I am by no means a social media expert with a bazillion followers, but I have studied successful ‘Instagrammers’ and have picked up a few things as I grow my own ‘tribe.’ You can’t expect to magically attract a large quantity of followers immediately by adjusting your captions. But if you put in the hard work, you can attract quality followers who engage with you online. As someone who loves to write, I recognize the hard work it can take to create quality captions. Most of these tips are specifically for those with business accounts, but the tips apply to personal accounts, too. Try asking yourself these 5 questions every time you write a caption!
· Is this something you would normally say? Does it sound like you? Or are you trying to sound like other famous Influencers? These questions really help you to develop your own voice on social media. There is so much “noise” out there. People don’t want to follow someone who sounds like everyone else. They want to follow you. So, make sure your captions sound like you and watch your followers start connecting with you!
· Am I using any clichés? If I see one more person say they are “obsessed” with something on Instagram…. We’ll just leave it at that.
· Am I adding meaning to this photo? What story is this photo telling? Is there something you can share with your audience that they wouldn't know just from looking at it? If you aren’t going to add value to your photo with your caption, why write one at all? Captions allow you to create interest and then to call your followers to action. If they relate to what you are talking about, if you make them smile, or if you share an inspirational story, they are going to want to interact with your content! Don’t miss out on this great opportunity to connect with your tribe! You won’t regret it!
· Are you inviting your audience to do something? If you want your audience to engage with your content, every caption should include some type of call to action. This doesn’t always look the same. On Instagram, a great way to get started is to start a caption with, “Double tap if…” and then write something your audience will identify with. Now, if you start every caption this way, your audience will see straight through your armor (Mulan/Disney enthusiasts will appreciate that reference). In the same way, if you are always asking your audience to “comment below,” they probably won’t. I usually save content where I’m asking for comments for days/times when my audience is the most active on social media.
· What common ground do I have with my followers? What would they identify with? Find Common ground with those who follow you and they will definitely respond to it. I have found that even though my business is a photography/videography business, my followers really love to talk about health and fitness! Some of the posts that have the most engagements are ones where I have brought up running, eating healthy, or motivation to stay in shape.
· Bonus: Vary the length of your posts. For your own insanity, don’t always do long, story-telling posts. You will quickly burn out and your followers may eventually get sick of your Instagram short stories. You can add value to a photo with less than 300 words. It just takes a little bit of hard work.