Social media has revolutionized the way we connect and socialize in this digital age. With just a few clicks, we can share our thoughts, express our opinions, and showcase our creativity to an audience all over the world.
But wait, there’s a catch: you only have a few seconds to capture your audience’s attention. Eye-catching visuals may be the scroll-stoppers, but engaging captions encourage users to read and consume more of your content. Captions are just as important as the images you post.
Let’s face it, no brand wants to be known as a business with bad captions. In this blog post, we’ve put together some do’s and don’ts for writing social media captions that actually add value. After all, a picture might be worth a thousand words, but a good caption? That’s priceless.
DO: Speak Your Audience’s Language
If you want to engage with your audience, you need to speak their language.
Use trending or industry-related words and phrases that resonate with your target audience. Is your brand targeting millennials? Look for catchy slang or trendy phrases that will appeal to them.
Make sure to stay away from offensive or sensitive language that could alienate potential followers. Do your research before jumping on hashtag or reel trends that could sound like a good idea but not actually align with your brand’s vision.
DON’T: Use Clickbait
While clickbait might get people to click on your post initially, your audience will quickly lose trust if your content doesn’t deliver. Be honest and transparent about what your post is about.
DO: Show Your Personality
One of the biggest mistakes many people make on social media is trying to sound like someone else. You are unique, and your captions should reflect that. Use your voice, style, and slang to convey your message. Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable, opinionated, or quirky. Share your thoughts, your experiences, and your insights. Remember, people follow you because they like you, so give them a reason to stay.
DON’T: Be Too Long-Winded
Have you ever seen a caption that unfolds like a novel? Most users won’t take the time to read the whole thing.
Make sure your captions are crisp, concise, and to the point. For shorter captions, aim for 125 characters if possible. Use bullet points, spaces, or emojis to break up text in longer captions, but try to stay under 1000 characters. A simple and straightforward caption with a call to action like “Double tap if you agree” or “Tag a friend who needs to see this” can do wonders for your engagement.
DO: Use Humor or Authenticity
Social media is a happy place, and there is no place for boring, stiff, or robotic captions. People come here to laugh, cry, and relate, so make sure your captions cater to their emotions. Use a witty, sarcastic, or clever tone to capture your followers’ attention. Make puns, jokes, or references that relate to your content or the current trends (as long as humor aligns with your brand voice). The key is to sound authentic, relatable, and fun.
DON’T: Ignore Hashtags
Hashtags help reach a wider audience, build your brand, and categorize your content. Make sure you research relevant hashtags to your niche and add them to your captions.
You can use up to 30 hashtags on Instagram, but don’t overdo it. Overusing hashtags can make your captions look spammy and unprofessional. Three to five targeted hashtags are usually enough to get your post discovered by the right people.
DO: Add a Call-to-Action
If you want your followers to act on your content, give them a clear call-to-action. It could be anything from visiting your website, commenting on your post, or sharing your content. Whatever it is, make sure to include it in your caption. This will not only increase engagement, but it will also help you track the success of your social media campaigns.
DON’T: Be too Salesy
While social media is a great platform for promoting your business or product, your followers don’t want to be bombarded with constant advertisements. Instead, focus on creating content that will draw them in organically and use your caption to enhance that experience.
Social media captions are just like any other art form – they take practice. Don’t be discouraged if some of your posts aren’t generating the engagement you hoped for. Take a step back and re-evaluate whether you’ve been following the common do’s and don’ts we have listed in this blog. Remember that every platform has its own personality and audience, so you need to adapt your captions accordingly.
If you are feeling a bit overwhelmed by the world of hashtags, emojis, and punchy one-liners, don’t panic – we’ve got your back!
At Vervocity, we specialize in creating engaging, effective content that captivates audiences and drives engagement. We’ll help transform your social media captions from ‘meh’ to ‘must-read’. Contact us today or call (217) 222-1451 for a free quote on leveling up your social media strategy.