How to Create The Perfect Caption

You’ve made the perfect video; now it’s time to make the perfect caption. Adding the perfect caption can be a challenge - it can sometimes be harder than creating the video itself! But for those of you hitting this mental roadblock, here are some tips on how to come up with a great caption for your next social media post.

1. Try Different Types of Captions

There are different types of captions you can use to diversify your social media. Here are some caption types you can utilize:

The Sneak Peek: Write captions that generate excitement. Give customers a sneak peek at any new products you have coming up.

Open-Ended Questions: Elicit customer feedback by captioning your photo or video with an open-ended question.

Call to Action: Invite your audience to take an action. For example, encourage potential customers to visit your website.

Humor: Make a joke! We’ll write more about this below.

An example of a call-to-action caption:

2. Be Humorous

When it comes to social media, creativity is appreciated. In terms of captions, don’t be afraid to get clever - make a pun, a pop culture reference, or even write a dad joke! It makes your content seem more relatable and fun.

When it comes to humorous captions, make sure you use good judgement when making a joke. Keep your caption appropriate to a general audience and fun for everyone. A bad joke in poor taste will not go over well!

3. Keep Captions Short (Mostly)

A good caption should be 1 to 3 sentences long. Any longer, and you risk losing your customer’s attention. For most of your posts, you'll want to stick to that length.

That being said, there are times when you may wish to write a longer caption. Perhaps you want to tell the inspirational story of how you first started your business and the obstacles you overcame. Or you may share that lightning bolt moment that inspired your new product. Although we don’t recommend writing long captions all the time, you may opt to use long captions to share something important with your customers.

A classic example of a long caption- Humans of New York:

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“I’m closing the chapter with my last job. I was a research engineer. I really loved the work, and I felt like I belonged, and my colleagues were like my family. But recently we were bought by an American company, and a lot of people were laid off. Maybe that’s a normal thing in America, but in France we’re not so used to this mentality. So it was quite a traumatizing thing for me. Many of these people had families. Some of them were older and won’t be able to find new jobs. It kept me up at night thinking about it. It made me question a lot of things. So a few weeks ago I decided to quit. And before I start a new job, I’m going to travel by myself for two months. Just to turn the page. This is the first day of my journey. I’ve never done anything like this before. I’m nervous, I’m anxious, I’m excited. I have no idea what to expect. I’ve never spent this much time alone, and I know I’ll have to think about stuff. Personal stuff that I’ve never had to think about before. Because I was too busy with work. But those things were always there, whether I thought about them or not. So I think I’m doing something that I should have done a long time ago.” (Montreal, Canada)

A post shared by Humans of New York (@humansofny) on

4. Try A Few Clever Tricks

Finally, there are a few clever little tricks you can use to up your caption game. These techniques can be used to boost your social media engagement levels.

Emojis: Studies show that captions that use emojis see better engagement levels.

Hashtags: You can use hashtags to reach a wider audience - although a caption should have no more than four hashtags. When you post a Ripl video, we’ll automatically recommend a few hashtags that you can use!

Mentions: If your post includes another social media user, make sure to mention them in your post. This can lead to the other user’s followers seeing your post.

Location Tags: Tag the location of your photo on social media. If you’re trying to draw new eyes to your business, social media users may be able to find your business when searching social media by location.

We hope this tips will help you brainstorm different captions for your social media posts. When you've come up with a few that you like, decide which one you like best and start posting!

Annika Larson

Annika is a marketing lead at Ripl who is passionate about small businesses. With a focus on customer engagement, she hopes to show how Ripl can boost your social media video presence.

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