Marketing on Instagram is all about the visuals. The quality of photos on your feed will be the most essential element that leads to gaining your Instagram followers, attracting them with your brand and content. It’s also a way to show off the human side of your business.
However, getting a beautiful photo and editing it to perfect ones are not enough for you. Do you want to hear the voice of that visual content? The caption of your post is where you can let this voice begins.
A good caption on Instagram tells your followers what the photo is about. Moreover, it encourages them to take action or makes a joke that makes your content all the more interesting and shareable.
If you think of your Instagram caption as an afterthought, you’re losing out on a chance to engage your followers in ways you can’t do with only visual.
In this article, we mention 8 great tips to help you better your Instagram captions.
1. Write several drafts first.
Have you ever thought of a perfect joke after it was a little too late to tell it? We’ve all had this similar feeling when we’ve already uploaded an Instagram post and then we come up with an interesting caption.
What is the lesson we’ve studied here? Don’t rush the process! You should write several caption ideas down. And spend more time on them to choose which one is perfect for your photos.
You might wonder that timeline and chronology are important on Instagram or not. The answer is, it depends on the subject of your post. In the case of Patrick Janelle – a professional Instagrammer, he says that he uses Instagram as a kind of chronological journey of his activities and lifestyle. He would like to publish all posts in real-time to show what he’s doing at a given moment.
However, the Instagram feed algorithm has changed, the level of engagement your posts get will soon matter more than chronology. So, Instagram will show posts that it thinks we’ll care about the most. The visibility of your posts on your audiences’ feed will depend on the number of likes and comments your post receives, your relationships with the user posting, and another factor.
That’s the reason why you must spend time writing a great caption that’ll stop your followers and encourage them to engage with your content.
2. Front-load the important stuff.
The maximum character count for a caption on Instagram is 2,200 words that are a formality. However, you should know an important thing is that Instagram captions cut off in follower’s feeds at third or fourth text lines.
We don’t mean that you should write a super short caption so your followers can see all of it without clicking “more”. What you should do is to frontload your Instagram captions with the most essential content or text calls-to-action. And leave your hashtags, mentions or extra information at the end of the post.
Let’s look at this example from coffee-based skincare Frank Body. They created an enticing and front-loaded caption.
3. Include a call-to-action.
The greatest way to boost the share potential of your Instagram post and engage your followers is to have some kinds of call-to-action in the captions of your photos. That means you should add some action verbs on the caption to encourage people to do something, instead of just scrolling by. As research of Hubspot, verbs generate more shares on Twitter than nouns and adjective, we can get the same result with Instagram.
Let’s see an example, you might write down: “double-tap if you find this interesting” or “share with me your story in the comments”.
We also have some other ideas for you here:
Ask a question.
Make people want to leave a comment on their own experiences. You might be able to depend on these experiences to improve your Instagram strategy moving forward, or to create new content ideas. You should respond to users’ answers to make it like a conversation to increase engagement with your followers.
Here are some examples for you.
H&M: “All you need for a weekend get-away. Where would you go?”
Another example from @lornajaneactive
Direct people to a link in your bio.
Clickable URLs aren’t allowed anywhere except the single “website” box in your bio. That’s why optimized Instagram profiles update that URL frequently to point to their latest blog content, YouTube videos, products, or offers — and then refer to that link in their Instagram captions.
If you are running a contest or would like to gain your blog subscribers. You should change the link then post a photo that mentions in its caption the new link.
Pro tip: Use shortened links that include UTM tracking codes so you can see how much of your traffic came from your Instagram page.
To change the link in your bio, click your profile page then choose “Edit Profile.”
Now, insert into the URL box the URL of your choosing.
Invite people to tag their friends.
Invite your followers to tag their friends to make them share your posts.
We have here some clever examples that brands used to ask their followers to tag friends.
Invite people to enter a contest.
Hosting a contest is the best way to boost engagement and expose your Instagram brand.
Let’s see what BuzzFeed Tasty did below.
Consider including the contest’s official rules in your caption for folks who are interested and even a link in your bio.