Using Smartphone Videos for EASY Marketing Content

by | Sep 26, 2022 | Business Building Musts, Small Business Help, Social Media

Today I am writing about VIDEO – and specifically video you can make with your smart phone.

We all know (or if you’re listening to this you SHOULD know!) that video content is super important when it comes to your marketing.  Video is king.  Just to say that podcasting is the Queen, but video is still the king of content!

And we all have a smart phone and therefore we ALL have the ability to do more video.  And if you are thinking that I am wrong and you can’t do more video just because you have a smartphone then, hopefully after this episode, you will have the know-how and the tool to do it! And will do more videos like I’d like you to!!

So, of course, videos you do can be for

  • Story telling
  • Informative
  • Educational
  • Entertaining
  • And to create sales (which can be any of the above as well!).

A good video, done on a smartphone or wherever has excellent audio, good lighting (natural is cheapest – yay the sun), captions of the audio, and has a sprinkling of editing options (or a lot, depending on the video!).

Here are my tips for creating some simple and easy video content for your marketing:


Quality of the audio is probably more important than anything else – except the content of course!  People will sit through bad lighting in some cases, but almost no one will listen to bad audio.

Using the earphone/speaker that came with your smartphone, or AirPods (and equivalent) or even a lapel microphone will ensure you have a clear voice and also help to block out sounds you don’t want to be recorded – like sheep and birds, in my case!

When you are talking on video, sound is probably most important – get that right, and you are ¾ of the way there.


It’s important to think about whether you want the camera landscape (horizontal) or portrait (vertical) –  this might be determined by where you want to use it.  You might need to do some research on this before recording based on the platform you are sharing to (For example: If you are using Instagram then portrait/vertical is what you need, but you might need to record in Landscape/horizontal if it’s for YouTube).


Lighting, as I said earlier, natural light is best – stand near a window or outside or in a well-lit area to record.  Otherwise, ring lights (readily available from a few dollars up to hundreds) are a great idea too.

I have a big free standing ring light but have to say that I use mostly my small one that clips onto my iPhone – I think it cost me a few dollars either at Kmart or the local post office – can’t remember!


Of course, editing a video is where some people become unstuck – not sure how to edit or what tools they need.

Can I say firstly, though, that most videos won’t need editing.  If you are editing out parts of the video where, for instance, you would do or say the same in real life, in a face-to-face conversation, don’t edit it out!  But editing is necessary if you make a big mistake or just need to make the video shorter to fit into a platform (such as 60 seconds for an Instagram story).

While you shouldn’t feel that every video MUST have an edit, there are some great apps for editing such as:

  • iMovie
  • InShot
  • Canva
  • Splice

These tools aren’t expensive, but if they do have a subscription of a few dollars for the year – it might just be totally worth it, given it WILL more than likely make your life as an editor simpler and easier – that’s what you are paying for obviously!!


As far as the video goes, your first 5 seconds are very crucial.

Try not to use those precious seconds saying, “Hey there, I’m Jenn Donovan blah blah blah” – remember, people don’t care who you are until they know what you can do for them!

My pro tip for this:

  • You are better off saying something really engaging and catchy to get their attention in the first 5 seconds so they will keep watching and not scroll on or click out!

Something perhaps like “video content in 30 seconds – how to do it – keen to learn?  Cool, I’m Jenn …..” or “if you hate video with a passion …..” – there’s the head nod test for sure!

How many times do you click end on an ad in YouTube as soon as you are able to and you think, I have no idea what they were about – because they didn’t connect their message with you before you had the chance to stop listening to them?

Otherwise, past the first 5 seconds, the first 15 seconds is where you set up the video – main messages, topics, how you can help them etc.


A key tip is to know the platform you are putting this video on:

  • YouTube – go for your life, make it as long as you want (sort of!)
  • Instagram stories – 15 to 60 seconds
  • TikTok – constantly changing – a few minutes now, I think
  • Facebook – any length, really!

Understand that if you are going to do a Live video on a social media platform – that my 5-second rule doesn’t really apply, as you will probably have to wait for people to come on – they probably won’t be there immediately – so be strategic to keep the early birds on and wait for some more to deliver your amazing content.

Of course with video we can go live, as I mentioned before, we can prerecord something and we can, of course, repurpose videos.


Knowing what form of video, live, stories, reels, prerecorded etc., is swayed by your target audience and knowing how they best interact with you.

Of course, if you have never done a video or don’t do videos very often, you probably don’t know how your ideal client best interacts with you via video – so you have some research and experimenting to do!


Just about any video content you do, in fact, I would be so bold as to say 100% of the video content you do should have captions.  Captions are important to people who listen with sound off and also for people who need them for communication purposes.

Most platforms you upload a video to will do automatic captioning but you can use platforms like or or even an app like Mix Captions to transcribe your videos.


So lastly, let’s touch on content for the video.

95% of the videos you create should have strategy/plan behind them.  In others words you should know what the outcome of doing the video is for your audience.

You can write notes, do sticky notes, dot points or just think about it in your brain before hitting record, but you should never (or hardly ever) just hit record without a thought of what you will do or say.

You are serving your people, your community, so what are you serving them up?

Depending on what platform you choose and the length of video, and considering most of us will do short sharp 30 to 90 second videos, you probably should have 1 good point to make.  More points mean longer videos, really.

One point and one call to action make for a good short, sharp, engaging video.


Something I hear from many people is they just don’t feel confident in video and that they dislike seeing themselves in video content.

If you don’t like yourself on video, then I would say, in the friendliest and most polite way I can, it’s not about you – it’s about your audience.

Think of it this way…….

You show up in person in many different ways and interactions – this is how people see you! So show up on video how you would show up in real life, at a networking event, the pub or the supermarket!

Thinking of it like that makes it easier for people to show up on video.


If video is something you struggle with, pull out your smart phone, press record and start talking to it.  If you make a mistake – no stress!

But don’t press stop, just keep talking until you feel like you have your point made.  You don’t have to do anything with that video, but there is something about that old saying “practice makes perfect” that makes us better at things we can’t do or struggle to do.

Oh and hint – we are in no way, absolutely no way, looking for perfect!  So, stop trying to be perfect.  Perfect is subjective, my perfect is not your perfect – so you will never be perfect.


So, what do you do with these tips from this blog?

  1. Choose a platform you know your ideal client or customer hangs out in.
  2. Choose your form of video – live, reel, story etc.
  3. Start to list all the points or information you could share in a video that is between 30 and 90 seconds.
  4. From that list, choose one, make some simple notes, gather your thoughts, get yourself in a place with good lighting and have good sound and click record.


Lives might seem scary but if you can, do them because you can’t delete or change anything – it’s out there, and there’s something rather wholesome about not being able to change it or edit it (you can delete it, of course, but someone may have seen it!).  Sometimes if we pre-record, we get that icky feeling watching it back and never take the action to put it out to the world – but lives, it’s done.  60 seconds of your life done, along with your social content to the day!

One of the simplest ways I do a video is to do an Instagram story – 4 of them so that makes 60 seconds.  After they are live, go and click the “More” button in stories and click save story (which saves all 4 x 15 seconds) and then upload into the app Splice, stitch them together and repurpose onto other platforms as a 60-second video!

Captions are done by Instagram – I get to use a filter if I want – because Instagram has the best ones and I just do 1 video for many platforms.

SO there you go – my top tips for easily making video content!

I hope these hints, tips and tricks have been handy.

Basically, do more videos.  And, if you already do video now – do more!

If you have other apps or tools you use for video, let us know – come into my online community – my Like Minded Business Owners Facebook group and we can chat all things VIDEO!

Or, let’s hang out and get social on social – you’ll find me on Instagram, Facebook and my fave LinkedIn.


If creating video content for your marketing is something you struggle with, and you would love to have someone in your corner to help you create videos, then I would love to help you! Simply book a discovery call with me here!

And don’t forget to go and join my Like Minded Business Owners Facebook group. The community of people are so great, and it’s awesome to be able to make connections with other small business owners.

Or you can DM me on Instagram or send me an email

I wish to acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land, the Yorta Yorta People, on which I conduct my business today and pay my respects to their Elders past and present. I extend that respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples reading this blog post today.

About the Author:

Jenn Donovan of Social Media & Marketing Australia.  Jenn’s an expert marketing coach and mentor from rural NSW. She is all about empowering business owners to earn what they’re worth so they can make a bigger difference in the world.  The Founder of Buy From a Bush Business, Co-Founder of Spend With Us – Buy From a Bush Business Marketplace and host of the very popular podcasts Small Business Made Simple and Stories from the Bush. Jenn is all about community and humans interacting with humans!  H2H Marketing – human to human marketing. Jenn talks the talk but importantly walks the walk! Jenn’s online community is over 320,000 with her famous Facebook Group currently at almost 365,000 members and still growing every day.  She’s the mayor of her own little online city!

Get in touch –

On Instagram – @jenndonovan_

On Facebook – Jenn Donovan

Or on LinkedIn as Jenn Donovan


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Brilliant – it’s on its way – thanks!


Brilliant – it’s on its way – thanks!


Brilliant – it’s on its way – thanks!


Brilliant – it’s on its way – thanks!

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