Looking for personalized video software? Here are my top 5 picks
If you’re at a stage where you want to level up your marketing game through personalized videos, you need the proper tools to do your best work. There is a plethora of personalized video software out there, and evaluating which one would be the best fit for you takes time.
Before launching Plainly, I did extensive research on existing software and signed up for free trials where possible to explore available features, and user-friendliness, and test the limitations of each individual personalized video marketing solution out there. After all, it was my due diligence given the fact I was entering a fairly competitive market.
To help you make the right choice here’s my honest and objective review of five completely different personalized video software: Pirsonal, Shotstack, Motionlab, SundaySky, Hippo Video and Plainly.
The criteria for evaluating personalized video software
In the table beneath, you can see which criteria I took in mind while coming up with the list of potential personalized video marketing software you should consider.
Option #1: Pirsonal as a personalized video software
Pirsonal is a cloud-based personalized video software. It allows you to render and mix videos, images, audio, and text in order to create unique campaigns for your customers.
What I like: Creating templates is rather simple and the choice of available templates you can use (if you don’t want to start from scratch) is solid. However, some features do require technical knowledge in order to make the most of them. I’m mentioning this just so you don’t assume it’s sort of like a “plug-and-play” personalized video software. I mean, it is, but only to a certain extent.
Credits: Pirsonal Youtube Channel
What could be improved: The client delivery system could be improved. Pirsonal offers Zapier integration which solves for around 2000 apps on the market. But just like their own customer support team said, they are working on making it easier for any organization to integrate with Pirsonal system seamlessly.
Pricing: Pirsonal offers four different pricing plans that cover more than just a personalized video editing software. Pricing starts at $199 per month.
Value for money: In my opinion, Pirsonal is more like a one-stop shop for creating personalized video experiences (e.g. they offer analytics and landing page creation), which might be too much. Or to be more precise, it might not be something that a marketer, who’s only getting started with including personalized videos in the marketing mix, really needs. A bit pricey for a starter’s plan.
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Who’s it for: If you need a more robust personalized video marketing solution, you have a team that plans on creating personalized videos on a regular basis, and you have a solid budget, then Pirsonal is a fine option.
Overall score: 4/5
Option #2: Shotstack as a personalized video software
Shotstack is a good option for more tech-savvy teams that want full control over their personalized videos. It is essentially a cloud-based video editing API. By relying on Shotstack’s SDK, you control the tech stack you want to use. For developers, the entire process is quite intuitive: you create applications, post the edit to Shotstack Cloud API which then renders the video, and then you download the video in your preferred format - HD, SD, mp4, or gif.
What I like: From a user perspective, I liked how simple it was to get started. You don’t need to make any payment upfront or leave your credit card number. A free trial is truly free, and the videos that you render come with a Shotstack watermark. This gets removed if you decide to subscribe. Documentation is really comprehensive and the API works great. Overall, it’s a personalized video software that offers a good experience for new users.
What could be improved: From my experience with it, it seems like their app is pretty limited when it comes to templates. I didn’t find a way to build any complex templates. The only thing I was able to create were pretty simple, slide-show-like templates. To build a template, you have to write a JSON file and put the elements on a timeline that way. I liked Pirsonal’s template builder more, but again, Shotstack is more oriented toward developers who might actually prefer JSON over a visual creator.
In addition to developers, Shotstack targets startups and creative agencies as their customer segments. There is definitely value in not being forced to break the bank with upfront investments in infrastructure and development, not to mention engineering and maintenance overheads get eliminated. Still, I’d say the learning curve is not that mild.
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Pricing: Shotstack offers four different pricing plans that differ depending on the number of minutes available and a number of images used within the video. Storage and bandwidth also vary. Still, the starting plan is quite affordable: only 49$ per month.
Value for money: Pricing makes Shotstack quite competitive on the market. The obvious shortcoming lies in the fact it requires technical knowledge to make the most of it.
Who’s it for: In my opinion, Shotstack is a great option for marketing teams that do have technical support or developers that want to build automated video workflows.
Overall score: 3.5/5
Option #3: Motionlab as a personalized video software
Motionlab is a personalized video marketing platform based in the cloud. It allows video creators, data managers, and campaign analysts to work from a single workspace, deploy different language variations to their videos, and test video quality in a secure sandbox.
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What I like: Their reporting is really good. It seems like they tried making that part of their software stand out. It truly is a collaborative platform with easy-to-understand analytics. Also i’m a sucker for great design paired with great functionality, and I got to hand it to the Motionlab team, the interface is really neat.
Credits: MotionLab Youtube
What could be improved: Their pricing model, and their setup I’d say. It seems a bit weird to me to charge per video instead of video length, storage, or retention time. Also the setup is not self serve and requires multiple touchpoints.
Pricing: Motionlab is not really transparent about its pricing. They only mention they have “flexible pricing plans” in their FAQ section, so you’d need to contact their sales to get more information. Software review websites such as Sourceforge and GetApp state that Motionlab charges €0.19 per video.
Value for money: Unfortunately, I can’t really provide a detailed answer here because pricing is custom-made for each separate client.
Who’s it for: Motionlab is a personalized video software that’s more suited for enterprise-level companies and bigger organizations. Industries they focus on include e-commerce, utilities, and finance. Think brands and agencies as opposed to individual creatives.
Overall score: 4/5
Option #4: SundaySky as a personalized video software
SundaySky, alongside Idomoo, is one of the oldest personalized video tools on tools on the market. They started doing purely personalized videos for customer experience, but recently they also started offering easy template-based video creation. They’re trying to compete with tools like Biteable or potentially even Canva in the future.
What I like: I appreciate SundaySky as one of the OG’s in the personalized video. Over many years they built a really feature-rich platform.
Credits: SundaySky Youtube
What could be improved: Although they started doing only personalized videos for enterprises, they are now venturing into other areas of video. Having a lack of focus leads to a clunky platform that has a bit of everything but may miss key features. Also, SundaySky is for enterprises – that means long sales processes, a lot of hoops to go through, and not an easy setup process.
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Pricing: N/A (custom pricing for every client)
Value for money: If you’re a large enterprise, value for money is good – if it wasn’t SundaySky wouldn’t exist for so long. If you’re anything except that you can probably expect to pay a premium because of minimum commitments and large yearly contracts.
Who’s it for: Large enterprises that want to do giant personalized video marketing campaigns.
Overall score: 4/5
Option #5: Hippo Video as a personalized video software
Hippo Video enables you to automate sending personalized video emails. As a video personalization platform, it allows you to personalize elements such as text, images, audio, graphs, and animation effects. They are focusing on automated creation of sales videos, so expect to record videos with your webcam and add personalized details like name...etc.
What I like: I like the fact it’s rather intuitive, it has a lot of useful features and free templates you can use. There are also many integration options.
What could be improved: HippoVideo tries to do a lot of things, it can get really confusing for a first-timer due to the lack of focus. The whole template creation process & setup is a bit clunky.
Pricing: Plans go from $15 to $99 per month per user, depending on the features your team needs.
Value for money: I would say that value for money isn’t that good considering the shortcoming and user complaints. You should get access to a seamless personalized video platform for that kind of money.
Who’s it for: It’s quite pricey, so I’d say it’s a solid personalized video platform for sales, marketing, and support teams that are part of a larger organization.
Overall score: 3/5
Option #6: Plainly as a personalized video software
Plainly is proof that you can have your cake and eat it. I noticed that there was an obvious gap in the market. There wasn’t a tool that allows you to easily create templates in a design industry standard tool like After Effects, which has a user-friendly Web App for setup & rendering, and also a powerful API for more advanced users.
What I like: Plainly favors simplicity and functionality over flashy features. I wanted to ensure you’d be able to get the job done well without minimum hassle.
- For developers, this means effectively working with API and setting everything up in just three steps (template creation, Plainly setup, integration setup).
- For no-code lovers, it’s giving the ability to create automated workflows with tools such as Zapier and Integromat (yes, you can connect Plainly to your favorite app, or create videos from spreadsheets (also Airtable) and leverage bulk video creation).
What could be improved: I will admit that we’re lacking on the reporting side. We’re building a video player that would enable analytics such as views, user interactions…etc..
Pricing: Three simple monthly subscriptions that vary depending on video minutes, storage, and video retention. Plans start at $59.
Value for money: Combined with responsive support and high-quality tutorials and examples you can use for learning and inspiration, it’s a pretty good deal.
Who’s it for: Great value for both developers, and no-code lovers.
Overall score: 5/5
How to choose a personalized video marketing solution
This article deliberately looks into six different personalized video marketing solutions so that you can get a good feel of your options.
Here are some of the things you should consider:
- The budget you have available
- The technical capabilities of your team
- How often you will use the personalized video marketing solution
- What product documentation is available
- How are templates created
- How functional is the API
- How often do product updates and releases happen
- What level of support do you get
- What is the quality of learning resources the company provides
Additionally, think about where you’re willing to compromise to save a few bucks. Then categorize features by using the following framework:
Summary of my top 6 personalized video software picks
Pirsonal is more of a drag and drop solution, but it offers so much more than just a way to create personalized videos. It’s a solid option for those who are less tech-savvy, but it also implies your team wants an advanced way to measure video performance and create more holistic personalized campaigns across several channels.
Shotstack is purely technical. Their capabilities are quite solid but their template creation is not that simple.
Motionlab is a personalized video software that’s more suited for enterprise-level companies and bigger organizations.
SundaySky is great if you’re an enterprise that wants to do cloud-based drag-and-drop video creation and not only personalized video marketing campaigns.
Last but not least, Plainly is a personalized video software that gives you the ability to create amazing templates using After Effects, have a user-friendly Web App that allows you to customize your project, and a powerful API for creating complex integrations (or just connecting Plainly with your favorite app using Zapier/Integromat. It is the future of automated video production, which is talking personally to 1000s of customers individually.
I like saying that Plainly is similar to having a team of video-making robots working for you. They cost less than a full-time video editor, they create videos 24/7, and they never rest. But don’t take my word for it: book a demo today to see it in action
Frequently asked questions about personalized video software
How much does personalized video software cost?
Depending on the vendor, personalized video software can cost anywhere from $59 to $599 per month. Some software companies have the “pay-as-you-go” pricing model where you pay for each individually rendered video.
What influences the cost of personalized video software?
The cost of personalized video software can be determined by many factors: complexity of the video, duration and/or resolution of your video, and the complexity of your workflow. Plainly takes into account the total minutes of your video, the amount of storage you need, and video retention time.
What are some of the common use cases for personalized video software?
Personalized video software can be effectively used in sales and customer acquisition, onboarding processes, email marketing, customer support, social media campaigns, and more. Customized videos that are tailored for each individual result in better conversion rates, stronger customer relationships, increased brand awareness, and improved retention.