RI Business Forum

Ten Tips to Elevate Your Social Media Photos

April 01, 2021

Successful mobile phone photography is essential for any corporate social media marketing plan. Visual Thrive hires professional photographers because we know they have the “eye” for the details, lighting and angles; but with a few tips you can level up your social media photography and draw more engagement from your followers.

Wait – even with a mobile phone? Yes! The new generation of mobile phones offer sophisticated technology, mobile apps with filters to process images and video that rival content captured with professional photo and video cameras. Phone photography allows you to create images much easier than a more sophisticated camera and definitely share online with ease.

Tip 1: Shoot wide, medium and close

A general rule for photojournalists is to take a wide photograph of the entire scene, then a medium one, and end it with a close detail photograph. This makes your story more interesting and brings your eyes to various locations within the same scene. This tactic will cover your visual narrative needs and after you take photos using these three angles, you can have some fun experimenting with different perspectives or color schemes to see what you create. You can use many photographs from the same scene, mixed in with your experimental angles for lots of interesting images for your social media feed. If you only need one photograph to use for your story on a particular day, then photograph all three angles anyway, it will allow you to choose your best in the editing room or save others for another post on another day.

Example wide, medium and close shots

Tip 2: Show the entire scene (wide)

Remember your narrative, and at times the whole environment is exactly what your story is about.

Try shooting the entire scene!

Tip 3: Photograph medium perspective

This is an excellent opportunity to show close up activities, smaller groups of people, and minimize the surrounding distractions.

Medium perspective shots

Tip 4: Get in close

Many times people take a full body photograph of someone doing their activity when the story they want to tell is actually about their hands and face. Zooming in close and tight to your subject makes it more exciting. This works for people, a house or an object. Show only what is necessary to get the point across. A simple detail cell phone photograph can tell a story and increase interest in your narrative. For example, the action of hand writing notes can be more interesting than a table full of people taking notes.

Shoot close-up shots!

Tip 5: Photograph lots of images

For a Visual Thrive assignment, I typically photograph 300 images with the goal of creating 30 excellent photos for a social media campaign. It’s always better to have too many pictures than realizing you didn’t photograph enough, or had an excellent photograph but your subject’s eyes are closed.

Tip 6: Shooting in front of a window

Sometimes a window view looks great when you are in the room looking out. Keep in mind that a phone may not be able to balance the brightness of the outside with the indoors. Also, if a window has bars going through it, it may fall under the realm of Tip #5. A window with a view may not be the best selection. Sometimes having a person in front of the window and photographing them with your phone from an angle will be more pleasing depending on the background.

Tip 7: Creative angles

Be creative with your angles. Take you phone low and shoot up, or hold your phone high and shoot down, or use foreground elements to draw the viewer into the subject matter.

Try being creative with your angles and subject matter.

Tip 8: Watch for items in the background

Images with poles, branches and other background distractions coming out of the subject’s head or ear is not visually pleasing. A simple shift of the angle will clean up the background and make a good photograph even better. The below examples were all photographed by me. This happens often, and the reason why taking multiple images of each scene will help you fine tune the image as you take more.

Be careful of distracting background items.

Tip 9: Have fun with phone photography

Have fun, take lots of photographs and the more you tell your corporate social media narrative visually, the better you will get.

Tip 10: Have fun with your filters

Instagram and many other photo apps and platforms offer filters. Have fun with these filters. Filters allow you to get creative and add a level of interest to your photos that you won’t get from a non-filtered image.


Social Media Marketing Using Phone Photography

Branding and personalizing your company through social media marketing can be fun and practical with a few mobile phone photography tips to keep in mind and practice. Remember the more phone photography you create the better you will get.