Words seem to mean nothing on Instagram since it's a visually-based social media platform. Not exactly the truth. A good caption can increase not just your engagement, conversion, and sales but also make you stand out among thousands of other brands and build a loyal community.
Perhaps, when you think through the content for Instagram, you try to concentrate on visuals first. Some, however, come up with a caption first when creating Instagram content, and only then select an image for it.
If you're one of those who can't easily make up an Instagram caption, we've got you covered.
In this piece, we'll talk about:
- An Instagram caption's specifications;
- How to come up with an engaging Instagram caption;
- Best practices to leverage when creating captions;
- Examples of great captions on Instagram.
What's an Instagram Caption?
An Instagram caption is a description or explanation about Instagram media that provides more context. Instagram captions can also include emojis, hashtags, and user tags.
Instagram captions cannot contain clickable links, so you can't invite followers to visit your site right from your caption. Instead, you can add a link in an Instagram bio or a special story sticker.
💡Suggested read: Instagram Gives Up on Swipe Up Links in Favour of Link Stickers
Instagram Captions Characters Limit
An Instagram caption has a limited number of characters – 2,200, which is about 300 words. You should keep this in mind when creating a long post in your notes or other third-party text editing app.
If you want to tell your followers a story exceeding this amount of characters, you can add part of it as a carousel post. Thus, you'll even drive more engagement to the post.
How to Come Up with an Appealing Instagram Caption
Technically, Instagram post can do without a caption — you will be able to publish a post without it. Yet, if you're an influencer or run a brand's account, we recommend you write something in addition to a visual.
Here's what to do if you run out of ideas.
Ask your audience
And when we say 'ask,' we mean several things.
Ideally, you should know your target audience pretty well to give them content they want to see, but it's fine to ask them if you can't come up with something on your own.
In a post or a story, ask your followers what they want to see next and develop an outline you should cover in your upcoming post(s).
Besides, you can ask your audience to do something in the caption or enquire about their opinion. For instance, ask to tag a friend or ask them what they think of a new episode of popular TV series.
Don't forget to communicate with your followers – asking them to express their opinion and adding questions will not only allow you to never feel the lack of ideas but also keep your audience engaged and actually talk to them.
Come up with several captions before choosing one
Has it ever happened to you that you made up something witty to say after the post is already published? If so, we suggest you should brainstorm first and then write down all ideas you come up with when thinking about how to caption a specific post. This is why it's helpful to think through your content plan in advance and schedule posts to be published at a certain time.
Read how Combin Scheduler can be helpful when it comes to content planning! Combin Scheduler is a desktop tool that allows you to schedule for publication and instantly publish posts and stories, make Instagram reposts, and add a link in your bio so that it appears together with your post or a story. It also allows you to preview your grid.
Think through the caption structure
If you're about to share a long post, it's useful to predefine its structure: what you're going to write in an introduction, main body, conclusion, and what you'll add as a CTA. Make a brief outline and bullet-point everything you want to say. Thus, you'll ensure you haven't forgotten a thing when making a final draft before publication.
And don't forget to place the most important information at the beginning of your caption.
Follow your brand voice
To stand out from thousands of other brands and companies, it's essential to be consistent in not just how you look but how you sound.
If you haven't built your brand voice yet, try to make a list with adjectives that would define how you want to sound: professional, funny, authoritative, etc. This will help you to keep the voice consistent throughout your whole communication strategy.
Use a call to action
It really goes without saying but if you want people to do something after seeing your post, just ask. It works! If you want people to visit your website, direct them to the link in your bio.
Instagram Captions: Best Practices
Use custom fonts
Custom fonts that are different from the native Instagram fonts draw attention. Read about how you can write in different fonts in Instagram captions with Combin Scheduler.
You can use these customised fonts both in Combin Scheduler when making a post from your desktop or install a third-party mobile app on your smartphone and add a custom keyboard there. Thus, you'll always have access to different fonts.
Whether or not to use emojis in your captions should be defined by your brand voice and stylistic guidelines. If your voice is okay with emojis, and they don't look like it's something you borrowed from another brand, then add them to your caption: they will help you make your caption vivid and appealing.
Add quotes, facts, stats, and findings
If you don't know what to post at all, but there should be something to be added to your content plan, you can always turn to someone else's content — quotes, studies, statistics, commonly known facts with your opinion, and findings. If you use these, don't forget to give the author credit or tag them in your caption.
Instagram Captions: Wrapping Up
Instagram captions can be a struggle sometimes, especially if you're not a fan of writing. The secret is never to consider captions creation as a challenge but an opportunity to be creative. If you can't come up with a caption, you can always get back to this piece for inspiration and advice.