How to write Instagram captions that make an impact

Curating the perfect Instagram caption for your business’ profile is both time-consuming and difficult.

There are character limits to think about, emoji choices, hashtags, tagging — all for just one post. So, if you’re trying to post daily, you can see how it can quickly become a chore.

But don’t panic! There are so many ways to make this process a lot quicker, easier, and more effective. And even more reasons not to give up: 

  • 200 million Instagram users visit at least one business profile daily
  • 130 million Instagram users tap on shopping posts every month
  • One-third of the most-viewed stories are from businesses
  • 63% of Instagram users log in at least once per day, and 42% check multiple times per day. Only 16% log in less than once a week.

In this blog post, we’ll explore how to write captions that will help you benefit from these impressive statistics.

Ready? Let’s get started…

8 easy ways to write Instagram captions that make an impact

1. Include relevant hashtags

Using hashtags that are relevant to your business, product, or service is one of the easiest and most efficient ways to increase reach on your posts. 

When you use a hashtag in your caption, your post will appear on the results page for that hashtag. This means that followers who have chosen to follow certain hashtags could see your post in their feed — even if they don’t follow you.

Deciding which hashtags are most relevant to your business can take a bit of research. Tools like HopperHQ can help with finding popular or trending hashtags in your industry. 

Or, you can use tools like Hashtagsforlikes or Hashmaster to generate a series of hashtags for you. Just be sure you comb through them and get rid of any that don’t make sense for your business.

Note: You’re limited to 30 hashtags per post, so choose carefully!

2. Include location tags

Location tagging works similarly to hashtagging. If you tag a location in your posts, your photo will be displayed on the Instagram page for that geotag. 

If you have a brick and mortar business (or you only operate in certain areas), this can really play in your favor. You can use geotags to make your business a searchable location, so that customers in your area can find you more easily!

3. Ask questions to encourage engagement

Do you know someone who only ever talks about themselves? It can get a little dull, right?

Well, the same goes for Instagram!

Social media should be just that — social. So, don’t just broadcast about your business all the time. Instead, use your captions to try and get your audience involved in conversations. You’re much more likely to engage your customers if you ask for their opinion, feedback, or insights.

4. Identify your brand voice

Customers typically browse Instagram during their downtime. It’s an app for fun and entertainment more than anything else, so keep it light! Having a super formal brand voice won’t serve you too well on this channel.

But what you should do is keep your voice consistent? Well, ask yourself:

  • What values do we want our Instagram channel to embody?
  • Do we want to be funny? Curious? Bold? 
  • What are our goals for the channel and what type of voice would help us meet them?

An inconsistent brand voice can lead customers to lose trust in your company. And that, unfortunately, can lead to them pressing that dreaded ‘unfollow’ button.

So it’s really important that your captions consistently reflect the brand voice you’ve chosen!

5. Consider timings and frequency of posts

Insights into instagram performance

The best way to make sure your captions and Instagram posts are engaging is to maximize the potential for people to see them. This includes posting at strategic times and frequencies.

Why is this important?

Because it’s crucial to drive as much attention to your post as you can within the first 15-20 minutes. Instagram’s algorithm notoriously favors posts that get an initial spike in likes.

Luckily, you don’t have to guess when this might be. Instagram has a lot of built-in functionality in its analytics dashboard to let you know when your audience is online. 

Simply go to Insights → Audience on your business analytics dashboard and scroll down a bit. From there, you’ll be able to see which days of the week — and which times — your followers are the most active on the platform.‍

6. Consider length

Most people scroll through their Instagram feeds pretty quickly. Unless you really catch their eye, they probably won’t stick around!

So, consider the length of your caption on each post. If your photo needs a lot of context, that’s fine. But if at all possible, keep it brief. Instagram is a visual platform. Your caption should be a simple compliment to your photo — not the other way around.

Note: for posts in feeds, only the first three lines of a caption will be displayed. For captions longer than three lines, your audience will have to tap ‘more’ to read the whole thing.

The max Instagram caption character limit is 2,200. But if you want your entire caption to display in feeds, keep it to 125 characters or less.

7. Make use of Instagram’s other features, too

Static Instagram photos with engaging captions are great. They’re the bones of the platform. 

However, you can also make great use of your captions and posts using some of Instagram’s other features. 

It’s easy to get confused about how these features differ, so let’s have a very quick run through:

  • Reels: similar to TikTok, Reels lets you record short (15-second) editable videos from within the Instagram app. Or, you can upload short videos from your other social media platforms. These are added to a new tab on your profile, and have the chance to be included on the coveted ‘explore’ page on Instagram (more than 50% of Instagram accounts use Explore every month!).
  • Stories: Stories are quick videos that stay on your profile for just 24 hours (unless you add them to a highlight). They’re highly effective too — brand stories have an 85% completion rate when it comes to views.
  • Highlights: Highlights are a series of grouped stories (often grouped by topic) that you’ve chosen to stay on your profile forever. 

Using all of these Instagram functions can be a great way to create an interesting mix of content and keep your audience excited and engaged.‍

8. Outsource, outsource, outsource

If you’re struggling to find the time to write world-class, captivating Instagram captions, why not consider outsourcing?

There are experienced professionals out there who will take the time to get to know your business, brand, and needs, and be able to get the job done for you! 

Want to work with a partner who can guarantee that your posts will actually produce results? Get in touch with the team at Scribly. We’ll help you craft a content strategy designed to boost social engagement, and then do the posting for you.

Here’s to your future Instagram fame!