4 Tips to Up Your Smartphone Photography Game on Social Media
Using photos in your social media posts will improve your results dramatically – tweets with photos receive 150% more retweets than tweets without images, and viewers are 5X more likely to remember content with a relevant image.
In order to take your social media game to the next level, here are 5 photography tips to keep in mind every time you tweet, Instagram, or post to Facebook (or any other platform):
- Create a Plan Before you Start Shooting
Before you take your smartphone out of your pocket, take a few minutes to brainstorm some concepts with your team – location, props, lighting (which can affect the time of your shoot) are all items to consider before-hand. Even those candid shots need locations and lighting that will make for an effective photo!
Pro Planning Tips:
- Natural light works best – whenever possible, opt to shoot during the daytime and outdoors, or inside with large windows
- Avoid shooting at night or during “Golden Hour” (the hour before sunset) which will give your subjects a yellow glow
- Shoot at different locations so you have more variety to choose from
- Optimize your Photos for Each Platform
Each platform requires different image dimensions to ensure your photo is optimized. It’s a good idea to identify which social platforms your photos will appear on and ensure you take multiple photos, or photos that can be cropped to meet the dimensions required.
For basic posts, follow these photo guidelines:
- Instagram: Square
- Instagram Stories: Portrait
- Facebook: Landscape
- LinkedIn: Landscape
- Twitter: Landscape
- Snapchat: Portrait
For a more comprehensive list of social media dimensions for banners, cover photos, ads and more, check out Hootsuite’s Up-To-Date Social Media Image Sizes guide.
- Use Only High-Quality Pics
Photos that are in-focus, bright and composed well are always the way to go. Blur, image noise and poorly lit pictures are scrolled past the fastest and may not send the right message to your audiences.
Pro Quality Tips:
- Avoid using the zoom feature at all costs. Using it butchers the quality of a photo – get closer to your subject instead, or consider cropping your photo after
- Experiment with your smartphone’s portrait-mode if you’re photographing products
- Use the Rule of Thirds! You can turn on the grid in you camera setting to help you make sure your subject is either centred in the photo or positioned where the grid intersects
- Edit, but Don’t Overdo It
It is necessary to play with photo settings to tweak any imperfections in lighting and colour balance. You can play with the settings to reduce shadows or boost the saturation and contrast to make your photo pop, but make sure you don’t overdo it and keep your photo looking natural.
Pro Editing Tips:
- Having good lighting when shooting initially will help you cut the amount of tweaking you have to do later
- Avoid using the flash. Brighten up dark areas by tapping on darker parts of the screen to focus your camera
- The days of heavy Instagram filters are in the past, leave them there… Avoid filters all together or tone them way down