Get More Organic Followers On Instagram With Derren Ohanian

Get More Organic Followers On Instagram With Derren Ohanian

Posted on October 14, 2020 by

Get ready to be F.I.R.E.D U.P!

Today, we have one of the most successful Digital Marketing Entrepreneur, Derren Ohanian.

He is the Co-founder and CEO of Social Sensei. He worked with some of the biggest names not only on Instagram but in the entertainment industry as well!

Check out my “F.I.R.E.D Up” playlist with more interviews!

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Hey everyone, are you ready to be fired up? Because I sure am. And you get to see me with no makeup on because this podcast was not on my schedule.So that would be kind of fun.I’ve got Darren here and he’s gonna be talking about Instagram growth hacking with influencers.So if you wanna know how to get your Instagram and social media following to blow up, this is the podcast for you.But first, give me a one second quick little introduction here. Well, they actually call it commercial but I promise you’re gonna love it. I’ll see you in a second.

Hey Derren, thank you so much for being here.I’m so excited to have

you, so do me a favor. Tell me a little bit about yourself and what is it that you exactly do?


Yeah, absolutely I’m Derren Ohanian. I’m the CEO and visionary of Social Sensei.

I wear many hats in the company but primarily I work within the

marketing space of Instagram working with influencers and content creators

to, drive traffic to our clients.


Okay, good. So tell me, how does this work? We all know that really it’s almost impossible to get this huge organic reach on Instagram. It’s definitely doable

to grow your followers, but you know first of all, why would somebody wanna do that? What’s the best way to do it? And how do you know you can trust one that does this for a living? ‘Cause I know there’s a lot of fraud out there.


 Okay, so yeah, let’s start with a little bit of the history of Instagram. So everyone remembers 2019 was great. The algorithm was super friendly. You could just read a blog post, learn about hashtags and the best time to post. And somehow you’re growing fist over fist with new followers. That is totally not the case now,there is also a great growth hacking strategy of Instagram automation. Everyone was using bots to follow and unfollow and just drive massive amounts of traffic.In August 2019, Instagram changed their API, completely blocked that off to everyone and small businesses across the board, personal brands probably even yourself, experienced a major drop in how many followers you’re gaining and engagement dropped. And in April 2020, they made another change to make it even more stringent and strict.

And this is because Instagram is a business. They want us to purchase Ads as business owners

to drive traffic and engagement. So, it makes sense they have shareholders before but, we also have our own families to feed and things of that nature. So what is the new latest greatest growth hacking technique? And we’ve gotta say, we’ve scoured the internet. We’ve scattered everywhere to go. And we found that Instagram influencer marketing is the place to be. Now there’s two ways that this kind of works that you can approach. One is called a loop giveaway.

Now what is a loop giveaway?

You sign up with Social Sensei, we pair you with a celebrity or influencer who then runs a contest or promotion on their account. Now, this promotion is a giveaway for $500, $20,000, a TV, iPod, something like this it incentivizes their followers to enter the contest.

What do they do to enter the contest? They follow your Instagram account. So this is how we drive massive amounts of organic traffic back to your account. So within seven days you

can be gaining thousands, tens of thousands, even hundreds of thousands of followers, depending on the level of influencer that you work with. Of course, that’s all

dependent upon your budget. 

Now you’re probably thinking well, what’s the benefit of that?

Why would I even wanna do that? Is it just so I can look in the mirror and look at my Instagram account and like, wow, look how many followers I have. And this is a whole vain thing, you know? No, it’s not just for that.


That’s so cool.


Yeah you can do that, you could do it just for the ego, if you want to. But obviously you’re gonna be getting a ton of more brand exposure just right off the bat with all these followers, come to your page. You’re also gonna get a boost in credibility. When (indistinct) accountancy you have and trying to sell them a home versus a realtor who has, let’s say 20,000 followers. You guys do the exact same things but the one with 20,000 followers has the social proof. It actually creates subconsciously in the person’s mind is looking at your account a little tick of like, oh, I can trust this person because other people trust this person as well.

Now that doesn’t mean you’re a good realtor. It doesn’t mean you could sell their home any better than the person with a hundred followers. But in the minds of the consumer,

It makes a big difference. So, you get that boost in credibility, the boost and trust. You also get the brand association with the influencer or the celebrity that you pair with. Like for instance, we just did a contest last month with Kevin Hart, he has 96 million followers. So, one of our clients gained like a hundred thousand plus followers within seven days. Now it’s important that the

influencer you’re working with is also the target audience that you wanna reach.

So, Kevin Hart has this massive following of mainstream audience consumers ready to buy something. If you’re a T-shirt company that’s great.If you’re another comedian, that’s awesome.

Something like this, but if you’re maybe a mortgage home broker maybe that doesn’t make sense for you. Maybe you wanna find somebody with better alignment that can resonate with you.Now at the lower budgets you don’t really get to select the influencer that you wanna work with, because working with influencers can be very expensive depending on who you work with.

Like for instance, Kevin Hart or other celebrities may range anywhere from 5,000 to 500,000 for a single post, it gets really crazy.



Derren: Yeah, really crazy. That’s a list celebrity status. If you wanna work with Beyonce or Brad Pitt or something like this and they probably even say no, but who knows, maybe they’ll do it.

But with Social Sensei we offer smaller main market influencers so that small businesses can approach gain, 3000, 5,000 10,000 followers, depending on the plan that you select. Now, the other option to that is, if you want a super targeted audience you want to reach exactly

the person that loves exactly what you’re offering. So I’m looking… Let’s say for instance, I’m selling Nike shoes, basketball shoes, okay. I’ve got a store, I’m selling basketball shoes.

I want people that are athletes, that are practicing basketball, like love watching the NBA

and things of that nature. So, what you want to do is when working with Social Sensei is we’ll go out there into the world find these top five influencers that are specific in that niche audience.

Then present them to you, break down all their demographics male, female ratio (indistinct) all that information and not only that but they’re going to present, they’re gonna look at your brand

and it’s kind of like Tinder.

It’s like, you’re looking for influencers. And the influencers are also looking at you and saying, yeah, we’re a match. I resonate with your brand message. I like the shoes that you’re doing. And I will be willing to promote you. Now not only that but we work with influencers

to come up with creative ideas. Like for instance, I’ll give you an idea like we could take your basketball shoe and we’ll put it on top of a basketball hoop. And then we’ll jump on a trampoline

and do a three 60 dunk and we’ll film it. Maybe another one is we’ll do an IG TV and we’ll do an unboxing of your basketball shoe. And I’ll look all excited and confetti will pop all over the place.

When we open up the box, maybe another one could be infographic, like showing the benefits of the shoe and the features and things like that. And on the end of is a call to action

back to the website so they can make a purchase. So, now you as the business owner also get to play a part in that. So you get to be fun and creative too. You can pitch your idea like, hey, I want you to jump out of an airplane with my shoe pretending you’re making a call to the basketball gods or something like that. It doesn’t mean he is gonna go for it, but like you could put it out there. It’s totally an opportunity to do that. And of course this is all again, the level of influence you’re working with is dependent upon your budget.

So let’s just say you have $3,000 to play with.You could be working with an influencer that charges $300 for a post, and you could work with multiple influencers. So you could do like a 10 post campaign across multiple influencers and see who works the best for you, who resonates the best, who do you like communicating with and then kind of work with them.

Or you could take that 3000 and put it into maybe a higher performing influencer and just do a one shot. But all these influencers that are within our network are all professional. They know exactly what they’re doing with, working with, they know how to they present themselves well,

they take these jobs seriously.So you don’t have to go through the riff-raff of trying to find the good apple between the batch. You don’t have to deal with contracts. You don’t have to deal with chasing people down and making sure they’re doing work.We take care of all that for our clients.So what you get with the creator marketing is, not only niche targeting but you also get really high quality followers. So, we can’t guarantee the number of followers you get, but the ones that will follow you resonate with your brand or your product or service. And that’s the power of influencer marketing.


And a lot of them are gonna fall off. You have to understand that a lot of them are gonna fall off or not watch. And if you don’t have an Instagram presence or you’re not on Instagram

and doing your stories and doing all that, it’s not gonna work for you anyways. So should you wait until you start to use Instagram more? And what do you think about that?


 Good point, and our team can definitely help,anyone that’s looking for advice on those things. We have blogs, we have YouTube channel. There’s all types of information out there as well. But I would say as soon as possible, if you have a business like, why aren’t you on social media? You’ve gotta get out there. I know that you’re doing a big giant video course. Get your face out there, become a personal brand. I’m doing it right now, being on your podcast. This is the way to go.This is the wave of the future.

So, if you’re still playing with the old paradigm, old school marketing and newspapers and things like, it’s time for a little bit of update to the operating system here, of how to play in this game

and social media is the new storefront. So, I think that you should have started yesterday, if you didn’t already start as regard to signing up with someone like our Social Sensei, I would say that, what you wanna do on Instagram is, I have at least 10,000 followers. So that way you have the swipe up feature, this allows you to convert your followers into leads or sales a lot easier

because then you can use the Instagram stories feature, which is at the top of the screen is the first thing all your followers see, gets actually more engagement than your feed gets nowadays

since everything’s moving towards video. And since people’s attention spans are even shorter,

like they’re just seeing this video tik tik tik tik and then you can just swipe up if they like it.

So, if you have the 10K already and you’re not kind of set up in that regard it’ll be good to, look into a social media strategy. Another thing that Social Sensei does. We can help dial in your social media strategy, tell you what type of content you need to post, when to post, how often to

post, build out a mood board, create like a brand and a presence. And if you already have a website, you can just port this all over. It’s pretty easy to do that. And since you’re the expert, all you have to do is…

Here’s a tip for a lot of entrepreneurs out there, like, oh my gosh, how am I gonna get all this content out? How am I gonna get this out to the world? I don’t wanna write 20 blog posts. I don’t wanna do any of that stuff. Yeah, I don’t either, but you know what? All that information is right here. And then nogging like, you’ve got years and years experience.So you just take a voice recorder and pick a topic that you’re an expert in and just start talking about it and then hire a VA or someone that is on your team to transcribe it and turn it into a blog post. It’s not rocket science and it saves you a bunch of time, and now you have a bunch of content. Which turns out to be SEO, which drives more traffic back to your website. And then you take your blog posts and you can just cut snippets out of your blog posts, turn them into captions, put them on your social media and then wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am you’re done for a year, with like 10 to 20 blog posts.

You can do it all in a month. Like really you really could. And then we get to do the coolest part which is only talk about the best parts of our lives. Like the most awesome things, right? That’s the only thing I ever want to post about is like, hey look at me on top of this mountain or doing this awesome thing or we just closed 10 new homes this week. The shouting from the mountain tops, how amazing you are. The highlights, so that’s my advice for…Yeah, get started as soon as you can.

Krista: Get started soon. Okay, so for somebody like let’s take a local business, a local service professional. Realtors, lenders, dentist, tax accountants, consultants, attorneys, CPAs, what should they be posting and what kind of an influencer would help them?


Sure, let’s go with realtors.


Okay. Well, my target market is not just realtors I help, service providers. So what I kind of wanted to do was pick a different… Something different so that is realtors, you can use this for anything and that’s what kind of what I want people to get the understanding you know what I mean?


Yeah. It can be used for anything. Okay, well-


Lets take a CPA, like who would be fine do realtor, who would a realtor go after? Who would their target market be? Like as far as who would their influencer be?


Yeah, absolutely. So I would say that the influencer or a realtor would be high-end lifestyle and, or travel. So people you’re looking at… The question is who has capital to purchase a home, right? So, who is the audience that’s on social media that can do this. So high-end lifestyle, maybe these are models, actors or athletes that represent that type of lifestyle. You could take George Clooney, a lot of people associate him with, luxury brands, wine, Italy, private jets and things of that nature. So I’m sure a lot of people that are following him or either inspired by him or resonate as him.

And that’s why you follow because we’re looking for mirrors,things that we feel comfortable around with. Another thing that I was saying was the travel. So people that can travel generally have more expendable capital. So you can look for influencers that are promoting five star resort hotels, like exotic locations to go visit. Obviously some of these people are just,

wow, I really wish I could go there, like maybe it’s an escape for them, but majority of these

people are legitimate and following them for inspiration.

Well, where’s my next trip.Where am I gonna take my yacht to next? Or which I’d be flying too. So I think those two are good strategy, as well as you could go after someone, so let’s say like a CPA or a BDB business service provider, you could go after entrepreneurial market. Let’s go find the Gary Vay that-


All those people are local. They are local people.


Yes, so if you’re going local… If you’re looking local, there’s a possibility for local influencers in larger markets, like say New York City, Miami, but if it’s a small town, you might as well advertise in the newspaper or work with, just go door to door and shake everyone’s hand

and kiss all the babies. At that point go to church. But if you’ve got something like million people in your city, it’s possible to find influencers that are lifestyle or in the space. But what I was gonna say is also, the startup scene, entrepreneurs kind of the hustle mentality, like Gary V’s of the world.These people are attracting a lot of people that are go-getters are creating things in the world, have capital, or are looking to invest capital to flip a home or things like that because

we’re looking long-term. So you kind of wanna find… Those three buckets is kind of where I would kinda gear my marketing efforts towards.


And then again, it just looks good to have a large number of followers for a couple reasons. One, it gives you credibility, two more trust as well, correct?


Yeah, absolutely. And then of course the best type of marketing beyond social media and everything else, you know it, I know it word of mouth. It’s been here forever because that’s the most trustworthy, when somebody follows you and they see what you’re doing, maybe they don’t need to buy a home or maybe they don’t need a CPA right now. But if they like what message is and the value that you’re bringing to the lives, they’re gonna be like, oh, hey I need a CPA. Oh, you guess what? I just followed this guy on Instagram. You should check them out.

And that’s the best referral you can ever get in your life. So that is totally a long-term play, long-term investment into social media.


Creating a lot of video content, Know like trust the whole nine yards.




Absolutely. Okay, great. Okay, so last minute, any social media Instagram tips that don’t have to do with finding social influencers?


Yes, my number one tip to

every single entrepreneur has nothing to do with social media and everything to do with social media. And that is become a master delegator because you’re already doing everything in your business already. You don’t have more time to make 30 posts and all the captions and

hashtags and research and community engagement and dealing with 10,000 people trying to talk to you.So do your best to find what you’re passionate about in social media. What do you really like to do? Maybe I love to wake up and  do those 15 second videos. Okay, great do that.

But everything else, just outsource it. Get someone on your team. And if you can’t afford

someone to have someone on your team in the states, then find a VA overseas

through like or and offload those tasks.

So that way you can stay in your zone of genius and perform at your best. That way you don’t feel bogged down and social media is not this thing. Like you’re trudging your feet through the mud. Like it can feel like obligation. A lot of times if you know, you get into that-


What kind of things would you suggest they have their VA do?

Derren: One thing I would have their VA do is, research what hashtags they should be using,

research what their competitors are doing and then create a SWOT analysis of their strengths

and weaknesses of what the competitors in the space are doing. And then that way they can find where they can slot into the market and stand out from the crowd. Another thing I would have them do is schedule their posts. I would have them create graphics, infographics based on the knowledge that is inside the noggin of theirs. And I would also have them do compete community management. So you could create like a FAQ, frequently asked questions and then you could have your VA do for the basic stuff, there could be just like standard copy and paste type questions and anything more could be sent to like a support email, or personal email to be answered by the service provider.


Yeah, great advice, great advice. Okay, well I really… Derren, it has been great having you. I so appreciate, thank you so much for your time and for being here. So, Social Sensei is

his name at his company and he is here to support and surrogate great tidbits, great advice. And just wanted to say, thanks for being here. What would you like to leave with Derren?


What I’d like to leave with is infinite prosperity for you all, may you all your dreams, hopes and desires come true. This is my greatest wish for all of you.


Oh, thank you so much.I hope you were just service provider everyone.Thank you so much for your time.I appreciate you all. And don’t forget. Go to

for our free challenge. That’s You get free coaching from me and we’ll be talking all about learning all about video and social media, and I will see you next time.

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