What’s the Perfect Formula for Social Media Copy?

What’s the Perfect Formula for Social Media Copy?

Not being bombarded by dozens of posts and articles on a daily basis is a tough situation to crack because social media has become a part of everyone’s daily routine. People spend hours and hours just scrolling through their devices and reacting to several posts, articles, photos, or videos that resonate with their daily interests.

But what exactly grabs the attention of a consumer? Let’s crack the science behind what makes people bat an eye on your post: captions.

What Is Too Much Or Too Little Copy?

Fact: Sometimes, some social media marketers and small business owners overdo their captions and overload on hashtags. That’s why instead of being able to create engagement, people tend to shy away from them.

Overdoing social media copy gives that ‘spam-looking content’ vibe and also lessens your chances of getting good engagement because of some dramatic algorithmic shifts on social media giants like Facebook and Instagram.

Although the shown data proves shorter posts can get more engagement tractions by up to 23%, for many who has little to no experience of handling their business’ social media accounts, achieving the perfect number of character and using the right words to capture your audience’s attention is pretty much a wild guessing game. But here’s the thing: there’s no 100% perfect formula for social media copywriting.

Why? Because all businesses are different. Newer businesses require longer social media copywriting because it aims to create curiosity and formally introduce their products to consumers who would take interest and ask more about their products or services. Some businesses, on the other hand, require shorter and more concise copies because some consumers are more convinced with fewer words and more about the promising offers.

As Buffer cites, ‘social media engagement is the new social media marketing.’ If your target audience can’t find anything interesting enough to engage on during the first three seconds of seeing your post, they’ll be moving on quickly.

Why Is Your Copy Ineffective?

Here’s the only reason why we think why your copy just can’t seem to nail getting high post engagements at this rate: lack of substance and empathy.

It doesn’t necessarily mean that your copy was bad because it’s too short or too long; it just didn’t resonate well with what your audience expects of you.

Your copy’s substance defines how you project your brand’ identity and voice, while your ability to empathise enables you to create something that sparks conversation between you and your audience. If one element is lacking, your copy as well as your social media marketing strategy, will start getting unsynchronised. 

At first glance, you’d probably think that people who are regularly seeing your posts would find it perfectly fine to see them. Here’s where the problem starts to unravel: when the type of content you produce itself gets too generic, shows lack of intention, and looks like the same thing over and over again — people will get bored and will naturally lose interest in what you can bring to the table.

This is how you write copy that matters: understand how the human mind works. After a long and stressful day from daily hustles, humans don’t want to be bombarded. They want constant communication and engaging conversation. We want someone who listens and relates to us on a deeper level. We want a consistent voice and plan of action, not promises. We crave for an unforgettable experience.

If your copy didn’t work, it’s because you haven’t tried putting your feet on your audience’ shoes.

Now’s the perfect time to sharpen those social media copywriting skills. It’s either outsourcing the work to a credible social media marketing agency or hiring a new employee who has efficient experience doing social media accounts.

The Length That Works


Organic Posts: It must be less than 80 characters. According to Buzzsumo and Jeff Bullas’ study, it receives a higher amount of post engagement by up to 66%. Why? Because users tend to lose interest once they have to view longer social media posts and click ‘see more’ to view the whole thing.

Paid Posts: At least 5-18 words only. Facebook Ads have three main parts: headline, main text, and description. The ideal length, according to AdSpresso, would be:

  • Headline, the first text people read, is 5 words.
  • Main Text, the snippet above your image or video, is 14 words.
  • Description, the text that lives directly below your headline, is 18 words.


Thanks to doubling their character limit recently, it has become more convenient for marketers to post on Twitter. But this doesn’t mean that people expect to read slightly longer tweets.

Organic and Promoted Tweets: It must be at least 71-100 characters. Direct-to-the-point tweets that contain lesser characters and is easier to read gains about 17% higher post engagement. Don’t forget to add in at least 3 to 4 relevant hashtags. 


Even though Instagram is about visual content, copy matters too. Instagram captions are often catchy, must capture the brand’s personality, and make people take action. Just like on Facebook, Instagram users don’t want to click on ‘see more’ unless it’s a creative and inspiring story or real, life-changing stories. Using at least 5-9 hashtags also play an important role in having bigger chances of being discovered.

Organic Instagram Posts: Must be at least 138-150 characters. Most people scroll very quickly, that’s why it’s important to keep it short and straightforward.

Sponsored Instagram Posts: Should be 125 characters or less + emojis (if it applies to your content)


Progressively growing with 546 million professionals using LinkedIn daily, writing on this platform requires formal tone and is competitive when it comes to organic attention, so much that it requires your posts to have good quality and length.

Organic and Paid LinkedIn Updates: At least 25 words. After the 140-character hit mark, your copy will be cut off with a ‘see more’. Keeping your updates short works best.

Articles:1900-2000 words. Paul Shapiro, the founder of Search Wilderness, analyzed more than 3000 of the most successful posts on LinkedIn’s publishing platform. These posts, on average, received 42,505 views, 567 comments, and 138,841 likes. This meant that articles with more words perform better.