How to Write Enticing Captions
Updated: Mar 4
You've got your amazing products, you've got your beautiful photos, but when face to face with Twitter's "What's happening?" or Instagram's "Write a caption..." your brain goes blank. You think a sale will grab your audience's attention, because who doesn't love saving money, right? But later that night, your notifications are still dry, and you haven't made a sale. So what happened?
Writing a caption is more than opening up twitter and asking "who wants it?" Crafting the perfect caption starts before you even log on.
Knowing Your "Why"
Maybe you've been selling for a couple years, or maybe you're brand new to the business world, but one way or another you had a reason for starting this journey. Think about what that reason is - saying making money isn't good enough! If your goals don't go deeper than making money, it will be hard to make it very far.
So, why do you do what you do? What are your non-numerical goals? What solutions do YOU offer? Having clear answers to these questions will help you be able to communicate about your product with more confidence.
Get to Know Your Audience
After you've identified your goals and solutions to common problems in your industry, its time to get to know your audience, and identify your ideal customer with a customer profile. This profile includes information about your ideal buyer or client. Knowing this type of person will allow you to attract an audience that is interested in your product or services.
Once people start gravitating to your brand, get to know them genuinely. Then you'll be able to relate to them often and create the content they want to see.
Some things to think about:
You can also use these questions to start a customer profile if you haven't already.
do they prefer humor and memes or serious content?
what do they value?
what problems do they have that you could solve?
what do your supporters and customers have in common with each other?
As you craft your captions, stay authentic to the vibe and vision of YOUR business. Being yourself is always the way to go.
Being aware of your tone in each caption is so important. You don't want to seem bored of your own product. Check your recent posts and put yourself in a potential customers shoes as you reread them. Note how it makes you feel - excited, annoyed, uninterested, informed? What was the tone in posts with the highest and lowest engagement (serious, funny, etc)?
You can now recreate these posts with the new information from your customer profile and cater directly to people who will receive it positively.
Strategize and Plan Ahead
Different social platforms have different algorithms and we don't know too much about them, but when you create content people want to see (with the help of your customer profile) the algorithm will be easier to work against. With each platform comes an ideal form to share posts, so you'll need to approach each one with a different strategy with the same caption. Don't overwork yourself with this. Pick 1-3 platforms to post on.
By different strategies I mean getting creative with how you post. Use text based editing apps such as Text Art and Canva to share your message in a more interesting way.
Planning ahead is absolute key. You can schedule posts via third party apps like Buffer or Hootsuite. Twitter has a scheduling function on the desktop version, or on mobile you can click "cancel" then "safe draft."
When you plan ahead, you'll never be scrambling for something to say.
Things to Avoid
Your captions showcasing your beautiful photos should not be about sharing failures. Every business owner passionate about what they do have faced being absolutely discouraged or feeling like they failed. its ok to feel that way, but that is not how you sell your products. You may have seen this type of posting work for others, but pity can only take someone so far. It is not a sustainable way to keep your business open. Make a personal account to shout into the void if you really need to vent.
Another thing I've seen that I recommend avoiding is talking about how people don't like your work or even hate you. Again, even if you've seen this work, it is not sustainable. It's disrespectful to the people who support you, and puts a sour taste in the mouths of potential customers.
Outright asking for sales. This very common caption isn't bad, but its also not doing you any favors. What can you say that will help someone decide if they want to buy or check you out? What are the benefits of what you offer?
"I have stickers! Who wants to help me get a sale tonight?"
"Nothing worse than pulling your favorite water bottle out of the dishwasher to find your stickers ruined. My stickers are covered with a clear vinyl overlay to ensure that won't happen to you anymore!"
"Check out this sticker I just made!"
"I'm always fully hydrated, are you?"
Everyone has a preference to what type of content they want to share, but these are examples of tweets I made that directly lead to sales.
In the first example, instead of making myself the center of the tweet, I make problem-solving my focus. Everyone already knows a sale will help me, so I chose to tell them something they might not know. Most people who love stickers really want it to be water proof. Letting my audience know how my stickers are protected lets them know they can choose any design, and have a sticker they can safely stick anywhere.
In the second example, I used the artwork I'm showing to inspire a creative, yet simple caption.
While there's no magic answer to writing the perfect caption, there's only one thing you need to know - your ideal customer. Once you know who this person is, you'll know exactly how to craft the perfect captions that will attract an engaged audience.
I hope these tips help you with your social media marketing! Let me know what your favorite tip was!