Can A Mobile Phone Shoot Business Videos? [ReelRebel #42]

Can A Mobile Phone Shoot Business Videos? [ReelRebel #42]

Some of you out there might perceive the camera in your phone to be the beautiful, cheap way to shoot your business videos.  But the limitations of these cameras are noticeable, to the point that there are only a few instances and circumstances where you should ever use it.  So, while your iPhone can take great videos that you can show your friends when you went to Mount Rushmore that one time, they shouldn't be taken seriously as professional video.  But, there are circumstances in which you can use them, and here are some things you should consider when you decide to use these devices.

Using Your Mobile Phone for Business Video

Things to consider:

  • Where is your video going to end up, if not the web?  If it's anywhere but the web, then skip the camera in your phone altogether and get some real equipment.
  • Phone cameras can be good for grass-roots or a customer testimonial...once.  Don't do any more than that.
  • If you're going to use a phone on your camera, use the latest model that can shoot at least 1280 x 720 HD.
  • Don't shoot in low light, and get a tripod or stabilize your phone on a ledge if you have to.  No Blair Witch Project here.
  • Camera phones have tiny lenses and image sensors that aren't very good at shooting.  So you need to shoot in good light, or light the scene, or well...just get a better camera.
  • Capturing audio is obviously bad with phones: low audio, distortion, ambient noise...for Apple products you can use the Rode iXY, or you could even get a separate recording device like the Zoom H4N

Remember, your business has an image to maintain.  And using the phone in your camera to shoot sales videos, landing page videos, about-me videos, etc., is not a great way to go.  Get professional equipment or hire a professional.  Image is everything...in more ways than one.

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View The Full Video Transcript:

Hey, I’m Stephen Schweickart with this episode of the Reel Rebel and today we're going to talk about making videos for your business using the camera that's probably in your pocket at this very moment - you guessed it genius, your cell phone!  

First things first, you need to decide WHERE your video is going to end up - if it's going to be shown anywhere other than the web, I would recommend SKIPPING THE CELL PHONE ALTOGETHER and use a real-deal camera. 

Since you quote-un-quote Hollywood directors are moonlighting as entrepreneurs, phone cameras maybe good for a grassroots video or a customer testimonial, ONCE… twice is pushing it. But avoid it at all costs for commercials, landing page videos, or anything that will take away from MY pretty face.

If you refuse to give up on phone cameras, at least stick with a newer model that shoots at minimum 1280 by 720 H-D. Phones have been able to do this for years now, but some of the older ones do a pretty horrible job at it.

DON'T shoot in low light and get your hands on a tripod or stabilize your phone on a ledge if you have to. Phones have tiny lenses and imaging sensors that suck at shooting if there isn't a ton of available light. Either shoot in good light, light your scene, or use a better camera.

The final rule when shooting with your phone, if you want quality audio… don't shoot video with your phone. There are some accessories that will plug into your phone to help with audio like the Rode i-X-Y for Apple products. You could even get a separate portable device like a ZOOM H4n (*gestures over shoulder to Zoom video)… Audio directly from your phone will have super low levels, distortion, or ambient noise. Pretty much a waste of everybody's time.

Remember, perception is key-- and you don't want to be perceived as a hack. Don't let your business' image rely on a device that was built for FaceBook and playing Angry Birds. Upgrade your camera or hire a professional.

AND if your still anxious to use your phone, leave me a little something something in the comments section below. Don't forget to click the subscribe button before you leave.

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About the Author -
Chris Atkinson joined ReelSEO in 2011. He is a longtime film and television reviewer, and has almost two decades of experience in the theater industry. He also writes on his personal blog - http://nymoviereviews.com. View All Posts By -

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