Yes, it’s true Instagram is an insanely visual platform. Be honest, the main reason you scroll through your feed several times a day is to look at the gorgeous pictures everybody is posting. While pretty pictures are fun and all if you just have a personal account, when you’re using Instagram for your boutique, shop or product-based business, you need to look at everything that Instagram offers, especially your captions.
Why do captions matter? Captions matter because it gets you, your brand and your business to connect with your audience on a personal level. That’s what social media, especially Instagram, is all about — connecting with your audience in a way that traditional marketing such as flyers and ads cannot. Captions can take your Instagram to the next level and skyrocket your engagement. They encourage your audience to have a dialogue with you to build trust with them. And we all know trust equals more sales!
But when it comes time to write about your Instagram caption, what I hear from many boutique and shop owners is that they don’t know what to say. As product sellers, many think they just have to talk about their products — new products that just hit the shelves or current sales or promotions that are going. That is so not the case. There is so much more you could talk about.
When thinking of what to write in your captions, the overall idea and goal of each one of your captions should be to provide value to your audience. As a product based seller, what kind of value can you provide to your customers that is NOT tangible (AKA your products).
Here’s what you could be posting about instead of your next sale:
1. You could be sharing styling advice in your captions.
Your customers may love buying from you, but who do they turn to or where do they turn when they need styling advice? Don’t just be someone they turn to for a new shirt when it goes on sale. Be the person they turn to when they’re not sure what necklace to wear with their little black dress for date night.
You can share in your Instagram captions tips about what to wear to your next business meeting, your next family event, or first date. The options are endless. Add a personal touch to your captions. If you’re advising your followers to opt for the small clutch for their date tonight, don’t forget extra cash and some gum!
You can even take it a step further! Video is a huge tool you can be using for your Instagram. Because your audience can now watch you talk about your styling advice, they can see your enthusiasm. This can make a much bigger impact than just posting a picture and typing some words. Instead, post the video and give a recap of a few key points you made in the Instagram caption.
2. You could be sharing fun events in your area.
The fun part about being a local boutique or shop is the community you surround yourself with. Several times throughout the year, many local stores get together to host or sponsor events. A few that come to mind are seasonal festivals, girls nights out, and fundraisers for charities.
Only selling online? Not a problem. Make it an online party! Join together with a few shops and host a summit. Ask around for business owners and influencers who can get online and speak to not only your community but anyone who signs up for the event anywhere. This event could be free, but then when anybody purchases from either of the shops that host the event over the duration of the summit, a percentage can go to one or several different charities.
3. You could post what goes into the making of your business.
You may think no one cares about what goes on behind the scenes of your business, but that’s not true! What about all those factory tours people go on every single day when on vacation? People are interested in what it takes to make your business successful, so let them in on it!
Meeting with a blogger for a new collaboration idea? Give a sneak peek on Instagram, talk about your lunch meeting and get people excited for your collaboration together. Have a gorgeous coffee bar cart in the office where all the employees hang out to take a break? Snap a few pictures and share them on Instagram. Share what makes your employees want to come to work every day, their favorite productivity tricks, and what they take their coffee with.
Captions matter, my friends! Don’t just write a one-liner and be done. Write a caption that will engage your audience and keep them coming back for more.