For a small business still building your online reputation, Instagram might seem like an unimportant platform. But that’s where you may be wrong. One of Instagram’s biggest benefits  is the ability to churn out compelling content at little to no cost. That’s saying a lot when you’re a growing business on a tight budget.

Sharing photos on Instagram is an easy way to give insight into your company culture and the team contributing to your small business.

But if you’re not quite ready to hit the ground running with your Instagram account, take some pointers from these influencers (and get inspired while you’re at it).

1. Gary Vaynerchuk @garyvee

Gary Vee is a machine that functions effectively across all social media platforms. Not only is he a firehose of inspiration, his Instagram is full of smart business tips and a killer example of how to market yourself successfully.
instagram inspiration

2. Greats @greatsbrand

Greats, a Brooklyn-based sneaker brand, is an impressive example of how to build a following – and an entire business – around Instagram and social media. The brand reached its first million customers mostly thanks to their Instagram marketing.

The key to their Insta-success? Unlike many other brands, they’re not pushing their brand but focus on providing value.
instagram inspiration

From posts like tasty hamburgers to cool pictures of sneakers, they’ve got a nose for what’s trendy on Instagram — and they don’t take themselves too seriously.

3. Entrepreneur Magazine @entrepreneur

A classic brand in the world of small business, Entrepreneur Magazine features inspirational founders on Instagram. You can find different kinds of business owners and learn from their stories. And they’re not just posting standard business headshots. The publication captures each entrepreneur in their element.

instagram inspiration

4. The Honest Co. @honest

Jessica Alba is not only a successful model and an actor, she’s founded and built a billion dollar empire, Honest Company. She managed to balance a career, family and to take a small business to an IPO in a short period of time. (It doesn’t hurt that she had some extra cash flow to get her started.)

instagram inspirations

While pictures of cute babies are completely irresistible, Alba infuses her own personal brand into Honest Co’s Instagram account, sharing quotes and experiences from her own life – setting the brand apart in a crowded market vying for those parenting dollars.

5. Grant Cardone @grantcardone

Grant Cardone is pretty much the expert when it comes to building a brand online. As an author, entrepreneur and advisor, he offers valuable tips for growing your business. Whether you’re looking for inspiration, a sales advice or general business tip, his account is where you’ll find it.
instagram inspiration

6. Tai Lopez @tailopez

Tai Lopez made himself popular through his “one book a day” challenge, when he read and reviewed one business or self improvement book each day of the year.

instagram inspiration

He became a successful entrepreneur and lot of that book wisdom as well as practical advice can be found on his account.

7. Manny Khoshbin @mannykhoshbin

The highly successful real estate mogul has quite possibly the most inspiring stories on Instagram. He came to America from Iran when he was 14 and could barely speak English.

instagram inspiration

He’s now living the “American dream.” His Instagram features a mix of inspiration and his private collection of cars. If nothing else, looking at all of his ridiculously expensive cars gives us all something to aspire to.

8. Brit Morin @brit

Brit Morin, founder of Brit&Co., started as a blogger and turned her website into a prolific brand and a successful multi-million dollar business. Her Instagram is a great display of what a professional brand account should look like.

instagram inspiration

Her posts are engaging and consistent which is hugely important when building a following through social.

9. Richard Branson @richardbranson

Everyone knows the founder of Virgin and an adventurous entrepreneur Richard Branson. It should be no surprise that his Instagram account is an instant source of inspiration. His posts are a great reminder that building a business is about more than paperwork.

instagram inspiration

He not only shares business advice, but he’s constantly posting photos of his travels and meetings with other influencers.  

10. Mark Cuban @mcuban

For Mark Cuban, business is a game. And you better believe that he’s out there playing to win. His account is video heavy with lots of advice and reminders that as a business owner, you have to work to be the best.

instagram inspiration

11. Ellen DeGeneres @theellenshow

Who doesn’t love Ellen, right? The famed talk show host’s Instagram account is full of inspirational examples of her helping others. It’s a fantastic reiteration of her motto: Be kind to one another. While she might have a larger stage and fatter wallet that your small business, her account (and talk show) are a great reminder that we should always be doing our part to give back to others.

instagram inspiration