Personalized videos. You have to see them to truly understand the magic of seeing your name appear realistically on coffee cups, in newspaper headlines—maybe even in skywriting!

Before the magic happens; however, there’s a lot of careful planning that goes into putting together a great personalized video. If you’re interested in creating your own personalized video (or even just curious about the process), here are some key principles to keep in mind to ensure that your hard work garners you the results you’re hoping for.

1. Begin with the end in mind

If you’re planning a personalized video campaign, it’s important to set clear and measurable goals for your project. Yes, personalized video is cool, but you don’t want your viewers to just be impressed by the shiny tech. You want to drive action.

Think about the kind of customer activity you want to encourage: do you want your viewers to check out a content asset? Download a resource? Register for an event? Something else entirely? Your storyline (and yes, your personalization effects) should all be targeted to achieve the goal that you’ve set out.

This following teaser video for Marketo Summit is a great example of how personalization can be used to create video that is not only creative, but also strategic—in this case, driving viewers to register for the event.

2. Choose the mood of your personalized videos wisely

Perhaps given the “magical realism” of personalized video, it can be tempting to go for a comedic angle. And while there’s nothing wrong with that—we’ve created our own fair share of fun and lighthearted personalized videos—sometimes what gets laughs is not necessarily what’s most effective for your objective.

Some of the most compelling personalized videos we’ve come across actually use a slightly more serious tone and emotional appeals to get the viewers’ attention. Again, it all comes back to your goals: what kind of action do you want to drive? How can you make best use of your video storytelling to achieve this result?

Check out the heartstring-tugging video from the YMCA below which does a great job of showing donors the impact of their contributions and encouraging them to continue donating.

3. Have fun with your personalized videos!

We know it sounds cheesy, but having fun with this medium and playing with the possibilities is so important to the process of creating personalized videos that people actually want to watch.

Want someone’s name to appear on a beach ball? On an etch-a-sketch? On a chalkboard? If you can believe it—and find a suitable font—you can achieve it!

As a final example, we want to share a recent personalized video favourite: our personalized Chalk Talk. (That’s right, we personalized a video from our popular education series on the very subject of personalized video. Talk about meta!). Give it a watch to find out more about different kinds of personalized videos and what might work best for your next campaign.

We hope this post has been helpful for planning your next personalized video campaign. Do you have any personalized video success stories? Share them in the comments below!

Carina Rampelt