How to Gain 10K Followers on Instagram in Less than 5 Months [ACHIEVED IN REAL LIFE]

Caution: This is a real life example and if you follow the steps explained here, you can achieve success this as well!

Relevant Instagram account: @flppublic


In order to achieve this you must have several quality checks first!

1. Optimize your Instagram Page

Your Instagram profile is the first thing your potential followers will see, so this is the best place to start! Make sure you include these four main components, and make these utmost proper to optimize your follower count:

  • Name or Business Name

  • High quality profile picture or logo

  • Simple bio that describes who or what you are

  • Website URL or Linktree to share more links

Your first glance must be so delicate and gentle that visitor should love you, so that you will be able to make them following.

Below are some screenshots of my profile history along with this journey, check out:

2. Find your Unique Aesthetic

Instagram is a visual social media platform, so it is important to take high quality photos that match your style along with the personality of your followers. For editing photos on my Samsung Note 5, I like to use Lightroom (duh!). Although it will take trial + error to find what photo scenarios make your style, it won't take long before you notice which sort of posts get the most engagement!

Your style means your rules, and, people who follow you is the ones who loves your rules, find more of them!


Alright, if you're good to go after these quality checks here are the secret tips for you to succeed! For your information, I did not use all of them all along...

3. Use Insights & Gather Intelligence

Instagram makes it easy to track your followers and post's impressions. If you are looking to gain a large amount of followers on Instagram, be sure to switch your personal page to a business or creator profile so you can track your insights. Once switched, you can use the information to know the prime time to post. By doing this, you will get the most engagement which will in turn give you more followers. 

4. Create Efficient Instagram Promotions

According to above analysis and interest statistics, create Instagram promotions for certain geography and demography. Specify the interests carefully, so that you will make the most of your visitors into your followers! INCREASE THE EFFICIENCY!

I was getting 1 follower per 10 visitors and it was a satisfactory rate for me.

Below is how much I paid Instagram ads to get 1 click for certain Geo:

  • $0.1 for Tier 1 countries (Includes: United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada)

  • $0.7 for Tier 2 countries (Includes: Germany, Austria, Italy, Spain, Netherlands)

  • $0.2 for Tier 3 countries (Includes: Brazil, Mexico, Argentina)

  • $0.1 for Tier 4 countries (Includes: Greece, Philippines, India, Indonesia)

Above tiers are from my actually Instagram ad groups.

I've spend around US $2k to get such Instagram page and if you can manage to get efficient promotions as much as I did, you should be getting similar results.

5. Post Frequently & Use Hashtags... but be SMART.

The less posts under any hashtag the more chance for you to be discovered. That’s why I choose #mobilelightroompresets over #lightroompresets or I choose #bloggerlightroompreset over #blogger or I choose #influencerpresets over #influencer etc.

When searching for hashtags, be sure to use mostly hashtags that contain around 10,000-50,000 posts, with a couple larger hashtags thrown in. This gives yourself the opportunity to be on Top Posts per hashtag -- which means your post to be shown to even more accounts!

Also, try to use the most relevant and the most narrow hashtags to feature your photos in those hashtags more powerfully. Quality over quantity is rule of thumb here.

In order to avoid becoming shadow banned on Instagram, I now recommend only using 4 - 5 random hashtags per post. By doing this, you can increase your engagement and avoid the risk of being shadow banned.

Last note: Be careful using the same hashtags over and over again. If you use the same hashtag daily, you might become "shadow banned" by Instagram thinking that you are spamming. When you become shadow banned, your posts will not come up on any hashtags you use for a certain time, my shadow bans were generally up to 48 hours. The best way to ensure this doesn't happen is by creating different lists of hashtags to use every day. I have about 7 different hashtags lists, and I suggest you do the same. 

6. Use Geotags + Tag Brands

Tagging works like hashtags, you reach people that do not follow you normally, however, they see your post somehow and like it. Maybe even further, you may gain new followers in this way.

An Instagram geotag is similar to a check-in on Facebook. Many people will search popular posts in their region, so adding a location to your posts is a great way for local accounts to see your posts. Along with geotags, tagging brands + large accounts gives your post the opportunity to been seen by a mass amount of followers. For example, in the photo below I geotagged Texas City, TX and tagged large account @olaprzywitowska (142k). You can tag up to 20 accounts per photo.

7. Mass Engage [abandoned method]

I was using this method at the first and actually gathered my first couple hundred followers in this way but, they disappeared very quickly :)

This is not a recommended method however, it works!

In order to have more followers, you have to engage with more followers. Liking, commenting, and following are going to get the job done. In order to find the best accounts to engage with, search other accounts and hashtags relevant to your brand. For example, my page is solely focused on Lightroom Presets, so I follow accounts of that use hashtags like #freelightroompresets, #lightroompresets, or #mobilelightroompresets, along with following people that are following @Lightroom page. Instagram allows you to follow up to 7,500 people -- so take advantage of that! When you engage with accounts with similar traits as yours, they are more interested in following you and engaging on your posts. In order to not have your account banned, you must make sure you are engaging within Instagram's limits.

  • 300-350 likes/hour

  • 8-14 comments/hour

  • 20-40 follows/hour

  • 20-40 unfollows/hour

As I've said above, I do not recommend this method, however, if you want to use it anyway, I recommend you to start with less than the numbers above for at least 2-3 weeks before testing Instagram limits on your page. If you do reach one of Instagram's limits, you will be banned from using the feature for 24 hours. If this continues to occur, your account could be shut down permanently. I was getting SMS verification message several times per day because of this, thus, I quit this method.


Final question to answer is here: Should you buy 10k instagram followers?

There are weird services that provide you mass followers and likes automatically. Although, they try to convince people that these quickly delivered "fake" followers & likes are actually real, I do not and can not believe them! I've never used such service and actually I am afraid to do such thing for my Instagram page, because, it seems very dangerous for the health of my account, you know what I mean!

Stay away from such artificial followers :)

Final word: Be sure to also use Instagram stories as another outlet to communicate your passions to your followers.

If you found this article helpful, please consider supporting me and my website by Buying me a Frap., or if you are into Lightroom Presets, get my Bundle instead.


Comment on my 10K celebration post your best tips or questions for gaining followers on Instagram!


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