Visual marketing is a key component of marketing your small business. Photos attract and engage customers through email newsletters, blog, and social media posts. Many small business owners get caught up in worrying about having professional equipment, but some of the best marketing tools are right in your pocket – like the camera on your smartphone!
Below are a few quick tips to make sure you get the most out of your phone’s camera and make sure you always have it ready to snap a pic – even when your phone is locked.
Have you ever seen anything cool on your phone and wished you could take a picture of the screen? Or wondered how sites like Buzzfeed capture all those funny text conversations? Taking a “screenshot” is actually pretty easy. On the iPhone, just press and hold the “Home” button (the button at the bottom), then press the “Sleep/Wake” button (at the top of the side). You’ll hear a camera shutter snap and, bam!, you have a screenshot saved to your picture gallery.
On an Android, access the Power Options screen, then press “Take screenshot.” Click here to see the complete guide on how to take pictures on Android phones. This way you can take a screenshot of your new mobile site or share a cool shot from an app.
Sometimes you need to take a picture of something right now, even though your phone is locked. On iPhones and some Android phones, it’s easy – just tap the power button, then click and drag up on the “camera” icon and it will take you straight to the camera app. The next time your star karate student is working on that roundhouse kick – use this feature so you don’t waste time unlocking your phone and launching the camera app.
You don’t want to miss your chance to get that perfect Instagram shot for marketing your martial arts studio at viral fame while you were fumbling to unlock your phone.
Your camera can also be used to help organize and remember marketing ideas that pop into your head. Have you ever seen a great store front that you’d like to emulate? Snap a picture so you don’t forget it! Like a font one a restaurant menu that you think would work with your print materials? Snap a picture of it! See something cool that you’ll want to share on your site later? Whip out your phone and snap a picture. Want to make a note and remind yourself of something? Take a picture; it will last longer than a note scribbled on the back of your hand.
Did you grab the perfect picture that you want to tweet or share on Facebook? You don’t need to email or it to yourself or put it in your Dropbox – you can share directly from your phone – no need to even load up the Twitter or Facebook apps! Just go to the gallery, select the picture or pictures you want to share, then click the “share” icon and select the social network you want to use.
[Related: Make Facebook Work for Your Business]
If you have an iPhone and you’re looking to share photos with another user, AirDrop is the best solution. To use AirDrop, both users must enable Bluetooth and make their iPhone discoverable. Then simply select the photos to share and tap AirDrop and the photos will be delivered.
Not everyone is a professional photographer – but just because you don’t have the training or an expensive camera doesn’t mean your photos can’t look professional! Photo editing tools like Afterlight can make a huge difference in how you present your business. Check out our guide to using Afterlight here.
Add words, your company name, or hashtags to photos with apps like Over or A Beautiful Mess. These apps can not only make your photos more visually engaging to your users, but you can tie them directly into marketing your business as well.
Now you know how to get the most use out of your camera phone. Now you’ll never have to regret being unable to snap that one awesome picture because you were fumbling with your phone; and you’ll be able to share it instantly. If you’re still not convinced you can use your smartphone photos, check out our free stock photo resources. Good luck and happy snapping!