YouTube is the second largest search engine next to Google, and it is predicted that by 2017, video will account for 74 percent of all web traffic.

What these two statistics should tell you is that it is important to start thinking about a video strategy for your brand.

Videos are a great compliment to a content marketing strategy and make your brand voice come alive through voice and action. But, having a video strategy is easier said than done – especially when videographers often charge $5,000-$10,000 or more, per video. Not to mention that creating and editing professional videos yourself can be overwhelming.

So, to take the guesswork out of what to do and how to do it when it comes to building a great video content strategy, I’ve put together a quick guide to creating inexpensive, yet effective brand videos:

Learn to Love Capturing Video on Your iPhone

First, don’t think it’s important to buy expensive cameras and lighting to create a professional video for your brand. With the quality of iPhone cameras and editing apps, a lot of big brands and names are creating high quality videos on their phone.

Recently, Kate Hudson filmed 70 percent Fabletic’s (her workout clothing brand) new commercial on her iPhone. Apple also just launched eight “Shot on iPhone” commercials that are airing to show the capabilities of the iPhone camera.


In addition, big brands such as Bentley have shot their commercials on an iPhone and edited the video using software on an iPad.

The bottom line is, not having the right equipment is no longer an excuse to shy away from video marketing. It’s easier than ever to create amazing videos using equipment you probably already carry around with you every day – like your iPhone.

Strategically Plan Your Video

So you have a device for capturing video, but how do you turn video footage into effective content that tells a story to your audience?

Nailing down your video production plan helps ensure that your vision comes to life.

Make sure you lay out the following:

The Video’s Goal: Do you want your viewers to walk away with understanding a key point to your business or product? Are you creating a how-to video that highlights features of your brand? Do you want your viewers to walk away with a particular emotion?

Videos often focus on eliciting one really good response. This is sometimes happiness through extreme humor, outrage through controversy or disgust through a extremely gross video.

The goal of your video should include how you want your viewers to feel, and what action you want them to take.

The Story Outline: Perhaps you’re creating a 60-second video so people understand what your brand does. Or maybe you’re attempting to create a viral video such as Dollar Shave Club’s infamous video that made their company $1 billion.

To reach your video’s goal, you need to outline a clear story you want to tell your audience.

Script & Storyboard: After you outline your story, you can get more granular and break it down into specific script, scenes and frames you want to capture.

Do you need to change location? Do you need multiple actors in your video? What are the props or scenery you’re using?

Laying out the script and scenes before you start filming prevents wasting precious time and budget.

Get Professional Video Quality With a Few (Inexpensive) Extras

When filming with your iPhone, you want to make sure you’re not relying on the steadiness of your hand for a clear, stable shot. Purchase an inexpensive iPhone tripod from such as the KobraTech.

Proper lighting for your brand video also helps set the mood and often sets high quality videos apart from bad brand videos. You can shoot your video in natural lighting, or you can put together an inexpensive video lighting kit. Wistia shows you how to create a lighting kit for about $100 with items you can purchase at Home Depot.


In addition to a tripod and great lighting, it’s recommended that you get a microphone if you’re recording interviews or dialogue.

A few microphones recommended by are:


Wired Lavalier:

Understand the Capabilities — and Limitations — of iPhone Camera

There are a few guidelines you want to follow when using an iPhone to film your video.

Don’t film your video vertically. All of the videos viewed on phones, laptops, televisions, Facebook and Twitter are horizontal videos, so follow the lead.

Make sure you’re not zooming your iPhone. Your iPhone camera doesn’t optically zoom the video since it doesn’t have a zooming lense. Zooming on iPhone is actually just enlarging the picture digitally, which leads to pixilated and wobbly images.

Instead of zooming in, you’re going to want to get closer to your subject if you’d like a closer shot. Or, if you want to get a wider shot of your subject, use a clip-on lens adaptor such as the Olloclip.

Use the exposure lock on your iPhone. If you don’t, your iPhone camera will continually readjust and refocus your video over and over.

Be intentional when using video effects. The iPhone allows you to create slow motion video and hyperlapse video, but use them sparingly and make sure they fit seamlessly into your video script and storyline.

Take advantage of video apps that will improve production. The beauty of using an iPhone to shoot video is all of the great apps created for iOS. According to, some of the best video apps for iPhone are VideoPro Camera, iMovie, Squareready for Video and the Video Filter app.

With the right app you can achieve the quality or mood you’re shooting for.

Bring Everything Together With Easy Video Editing Software  

Editing is where the magic comes together for your video. It’s easy to use iMovie to edit your video, which is included on all Mac laptops and also has its own iPhone app. However, there are a few other options when it comes to editing your brand video.

Buffer created a great guide to some of the easiest and cheapest iPhone video production and editing software. The top choices out there are:

Video editing can be the most overwhelming part of creating your brand video. But a lot of people are self-taught, so you can be too. There are a lot of great guides online to editing videos. Once you choose your software, search online for blog posts or videos on YouTube that can teach you the quick and dirty to using the software to edit your video.

Choose the Right Background Music

Music helps set the mood for your video and can convey the emotion you want to get across to your audience. Unfortunately it’s not always easy to find the right music since there are a lot of copyright laws with music, and YouTube will take your video down if it features copyrighted music.

You can use popular songs in your video, but you will pay the price in royalty fees. Instead, tap into a lesser-known tune to add another layer of depth to your video – without adding a heafy price tag. Some of the best places to find royalty-free, Creative Commons music for your video background are:

Embed & Distribute Your Video

Now that you’ve created your video, don’t just let it sit on your hard drive. Get the word out! Embed it on the homepage of your site using a great tool like Wistia, which allows you to track important analytics with how viewers are using your video. Share it just like you’d share a blog post, in fact, embed it in a blog post and share that blog post. Consider paying for video ads on Facebook, YouTube or Twitter. Send your video to your email newsletter list.

Work hard to get your video out there, so you can get views and the time spent creating your video will be worth it.


Your small business doesn’t need a Blockbuster budget to create valuable video resources. Use these hacks to jump on the video bandwagon and better connect with your audience.