Make Your Instagram Captions Pop — Here’s How

Sure, Instagram is all about the photos — but the photo captions matter, too. “It’s where you can explain what the photo is about, tell your followers to take action, or crack a joke that makes your content all the more delightful and shareable,” writes Lindsay Kolowich for HubSpot.

Here are a few of Kolowich‘s tips to help you write better Instagram captions:

“• Front-load the important stuff: The maximum character count for an Instagram caption (2,200 characters) is basically a formality. But the important thing to note is that captions cut off in users’ feeds after three to four lines of text. That doesn’t mean you should keep your captions super short so users can see 100% of it without having to click “more.” Instead, frontload your captions with the important content or text calls-to-action — and leave any hashtags, @mentions, or extraneous information for the end.

Include a call-to-action: The best way to increase the shareability of your Instagram post and engage your followers is to have some sort of call-to-action in the captions of your photos. That means using action verbs to prompt people to do something, instead of just passively scrolling by. We found that verbs generate more shares on Twitter than nouns and adjectives — the same can be true for Instagram.

For example, you might say, “double-tap if you find this funny” or “share your story in the comments.”

Here are a few other action-based ideas to get you started:

Ask a question.

Encourage people to comment with their own experiences. You might be able to draw on these experiences to shape your Instagram strategy moving forward, or to come up with new content ideas. To increase engagement and delight your followers even more, respond to users’ answers to make it like a conversation.

Invite people to tag their friends.

Encourage your followers to share your post with friends by inviting them to tag their friends. Here [is an example of a fun, clever way one brand has] asked followers to tag friends.

Meld your brand voice with Instagram’s lighthearted tone: Every social network has a different tone that works best. While serious, jargon-heavy copy may work well on LinkedIn, for example, that same copy won’t work as well on Instagram. The best Instagram posts tend to have a lighthearted, fun tone, showing off the more authentic, human, and personable side of brands.”

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