Guide to Prospecting Small Business Owners on Instagram 2024

Guide to Prospecting Small Business Owners on Instagram 2024



Griffin Morris


April 26, 2024

Instagram can be a valuable platform for connecting directly with local business owners. Small businesses are more likely to have a presence here compared to LinkedIn, and their contact information may not be readily available on corporate lead generation tools like ZoomInfo. 

In this blog post, we'll guide you through the process of prospecting  small business owners on Instagram.


  • How many small business owners are on Instagram?
  • How do I find business owners on Instagram?

How many small business owners are on Instagram?

According to Instagram business statistics gathered by SocialPilot (February 2024), over 200 million businesses are on Instagram to promote their products and services, and over 150 million people use Instagram every month to communicate directly with a business.

Platforms like Instagram are perfect for small businesses that want to connect with their audience, unlike LinkedIn, which is a good social media platform for big B2B companies that have exclusive marketing staff.

But when we talk about local businesses, there's a high chance they're on Instagram, not on LinkedIn. After all, they don't have a lot of time and need to choose the best platforms to communicate with their customers.

Less than 10% of local businesses are on LinkedIn, and 60% of all businesses in the US are not on LinkedIn. You will find them on platforms like Instagram or Resquared.

Check out the testimonial of Jason Brooke about how Instagram can be effective in connecting with small businesses.

Testimonial on Shorts (Youtube).

“I have a girl in our office that I still think should start her own StripMallGuy. She's like the prospecting queen of Instagram. She does all of her listings in the Center City and Fish Town. So she's an urban broker. She no joke has brought in Michelin-star restaurant groups out of New York and DC that are, I mean, heavily now focused on the Philadelphia market. And that's just her night and day DMing, DMing, DMing.”

Take a look at Stefanie Gabel's Instagram: @leasedlikely

How do I find business owners on Instagram?

1. Explore the hashtags

Do some digging and find popular hashtags used by small business owners, like:

  • #entrepreneurlife
  • #entrepreneur
  • #smallbiz
  • #smallbusinesowner
  • #localbusinessowner
  • #smallbusiness
  • #localbusiness
  • #shoplocal
  • #shopsmall
  • #supportsmall
  • #shopsmallfirst
  • #supportsmallbusiness

This will help your posts reach them, and you can use the posts you find as case studies to determine the type of content they consume, their favorite formats (video, picture, carousel, reels), and how you can make your content more engaging based on their interests.

Instagram icon

2. Try Instagram Ads

The SocialPost statistics also show that ads on Instagram have the potential to reach 849.3 million users. Additionally, 83% of consumers affirm they use Instagram to discover new products and services. 

Regarding format, usually, video ads have 3x more engagement than photos.

Instagram allows you to create super-specific ads to reach people based on age, interests, and even how they use the app. Take advantage of this feature to get your message directly to small business owners!

You can learn how to boost your Instagram posts on their tutorial page.

3. Find the influencers

Every field has its influencers, including small business owners. You can use their accounts as inspiration for the kind of content that resonates with local businesses and try to build partnerships with them to showcase your products or services.

Examples of Instagram accounts tailored to small businesses:

  • Amerrica's Small Business Network: @myasbn
  • Business Chicks: @businesschicks
  • Natalie Frane:@nataliefranke
  • Alicia Clough: @theclienthunter

4. Engage on small business owners' posts

Don't just follow, be a conversation starter! 

After following small business owners, like, comment, and share their posts to show you're interested. This active engagement will help you build connections naturally. As your network grows, you'll discover even more inspiring business owners to connect with. 

5. Have an interesting profile

It's hard to trust a profile without a profile picture and any photos, right? In today's world, scams are everywhere, so it's important to add information and photos to your profile and be active. 

This doesn't mean you need to be an influencer yourself but use your account similarly to how you see small business owners using theirs. Share some glimpses of your work, and your life - this will help you convey the right message to the right audience

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