How to Craft Perfect Captions That Gain Sales on Instagram
With so many new online businesses launching, it’s important to have a distinct brand especially on a highly visual platform like Instagram. The best way to capture and maintain the attention of your audience is to have epic brand visuals and content they can use and care about. From past conversations, I’ve learned that many business owners don’t put that much thought into their captions on social media. This definitely has to change. Captions are the golden ticket to attracting the perfect audience alongside beautiful photos.
Your beautiful photos will stop people from scrolling. What you’re discussing will encourage engagement and keep people coming back or more. Instagram is one of the best ways to monetize your craft and increase sales. It is a highly visual platform but there are people who need more information about what you do, why you do it, and how you can help them. To demand the attention of my audience, I use a five-step strategy to crafting the perfect captions for sales.
But before we get into the steps, make sure you’re executing these four things on a consistent basis:
POST HIGH QUALITY PHOTOS
Be mindful of background and lighting when you take photos. If you’re selling tangibles, you need well lit photos that draw the eye to the items you are selling. Professional photography is highly recommended. If that is not possible, make sure your photos are free of distractions. I recommend taking photos of your items being in use if you sell tangibles. This will help your audience imagine themselves in your products. For example, if you’re selling formal event dresses, instead of posting a photo of the dress on a mannequin, post a picture of a woman who looks like your ideal buyer who’s headed to an event they’d likely to attend. Remember, your visuals attract your audience so make sure you aim to attract the audience you want to do business with.
POST USEFUL CONTENT
Useful content is content that people can use and apply to their lives. It is content to help them in one or more ways. Post something worth talking about; worth sharing. Keep these terms in mind when you post: teach, inform, entice, and entertain. Your content should always have purpose.
ENGAGE ON A CONSISTENT BASIS
The entire existence of social media is to be “social”. Make sure you are present on this platform as much as time permits. Respond to all of your comments. Take the time to visit the pages of people who like your content and leave a genuine comment on their page. Or, like a few of their photos. Be personable. Be responsive.
Do not sleep on hashtags. Many people think it’s spammy. While it can look that way, hashtags are nothing close to spammy. In fact, it’s how I grew my account quickly. Hashtags are used like keywords are used in search engines. Plug a number sign (or pound sign) in front of the keyword(s) your audience would most likely use. I recommend creating a document of all the hashtags you’d like to use on a consistent basis. Copy/paste in the first comment on each post. When other people comment, the hashtag comment will collapse and your posts will look cleaner and less spammy. You can use up to 30 hashtags. Use them all!
If you’re already killing these strategies, you’re ready to smash the next ones. When you’re creating a caption, think about what you want your audience to do and feel. The purpose of your post should be to get your audience to engage. Engagement is key. Here’s my five-step recipe to help you craft captions that sell:
TELL A SMALL STORY
Create a conversational caption. Share an experience with your audience. This will help connect you with those who have similar experiences and feelings. Share a part of your story with your audience. This could be a conversation you’ve had in the past, an experience with a client or brand, or your thoughts about a subject. It doesn’t need to be a long novel, but a conversational piece will keep your audience reading.
ACKNOWLEDGE NEGATIVE EMOTIONS
Negative emotions are the strongest emotions so, it’s important to identify pain points that your audience has but doesn’t want. Don’t aim to guilt your audience into buying anything or making them feel less of themselves. You should aim to evoke feelings of hope and relief. It’s important to think about how your ideal buyer may feel without your product or service. Use the name of those emotions in your captions. To emphasize a point, throw in some emojis!
HIGHLIGHT END RESULTS
People want results. They want to know and imagine how their lives will feel after they have your product or experienced your services. In other words, state what happens after Mario (the old school Nintendo Mario) eats the mushroom. His end result: He is bigger and better against adversity. Did you catch that? What happened after he eats the mushroom is what you’re highlighting, not how he ate or why he needs to eat it. Do not highlight features; only benefits.
STRUT YOUR STUFF
Prove that you know what the heck you’re talking about. Before you ask anyone to invest in your business, you have to give them a reason why. Aim to build trust with your audience by consistently implementing the four strategies listed at the beginning of this post. Tell your audience what they need and why they need it. Build your influence by sharing your expertise.
GIVE NON-TRADITIONAL CALL THE ACTION
The same content falls on deaf ears. In other words, if your content is predictable, people will lose interest. Change up your approach when you give a call to action (CTA). There are a ton of blog posts on CTA diversification if want to learn more about it. Avoid repeating “click to buy”, “check it out”, “link in bio”, etc. every time you post a product or service. We’ve all heard that song before. Use words like steal, snag, grab, cop, get, hop, and go. These are all actionable words that work depending on your audience!
Selling on Instagram isn’t hard if you’re creating the right content that attracts the audience you want. You can gain sales without looking spammy or needy. A genuine approach to relationship building on this platform is the key to make your followers slap the “buy now” button!