When using Instagram as a platform for social media marketing, posting attractive visuals is probably the most important thing you should do. However, many marketers actually underestimate the importance of what comes under it – the caption.
Having a great caption is essential because people do read them. That’s why it’s so important to be able to craft the best ones for your posts, so here are the seven steps to write Instagram captions that sell.
#1 Set Realistic Goals
First and foremost, you need to set realistic goals for your posts. Many marketers and influencers often overestimate the success their content can have and quickly get discouraged when they don’t see the results they expected. That’s why it’s essential that you analyze how well your posts have performed in the past and set realistic goals for the posts you are currently working on.
As you create more content, you will see what works best and you will be able to set higher goals and achieve them by using the right techniques. Remember that Instagram posts are made up of the visuals and the caption, so when you analyze the performance of your posts, you need to take into account both parts and understand what was the cause for worse or better performance of certain posts.
#2 Craft A Strong Opener
The first thing your audience reads is the opening line of your caption – and that should be as good as you can manage. Crafting a strong opener is necessary to catch the attention of your followers (or potential followers) and then keep it as you transition to the body of your caption. Experts from custom writing reviews sites all agree that it is absolutely essential to have a strong opener no matter what king of content you are working on.
Of course, there are different types of captions which means some of them will be lengthier than others. So, what do you do with your opener if your caption is just a single line or phrase? Think of it as your opener then. If your caption is quite short, then it can be in its entirety a single opener. Ask a question, state and interesting fact, or just write something quirky depending on what you usually write.
#3 Write Like A Human
One very important thing every social media marketing and influencer should remember is that you should always write like a human being – not like a robot. In order to connect with your audience, you need to show that you are just like them – and that means speaking like your followers (at least, to some extent).
Depending on what your brand image is like, you will need to have an appropriate brand voice. For example, if you are an influencer who specializes on traveling and your audience mainly consists of young people, you can adopt a friendly and easy-going voice. Another element to consider is structure. By breaking up your lengthy caption into paragraphs, you make it more appealing visually and separate every topic creating imaginary pauses between the paragraphs that you would make while talking.
#4 Be Open About Ads
Because many influencers earn money through influencer marketing, they will often have to publish sponsored posts on Instagram promoting a certain brand or product. It’s easy to assume that you can simply publish the post and be done with it, but there is actually more to it than it seems at first.
Sponsored posts published on Instagram must explicitly state that they are ads which means that you need to include this in the caption. If you don’t do so, you will be breaking FTC rules. Use words like “ad” or “sponsored” to show that this is an endorsement you were paid for. Even if you received the product as a gift from a brand, it still counts as an endorsement. Moreover, the disclosure should appear in the first lines of the caption, so don’t bury it in hashtags or somewhere at the end of the caption.
#5 Add Fun Details
When you write a lengthy caption, the text can seem a bit blocky and boring, even if you have divided it into paragraphs to give it some structure. This is usually the result of captions not standing out much when compared to the photos and videos they usually come along with. Luckily, there are some fun details you can add to your captions.
For instance, using hashtags will not only make your posts visible to more people, but they can also highlight keywords in the text to bring attention to them more. You can also use emojis but try to avoid using too many of them because they can make your captions look stuffed. Avoid using stylish fonts that have become common thanks to other apps converting your text into such fonts. Not all devices are able to read these fonts and you will end up leaving out part of your audience. Consider using mentions to get more responses.
#6 Include A Call to Action
At the very end of your caption, there is a simple detail you can add that can potentially increase the engagement on your posts. A call to action or CTA is a sure way to encourage your followers to leave a comment, like the post, follow your account, or even share your content, according to specialists from the best custom writing services sites.
A CTA can come in the form of a sentence where you directly ask your audience to perform a particular action. However, you can also use some indirect CTAs such as questions that ask for opinions of your followers and, therefore, prompt them to leave a comment.
#7 Proofread and Edit
Last but not least, once your caption is written and you are happy with it, you should still proofread the text and edit it. Making even minor adjustments can solve huge issues and prevent bad situations from happening.
For example, consistently posting captions with typos can lead to a poor reputation which no marketers or influencer likely wants to have. Any offensive language should also be avoided while it is also a good idea to steer clear of controversial opinions that you may want to talk about.
To sum up, writing Instagram captions doesn’t need to be complicated. Once you figure out the basics, you will be able to build on that foundation and create increasingly effective Instagram captions that encourage your audience to act. Use the tips and tricks from this article to create the best Instagram captions for your posts and increase engagement and sales.
Guest Contributor: Frank Hamilton is a blogger and translator from Manchester. He is a professional writing expert in such topics as blogging, digital marketing and self-education. He also loves traveling and speaks Spanish, French, German and English. Meet him on Facebook and Twitter.