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  • R'Minda Russell - Owner of Visualize Creative

How to write a caption to boost engagement on social media.

Is your engagement low? Are you not growing as quickly as you would like? Or do you have a following and only get 20 likes on your posts? Let me tell you why and how to pump up your engagement with a simple caption formula.

In today's age of social media marketing, brands have quickly come to terms that simply posting your accolades will NOT grow your accounts or get your followers to engage with your content. If your engagement is low, maybe this is a new concept.

I like to prompt people to think about their social media profiles as they would humans. If you hear someone only talking about how awesome they are, they seem egotistical, stale, and boring. On the other hand, you hear someone talking about industry tips, funny or intricate behind the scenes stories, who they are currently listening to on podcasts, etc. You’ll be more inclined to go over and talk with that person than the show off right? Same thing for social media pages.

Even if you are a big corporate brand - you still need to humanize your profiles. Or be left in the dust.

I’m not suggesting you max out the character count on all your captions. What I am suggesting is to figure out why someone would care to follow you and engage with your content and play into those aspects rather than ego.

In each caption, you want an attention-getter, a purpose, an engagement factor, and a call to action. To help you remember this I created the A-PEA Caption Formula. Let’s dive further.

Attention: You have 125 characters to grab someone's attention before Instagram will cut off your caption. How will you use these characters? What is the best way to stop the scroll? A statement, fact, question? You want to write something that would get people to think “hmm I want to know more.” Think back to that psychology class you hated in school. Marketing is all about psychology.

Purpose: Why are you posting this? What message are you trying to convey? Why is this post relevant? What is your intent behind this post? What is your insight? Give depth and details. This section of your caption is the self-serving part.

Engagement: Why does your audience care? How can you insert your audience into the caption or perspective you are trying to frame. How is your audience supposed to feel when they look at your content?

Action: What is your call to action? What do your audience members do with your content? Like, save, share, shop, etc. People will not do ANYTHING with your content if you don’t tell them. Your followers are not mindreaders, don't expect them to be. Tell them what to do and where to go.


TEST: Which caption captivates your attention?

Caption 1:

"Check out my latest blog post about how to convert your audience into clients. I’ve converted my community into clients by using a simple method you can use too."

Caption 2:

“HEY YOU - do you want to know one of my best social media manager secrets? This secret has helped me convert my community into clients. In 3 months I've grown….(elaborate)
I'm telling you this because I want to see YOU do the same. Imagine never having to cold DM another prospect. They will DM you!
Like and save this post to use as a reference and thank me later!!”

Which one grabbed your attention? Which one gave you the necessary information to know what to do with the post? The answer is caption 2.

See how I grabbed the attention of the reader, told them my purpose for posting, made them imagine themselves using the concept, and then told them what to do with this information? It's simple, short, and to the point.

By applying the A-PEA formula to each caption your engagement will skyrocket. Test it out for yourself and let me know your feedback! I have created a downloadable graphic to help you remember. Save it into your photos, print it out, maybe get an A-PEA tattoo? JUST KIDDING.

...or not.

A-PEA Caption Download (1)
Download PDF • 71KB

If you need help implementing this concept let me know! I can help coach you through growth tactics or do it for you. Shoot me a message at and let's turn your visions into realities.


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