Log in
Blog Mastering Captions for Instagram with the Help of AI: Tips & Tools for 2024

Mastering Captions for Instagram with the Help of AI: Tips & Tools for 2024

Trying to capture and hold someone’s attention on Instagram is more challenging than ever.

In the early days of Instagram, creators got away with spamming their posts with the 30 hashtag limit and choosing a filter.

But now things are different.

It’s down to simple math. There are more active users on Instagram today than ten years ago, meaning more people are fighting for attention. Naturally, you have to create better content to stay top of mind.

The sheer amount of complementary tools available today makes creating high-quality reels and carousels accessible for everyone, not just the top 2%. There are apps for video editing, subtitling, and adding special effects. Of course, the cameras on our smartphones are better now than in 2010.

And everyone has a smartphone, so the up-front investment required to start on Instagram isn’t as pocket-hurting as it used to be.

Instagram’s algorithm has also evolved. Now, we’re not going to pretend we know how it works. But we know that it prioritizes educational, engaging, and entertaining content.

It also likes creators who regularly use Instagram. Posting and ghosting are no longer acceptable.

With that being said, it’s still possible to explode on the app as long as you’re creating high-quality content at scale.

That’s where artificial intelligence (AI) helps. In this blog, we’ll explain:

  • What makes a good Instagram caption
  • Prerequisites to using AI for Instagram captions
  • A step-by-step process on using AI to rise above generic captions and start writing thoughtful captions that engage your audience.

What makes a good Instagram caption?

Before enlisting AI’s help, you need to know the building blocks of a good Instagram caption.

Here are its core elements:

  • Relevance: Any caption needs to be relevant to your audience and reflect their beliefs, values, pain points, and motivations.
  • Clarity: Your North Star should be clear and clever in your captions. For newbies, start by focusing on clarity. This means avoiding jargon and overly complex sentences. Stick to simple words that everybody understands.
  • Conciseness: Although there is a case for using long captions (they do work). It’s better to start with short and impactful captions. The former usually works for established companies and personal brands.
  • Tone: Your caption’s tone needs to match your brand’s personality and reflect the audience it’s written for.
  • Storytelling: Instead of stating facts, tone-deaf tips or using generic product/service descriptions, weave a narrative around them. Helping your audience see themselves in the narrative builds connection and loyalty.
  • Emojis: Text can be tone-deaf. Where written words reach their limits, use emojis to boost understanding and communicate emotion.
  • Hashtags: Although their significance may have decreased, they still hold some importance.
  • Call to action (CTA): Your caption needs to end with the next step. That could be to click a link, share with a friend, or ask a question to elicit comments.

Good quality captions add context to and elaborate on your visuals. Stuck on what to write? No worries. Our snazzy AI Instagram caption maker is here to save the day. Give it a whirl and watch the magic happen.

Prerequisites to using AI for Instagram captions

Think of AI like a mirror. In other words, the model reflects what it’s fed. It can’t help you write impactful captions until you have internal clarity on a few key inputs. Let’s break those down.

Target audience

Ask yourself this question: in an ideal world, who do you want to come across your Instagram posts, read your captions, and interact with your Reels?

The answer to this question will help you determine who your captions are serving.

It’s similar to trying to write a book without knowing who’s going to read it. You wouldn’t know where to start in the writing process in terms of:

  • Language
  • Theme
  • Style
  • Tone

Once you fully understand who your captions are intended for, you can then turn to AI’s help to write relevant captions for your next campaign.

For example, as a financial services company, you want to tailor your messaging to attract the right target audience.

Your language would look very different if targeting high-net-worth clients seeking personalized financial planning compared to young adults looking to build an emergency savings account.

Get to know your audience like the back of your hand. Trust us, it’s worth the extra effort here.

Brand voice

Be clear on how you want to be perceived on social media. Nobody likes a two-faced brand. To develop a brand voice, you need to be clear on your values and beliefs.

Even if you are a serious company, have authority, and speak with authority on topics such as global tax compliance or how to hire a remote workforce, you can still appeal to humor in your social networks.

Remote uses witty captions that poke fun at office life and work hardships to provoke laughter and conversation among its audience, proving that relatable humor can be a viral recipe for engagement on Instagram.

Content themes

Identify key content themes or categories that align with your target audience’s interests.

Marketing goals

What are you trying to get out of Instagram? This could be sales, awareness, or building a community.

It’s also worthwhile conducting an overall Instagram audit to make sure your profile, bio, and other elements are singing the right tune.

How to train AI to write Instagram captions

AI tools like ChatGPT need to be fed specific prompts (instructions) before it can create mind-blowingly accurate Instagram captions for your brand.

Open up ChatGPT and train it to understand your business.

Start with the following prompt to get ChatGPT in the zone:

Please act as a social media strategist for my business. I provide online personal training services for busy single dads who don’t have time to go to the gym.

Replace the second sentence with what your business does. Under this prompt, describe the following in as much detail as you can.

What outcomes do you help your target audience achieve?

Be as specific as you can.

Our fictitious personal training services don’t help dads lose weight. It helps them achieve their ideal body without sacrificing their favorite foods, spending hours at the gym, sacrificing their sleep, or time spent with the kids.

Think about how you can help them achieve their desirable lifestyle. People are either chasing pleasure or avoiding pain. Your business is most likely supporting them in one way or the other.

Describe your ideal audience

Start by outlining the important demographics, such as age, gender, and location. But if you want AI to give you crazy-good captions, you need to list their detailed psychographics. This includes:

  • Their sentiments and motivations
  • Their life circumstances
  • The beliefs they hold
  • Their fears

For our online personal training for dads, we are trying to reach dads who:

  • Work at least eight hours a day and come home to start their second job as a parent
  • Have bad eating habits (junk food, microwave food) due to the lack of time to cook
  • Believe it’s impossible for them to get fit
  • Are too busy to go to the gym

Screenshot provided by the author

You want to get as detailed as you can because only then can AI give you suitable Instagram captions that are empathetic to and reflect your audience’s current lifestyle and emotional state.

Imagine telling a single dad to go to the gym after work as a “fitness tip.” This is totally tone-deaf to the fact that he might have a kid to pick up from school or that he needs to go home and cook for his kids, and so on.

The more AI understands your audience, the more nuanced its captions will be.

Common FAQs

If you are a seasoned business owner, you’ll have a good idea of the most common types of questions your previous/existing clients have. Feed these to ChatGPT to enhance its understanding of your audience.

Describe the results of working with you

If you have a long list of client success stories, tell ChatGPT exactly how you’ve helped people in the past.

When describing your results, don’t only focus on the factual outcomes. Focus on how it’s helped your audience feel. Our online personal training didn’t only help single dads lose weight and build muscle but:

  • Gave them more energy throughout the day
  • Made them feel happier about themselves
  • Provided a confidence boost

As a result, they can give more to their kids, perform better at work, and even manage to up their dating game!

Screenshot provided by the author

Make this part of the prompt about the transformation rather than the service delivered.

Custom instructions

Tell ChatGPT anything extra it needs to know, such as the tone, language, and style the captions need to be in.

And finally, give it the following instruction:

Please provide me with a list of 20 topics related to my niche that I should make content about to attract my ideal audience.

With the list of content ideas, you can begin to craft your post. You’ll notice the AI hasn’t only given fitness tips but also other ideas that resonate with the audience, such as motivational posts. These are the nuances AI will give you, provided you’re specific enough.

Screenshot provided by the author

Turning content into captions

Copy and paste an idea back into ChatGPT and write the following prompt, asking it essentially to give you the post’s content. We asked it to expand on the first prompt about 5/10-minute workout ideas.

Screenshot provided by the author

You now have the basis of your idea, which can inspire you to make your visuals for the Instagram grid.

To turn it into a caption, feed it one final prompt:

Write an Instagram caption introducing the above topic.

You can give your prompt more details to generate your desired style of caption. We supplemented this caption using the following prompt:

Can you write a caption that emphasizes that dads are busy and then introduce the post? The CTA should be to try this in the morning before your kids wake up.

Now, this is where your expert knowledge of what you deliver for your clients comes into play. Pour your expertise into AI to generate the best Instagram captions.

Screenshot provided by the author

You can now edit the caption to suit your specific needs, should you need to.

Thanks to AI, you now have:

  • An endless list of content ideas (you can repeat the prompt about 20 content ideas and/or ask it to give you further off-shoot ideas from the 20 produced).
  • Inspiration on how to build your visuals around the content ideas.
  • Gave them more energy throughout the day

Use Planable AI to:

  • Churn out highly relevant content at scale to build your business
  • Permanently destroy your team’s writer’s block

Rewrite captions in Planable AI

Wrapping up

We’ve covered a lot! The main thing to remember before diving into the prompts/instructions is understanding:

  • Having clarity on what you do and the specific value you provide your audience
  • What makes a good Instagram caption

This forms the basis for writing relevant Instagram captions.

AI isn’t perfect. The idea behind AI isn’t to simply copy-paste the captions it provides but to use them as a basis for writing your own.

Are you ready to take your Insta caption game to the next level? Try Planable AI for free today. You won’t regret it.

Jeremy Moser

Jeremy Moser

Jeremy is co-founder & CEO at uSERP, a digital PR and SEO agency working with brands like Monday, ActiveCampaign, Hotjar, and more. He also buys and builds SaaS companies like Wordable.io and writes for publications like Entrepreneur and Search Engine Journal.

Try Planable for free

I want to know more, Schedule a demo