How to write engaging Instagram captions

They say a picture is worth a thousand words but the right Instagram caption accompanying that photo could be worth a whole lot of moolah $$$. Heck, I’ve even heard of a viral, instagram sen station of a dog being paid 80k to post a product on his instagram page. Yes, you read that right. A dog. was paid. More than most people make in an entire year. To post a single instagram photo. Posting pretty pictures on instagram can be cute, but as a business owner your goal should be to go beyond posting a great photo because truth be told, great pictures alone are not what sell products on Instagram – or anywhere for that matter. It always comes down to context and the story surrounding the photo. The caption accompanying your photo is an excellent way to tell that story and provide more insight into the purpose of the image you’ve posted.


Tip 1 – Tell a story

Each post on Instagram is like another page in a story you are telling. The purpose of your story is to build relationship, connection, recognition and trust between you and your audience. If you are selling a product you want your captions to always discuss a different aspect of what is it you have to sell and how it meets a need of your audience. Challenge yourself to go beyond showcasing your pieces and instead approach your photos by putting your pieces in the context. Of a story and weaving them throughout.  So, for example if you sell jewelry perhaps post a photo of a date night or an anniversary celebration and showcase your product as the icing on top of a beautiful love story.  For more ideas on how to incorporate storytelling into your marketing download my storytelling playbook here.


Tip 2 – Consistent voice

When people read your captions, you want them to hear your voice. It’s easier to bond with someone who sound like a new friend who’s really interested in getting to know you and seeing how they can help you out than a know it all who is unapproachable. You want your brand voice to be some variation of the former than the latter. And be consistent. Each post should sound like its coming from the same person.  This is especially important is you have a social media team with multiple people posting. Ensure there are clear guidelines on your brand tone and voice. 


Tip 3 – Break up text

Now that you have a clear brand voice and are armed with your storytelling power it’s easy to want to write lots about the image you are posting. This is great but be sure to break it up. It’s difficult to read a long solid block of text especially since most people do not read and only skim through content, so make sure you include paragraph breaks that are more easily digested by the eye. Using emjois is a great way to do this as they add visual interest and can be the exclamation point on a point and really underscore your message. 


Tip 4 – include a call to action

As a business owner you are not just posting an image or caption for the sake of it. You can’t people to respond to your post and take some sort of action so think about what that call to action (CTA) will be for each post. n Do you want them to visit your website? Attend and event? Subscribe to your newsletter? Answer a survey question? Be specific and clear in your CTA so people know exactly what you want them to do. And only include one CTA per post so they don’t get confused.


Tips 4 – Start a conversation

The great thing about instgram and social media in general is that it allows you get instant feedback on content you produce. Use that to your advantage. Don’t just think of followers as an audience but thing of them as a community. A virtual coffee shop. Talk to them like your neighbours, ask them for feedback on new products you have released or include them in the merchandise selection process to see what they’d prefer.  If you are a blogger ask them if they can relate to a specific situation you have blogged about or posted about. This is your tribe. Speak to them and engage by asking them to participate. 


Tip 5 - Use hastags

Hashtags are a great way to promote the circulation of your post because it includes them into similar categories of content based on which tags you use. Additionally, If your post ends up receiving lots of engagement you could be trending in that category which means an exponentially greater numbe4r of people will have the opportunity to see it and it will be bumped into instagram’s explore page more.  Be specific with the tags because generic ones like #influencer, #killingit, #popular are banned. Also, you want to switch up your hasgtags about every six posts to avoid getting shadow banned by Instagram.

And there you have it, 5 ways to write more engaging Instagram captions. For more tips on storytelling and how to use the powerful technique for instagram marketing download my storytelling playbook.    Let me know if you want me to dive into greater depth on any of these sections. 


Till next time keep rising,