Life of a social media copywriter sees the following sequence of checks frequently.
A good picture – Check
Editing on point – Check
Perfect filter/frame – Check
Rethinking whether to post it or not – Check
After thoughtful evaluation, we finally stumble upon the caption for a masterpiece we desire to post, and it ends up taking up most of the time to create an engaging presence on Social Media.
“Content is the king”
Writing a perfect caption for any platform isn’t as easy as it sounds, it is an art mastered by a few.
Your pictures might tell a thousand words, but you still need to add your own creative content to make anyone stop and stare for a while. Make them curious to know the story behind it, inspire them to take an action or sometimes just give them a laugh.
Is “Good Caption” really that important?
If you are a social media copywriter worth your salt then you would agree that a good caption is hands down most important.
There are 3.5 billion people across the world active on social media. While you have an extremely beautiful shot of the sky, there are thousands of people who have a similar eye-catching photo to upload, so what makes you stand out?
The quality of your content at the right time, your caption is something which can be unique in its own way.
And while you think it is no big deal, your captions can actually uplift your presence in ways you can’t imagine.
From giving a unique edge to your brand or crafting a personality that communicates with users, a caption can change your entire social media marketing game.
Thinking a little about the context before posting a picture might not seem like a huge step, but it can be the boost that your brand is longing for.
Before getting into nitty gritty, always follow these two golden rules of content on social media, one is Quality and another is Consistency.
But I am not a social media copywriter
Not everyone is born with crafty writing skills, but you can still work your way up when it comes to creating great captions for social media posts.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind while writing copy
- Imagine and create a strong brand voice
- Craft content with an intention
- Don’t overboard with the limit
- Give importance to your lead
- Engage with your audience
- Be consistent, and relevant
- Use hashtags wisely
- Convey a story
- Be yourself to make it unique
Where to start as a social media copywriter?
If you think the copy you write for your Instagram post scheduler can work equally great for your LinkedIn post scheduler, you need to pause and reflect. Every social media platform has a different purpose and limitation.
Each platform has a character count to maintain. As a social media copywriter you need to know these limitations like the back of your hand.
Twitter, as we know, limits us to 280 characters, and if you want to add a visual, it chops off another 24 characters (Update: not any more). So your contact has to be crisp and engaging at the same time to maintain the limit.
However, Facebook is a bit easy-going here, it shows around 477 characters on display and rest is hidden behind the ‘read more’ walls of the post.
Instagram, a visually driven platform allows 140 characters in the lead and rest is yet again hidden behind a ‘read more’ link.
The professional platform Linkedin scrapes off the caption behind a ‘see more’ tab after 300 words. The ball is in your court if you work around well with these number and curate some engaging copy and do a smart cut-off so that your audience walks that extra mile to stand up and take notice.
While crafting your social media strategy, you have to be the jack of all trades. And here’s a quick guide on how you can do it, we’ve found out the keynote of every social media platform so you can sit back and take all the deets on how to score that social media attention.
With around 500 million+ activities daily, Instagram is quintessential for this social era. It is a platform which is driven by engagement; according to the Instagram algorithm the more comments and reliability of the post, the higher it ranks on the user feed.
A great caption can help you spark a conversation or garner public opinion; it lets your brand tell a tale to an end number of users. It also sets you apart from another run of the mill social media copywriter.
To ace, your Instagram game, follow these few tactics:
Identify your audience
Instagram has millions of users, but you don’t have to reach out to all of them. Know your crowd and curate content according to them. Let your followers understand the intention behind your caption so that they can relate to it, so first things first, ask yourself who do want to reach out to.
If something’s start is dull, you will scroll past it. To catch the attention of the user, make sure your caption has an exciting and curious start. Begin with the mystery unraveled behind the ‘read more’ link, hence leaving the user with no other choice but to engage. Also, you can keep it crisp or give a relatable pop-culture reference, so the double tap flows in.
Use this veto card wisely, Hashtags drives engagement, defines campaign and increases the outreach of your post. Instagram allows around 30 hashtags, but don’t go overboard with it, keep it relevant.
You can use them wisely in between your post or at the end of it, to make it look less spammy. If it’s a long caption, use them in the comments section. Also, make sure that the hashtags you use are trendy and serves the purpose.
You can use captions in countless ways, tickle your creative side with leash in your hands. The way you craft your caption can state the purpose of your post, and would help the crowd to connect. To keep it light and fun, insert an emoji with a pun, you can also have shout-outs to gain that extra piece of cake or go ahead with the simple user-generated story. Your caption can also be an open-ended question seeking opinions or a CTA to let your friends join in the laughter.
The keynote of this is Engagement, whatever it is, the user should always feel the post should be worthy of his comment or a compliment.
One of the oldest and largest social networking platforms demands a unique strategy. A strong brand voice, interactive video or maybe a live session is the most effective way to be on the top of the chaotic feed.
Being home to more than 2.32 Billion users, Facebook can be a source of die-hard loyalists for your brand.
Working around Facebook is very easy if you have consistency, which is easy if you use a good Facebook post scheduler.
Here are a few facebook hacks:
Experiment with length
Facebook offers a large 63,000 character limit on its post, so you can experiment with your copy style as well as make it as informative as possible. But make sure it’s not too long to crack some sleep into the user, keep it on a minimal edge. Give insight to your company or keep your caption simple. It’s worth experimenting on what works best for your audience and then maintains the consistency.
It’s always a fun idea to tickle some creative minds for their opinion or pique their interest. A question still proves out to be a challenging caption for many, if you post a guide with a caption. “Our business guide” it won’t look as appealing, but if you rather put it in a question format like, “Stuck with your business? Check out our guide to know it all.”
Let’em work for you.
The best way to drive engagement is to create content where people can relate on the same level. Facebook is the best place to have a little fun with “Tag-a-Friend” or “Caption-this” posts, and for a diverse platform like Facebook, people always have a different perspective to share. You can also link your website or blog to let them follow the lead to gain extra edge about the topic and help you increase the traffic, so it’s a win-win case!
The major takeaway is to keep it creative, interactive and fun, post at non-chaotic times to have a chance of visibility. It’s not a “one-size fits all” place, but definitely, a store where everything is available.
Twitter is a place for short, succinct and to-the-point content. It can help your brand reach heights only if you play by the rules of – crisp yet conversational copy in 280 characters. The quick-witted and one with a funny bone can always have tons of retweets and tweak up their social media game.
To have a better insight, here are few ways to get attention on Twitter:
Talk to people
This may sound like an old one, but try to make your twitter more welcoming by talking to people rather than talking at them. Yes, it might feel like your tweet is just for a crowd you have no clue about, but think of them as your shadow friends and start a conversation, as simple as that.
The tone of your tweets will go a long way to define whether you really want to spark a connection or you’re just there to do the part.
With its new policy, Twitter has taken the bull by the horns by scraping off the @name under the character count, giving a little flexibility but the links are still the same. Each link is worth 23 characters.
You don’t want to show a long link though as people may question the URL they see. To maintain consistency try shortening the URLs with bitly or FDLs. A good Tweet scheduler will always have the ability to shorten the URL for you. Hence, you can have a post with a cool description and a link to follow, this will help you boost traffic without giving up on the space.
Yet again, like Instagram Hashtags are a big deal on twitter as well, because Twitter also generates hashtags based content. So use your hashtags wisely.
You can go with a trending hashtag so that it enhances your chances of visibility dramatically and directs you towards a network of like-minded people to socialize with. As a social media copywriter, hashtags are the best tool in your quiver.
Apart from hashtags, incorporating buzz words into your tweet also works the charm. While it may sound trivial, but this small step may help you in a long way in making your Twitter presence engaging and compelling.
The bottom line here is to understand the viral nature of Twitter and then let your copy make a sensation with short and relative content, with the dramatic outreach of this platform your brand might tweak up with tweets and retweets.
Unlike any other social media platform, LinkedIn has a unique audience looking forward to learning new skills and meeting other like-minded mentors or peers, employees, and businessmen.
The content marketing strategy on this platform is supposed to be educational as well as informative. LinkedIn is a promising channel to generate potential leads, drive traffic and build leadership.
Here are a few things you should know about posting content on LinkedIn:
Trends and How-tos
It is a place where people spend their time to actually understand the business environment. Being a professionally social platform, the most searched articles on LinkedIn are about the current industry trends with a headline phrase similar to “The future of”,” In the year” and other newsworthy blog posts.
Thoughtful leadership content
People invest time on LinkedIn to do their jobs better and seek solutions to their problems. Viral content from BuzzFeed or Refinery won’t do well for your LinkedIn post. As a social media copywriter you are expected to know what will work on each social network including LinkedIn.
Hence, engaging and insightful content will drive more traffic. According to a LinkedIn marketing blog, “Clicks, shares, and comments are all good indicators of engaging content. While it can be tempting to sell your audience on the benefits of your product or service, “salesy” content doesn’t generally perform well on LinkedIn.”
Hence LinkedIn clears the air in generating thoughtful leadership content and works well with informative content which deals with your company’s ethos and resonates with your brand values, or something that resonates with an effective business solution.
Analyze the analytics
Wouldn’t it be easier to create compelling content if you have a clear idea of what the user wants? Linkedin offers different ways to drill down and understand user behavior and the type of content they seek, you can try your hands on optimizing and analyzing your campaigns with Linkedin company page analytics or the publishing analytics.
The principles that underpin B2B content on LinkedIn simply says that you should have a clear conscience while writing articles, have a promising headline and informative yet practical content based out of research and trends. Consider the time of the reader as an investment- after all, it’s a Busy man’s platform.
In the end, Social media is all about Socialising – try talking to people and encourage them to understand your brand and participate in a conversation with you. Don’t be so centered on the media part that you forget the idea of being social.
Debbie Moran is a Digital marketing strategist with 5+ years of experience producing advertising for brands and helping leaders showcase their brand to the correct audience. She has been a part of RecurPost since 2019 and handles all the activities required to grow our brand’s online presence.