How to Make Sales on Instagram Without Being Salesy

business instagalactic jake davey social media the workroom Jul 23, 2021

By Jake Adam Davey.

Do you want to know how to get more sales on Instagram WITHOUT being salesy?

Sounds a bit too good to be true, right?

Well, it's really not. And there's a process we use again and again (and again) on Instagram to generate leads for our business.

In this article, I share:

  • The 3 Step ACT System to get a consistent stream of leads for your business.
  • The Number 1 Factor in your success that allows you to profit with Instagram (that most people totally ignore).
  • Why most people fail to make sales on Instagram (basically, what NOT to do!).

As business owners and entrepreneurs, we want to ensure that when we are spending time on Instagram, or any other social media platforms, that we're getting bang for our buck. That we're getting a return on the time invested.

One of the biggest queries I hear every day is this: ‘Can I actually generate sales on Instagram and start making money?’

Sometimes people have already tried, and I hear, ‘I've tried making sales on Instagram, it doesn't work. People don’t buy.’ 

I'm going to totally disagree with that. 

However, I do agree that if we go out with the intention of looking to sell consistently, then, yes, we are probably going to get rebuffed, and people are going to say, ‘No, that's not for me, I'm not interested.’ 

So, what do we do instead?

One of the biggest mistakes that people make on social media - especially Instagram - and one of the biggest mistakes that I made myself when I first started on social media (and not just on Instagram but on other platforms too) is thinking that because we have a business and because we are entrepreneurs, and because we think we need to start making sales, we go out there and start to sell. 

STOP!! It totally doesn't work. 

The reason for this is that we’ve suddenly forgotten about why people actually go on to social media in the first place. People do not go on social media to be sold to - they go on social media to be social; to connect with people; to learn new things; to see what friends and family are doing; to see what's going on in the wider world.

They rarely go on with the intention to make a direct purchase, but they definitely don't go on there to be sold to. 

So, the second mistake that most of us make is that we try to sell to people who aren't yet ready to buy from us. 

The key is to remember golden rule number 1 - we do our marketing publicly, and our selling privately.

You may well have heard the phrase, ‘know, like and trust’. Well, just as in the offline business world, online, we also have to move people through that process of knowing, liking, and trusting us. Firstly, people need to be aware of us, then they need to like us, then they can trust us, and then they will eventually purchase from us. 

So, how do we move people through that process without being salesy?

There is a way to do this. 

There are three parts to Instagram, and the platform itself is perfectly built for this process. It's almost like there's a hidden sales funnel within Instagram that allows you to generate sales from the platform without being salesy at all. 

The 3 Step ACT System

  1. Attract

The first thing that we need to do when we're looking to generate leads, clients, and customers for our business on Instagram, is to attract people to our account.

That sounds really obvious, but the way we attract people is by not chasing and trying to be salesy, but by sharing high quality content, valuable content, and useful content that other people want to see. The more we give people what they want, the bigger our audience will become. You become a person of influence, allowing you to share your message and move people through the know, like and trust process, so you can start to generate more leads, more clients, and more customers from Instagram. 

The first step is attracting people by sharing content - our posts, our reels, our carousels, whatever that may be. We start to get our posts out to a wider audience using hashtags and engaging with relevant content, and all the other strategies I teach to grow on Instagram. 

The bigger our audience, the more attractive we become, and therefore the more followers we get to our account. But we do not try to sell to people at this stage. All we're doing is building our audience; we're engaging people to move through that know, like and trust process. 

  1. Capture

The next step is where we capture people. 

The way that we capture people on Instagram is ‘Stories’. Instagram stories are not the way to build our following, however, they are the thing that allows us to connect with and capture our most engaged audience, our most engaged followers, our raving fans.

The beauty of Instagram stories is that they allow us to start to capture people, and it can quickly become very personal. Stories are a full screen experience where you can connect with people straight away, and it feels like you are breaking down that fourth wall and communicating with people.

Stories are a bit more off the cuff, more relaxed, and not so curated. It feels like you get to see behind the scenes of who people really are and what they’re really like, and we feel like we begin to know, like and trust them. 

10 to 15%

Not all of your followers are going to see your stories, so at Step 2 your audience starts to get smaller. About 10 to 15% of your top followers are going to see your stories on a consistent basis.

Just like a funnel - Instagram starts wide at the top (your newsfeed), gets narrower as we come into the capture stage (stories), and then in the final step it gets narrower still. 

We attract a wide number of people - our followers - and we capture the top 10 to 15% through stories.

Within Instagram stories, there are people that are ready to purchase from you. Remember that around 600 million people now use Instagram stories every day, so there is definitely an audience there.

Once we’ve moved people through attraction, and we have captured them in our stories, what we then need to do is transition them from Instagram stories into a private conversation (remember: market publicly, sell privately). That private conversation may happen on or off Instagram. 

  1. Transition 

If you've got to the magical number of 10,000 followers, then you have the advantage of the stories Swipe Up which will easily help you move people from Instagram to a private conversation. 

But I haven’t got the Swipe Up Feature! 

If you don't have 10,000 followers, don't give up. What we do instead is move people into a private conversation in direct messages (DM’s). In DM’s, you can then start to engage people and test them to see if they are ready or suitable to become a client or customer of yours, or at least know more about your product and service. 

An example of what this looks like: 

We’ve been working on attracting people and we're starting to build our audience, we've got 10,000 followers on the platform, we capture the top 10 to 15% of our Instagram stories and if we're using stories consistently, this then allows us to capture 1,000 people. That is 1,000 people every day seeing your Instagram stories to transition.

Now, of course, not everybody's going to take action and that's okay, but if 10% of those people take action, that's 100 people every day taking action by sending you a message or swiping up to your online store, therefore moving from being in your followers to being more engaged through your Instagram stories, to then transitioning them off the platform, or into a private conversation about your products and services. 

But what if you’ve only got 1,000 followers? 

Well, the top 10% of our audience takes action, that's 100 people seeing our stories! The top 10% of those take action - that's 10 people every day! Imagine 10 people every single day who are connecting with you in DM’s, who are swiping up to your ad for your online store, or to a webinar registration, or booking a phone call. 

Suddenly, this becomes very, very powerful. 

The simple 3 Step ACT System to get a consistent stream of leads for your business can work for anyone, on any niche, but there are a few things you need to remember:

  • For this to work you need to be consistent. 
  • For this to work you need to structure your stories correctly to be able to move people through the process, so that they take action. 
  • And naturally, for this to work, you need to know about the types of conversations to have where we're not being too pushy, whilst equally not being too friendly - not just chatting for the sake of chatting. 

The conversation that we have has a purpose, we're clear on the end goal, and we can move people smoothly through the process to buy. The real beauty of this comes if you continue to follow this system on a daily basis. 

People will gradually move through each of these stages, so that no matter whether they are totally new to your account and they have never come across you before, or if they've been following you for a number of months (even years), and they are now in a position where they're ready to move forward and work with you more closely. 

This is one of the most powerful things that we've ever used in our business, and it’s one of the strategies and processes that have helped our clients generate thousands of dollars directly on the Instagram platform.

It's extremely powerful, and it works, and it WILL work for your business. It works no matter what business, what product or service you have because the process is the same.


If you can see how this could work for your business, your product, or your service, and you'd like more information, just send me a message on Instagram @jakeadamdavey. I would love to have a chat with you about how you can get this set up for your business and, if done the right way, it will have a radical, radical impact on your business. 


Jake Davey is the UK’s leading Instagram expert. Former high school French and Spanish teacher turned online entrepreneur, Jake shows business owners and entrepreneurs how to build an authentic audience on Instagram and be seen as the go-to authority in their industry.
His Flagship program, InstaGalactic follows the proven, 6-Step ROCKET system and shows people how to explode their brand on Instagram so they can impact on a global scale. 
He is passionate about helping business owners to scale by leveraging the power of Instagram via his online course, 1:1 and group coaching, hosting the INfluence podcast, and international speaking engagements.
Jake currently has an audience of over 65K followers on Instagram, and has helped hundreds of large and small businesses to influence more people, and build authentic, engaged audiences that convert. 



Stay connected with news and updates!

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.
Don't worry, your information will not be shared.

We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason. Ever.