A picture paints a thousand words, right? Yeah, we thought so too…
Although Instagram is a visual platform, nailing your Instagram caption is almost as critical as the photo (or video) itself.
That is a lot of pressure for a few lines of text. But not only do these words help you provide context for your image, they also help to showcase your brand’s personality. Win, win! But what should you write? How do you get your audience to engage? What length is best for your captions?
You’ll find the answers to all your questions (and more) in this blog.
Your goal: create a caption that will 1. elevate your post, 2. increase engagement and reach, and 3. represent your brand.
Here’s how to get there:
- Keep the important information first
Instagram is optimized for mobile, this means that only the first 125 characters of a caption show up in a user’s feed. To see the rest of the caption, the user has to click more. Remember, you’re competing for user attention, you want to catch their interest quickly before they scroll past to look at a more interesting post.
- Tell a story about your brand
Your photo is designed to draw the reader in, but your caption encourages engagement. Most people won’t read a monologue about your life story but they will read authentic, honest captions that tell a story about your brand. It doesn’t need to be long, your readers just want to know who you are, so make it personal and on brand and it will most definitely pull any potential scroller in!
- Consider the structure of your captions
You have anywhere between 2,200 and 400 characters in a caption so you can really go for it!BUT remember, a huge block of text is hard to read (especially on mobile) so plan how you’re going to get your important points read and how to engage them to carry on reading. Use spacing, asterisks, emojis and whatever else takes your fancy to make your caption come to life.
- Ask questions to encourage engagement
Engagement is the best way to increase reach on Instagram, but you want your audience to actively engage with your posts and not just read them.
One way to do this is to ask questions. Give them something to respond to. They need to be relevant to your brand but asking for feedback, getting to know you questions and simple yes-or-no, are all great ways to help engagement and get your brand to stick in the minds of users.
- Use emojis to show your personality
Emojis have been around since 2015 and although you might think they are a bit lame, they are actually a great way to grab interest and personalise your brand.
Instagram posts with emojis actually have a better rate of engagement than posts without them. They can break up long blocks of text and add a lot of emotion with very little words… clever, eh? ?
- Include relevant hashtags
Engagement is good but increasing reach and attracting new followers is even better. You want all of this amazing content to be seen by as many people as possible (the right people that is).
BUT that doesn’t mean you should just use all of the most popular hashtags in your post, you need to be selective. Go for a mixture of popular and specialised hashtags as long as they are all relevant to your post.#hashtag #design #ilona
- Use @ mentions to increase reach
Imagine if you could put your content in front of another account’s followers as well as your own… Well, you can!
If you use the ‘@ mention’ function to tag, other brands & businesses get notified and (hopefully) comment on or share your post meaning the post will appear in their followers’ feeds. This could be thousands of people you wouldn’t have otherwise reached.Disclaimer: It isn’t likely that someone is going to engage with a random post, but if you post content directly related to them, tagging them is a great way to increase your reach.
- Always include a call to action
These tips are designed to increase engagement and reach of your posts, but if you really want users to take action, you have to tell them to. A CTA directs users on what they should do after they finish reading your post. Where is the best place for a call to action on Instagram? That’s right, your Instagram caption. It could be a ‘tag us in your photos’, ‘like if you agree’ or even a simple ‘visit our website to find out more’ – you want to encourage users to engage with your brand, so give them a specific way to do it.
We work with interior design and home decor businesses to take away the headache of creating social media content. If you want to have a cuppa and a chat with friendly peeps about how to increase your social media engagement, follow the link to contact and hit us UP!
Credit to AdEspresso