How to Write Instagram Captions That Attract Followers and Boost Engagement

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What would happen if you knew exactly what to write in a caption to get your audience to respond?

I guess that your audience and your engagement would start to grow A LOT faster! 

People would respond more with likes and comments. They’d hit reply on your stories.

But you’re reading this article because you have no idea how to write Instagram captions. Right?

Then I’m glad you are reading this post because I’ll show you some actionable ways to write effective Instagram captions to get people stop scrolling and read your post.

Wondering Why Captions Are Important?

Instagram algorithm pays attention to the action your audience takes and determine how valuable your post is. 

Your Instagram caption allows you to express your thoughts in ways that a picture can’t do alone.

If you put time into writing an effective caption, your audience will be more likely to engage with your post. If the IG algorithm thinks that your post is valuable, then the algorithm will show it to more audiences.

Currently, your Instagram captions can be up to 2,200 characters long.

Now that you have an idea of WHY captions are important, let’s get down to writing something EPIC!

How to Write Effective Instagram Captions 

1. Keep the most important words first

One of the most important things you must remember is that captions cut off in users’ feeds after three to four lines of text. To see the full caption, the user has to click more.

This means it’s important to catch your audience’s eye and get them clicking. Think of the first sentence as a blog post title.

Put the most important words or information first and leave any additional information, hashtags, and mentions for the end.

Take a look at this post from Airbnb:


The initial part of the caption entices readers to learn more or engage with the post.

2. Mention pain points

It’s your job to help them understand why what you’re about to tell them is important. 

Be very specific.

Talk about the challenges or pain points your audience is facing. You want people to think… OMG, this guy is reading my mind! 

It will help you to make a human connection with your audience. Add value in your Instagram caption and users will share your post.

3. Use hashtags wisely

A hashtag behaves the same way on Instagram as it does on Twitter and Facebook. Hashtags make your posts searchable. Hashtags are great to connect people who are interested in the same topics.

Agorapulse found that posts with hashtags resulted in a 70.14% increase in Likes compared to those without hashtags.

But don’t use so many hashtags that they make your caption copy difficult to read. Only use relevant hashtags. Add the hashtags at the end of a caption or in the comment section to keep things looking clean. Limit your hashtags to four or five, tops, as FOMU did below:

4. Ask a question to start the engagement

You must encourage users to engage with your posts to increase reach on Instagram, right?

One of the effective ways to get more comments on your post is by posing a question in your caption body. It could be asking for feedback, open-ended questions, or multiple choice.

Don’t just ask random questions, your questions need to be relevant to your brand personality.

Starbucks uses this strategy frequently for gathering some engagement on their posts. See the question and responses from users.

5. Use emojis

Wondering you should use emojis in the caption or not?

Emojis can help to grab the users’ interest and personalize your message. That’s why more than 50% of Instagram accounts are using emojis in their posts – even the “serious” brands.

You can put emojis at the beginning of your caption or middle of the sentence to catch people’s eyes.

Emojis can also replace texts and make your copy short and fun. See how emojis are adding extra personality to this post:

6. Don’t be afraid to use humor or funny lines

Write your captions like a human. Talk like a friend to the users.

Don’t be shy to use humorous lines, lyrics, or funny quotes into your caption body.

Make your audience smile and they will remember you. A Shop of Things uses funny captions to match its products related to the subject. Check out this Instagram post.

Shop of Things

7. Increase your post reach with @mention

Use ‘@mention’ function to tag Instagram users or influencers. When you tag someone, they receive a notification. And if they share (or comment) your post, your post will appear in their feed and possibly some of their followers will engage with your post.

Don’t just post anyone in a random post, but if your post is directly related to them, you can mention them and increase your reach.

8. Always Include a Call to Action (CTA)

The best way to increase the engagement on your Instagram posts is to include a call-to-action in the captions of your photos.

You’ll want to give your audience instructions on the next step. A call to action tells users what they should do after they finish reading your post.

Do they DM you? Do they click on a link in your bio? Where should they buy your products?

You can also say, “double-tap” if you find it interesting or share your story in the comment or tag your friends.

Frooti is inviting people to tag their friends.


Now It’s Your Turn

And that’s it. You have the ideas to write compelling Instagram captions of your own. And it’s time to test your captions.

Instagram pays attention to how long your audience spends with your posts and the actions they take. A caption is a great opportunity to show off your brand personality.

Do you have any other ideas to write engaging Instagram captions? Please share your thoughts in the comment section.

I’m a writer, Introvert storyteller, and digital marketer. I've been featured on Jeff Bullas, MarketingProfs, Entrepreneur, Customer Think, HuffPost, Thrive Global, Write to Done, SEMrush, Shout Me Loud, and Addicted 2 Success! I'm an avid reader and movie buff. Let's connect on Social Media.

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