How to write Instagram captions that will turn followers into clients

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How to write Instagram captions that will turn followers into clients

Instagram is 10 years old in 2020 and already popular with over 1 billion people. It’s a brilliantly visual social media platform – but don’t make the mistake of thinking nobody reads the captions that go with your Instaworthy photos.
Instagram captions have a huge role to play in bringing your photos to life. It’s where you can share an anecdote or joke with your audience, create call-to-actions and add deeper meaning or context. If ever there was a social media platform where you can have a (party emoji), this is it!


Try these 8 tips to spice up your Instagram captions.


1. Know your audience

You may know your target market but have you given any thought to the types of people you are speaking to on Instagram? Marketing gurus recommend creating personas – details about their goals and pain points, where they live, hang out, work, etc. Creating personas gives colour to your buyers and will help you come up with more meaningful captions.


2. It’s all about the hook

Using the right words at the start of your caption can cause someone to stop mid-scroll and read what you have to say. It might feel like a cheap trick but hey – it’s tried and tested and proven to work. Why? People are curious, curious beings. They just love to be let in on a secret, to share their opinions, to be told a time or money-saving hack, or guess a knock-knock joke’s answer!
Here are a few examples to try for yourself:

  • True or false?
  • Guess what I just…
  • Is it just me or…
  • Can you help me decide?
  • Can I let you in on a little secret?

Download our full list of hooks at the bottom of this blog post.


3. Make it savable

Goodbye likes, hello saves: Instagram saves are the hottest engagement metric that brands are tracking right now (and for good reason). Every great caption serves your followers with what they need to hear such as a helpful tutorial, infographics, the “why” behind what you do, tips and tricks or motivation to tackle your day. Or you could simply ask them to save your post.


4. Use long-form captions

Micro-blog length captions are emerging as a strong trend for 2020. In fact, according to research by Fohr, the average Instagram caption length has more than doubled since 2016. It’s predicted that our feeds will be filled with an average caption length of 405 characters by 2020 — which averages out to be 65-70 words. Some Instagrammers write up to 100 words. 

We recommend starting your post with a short impactful intro(remember Instagram will shorten your caption after just 2 lines) – think headline and subheading – then following with your longer caption. Just like blog posts, we feel if it’s well written, people will make the effort to read it. Save any @mentions and hashtags for the end.


5. Practice makes perfect

Even copywriters won’t write the perfect captions the first time round, so don’t just throw a post up online without writing a few drafts first. There are lots of free apps like Later, Plann and Planoly where you can scribble away until you’re ready to go live with your post. Get an extra pair of eyes to check your posts – not just spelling but that you’ve used the right @mention accounts, links, etc.


6. Don’t forget your hashtags

Since hashtags are used with an intent to discover content, the right hashtags can put you in front of your target audience, even if they haven’t connected with you before.  If you want more Instagram followers, comments and likes, using hashtags is the best way to make it happen, faster. So go on, use all 30 if you want, but remember, keep them relevant to your post and business.


7. Get creative with emojis

You might think emojis are a little childish but they do instantly boost your captions with some humour and personality. You can either start your captions with the right emoji, replace words or let people work out a punchline of sorts. Copy and paste these somewhere 👉 👆 💥 🔗 🎯 📌 📍. They are useful to use for getting eyeballs on your important call-to-actions or links.


8. Get your followers to take action with creative call-to-actions

A call-to-action, also known as a CTA, is a term that you see used all the time in the marketing world. It’s a phrase that’s used to tell the user exactly what action to take and how to take it.  

Often, we put so much time and energy into creating an intriguing caption that we may forget about the most important aspect of social media: engagement.  Ask an engaging question, encourage comments or invite your followers to send you a DM or save your post at the end of every caption to build lasting relationships.



Instagram Hooks & Call-to-actions

Need some more inspiration? Download our free list of hooks and call-to-actions to get your creative juices flowing.



Want to know more about our content creation & Social Media writing? Get in touch with us to help you turn your followers into clients.
Call us: +27 79 896 1593 or email info@prettysocial.co.za



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