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Counting on Captions: Writing better Instagram captions for better business

As per a forecast from 2020, there will be around 1.2 billion Instagram users in the world by 2023: your reason for paying more attention to the photo-sharing social networking app.

Instagram is beyond posting eye-candy pictures. The highly popular app is the best budget-friendly social platform to spur your business in the year ahead. As an SME, reaching your audience and engaging them effectively is at its best on the Instagram platform.

With the app’s add-ons like video sharing and Stories, communicating with your audience and echoing your brand voice has become a lighter task – If you know how to do it well.

A visual social medium that’s image-oriented, Instagram helps you create an instant impression on your target audience. Facebook stated that as per their newsfeed, people spend, on average, 1.7 seconds with a piece of content on mobile and the average attention span for video content on the platform is just about 2 seconds. All the more reason for you to frown over your Instagram posts.

But even the most stunning images or videos could go unnoticed if you don’t pair them up with catchy and target-centric captions.

A great Instagram caption is what persuades the target audience, as well as those casual viewers to pause and read more. A great caption is a good storyteller. It gives an impressive intro to the context of the visual, reflects the brand personality, effectively engages the audience, and urges followers into action.

The word limit for Instagram captions is 2,200 characters.

A creative combination of text, hashtags, and emojis helps to reach the right audience as well as please the Instagram algorithms.

To make your visual feeds unique enough to stand out from the competition, you need to speak their language - in your words. That’s what captions do.

With the fleeting attention span of users and the torrent of visual content on the platform, what you say about your post in your captions matters much. A few wise words explain it all to your target audience and will determine whether they go ahead to view it.

But, among the Rio de Janeiro Carnival of stunning visuals on the platform, how do you expect to get noticed? How do you outsmart your competitors? How do you catch your fish?

Be it a business profile or personal account, captions make your posts more accessible to the viewers. To explain a stunning picture or video and make your target audience make note of it, you need to tell them what it’s about. A new product launch? Season’s Sale? Opening another branch? How do you say that in a few chosen words?

The best Instagram captions capture attention, mirror your brand identity, entertain your audience, and nudge them to take action.

Compelling captions can create more engagement, which is critical when it comes to Instagram’s algorithm. They can add a lot of context to the graphics, videos and images posted. Surveys confirm that engaging content is more powerful than videos.

As per Statista, Carousel posts have the highest level of engagement with followers, with an interaction rate of 1.08percent, while video posts rated as low as 0.61 percent in audience engagement.

You may post an informative infographic with an eye-catchy caption that says it all.

Well-crafted Instagram captions can serve your business by:

  • Multiply your website traffic.

  • Help you get more Instagram followers.

  • Improve your sales

Strong copy in your caption shapes your brand’s story and personality, which in turn creates an urge or need for your followers to get what you’re selling. Creative copywriting is an art that transforms a casual scroller on your Insta pages into a loyal follower. In short: Instagram captions can help elevate your company’s social media success, and impact the bottom line.

Points to ponder while creating captions for your Instagram posts:

1. Grab attention

Remember, the purpose of a caption is to catch the attention of your specific audience and make them go through your post. So get them hooked at the first glance - ask a question, use wordplay, coin new phrases that raise curiosity. But make sure it intrigues your target audience!

2. Keep it short

The Instagram limit for a caption is 2,200 characters - the same as that for posts. But that doesn't mean you should splurge on your word count. Facebook, which owns Instagram, recommends using less than 125 characters.

Keep the words as few as possible keeping in mind the stringent attention-span social media users have, and make sure they are visible at a glance. If the viewers need to click on 'More' to get the gist of the post, it may not sit well with them. They might leave your post to a better 'visible' and well-articulated post.

3. Front-load your captions with keywords

If you want your entire caption to be displayed “above the fold” on your Insta post, then stick to 125 characters (or fewer) instead of burying the lead. That would mean bringing the relevant words or phrases to the first part of the caption. If you’re going to use a longer caption, ensure that the most important keywords and information are displayed at the beginning phrase itself.

4. Stay relevant to your topic

Keywords in the headline lure your target user to your post. Know that your caption must include phrases or words that highlight the purpose of your post or ad and resonate with your audience.

Lack of relevancy and careless targeting could sink your posts in the flooded platform. Introducing a new flavour from your instant lemonade brand should "taste" different from a season's sale combo offer! Write for your audience and stay fixed on your social media goals.

5. Be brand-centric

If you haven’t identified your brand voice as part of a broader social media marketing strategy, ask yourself: ‘What are the qualities and values I want my brand to embody?’ Make a list and use it to shape your voice, because your Instagram captions or headlines better carry the weight of your brand persona. Your tone or the words that you use must sync in with your ideal customer's perception of your brand.

One easy way to do that is to jot down a few adjectives that aptly describe your business. Use those to find the right tone and create captions that reflect it.

6. Tell a story

Who doesn't love stories! Telling a story about your visual post not only attracts the attention of your audience but also makes them feel connected to your brand. A story can give your brand a "face" or human touch that makes it relatable for your audience. You can also ask your audience to share their stories as well, thus initiating better engagement on the platform.

7. Nudge them into action

Instagram provides one clickable link per account in the bio and hence it is appropriate to add a CTA that directs your viewers to your bio and persuades them to take action. Powerful and impactful call-to-action words in the caption can do magic. Use words like “Join”, “Jump now”, “Sign up”, “Refer”, “Subscribe”, “Buy, “Shop”, “View” etc.

You can also come up with creative lures like ‘Tag a friend,’ ‘Tap to Purchase’ or ‘Share on your Instagram Stories'. Giveaways and contests also engage the audience effectively.

CTAs are both persuasive to the readers as well as crisp because of limited characters in the caption. The shorter the caption, the more impactful it is.

8. Mind your hashtags

Hashtags are indispensable for Instagram captions. They are great tools to increase the visibility of your posts and have a wider reach to an audience who have similar interests or are talking about similar topics.

Customise the hashtag depending on the occasion. For instance, for a travel post, you may use #travel #toursinIndia #attractiveplaces, etc.

However, you must take care not to overdo it as too many hashtags may reduce your post to spam and call for penalization.


A wise and creative strategy for attention-grabbing captions for your Instagram posts will get you ahead much easier in the path of brand awareness. With a strategic approach that uses data-driven decisions to outline the path ahead, you’ll be able to create compelling captions that boost your engagement.

Create brand-relevant, out-of-the-box captions that amuse, entertain and pull your target audience to your posts. To create magic with words and impress your Instagram followers, get in touch with ThePendits. We help businesses leave their footprints on the social media map with creative, target-centric content. Reach us at +918448040030.

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