How To Auto-Generate Videos Using Google Sheets And Zapier

13 May 2023 | 6 min read
Laura van Sinderen

Learn how to use Zapier to automate videos from Google Sheets data to create video content for social media, personalization, advertising, and more.

No matter what kind of information is kept in your Google Sheets, whether it's products, leads, tips, quotes, or anything else, you can easily automate the creation of videos using a simple Zapier workflow.

This tutorial will teach you how to use Zapier to transform text and video clips from Google Sheets into short-form video content. To automatically generate these videos, we'll be using Creatomate, which is a video editing API. Once the videos are generated, the rows in Google Sheets will be updated with a link to the videos. Alternatively, you can also share the videos on social media, send them via email, or process them with any other app provided by Zapier.

We will create videos similar to the one below. However, don't forget to browse the gallery for ready-made templates for social media, advertising, quotes, real estate, prospecting, eCommerce, and more. And also try out the editor if you wish to create your own video designs.

If you prefer to convert your entire Google Sheets document into videos all at once, you can do so as well. Check out this tutorial.

Prerequisites

Here are the tools we'll use:

  • Creatomate: to create a template and generate videos. Sign up for free.
  • Zapier: to set up the automated workflow.
  • Google Sheets: to provide data and store the videos.

How to create videos with Zapier and Google Sheets

The first thing we'll do is make a video template in Creatomate. This design will serve as the foundation for our videos. We'll then set up an automated workflow with Zapier. Our Zap will trigger when new spreadsheet rows are added to Google Sheets. Creatomate will then automatically generate videos using this data. Finally, a link to the video will be added back to Google Sheets. Here's what our Zap will look like:

Tip: You don't have to put the video's link back in Google Sheets. Instead, you can process the videos with any other app. For example, you can post them on social media, as shown in this tutorial.

All right, let's get started!

1. Create a video template in Creatomate

Log in to your account and go to the Templates page. Click the + New button to browse the template gallery. You can choose one of these ready-made templates, but you can also design your own from scratch. For this tutorial, let's use with the Quick Promo template from the Featured category. Select a size, like 1:1 Square, and click Create Template to open it in the editor:

Now, let's take a look at the left-hand panel. Here we can find the elements that make up our template. It's important to know that elements can be marked as dynamic. In our template, Text-1, Text-2, and Video are dynamic. This allows us to replace its content with our Google Sheets data via Zapier, enabling us to automatically generate new and unique videos:

To keep things simple, I'm using the template as it is, but you can customize it however you want. Now, let's proceed with setting up our Zap.

2. Add trigger: New Spreadsheet Row in Google Sheets

Below is the structure of the Google Sheets spreadsheet that we will be using. Each column is named after a dynamic element in the template, so we can easily replace its content. Additionally, I added a VideoURL column to add a link to the video when it's ready.

Log in to your Zapier account and click + Create Zap from your dashboard. Search for the Google Sheets app and select the New Spreadsheet Row event. Continue by selecting your account or signing in first.

On the Trigger page, select your spreadsheet and worksheet. Then, click Continue:

On the Trigger page, click Test trigger to make sure Zapier can find a row in your Google Spreadsheet. When the test is successful, click Continue and move on to the next step.

3. Add action: Create Single Render in Creatomate

Search for the Creatomate app and select the Create Single Render event. Continue by selecting your account or signing in with your project's API key first. Then, click Continue.

On the Action page, select the Quick Promo template in the Template field first:

Then, the template's dynamic elements appear under Modifications. Now we can map the data from Google Sheets to the template as follows:

  • Set Video to Google Sheets -> Video
  • Set Text-1 to Google Sheets -> Text-1
  • Set Text-2 to Google Sheets -> Text-2

When done, click Continue:

Click Test action on the Test page to make sure Creatomate can generate a video from the provided data. We can check it by visiting the URL. However, the video takes some time to render, so simply reload the page when you get a Not Found message. This will only happen during testing, because once the Zap is live, the workflow will wait until the video finishes before moving onto the next step. If this test is successful, proceed to the next step:

4. Add action: Update Spreadsheet Row in Google Sheets

Click + to add the Google Sheets app and select the Update Spreadsheet Row event. Continue by selecting the same account as before.

On the Action page, first select the same drive, spreadsheet, and worksheet as we did with the trigger:

Then, select Google Sheets -> Row ID from the Custom tab in the Row field:

Now, select Creatomate -> Url in the VideoURL field. When done, click Continue:

Finally, click Test action on the Test page to make sure Zapier can update the row with the video URL. My Google Sheets document shows that the video URL has been successfully uploaded:

When the test is successful and you're happy with your workflow, click Publish Zap to activate it.

Wrapping up

That's it! You now know how to automatically generate videos using Google Sheets and Zapier. However, this workflow is only the simplest approach. You have the option to customize it by selecting apps and templates that best fit your needs. For instance, you could also post the videos on social media, as described in this tutorial.

And if you want to take it to the next level, you can incorporate AI technology. We've put together two tutorials that utilize OpenAI's ChatGPT to produce storytelling and quiz videos for sharing on social media:

šŸ‘‰ Use ChatGPT to Auto-Create Storytelling Videos For Social Media using Zapier
šŸ‘‰ How to Turn Text Into Quiz Videos using AI and Zapier

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