We all know the old cliche: a picture is worth a thousand words. But a picture doesn’t just communicate through its subject matter. The lighting, focus, and composition of an image can say just as much about a business as its subject. And for a lot of FECs, the pics posted on Facebook and Instagram scream, “I don’t know what I’m doing!”
If professional marketing photos aren’t in the budget, you can still stand out from the crowd. All you need to polish up your Instagram feed is your phone + TrustWorkz’s guide for taking better smartphone pictures in 2019. It’s time to take advantage of the production studio in your pocket!
Say What You Mean: How to Take Better Pics on Your Smartphone
- Think inside the box. Yep, you read that right. Every smartphone camera has a handy grid feature. When you turn it on (Settings —> Photo & Camera —> Grid on an iPhone), it superimposes nine squares onto your viewfinder, guiding your composition to create a more compelling image. For the best shot, don’t center your subject. Instead, follow the artistic “rule of thirds” and place your focal point where the grid’s lines intersect. This naturally draws the eye to your subject, plus it gives you the perfect balance of negative space. Congratulations! You just passed Photography 101.
- Light it up. We get it. It’s hard to snap a great pic in the artificial light of a skating rink. Cosmic bowling looks amazing in person, but most of its photos give off a seedy nightclub vibe. Many business owners think “this is as good as it’s going to get” and post the pictures anyway. But if that’s what you’re thinking, that’s what your customers will think too. Skip any pics that give off a “dirty, dim-lit” feel and make sure the pictures you post display the bright, energetic atmosphere your FEC has in person. (Protip: Master the art of lighting in 10 minutes with these 13 tips for taking low-light pics on your smartphone.)
- Walk this way. Nothing deteriorates image quality faster than the zoom button. Instead of exercising your thumb, move your feet. The closer you are physically to your subject, the less pixelated your pic. Can’t get close enough? Zoom in later during edits. Not only will it give you more control over the composition, but your photo will also look less blurry.
- Lights, camera … action! Want to capture a moment of movement? It doesn’t take an award-winning photographer to take an action shot on an iPhone. Keep your feet and camera firmly planted as close to the subject as you can safely manage. Use the burst feature to take multiple pictures at once. You’ll capture more of the moment and limit the number of blurry photos on your camera roll.
Photos may be the foundation of platforms like Facebook and Instagram, but video tops the charts when it comes to social media engagement. So how can you take better videos on your smartphone? Our photography principles apply to video too!
Here are a few extra tips for creating video content on your phone:
- Go vertical. A few years ago, conventional wisdom said horizontal videos were the way to go. These days, vertical video makes it easier for users to view content without rotating their screens. The stats are in, and they say vertical video means bigger engagement on social media.
- Be real. The desire for authenticity is at an all-time-high. Instead of a polished sales gimmick, let your followers peek into the personality of your business. (Need inspiration? TrustWorkz is here to help!)
- Go live. Give the people what they want! (Camera shy? Try a 1st person POV video and narrate a tour of your facility, introduce your fellow team members, and let some of your best customers ham it up on camera.)
Want to turn your latest photos into a thriving content marketing strategy? Call TrustWorkz and schedule a consultation with our social media development team.