Tips for Filming Video on Your Phone

You’ve heard it (and probably seen it) time and time again: Video content is growing in popularity.

Now that may either excite you or terrify you, depending on your comfort level with filming video. But the good news is, you really don’t have to have ANY videography experience to put together a top-notch video. All you need is your phone, a vision, and a few best practices in hand.

In fact, here are five key reminders for shooting high-quality videos on your phone:

1. Always film horizontally

If you’re not already in the habit of filming your videos horizontally, we highly recommend that you start. You want your videos to display well across all devices, and given that laptop and desktop screens are horizontal, videos in landscape mode look better. (Otherwise, if you do film vertically, you’ll wind up with those black frames on the sides of your video…and that’s never a good look.)

2. Avoid zooming

It can be tempting to zoom while (or before) filming a video, but that actually reduces the quality of your video and can make it a bit grainy. (Phones don’t zoom the way standard cameras do.) That said, If you need to be closer to something, it’s really just better to move physically closer, if possible.

3. Put your phone on airplane mode

Many people forget or don’t think to put their phone on airplane mode before filming, but doing so prevents you from getting pop-ups or notifications while you’re filming – phone calls, text messages, Facebook notifications, etc. Not only are those things distracting, but the sounds from those notifications could wind up in your video, and that could then distract your audience.

Play it safe by switching on airplane mode before pressing record.

4. Be mindful of the lighting

Lighting isn’t something you can always control, but it is something to keep in mind (particularly if you’re staging something for a video). If possible, try filming in a brightly lit area, such as somewhere outside. This often helps prevents shadows. But, while light is certainly important, you also want to make sure your camera isn’t pointed directly at the light source. It’s all about balance here.

5. Keep it steady

Last, but not least, it’s important that your camera is as steady as can be while filming. Shaky videos can be distracting, and sometimes, even hard to watch. You may be ok simply holding your phone, but if you really want to eliminate any kind of shakiness, consider getting a gimbal (which is a hand-held stabilizer) or a tripod. Many of these are fairly inexpensive, and if you plan on filming a good bit of video, it could be well-worth the money.

Video is just one of the many ways to engage your audience and market your organization. For more ideas and best practices, check out our free Small-Staff Guide to Association Marketing below!