The good news about modern campaigns is that social media offers the ability to connect with voters in ways that never were possible before. The bad news is that it requires candidates to be more technically savvy than ever before. But for those who invest the time to become proficient with their smartphone, it can become their secret weapon.


The modern smartphone has become a portable media production platform. You can take high-quality pictures and videos, edit them, create interesting after-effects, and upload to social media networks virtually instantaneously. This is a tremendous tool and surprisingly few candidates take advantage of it.

One key to success is to have the most up-to-date and quality device you can afford. Every release of the Apple iPhone or Samsung Galaxy incorporates major technology improvements, mostly associated with the cameras. If your phone is more than two years old, an upgrade will dramatically improve the quality and efficiency of your media.

To see what a difference this makes to your pictures, consider the following comparisons from the SnapSnapSnap website article; The ultimate iPhone camera comparison: How does the iPhone 6s camera compare to every other iPhone generation?

smartphone generation image comparison

This image shows how the image quality has improved over the various generations of iPhones.

smartphone generation image comparison

This image is arguably even more impressive. Look at the difference simply between the iPhone 6 and 6s.

And so our advice, again, is to have the newest smartphone you can afford. The platform isn’t terribly important: Both iOS (Apple) and Android (Google) devices tend to have comparable features when it comes to photo quality. At any given moment in time, one might be slightly better than another but they tend to be minor compared to something that’s two years older.

The choice between iOS and Android is mostly a matter of personal preference. iPhones tend to be a little easier to use but Androids are a little more flexible. If you use a lot of Google services like Gmail and Docs, an Android phone might be the ticket.

Regardless of which platform you choose, take the time to become very familiar with the features. Find some online tutorials for your smartphone and make sure you understand how to quickly and efficiently use the picture and video features of your phone.

Here are a few aspects to consider if you’re shopping for a new device:


This defines how many “pixels” comprise your photo. This number alone doesn’t dictate the overall quality of a photo but bigger is generally better.

Image Quality

The lens and photosensor will dictate the quality of the images you can capture with your phone. The best bet here is to check online reviews.

Screen Size

A larger screen will make it much easier for you to check and edit your photos, as well as to use other design tools on the phone.

Image Stabilization

I just upgraded to a Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge a few months ago and the image stabilization feature (compared to my older Galaxy S5) is phenomenal. This feature goes a long way toward making your videos easier to watch without getting seasick from the shaking.

Video Quality

Most, if not all, smartphones are capable of shooting HD-quality (1080p) video. Some are even more advanced (e.g. 4k) but you should be shooting all of your videos in HD for the best results.

Storage Space

This one is a big deal and it differs based on the platform. Many Android phones have a problem with “bloatware,” which is pre-installed software that can’t be uninstalled and takes up memory. However, most of them have the advantage of incorporating SD cards that act as separate storage that’s cheap and convenient. iPhones can’t use SD cards so if you’re planning to take a lot of videos you’ll probably want to opt for more storage space.

Photography and Videography

Photography and Videography ebookHumans are visual creatures. Our brains are designed to remember faces and we respond accordingly. If your campaign can take advantage of this, it will give your social media presence a major advantage. That’s why we put together a Photography and Videography ebook that shows candidates how to make the most out of this secret weapon.

In this ebook, we cover:

  • Photography: Tools and tips for capturing, enhancing, and publishing campaign pictures.
  • Videography: Tools and tips for capturing, enhancing, and publishing campaign videos.
  • Useful Apps: Manage your media library and collaborate with your campaign team with some of these recommended apps and services. Also, take your efforts to the next level with some simple tools that will add a lot of polish with little skill or effort.

Click here to learn more about our Photography and Videography ebook.

Featured image credit: “150309-charging-cellphone-smartphone-blue.jpg” by r. nial bradshaw is licensed under CC BY 2.0

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