. Remember to always use call to action, most people would love to do what you ask them but because they don’t know about it, they won’t do.



8. Followers to Customers

One of the main purposes of Instagram marketing is to increase the followers, then convert those followers to customers. It’s not an easy job but if you have a business and think to use Instagram to market your product you must follow the instructions in this section.

How to convert followers to customers?

One of the most common ways is to create a landing page and use it in your instagram bio or highlight stories. Don’t worry if you don’t have any coding and programing knowledge, you don’t need to. There are many different platforms that allow you to create a great and functional landing page, and here we are going to take a look at some of these platforms which are:


Unbounce is a great and powerful platform to create a landing page but if you are new to creating landing pages I suggest not to use Unbounce. The main reason is that Unbounce charge a lot comparing to the other platforms even though it has 30 day trail version after selecting a paid plan. The main problem is that until you start to get good at this it may take some time and you have to spend more and more money.
But if you already are familiar with landing pages, how to create them and so on, I strongly suggest to use Unbounce.
Click here to see pricing plans.


Squarespace is very much the same as Unbounce but more focused on designing great pages. Also it easily jump into free trail without any credit card. So if your target customers are people who are emotional and care about design, this is a great platform to start building your landing page.
Also comparing to Unbounce the membership price is way cheaper, and if you are new to this topic, this is one of the platforms you can use.
Click here to see the pricing.


Instapage is another popular platform for creating a landing page. It has 14 days trail version and the pricing is similar to Unbounce but a bit cheaper and yet I suggest if you are new to this, do not use instapage.
Click here to see the pricing.


Webflow is also great if you are just starting to create a landing page. I can say Webflow and Squarespace are the cheapest platform to create a landing page. The good thing about all of them is that you can easily learn them by tutorials which the site itself provide. Webflow and Squarespace are a bit harder to use comparing to Unbounce.
It also include 14 day free trail without taking any credit card. Click here to see the pricing.
Also several days ago I prepared a landing page for our product which is an online service using Webflow. We are going to see the example and I will show you around, give you some tips about it so you get familiar with the environment.

The connector

After you prepare your landing page, you have your 2 platform completely ready, just remain the last piece of the puzzle, “The connector”. Now what you need to do is to bring your followers from your instgram to visit your landing page and as we talked about it before you can use a link in your profile setting or in stories and highlights.
The big problem is that people just don’t come into your landing page by themselves and you need to provoke them. The main 2 technique that you can use is reward and curiosity. If you can show them that if they come to your landing page and do what you want them to do they will receive an amazing reward, they start to click on it more and more. some people give their product free to small number of people, some have other giveaways.
To be able to do this part in the most successful way, you have to know the marketing cognitive biases.



9. Instagram Tips

The last step of having a successful Instagram profile is to always remember several fundamental tips about it. The most important one is:


Never ever under no circumstances decrease your content quality. If you feel tired, stop working on it, rest and the come back. If you don’t have time, work on it when you have time but DO NOT DECREASE THE QUALITY. The moment your followers feel you are just posting without quality, they will stop responding and you will lose followers.


If you try to work on Instagram marketing today and after several day stop it and then come back again, it’s not gonna work. Some people are deactive for a week then they come online and upload 6 posts in 30 min. Make an schedule if you are busy or some problem happen in your business and stick to that schedule. I see this happen a lot in  different profiles. The admin comes and just upload 10 image and leave for a month.
If you have a goal about instagram marketing, you must do it constantly, otherwise don’t have expectations.

Interact with your followers

Spend time with your followers and they will return the favor. The more they see that you care about them, the more loyal they become and more successful you will be. If they leave a comment for you, try to respond them.



10. Automation

Managing your Instagram account can be a bit time taking mostly. This is why we are going to take a look at 2 powerful automation tool which make some of the work easier and faster for us.


Everliker is a chrome extension which will use your Instagram account to like posts on a specific hashtag or place or users. You just select what type of post you want it to like and it will do the job for you.
On free version it will like 700 posts per day but you can increase this number if you change your plan.
Also don’t be concern about the safety of your account because this tool will like post a way that Instagram won’t suspect. For example it will like 10 post and the 5 min sleep. Today I used this tool to like more than half a million posts, and I had no problem with safety of my accounts.

My Business Automation

Another great tool for Instagram automation which will help you a lot in many different tasks. You can use this tool to schedule your posts with multiple accounts at the same time, you can do some marketing strategies like auto like, auto follow, auto repost … .
This tool is paid but you have 1 week free trail access to the software.
Click here to get access to this tool.