People ask all the time what gear they need to get to shoot a good social media video, and you may be wondering the same thing.


If you have a smartphone you’re all set. Today’s smartphones shoot video in 4k (UHD) which is more than you need for any social media platform. If you are shooting social media videos, make sure to set your phone to 1080p (HD). Remember to turn your phone horizontal unless shooting for “stories”, then shoot vertical.

shooting smartphone video
Instagram stories are shot vertical

Don’t get me wrong, 4k video is amazing and has its place on platforms like YouTube and your companies website. When shooting 4k on your phone be aware of your phone’s memory limitations. 4k file sizes are much larger and may fill up your phone’s memory before you finish shooting, which is never a fun thing.

If you really want to up your smartphone video skill, I highly recommend getting an app like Filmic Pro. Video apps give way more control over your phone’s camera than the factory settings. With Filmic Pro you can select your frame rate and playback rate, what does that mean? Without getting too techie:

  • 24 frames per second (fps) is what our eyes see
  • 30 fps has less motion blur (soap operas are shot in 30 fps)
  • 60 fps is slow motion
  • 120 fps is used for the buttery smooth slow motion we see in most of today’s videos
  • 180 fps pretty much makes running look like standing still, but most cell phone video quality starts to degrade at 180 fps
  • Stick with 24, 60 or 120 and a playback rate of 24 fps and you can’t go wrong


Nothing kills a great video like having poor audio. Shooting video with your smartphone is the easy part, having good quality sound is another story. Your smartphone may have an amazing camera, but it has crap for a microphone. Unless you are within a foot of the mic you will sound muffled or like you are in a large auditorium. It will also pick up all the ambient sound around you.

rode cell phone microphones

Luckily there are solutions to make your social media video’s audio more professional – Rode makes both a directional mic that plugs into both iOS and Android phones and a lavalier mic that can be clipped to your collar allowing for near professional audio.


Nothing beats shooting outdoors with abundant natural lighting, if you are indoors shoot near a window if possible. While natural light is definitely the preferred source, it isn’t always available. When that’s the case, get some cool mood lighting by gathering any available lamps and positioning them near your shoot.

husky led work light

If you want to step up your lighting a notch without breaking the bank, go to Home Depot and get LED work lights, you will be surprised how well they work.


There are several good video editing apps out there to use right on your phone, and most phones come with one installed. The other option is to download your footage to your computer and use an editing software there, a lot of computers now come with a basic editing software installed.

Stepping up your game here will cost some money, video editing software like Premier Pro or Final Cut aren’t cheap but they are well worth the investment. They allow amazing control over your video and audio.


Ultimately it doesn’t matter how good your video is if your content sucks. We have all watched videos online that were poor quality and had crappy audio, but we watched it anyway because the content was engaging.

This article was designed to show how easy social media video content is to create. So, don’t focus on what gear you need, focus on shooting content people want to engage with!

Have a video project that needs a more professional touch, or need help with concept, content & creation? We are here to help, give us a call!

If you still have questions feel free to message us privately.

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