free course video on your phone holding up

How to Make a Video On Your Phone: FREE 100-Min Course

This course is full of information on how to make a video on your phone.

Whether you’re a small business, large business, or an individual, learning how to make a video on your phone is incredibly important.

This free course covers just about everything you’d ever need to know when getting started.

Free 100 min course how to make videos on your phone
Film, transfer, edit, and upload to YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram

Don’t have time to go through the full course now?

Press command (Mac) or control (PC) + D to bookmark this page, then you can come back in the future. I promise making it all the way through will be worth it.

Click the links to jump down to that section on the page. It has a step-by-step written description as well as links to additional tools and resources.

Table of Contents: In this 9-part course we’ll cover:

1. How to film professional, high-quality videos on your phone for free.

Click the link above this video to navigate to the section on the basics

2. What content you’ll want to discuss in your videos and how to relax on camera.

3. Advanced tips for making videos on your smartphone on a small budget.

4. How to import your footage from your phone to your computer.

If you’re on a PC, there’s a tutorial on how to transfer here

5. How to download, install, and edit, and export your video whether you’re on Mac, PC, or Linux.

Every step from downloading the editing program to the final export of your video

6. How to upload your video to YouTube and choose all the best settings.

I include every setting you should adjust when you upload your video to YouTube

7. How to design thumbnails in Photoshop for your videos (free trial available).

Step by step to create a thumbnail

8. How to upload your video to your Facebook Business Page and choose all the best settings

9. How to move your finished video from your computer to your phone, then post it on Instagram.

How to create videos on your phone youtube settings
Adjust both speed and subtitles

Bonus tip: Choose the speed that works best for you!

Click the gear icon in the bottom right corner of the video. Here, you can set the speed anywhere from .5x to 2x. Choose the speed that works best for you.

The Basics: Making Videos on Your Phone

Note: If you are uploading your video to YouTube you’ll want to do some keyword research. I recommend you read my ultimate guide to YouTube for tips on creating videos centered around a keyword.

I highly recommend watching the videos all the way through. I’ll give tips and examples in the text and images, but for the full experience, watch all of the videos.

Tips for making professional videos on your phone for free

You want light to be in front of you, not overhead or behind you.

Backlight behind when creating videos on phone
Back Light
Overhead light
Light in front: the best option!

If the light is behind you, you’ll appear silhouetted. If it’s overhead, it will be very unflattering and you’ll have dark areas under your eyes.

Luckily, you can have great light while shooting on your phone without spending any money.

Film in front of a window. Use lamps that are in front of you. It’s easiest to film outside when it’s a few hours after sunrise or a few hours before sunset.

Audio is one of the most important aspects of your video.

People aren’t going to watch your video if they can’t hear what you’re saying and the audio isn’t good. The audio that’s built into a phone is not good.

Luckily, they make incredibly affordable microphones like this mic from Amazon. It’s under $20 and is a great starting mic. (this is not an affiliate link)

A clip-on mic cuts out more background noise and provides much cleaner, crisper audio for your video.

Better audio when youre making videos external mic
Improve audio quality with an external mic

Even with a mic like this, you’ll want to be conscious of background noise, such as construction, planes flying overhead, and people talking in the background. It can still be distracting.

Feel free to check out my full guide on how to improve audio quality.

The image-orientation of your video (and the best way to hold your phone).

You’ll want to film with your phone horizontal for YouTube. For Facebook and Instagram, I find it works better to film vertical.

On Facebook and Instagram, you post stories in the vertical format.

What do I say when I’m filming myself?

•If you’re making videos for your business:

Talk about how you’ve helped other customers. Act like you’re directly speaking to a customer. You can tell a story of someone you’ve helped. You can also provide educational content that would be useful. Ask yourself, “What would a potential customer get out of watching this video I’m about to create? Try to help people solve problems and reach their goals.

•If you’re making a video for a personal YouTube, Facebook, or Instagram

Still, focus on your audience. What would they find interesting and valuable? What kind of things are they searching for?

Be succinct.

People will lose interest if you spend 20 minutes saying what could have been said in 90 seconds.

How to relax when you’re filming?

Many people feel like they should be speaking eloquently by their first or second take. This isn’t the case. Speaking on video takes practice. Expect to try recording 5,10,15 times. Have patience and relax. You get to use the very best take. You’ll get better as time goes on.

If you want more ideas on content creation you can find my post of 5 tips for creating marketing videos.

Advanced Tips for Making Videos on Your Smartphone on a Small Budget

This playlist has all sorts of information on video marketing, editing, filming on DSLR or on your phone. Whether you’re a beginner or intermediate, this playlist has ideas, tips, and strategies for creating content, knowing what to say on camera, how to shoot and edit your videos, and how to edit and optimize them.

Film on your phone without needing to hold it

If you want the ability to hold your camera in place, you’ll want a tripod or light standand a phone holder. You’ll no longer have to have someone holding your phone.

Phone holder for filming better videos using your phone

You can get a nicer mic that plugs into your phone, or a separate audio recorder that will record even higher quality audio for your videos.

Purchase affordable lighting.

Phones don’t do very well in the dark. With portable lights, you can film in the woods at night, add light to your face during the day, or film in the evening at your house. Portable lights are getting less expensive, and they add a lot to your production value.

If you use two lights, you can light both sides of your face evenly.

How to Import Your Footage From Your Phone to Your Computer.

On Mac, attach your phone to your computer using the USB connector. Open the program image capture, and select the images to import off your phone.

On PC, attach your phone to your computer using the USB connector. Open your phone in the menu, and you can drag your files to your computer.

Click here for a more detailed step by step guide.

How to Edit Your Video for Free.

Davinci Resolve is the best free video editor out there. It works on Mac, PC, and Linux. You can edit professional videos using the program or videos that you made using your phone.

You can download the file by going to Davinci Resolve’s official site.

You’ll need to click Davinci resolve and enter in your email.

The download will start. Once it’s done, install the program.

Install davinci resolve to edit videos from your phone

Save your project.

When you open it, you’ll want to choose new database, select create, choose type “disk” and give it a name and location. This is where the project file will be stored.

Create new database to import videos from your phone

Edit your video.

Once you’re in your video editor, you can drag and drop clips. Please note, you DO NOT want to move your clips once you import them. Your project will be linking to your large video files. They need to stay in the same place.

You can drag and drop clips on your timeline (make sure edit is selected at the bottom).

You can drag the edges to trim the video. Drag the full clip to move it around.

Pressing B will give you the blade tool. This lets you cut the clip up. You can then delete certain portions of the clip by hitting the delete key.

You’re able to drag in pictures and graphics as well. If you place them in the layer above the video, it will play them.

The top layer of video is always the one that plays.

Adjusting the audio levels of your video is important.

You can drag the audio levels below the video to choose how loud the clip will play. You can also add in music and make sure the music isn’t too loud or soft in comparison to the people speaking in your video,

Color grading: Setting the mood of your video.

In the color tab at the bottom, you can adjust the colors on your video.

You can spend days learning color correcting. Let’s keep it simple.

Color Grade Video you Made on Your Phone

You only need to adjust 3 things.

1. Hit A to do an auto correction (Davinci Resolve will make some slight adjustments for you). Most of the time it will give you a better result. If the result is worse, hit undo.

2. Adjusting the saturation will impact how intense the colors are: if saturation is at 0 your video will be in black and white. If it’s turned to 100 the colors will be way too punchy.

3. Adjusting the offset impacts the overall brightness of your image.

Export your finished video to save it on your computer.

Now that you have your edit, go to the deliver tab at the bottom.

Export your finished video you shot with your phone

You’ll want to choose “entire timeline”.

Name your file and choose where it should be saved (filename and location).

You’ll want to leave the settings as Quicktime h.264.

You can choose a custom resolution. For YouTube, you’ll want 1920×1080 (a height of 1920 pixels and a width of 1080 pixels). For Facebook and Instagram, you’ll want 1080×1080 (a square video) or for Facebook and Instagram stories 1080×1920 (vertical video).

You’ll want to choose “Add to Render Queue”. This will add your video to the right side of your screen. Click start render.

That will run, and it will save your finished video on your desktop.

How to Upload Your Video to YouTube and Choose the Best Settings

If you want to upload your video to Facebook you can skip ahead here. If you only want to upload it to Instagram, you can skip ahead here .

How to Upload & Optimize Your YouTube Video for More Views? Watch the video below

Upload your video.

Now that you have the file, go to your YouTube channel and click upload.

If you don’t have a YouTube channel yet, you can learn how to set one up by following Google’s instructions.

Go to your channel and click upload. Select your video file.

Choosing the right upload settings are important. Here’s a quick checklist:

1.Try to use keywords that you’ve previously researched. Include the keyword in the title, in the first lines of your description, and in your tag.

2. Upload an awesome clickable thumbnail. YouTube prioritizes videos that have thumbnails that people click on. In the next section, I’ll show you how to design one with Photoshop.

3. Include end cards in your video so people can see other videos on your channel at the end.

4. If you reference any of your other videos, include cards so people can access them.

5. Create subtitles for your video. This will make it possible to watch your video with the sound off and it will also help with your ranking.

6. Add your videos to playlists. You can keyword optimize your playlists for even more views.

How to Design Thumbnails for Your Videos in Photoshop

This tutorial will work in Photoshop Elements as well. 

If you don’t have Photoshop, here’s a link to a free trial.

If you want to use an online program, here’s how to design thumbnails in Canva

Import your image.

In Photoshop, import your image. This can be a screenshot from your video or a different photo you’ve taken with your phone.

You can take your photo in front of the background you’d like for your thumbnail.

You can cut out yourself and put yourself in front of anything by following these steps:

•Choose the quick selection by pressing W or choosing it in the menu.

•Select around yourself. To remove part of the selection, hit alt to subtract from the selection.

•Select Add Layer Mask.

Now you can add anything behind you!

You can add a color, gradient, or other image.

Add text to the thumbnail.

Thumbnails with words tend to do best. Try putting something that will inspire people to click. Make the text pop by making it have high contrast, and you can add a drop shadow or stroke under “layer>layer style”.

Want to learn more about thumbnails on YouTube? I wrote a full article on YouTube thumbnails for your videos.

How to Upload to your Facebook Business Page:

Don’t need to upload to Facebook? You can skip to Instagram here.

Videos uploaded to Facebook get 10x as much views vs sharing a link to your YouTube video.

Create the post on your Facebook business page.

You’ll want to go to your page, and choose “Create Post”, then “Photo/video”.

Fill out the title and description.

Select your file. Give it a catchy title up top. Write out a compelling description. Choose some tags relevant to your video, this will help new people find your content.

You’ll need to wait until your video finishes uploading to adjust additional settings.

Choose the thumbnail for your video.

Thumbnails aren’t as important on as on YouTube videos. The thumbnail will just flash for a moment when people are scrolling through their timeline. You can design your own thumbnail or just use a frame from the video. If you design a thumbnail, don’t include text, since people won’t be able to read it.

Add subtitles to your video.

Add subtitles on facebook to video from your phone

85% of people on Facebook watch videos with the sound off.You definitely need subtitles. Choose English as your language. Auto-generate is going to be the fastest. It will create titles and time them out. You’ll want to double check what it comes up with as it won’t be 100% correct and you’ll need to make some changes.

YouTube download caption files for video you made
Where to download the .SRT of YouTube

If you have already uploaded the same video YouTube, you can download the captions as an .srt file and upload those to Facebook by choosing upload (under the captions on Facebook).

Optional: Include a poll.

You have the option to include a poll in your video.

Another option is to include the video in a playlist on your page, where you can group it with videos about a similar topic.

Post your video for the world to see!

Then, all that’s left to do is to post! It will take a while to upload. You have the option to boost your post to get it in front of new people.

How to Move Your Finished Video From Your Computer to Your Phone, Then Post it On Instagram

Sadly, you cannot upload your video to Instagram on your phone unless you’re using a post scheduler like Buffer, Hootsuite, or Zoho Social. Luckily, it’s pretty easy to transfer your edited video from your computer to your phone.

How to transfer files from your computer to your phone.

Download the App, VLC onto your phone.

VLC share file from computer to your phone

Open the app, and turn on “sharing via Wifi”.

This will give you a code. Type this code into your browser. You’ll now be able to drag and drop your files from your computer and they’ll show up in your phone.

In the top right corner choose “edit”, then select your video files.

Now, you’ll have the option to download the files. Choose “save to camera roll”. They’ll now be on your phone!

Post your video to Instagram.

Open Instagram. Tap the + at the bottom of your screen to upload.

Select the file from your library. Click next in the top right corner.

You can then add filters if you want (though personally I prefer doing the color grade when I’m editing). You’ll want to click at the bottom right and choose cover. This will be the image that shows up in your timeline so it’s important to choose the best still frame. You HAVE to do this before you upload, you can’t change it later.Otherwise. it will simply choose the first frame (which is not what you want).

Use 9-11 hashtags so more people can find your video

Try and go for hashtags that don’t have millions of posts. Keeping it to hashtags that have a few thousand posts will mean you may have a shot at being one of the “top posts”, which would mean that your post can be seen by more people.

Conclusion: You now know EVERYTHING about making videos with your phone with this free course.

Filming, editing, transferring to computer, editing with a free program, exporting, and uploading. I’d say you’re ready to start creating, wouldn’t you? You’re a filming pro. It may feel overwhelming at first, but in no time you’ll be making professional videos with your phone to promote your business or online channels.

What’s next?

Please click the follow link at the bottom of my blog for lots more posts like this. You can also click to find my free course on growing your business with video.

Check out my YouTube channel for up-to-date videos on all topics marketing related!

Did you run into any issues? Leave a comment below and I will try to help you out.