Recently, I was asked by a new Instagram follower:

I know who I’m speaking to, but I can’t seem to get them to engage with me on Instagram. If you could pinpoint the best 3 things you’ve done to get more engagement, what would they be?

I LOVE the specificity of her question.

I mean, we’ve all felt this way, right?

Life is busy.
Don’t waste my time.
Just give me your BEST 3 TIPS!!

So, I promised her I would. And that’s what this post is all about…!

Today I’m sharing 3 Instagram copywriting tips to help boost your engagement:

1) Optimize your profile for search

Before your dream clients can engage with you, they’ve gotta be able to find you!

That begins with your bio.

One simple step that most of us gloss right over is decided how to use our username + name combo strategically.

I highly encourage my copywriting clients (regardless of which health/wellness niche they’re in) to base their username on their business name.

Look up any one of your favorite brands or business, and you’ll most likely see they’ve done this. It’s the fastest way to spark recognition of you + your brand.

And if you are your brand…?

Simply use your name (or a version of it) as your username.

Here’s where you can really optimize your profile for search.

A few quick rules of thumb:

  • Don’t be redundant. If your name (or your business name) is already clearly stated in your username, don’t waste valuable real estate displaying the same info in your name field. Let’s say your username is dr.allie. You could state your full name (Allison Hertz, DDS) below, in the name field.
  • Think like your dream client. What are they searching for? By embedding keywords within your name field, your profile will be significantly more likely to come up in search. For example, if you’re a sleep coach, your username might be helenbanks and your name might read: Helen | Sleep Coach. See?
  • Don’t get too clever. It might look cool to the folks who land on your profile, but that stylistic element could be killing your chances of coming up in organic search on Instagram. For instance, if the letters of your name are spaced apart (K E N  Y A N G  | M D), the platform won’t register it as a match when someone searches your name with regular spacing (“Ken Yang”). And that’s the last thing you want! So, avoid fancy fonts or spacing, and you’ll boost your odds of being discovered.

2) Deliver value up front

Once your dream client has found you, you need to give them a reason to engage.

This one sounds so obvious, but trust me: A lot of us are missing the boat.

You’ve gotta deliver value in your captions. Like, ASAP.

By now, you probably know that a simple “Friyay!” followed by 18 emojis won’t cut it when it comes to setting yourself apart from all the noise in your dream client’s feed.

You must provide value, in the form of encouragement, education, or entertainment.

But, just as important: You’ve gotta make it clear, right from the jump, what that value is.

I’ve seen this done in lots of creative ways. A few faves:

  • Open with a thought-provoking question. Or journal prompt. Or tip. Whatever it is, share it right there at the top of your caption.
  • Share the whole thing. It’s OK to send traffic from your captions to your website. But I’m also a big fan of surprising your followers by sharing the goods right there in the caption. (For example, if you’re a nutrition coach, share the whole smoothie recipe in the caption under that gorgeous photo of it, and watch the engagement spike!)
  • Use mini-headlines. This is especially helpful for those who favor super-long, text-heavy captions {*raises hand*}. By summing up the point of the caption in a very brief headline, you’re helping forecast for readers what’s to come.

3) Master the “DM intro”

So, you’ve made it easy for them to find you on Instagram, you’ve given them a reason to stick around… all that’s left for you to do is seal the deal with a good old-fashioned introduction!

I encourage my copywriting clients (again, no matter which health/wellness niche they’re in) to craft a brief intro to send to new followers.

Don’t go overboard! Just a few lines to thank them for following you, identify a point of connection between you (e.g., a colleague, geographic location, shared interest), and tell them a bit about who you serve + how.

BONUS: If you have an email opt-in freebie to share (P.S. you should!), this is great time to share it with them.

In my experience, this is one of the best, most natural ways to initiate 1:1 engagement on Instagram.

A few words of caution, however:

  • Don’t send the intro indiscriminately. Only send it to folks who you truly believe are your dream clients. I periodically go through my list of new followers and send the intro to those who fit my own dream client description.
  • Don’t send the intro redundantly. Obviously, if an email subscriber, or someone you know in “real life” follows you, there’s no need to send them an intro. Instead, I recommend sending a brief, personal message to welcome them + thank them for following.
  • Don’t rush the process. This might not be what you want to hear, but it’s the truth: You can’t streamline this kind of engagement-building. I never send my intro to a new follower without first clicking over to their profile to learn a bit about them and engage with their content. This helps ensure that when I send them my intro, I’ll be able to address them by name and speak meaningfully about why I appreciate them + their work. I REPEAT: This is not a fast-track strategy, but when it comes to actual engagement + relationship building on Instagram… it really works.



OK, here’s your action step for today:

  • Choose 1 of the tips above + start boosting your engagement on Instagram! (Share your ideas in the comments below, so we can encourage you!)

Cheering you on!

When it comes to attracting the people you love working with most, you already have a powerful asset at your disposal! Ready to learn what it is, and start putting it to work for you + your business TODAY?




I help health + wellness professionals connect with their dream clients through genuine, engaging communication. After spending over a decade studying, researching, and teaching psychology + communication principles, I started this business to empower health + wellness professionals like me to “preach what you practice”. I share practical guidance so you can get clear on your unique value, communicate it with heart, attract + serve the people you love working with most… and actually have fun along the way.
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