Instagram Marketing for Small Businesses in 2020

by Gareth
17 minutes
Instagram Marketing for Small Businesses in 2020

Instagram is one of the largest and most impressive social platforms, with over 1 billion monthly active users and approximately 30 million business accounts. It's quite clear that Instagram is here for the long haul. That's why we are writing our top 10 tips to exploit the platform and become a marketing God on Instagram in 2020, so you can connect with your followers better and eventually convert them into paying customers.  




The first thing you want to do, whether you've just signed up to Instagram or want to up your Insta game, is to fully optimise your bio by describing clearly and concisely what you do and who you do it for. This may also be a good opportunity to explain why it is worth following your profile, so if someone comes across it they can quickly determine if you are worth their time and attention. 


A great bio should also be topped up with a call to action, which is something that encourages them to take some particular action. We recommend offering a freebie (in other words, a lead magnet) and putting the link in your bio to access that free goodie. Obviously, as Instagram is predominantly mobile, you need to ensure that any links in your bio should be to a mobile optimised page. 



The three words that can help you build an effective brand plan are consistency, clarity, and congruence. Consistency means that you have a regular schedule to post on your Instagram profile, to respond to comments and to reply to any DMs (Direct Messages) you may have received. Being consistent not only demonstrates that you are a ‘value giver’, but that you are reliable and trustworthy as a brand. Clarity is about your style and making sure it is really clear exactly what you do and why you do it. It also means ensuring there is a clear tonality and consistent visuals across your account. Lastly, congruence is all about ensuring that what you do and why you do it matches the tonality and what you are posting each day. You want to avoid confusing anyone, otherwise you will simply lose followers.




Leverage both feed and stories in your Instagram marketing plan. In your feed you want to produce high-quality and well-curated content in your feed so you really portray your best brand image. In stories, you should be showing things in real time; live action, as they happen. 


If you’re running Instagram ads, you can leverage both feeds and stories, and see which one provides the better return on investment for you and your business. 




I’m surprised we still need to say this in 2020, but people are still missing out on the advantage that hastags can provide, and should be used on everything you post. At the end of the day, hashtags are how people are going to be finding you and your content. We have three tips to make hashtags work for your business… 


The first thing you need to do is #research, meaning you have to go and find what other influencers in your space are using, what the top brands are using, and what your competitors are using in order to attract and build an audience. We also recommend researching what hashtags your target audience are using because these are the people that you’re trying to get in front of.


The next tip is that once you have created your list of hashtags, you want to keep trying to mix your hashtags up. In other words, you want to avoid using the same hashtags every single time you post, to ensure you can get in front of new people. If you stick to the same hashtags, your follower count will stagnate as the same people will see your content time and time again. 


Our final tip is one that should help you speed up the hashtag process. It can be quite tiresome having to type out every single hashtag, so we recommend using the keyword shortcuts that pop up on your phone so you can more easily fill in the keywords you want without having to type each word out completely. 

If you are struggling to find decent hashtags, why not try out a hashtag finder tool?




You would have hear of influencer marketing, which involves using a well-known figure (such as a celebrity) on social media to promote a product or service. Now, there’s a useful and more affordable sub-segment of influencer marketing, known as micro-influencers, that is great for small businesses. A micro-influencer is a niche-specific influencer with far smaller audiences containing the exact people you are trying to reach. By utilising a micro-influencer you can get incredibly cost-effective placements targeting your perfect group of people. 




Leveraging user generated content is a fantastic way to build brand loyalty, build engagement with your tribe, and also take a little bit of the load off your plate when it comes to creating content. Fortunately, generating user generated content is easier than you might think. All you really need to do is ask for it. If you place a submission form on your website, you can direct people to it and they can submit their content for you to review. If you decide to use it, make sure you give them a shoutout (that is, a thank you in your post description and a link to their Instagram profile). 




Don’t just post on Instagram at any random time or day, you need to be more strategic than that. We recommend posting about one or two times per day, with three posts being the maximum you should probably do. The best times to post are 8-9am and 5pm. For video content, 9pm seems to be the best time of day to post (video marketing is super powerful at the moment). Monday and Thursdsay provide the best results, but Sunday seems to be the worst. Nevertheless, test the days and times yourself to see what works.




61 percent of Instagram users are under the age of 31 and there are about 7 percent more females than males. However, there are still a great number of older people on the platform too – a demographic that is growing quickly. Make sure you sit down and work out exactly who your ideal target market is, what their pains and desires are, and determine how you can get in front of them in the best way possible. 




My advice here is pretty straightforward. If you’ve got a business and you want to generate more leads, customers, and sales, then you will want to leverage the incredible power of Instagram ads. They are so powerful because they are owned by Facebook ads, which has an incredibly powerful advertising algorithm allowing you to precisely pinpoint your ideal target market and put your message directly in front of them. If you’ve got a business that’s trying to generate more leads, customers, and sales, you should be using Instagram ads


#10 DMs


Direct messages are great to reach out to new people, but you’ve got to lead with value and offer something without expecting anything back in return. So make a connection, seek to understand them first and really try to build that relationship. 

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