Instagram, as we all know, is a visual platform. Instagram isn’t only about photos and videos, though. Every Instagram post also has a textual component that is frequently overlooked. Of course, we’re talking about Instagram captions, which are the short pieces of writing that appear beneath each photo.
You may not realize how crucial captions are. People will look at your pictures first, but they will read the captions to learn more about your business and its narrative. What you write for each image, almost as much as the image itself, will determine whether customers think of your brand as fun, elegant, or sophisticated.
It’s not easy to create interesting subtitles. You must not only remember your brand voice, but you must also create something that catches your audience’s attention. If writing isn’t your strong suit and you’re stumped on how to come up with a hilarious Instagram caption, seek expert help. You might engage a creative writing freelancer. Using the copywriting strategies shown below, you may generate more interesting captions while also establishing your brand voice.
Why Are Captions Important?
Visual learners are visual learners. Visuals help us comprehend a lot of information, according to studies. It also makes sense from an evolutionary standpoint. Your forefathers didn’t have a library to help them live in the wild; all they had were their eyes.
Given our emphasis on graphics, creating just visual material seems reasonable, right?
The fact is that different people process information in various ways. People can be categorized into four types, according to the Vark modalities theory:
- Visual learners are those who like to learn through graphics and films.
- Auditory learners benefit from audio reinforcement when processing information.
- Kinesthetic learners like to learn by touching or feeling things.
- Reading/writing learners who process knowledge through reading or writing.
While visual learners make up the great majority of people, a sizable fraction also processes information through audio or reading. You won’t be able to connect with these folks as well if you only focus on visuals.
The concept of dual coding
Dual coding is a phenomena in cognitive theory in which people interpret visual and written information using two but connected systems. The appearance of an object might serve as a reminder of its name. Similarly, the term for an object might conjure up wholly distinct images.
For example, the term “dog” may conjure up images of a childhood pet for one individual and a cartoon dog for another. A image of a puppy may prompt one individual to think of the general term “puppy,” while another may recall Rufus, his childhood pet.
This approach is especially important in marketing when dealing with visual-heavy platforms like Instagram. For your audience, every graphic you choose will symbolize particular words. As a marketer, your job is to steer and reinforce these representations toward your brand values.
A image of a beach, for example, might have various meanings for different clients. However, if you use the captions to talk about beach vacations and summer, you may influence what buyers think about when they view the image.
This is why, in Instagram marketing, captions are so important. In a nutshell, they:
- Assist you in reaching out to those who rely on text for information.
- Assist you in controlling what people think when they view your graphics.
- This begs the question: how can you improve your captioning?
5 Tips for Writing Better Instagram Captions
When copywriting is done well, it might appear to be magical.
The world’s top copywriters, the Leo Burnetts and David Ogilvys, can create phrases from thin air that can sell billions of dollars in merchandise. Copywriting, as perplexing as it may sound, is essentially a compilation of tried and true strategies. While you may never be able to write like David Ogilvy, you may at least become reasonably persuasive by employing these strategies.
We’ll go through some of these copywriting strategies and how to apply them to Instagram captions in the sections below:
This is a no-brainer: captions that are well-formatted are simpler to read. It’s simpler to read and follow information that’s organized into bullet points or well-spaced paragraphs.
For years, copywriters have recognized this. Every line in this classic David Ogilvy Rolls-Royce commercial includes numbered lists:
This strategy may be used to better catch attention on Instagram. To make your captions simpler to read, use well-spaced paragraphs and line breaks.
2. Improve the placement of your CTAs
While making your content easy to skim is beneficial, the location of your CTAs inside that content is also important.
The beginning and finish of each piece of material attract attention. What occurs in the middle is frequently overlooked. This is known as the “Serial Positioning effect” in psychology. According to this effect, everything towards the beginning or conclusion has the most recall value.
Use this phenomena to your advantage by positioning your CTAs at the beginning or conclusion of the caption. Alternatively, put them at either end. This will ensure that your audience not only reads but also responds to your captions.
While you’re at it, be sure to employ action-oriented phrases in your CTAs, such as “Click,” “Move,” “Get,” and so on. According to studies, action-oriented terms result in better conversion rates.
3. Use strong words
Amazing. Incredible. Mind-blowing.
Have you ever wondered why so many advertisements use such large, powerful words? This is due to the ability of such phrases to elicit powerful emotions in readers. These are known as “power words” in copywriting. To make readers feel a specific feeling — joyful, thrilled, indignant, etc. – copywriters will sprinkle them throughout their material.
You don’t have to go overboard with these terms in your Instagram captions, but it doesn’t hurt to sprinkle them in. Use “amazing” instead of “excellent.” Use “exceptional” instead of “very excellent.” And so forth.
Nobody like reading subtitles that seem like they were prepared by a marketer for an infomercial. Take note of how many strong phrases are used to describe these shades. This lesson applies to more than just Instagram captions. It helps to employ strong words in anything you’re writing, whether it’s headlines, online content, or even a client proposal. It will assist you in capturing your audience’s attention and eliciting the appropriate emotions.
Rappers and poets have known for years that rhymes are easier to memorize and recall, and now cognitive tests support it.
According to a research conducted at Lafayette College, information given in rhymes is perceived as more honest and compelling. Rhyming slogans were shown to be more compelling and remembered in another research.
It’s unclear why rhymes are perceived this way, but psychologists say it’s because rhymes glide off the tongue and are perceived as whole phrases. Furthermore, rhymes are frequently employed in aphorisms, songs, and poetry, making them look more “authentic.”
This is why copywriters commonly use simple rhymes to underline the worth of a product. This Jaguar commercial is a great example. Use rhymes only when absolutely necessary. Make no attempt to emulate Kendrick Lamar. Instead, rely on rhymes to get people’s attention.
5. Use rhetorical questions to elicit feelings.
For thousands of years, rhetorical questions have been a mainstay of persuasive discourse. They allow you to suggest a problem and give a solution while also breaking up the monotony of speaking.
Ask rhetorical questions that focus on how people feel to increase your persuasive power. The text then provides a remedy to the problem.
Take note of how the first word highlights a feeling: anxious. This immediately reminds readers of how they probably felt when they first attempted cooking with their children. It also changes the context of the photograph, making it an aspirational vision of a woman who isn’t afraid to cook with her child, rather than just a joyful mother-child shot. This is a great copywriting strategy that is very simple to use. In your captions presented as rhetorical questions, try utilizing comparable emotion-rich adjectives – worried, fatigued, eager, joyful, etc.
Now it’s your turn.
Copywriting is a large and difficult subject that takes a lifetime to perfect. You may add the effect of expert copywriters to your Instagram captions by using these strategies. As a result, Better marketing results and more compelling Instagram captions.