Instagram Marketing

How to Write Quality Instagram Captions For Businesses (With Examples)

Some insider tips on how to write captions like a Pro.
Jennifer Lam
6 minutes

Writing a good caption is almost equivalent to holding a conversation with your friends. Your followers are your friends, and you talk to them via a platform with pictures and a few words!

Common tactics taught by “how-to” articles are to include a call-to-action, hashtags in the caption, questions, emojis and more. But these are just tactics and they are not enough. What you really need to focus on are essentially these 3 things: know your intention before you write, choose how you want to say it, and think of what will attract your audience.

#1 Know your intention

Recall a time you babbled away with someone, left, and thought how the conversation was absolutely pointless – “The sun is shining. I've had my coffee. Did you bring an umbrella?”.

The same goes for captions. Are you writing a caption just for the sake of it? When you upload a picture or a video, what do you want to tell your friends?

Knowing your intention will give you a general direction, making caption-writing a much easier process. Typically, your intention would fall under these 3 categories:

  • Informing your audience
    Shop updates.
    Latest arrivals.
    Sales.
    Behind-the-scenes.
    Design process.
    Event updates.
    Media press releases.

  • Wanting them to take action
    Like and comment below.
    Share a story or experience.
    Save the post.
    Tag a friend.
    Redirect to website.
    Buy something.
    Help a cause.
    Ask a question.

  • Having a conversation
    Get to know you (audience).
    Share a tip.
    Retell a story.
    Ask for advice.
    Did you know?
    Get to know the founder.


The list in each category are non-exhaustive. What’s more, they can overlap and be combined into a single caption when applicable.

Nespresso’s intention for this post is clear: they are updating their audience of the company’s improved methods of training and practices. What seems like a short caption also revealed the brand’s values – they are conscious of what goes behind their coffee production.



#2 Choose a structure

After knowing what you want to say, choose how you want to say it. Do you want a short, engaging post? Or would you prefer a longer, heartfelt caption?

XXL Scrunchie is a home based business that grew to have its own studio space. The business’s journey and success are embedded into the caption, offering their fans a deeper understanding of the brand. Not only does it feel raw and heartwarming, it is also an authentic story that audiences generally appreciate.


Pro Tip:
Including mentions in your captions, especially of people with a high number of followers, can increase your business’s reach.

Dove's simple product being turned into a conversation starter

Here’s another example – something shorter and more lighthearted. What could have just been a boring product shot is elevated to become a conversation-starter for Dove.


Pro Tip:
For lengthier captions, paragraph breaks are important. Help your followers read with ease!


#3 Attract your audience first

You’ve heard it before: hook your audience in. The first 125 characters are important to keep your followers reading, swiping, and/or commenting. For long captions, it’s even more important because it’ll decide if they click on “more” to read on. But what should go into the first two lines? Well, IKEA knows that and they do it well.

IKEA's captions start like a trivia to pique the user's curiosity

In this caption, IKEA manages to share something interesting, promote their product, and add a smirk to the reader’s face. Realise the fun fact isn’t the hook? The sentence that follows is. Also at the end, “You’re welcome” adds a sense of cheeky humour to the entire post. Kudos to their copywriter.

Pro Tip: Hashtags are important too, but don’t overuse them. Create a few hashtags unique to your business, and have a few mainstream hashtags people search for.

Captions can follow a Q&A format

In another more customer centric post, the first 125 characters are devoted to making themselves relevant to their followers. Not only does IKEA care about a problem that is commonly faced, they also offer a solution with their product.

Pro Tip : Emojis can help supplement your captions, but don’t be over-reliant on them. Nobody’s going to understand what “💅🧚‍♀️👠👀” means if that is all you have in the caption.

Alternatively, you can write what is important first.

For promotional captions, first part can convey the timeline to act

The sale is ending. There are still exclusive offers. These are important but vague facts. Uniqlo doesn’t tell their followers when the sale is ending or what offers they have – not until they press “more” and read on. Witty.

Captions add a backdrop and breathe life into your pictures. With that said, having quality pictures and videos are just as important. If the picture is aesthetically-pleasing or intriguing enough, your followers will be more likely to read the captions as well. Give these tips a shot and find what works best for your business.

We understand that content creation and planning take long, arduous hours of work. From ideating to shoots to editing to planning content to writing captions to uploading, it’s a never-ending cycle. Lucky you, our virtual social media assistant, Confetto, can help lighten that burden. It's the only tool you'll need to plan, design and publish your social media content. (pssst, we can automate captions for you too.)

Sounds good? Get started with Confetto for free here !


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