For advertisers looking to grow online, creative automation isn’t optional - it’s the only way to launch on-brand creatives at lightning speed.
A quick search will reveal several platforms that can help you produce thousands of creatives at a fraction of the cost and time.
But here’s the thing: each of these tools has been designed with a specific audience in mind and has different strengths.
Running successful campaigns really comes down to choosing a creative automation tool that works for you.
So we’re looking at the top 6 creative automation tools in 2022, their pros and cons, and a few unbiased reviews from users so you can make an informed decision.
#1 Hunch: all-in-one platform
Hunch is an automated creative production tool that lets you create 1000s of personalized, tailored creatives by leveraging your feed data and second and third-party sources.
You can choose from different ready-to-use image and video templates to design aesthetic ads without needing to overextend your design team.
The platform also allows you to employ dynamic creative optimization so your ad elements can be combined to create the perfect combination that resonates with the target audience.
Unlike most creative automation tools, Hunch gives you the opportunity to run campaigns right on the platform. While this isn’t an essential feature of creative automation tools, you are producing creatives for campaigns. So, it’s useful to have both creative automation and campaign management rolled into one platform.
You can also customize and set optimization goals for the campaign using advanced rules and triggers. The personalized customer journey Hunch helps you create the right offer to the right person at the right time.
Best For: Performance marketers working for independent agencies or brands.
Pricing: Hunch offers two plans: monthly and yearly. Plans refer to the commitment to Hunch, not the ad spend. With Hunch you only pay for what you get, and in the trial period, we're bringing 3 dynamic image templates and 2 dynamic video templates to give you something to start with. Easily calculate your fee here.
- Automated Creative Production
- Automated Campaign Creation
- Dynamic Video Templates
- Dynamic Image Templates
- Dynamic Video Campaigns
- Multiple Ad Platforms Integration
- Creative Testing
- Automated Workflow
- 1M+ feed catalogs
- 3rd-party Data Integrations
- Review Tool
- Creative Export
- Product Insights
- Reporting Capabilities
A user on G2 shares:
“Creating customised ads at scale and publishing them to Facebook works like a breeze. During an important season, we delivered over 700 ads to over 110 ad sets on Facebook in an instant. We were able to customise creatives and copies by including dynamic values such as local slang, area name and target audiences. I also like that we can run ads directly from a Google Sheet and Google Drive (so we don't have to go into Ads Manager to create ads which is a tedious process). Hunch's customer support is top-notch. They have given us the support needed to bring our ideas into reality."
Users on G2 have noted a few cons:
"Creating new campaigns can be overwhelming if you don't create them regularly (at least I tend to forget all the nitty gritty settings that need to be set for the campaign to work out properly). However, with Hunch's awesome customer support this hasn't been an issue as they have helped us set up new campaigns everytime it has been needed."
#2 Celtra: creative production suite
Designed for creative teams and marketers building a production suite, Celtra helps you go from design concepts to media-ready assets seamlessly. Celtra’s studio features tools that are similar or mimic ones that most designers are already familiar with.
The builder supports multiple formats and offers responsive design thinking if you wish to resize assets. If you want to create videos but don’t have any source footage, you can use static assets in the tool to create them.
The preview function lets you scan a QR Code so you can review the assets on your smartphone.
While an earlier version of the platform used to include creative ad serving and decisioning, these features have been deprecated. The platform’s focus is solely on the production of creative assets.
Best For: Established brands and media publishers creative agencies that want self-serve enterprise software.
Pricing: Available on request.
- Advertising Management
- Collaboration Tools
- File Sharing
- Project Management
A reviewer on Capterra shares:
“Overall, Celtra is easy to use and reliable. It's an all-in-one platform for digital ad campaigns; design, build, traffic, analyze and report. The Ad Creator part of the platform is designed to help you build HTML5 digital media adverts and it does this with aplomb. As well as being easy to navigate and understand, it's a very powerful platform that allows you to create rich, dynamic and exciting media without needing code. It just works.”
Reviewers on Capterra have noted a few cons:
"In the last time I created creativity with transparent background, but I couldn't deliver it in apps but online on site. Celtra support said to me this problem was a publisher problem."
"There should be a sort of offline version for editing ads, even if your internet connection fails."
"As of now, it takes more time to list the campaigns in the dropdown. Showing a warning/alert when the CSV format is wrong for the locator component."
#3 Bannerflow: automate banner ads
Bannerflow is intended for designers and marketers and the platform’s focus on ad creation and versioning capabilities in its Production Studio product speaks to that. Many users prefer using Production Studio instead of Adobe.
If you’re looking for prefabricated templates that you can use, Bannerflow isn’t the right solution because it takes a different approach to building templates. Also, DCO capabilities are not built into the platform so you have to use Bannerflow with other adtech solutions.
However, Bannerflow is not just for creating ads. You can use it in owned environments such as onsite or in-app which isn’t a feature other creative automation platforms necessarily offer.
The platform designed to solve the problem of designing banners by hand is reliable, robust and very easy to use.
Currently, production capabilities include video, OTT/CTV formats but not decisioning. It only offers CTR-based optimization which is quite limited when compared to other platforms. Bannerflow can be expensive since features like feed customization and advanced retargeting incur extra fees.
Best For: Multi-national companies looking to enhance their display ads globally.
Pricing: Available on request.
- AB Testing
- Ad Inventory Management
- Ad Optimization
- Audience Targeting
- Banner Management
- Campaign Analytics
- Campaign Management
- Conversion Tracking
- Cross Channel Attribution
A happy user on G2 shares:
“We usually create multiple versions of all our creatives and with Bannerflow it's super easy to manage the different versions, keeping them up to date and adjusting the messaging when necessary.
I feel that Bannerflow mainly is a big timesaver for me and my team. Creating banners and keeping them up to date is no biggie and with campaign management, we distribute our campaigns to different DSPs. So to be able to do multiple steps of the whole process of setting up a campaign within Bannerflow makes my life so much easier.”
A user on Capterra noted:
“Not too intuitive. To find what to do one has to dig and actually click around. I didn't find a lot of trainning options.”
#4 RevJet: ad experience platform
RevJet describes itself as an ad experience platform for enterprises. So while it may be a great option for brands used to the SaaS pricing model, advertisers used to the CPM model may not be on board.
While other tools in the creative automation space (not necessarily on the list) suffer from a clunky UI, RevJet has focused on automatic self-optimizing performance tools and high-velocity semi-automated content production.
The platform offers solutions by strategy and channel (social, TV, display, native, video, mobile and even audio). RevJet helps you seamlessly navigate workflows and collaboration by automating almost all of it.
However, its video offering leaves a lot to be desired compared to leading creative automation tools.
Best For: Enterprises looking for a SaaS-based tool.
- Dynamic Audience & Creative
- Marketing intelligence
- Enterprise business process management
- Automatic Experimentation
- High-velocity creative production
- Forever memory and measurement
Pricing: Available on request.
Reviews: RevJet doesn’t have any reviews on reputed third-party sites. Check out their case studies on the site instead.
#5 SundaySky: video platform
SundaySky’s entire focus is to help you create personalized, interactive, video experiences. You can opt for the self-serve experience which doesn’t include media buying or use the video platform to create “video-powered experiences.”
A standout feature is its Shopify Advertising App. Once you connect your Shopify app, SundaySky automates selects your best-performing products and creates multiple videos tailored for each individual shopper, and distributes those ads on sites like CNN and MSNBC.
The platform has a robust set of features to help you create tailored, video content for a range of use-cases. However, you may find it performing below par in other channels like display and DOOH.
The tool is intuitive and extremely easy to use when it comes to launching new campaigns. You can integrate first, second and third-party sources and data from other apps to personalize creative assets for specific audience segments or for individual viewers.
You can measure viewer engagement and impact through analytics and AI insights to optimize your messaging.
An obvious criticism of the tool is its singular focus on video. However, that may appeal to performance marketers looking to up their game with video ads.
Best For: Performance marketers who want to create tailored video ads.
- Dynamic templates
- Creative themes
- Color and font configurations for your brand
- Advanced text-to-speech narration capabilities
- Music tracks
- Sound effects
- Partner integrations
- AI-powered reporting
Pricing: It is available on request.
A reviewer on G2 shares:
“I love how efficient the platform allows you to be when targeting a customer base. What used to take hours or days to complete can be done in minutes using SSky. The AI voice is also very natural sounding, maybe the best I've heard. Hiring voice talent can be costly, so this is a huge plus.
The best part of using SSky is how much time it saves. Additionally, we can get information to customers in a much more digestible way. People generally prefer to watch a short video over reading an email.”
A dissatisfied user on G2 noted:
“SundaySky is difficult to do business with. They are not flexible in how the contracts are structured. There are also changes made to their platform that sometimes require additional expenses that I would not expect from a SaaS solution.
Customers who have questions about their bills often times call into a call center to get their questions answered. The smart video solution deflects those calls and saves the company money by not having to have a person speak to the customer.”
#6 Adacado: DIY advertising
After nearly 10 years as an early-mover in the DCO space, Adacado changed its direction to take a DIY approach and is perfect for DIY-ers who want to launch dynamic ad campaigns or execute media buying - fast. You can be up and ready to go in about 5 minutes only using a credit card.
The platform has a 24x7 chatbot that offers help and sends usage data and feedback to the team. Tools like ad building, versioning and distribution make it a breeze to handle basic use-cases. It also has templates that are specific for verticals to get rid of guesswork. However, the platform is not a serious contender if you have more complex use-cases. Reporting is not as developed as you might want and it supports fewer channels.
In short, Adacado gives you all the support you need to launch simple campaigns but you may want to consider other platforms if your use-cases are tricky.
Best For: DIY-ers looking to execute simple use-cases.
- Pre-built ad templates
- Complete campaign control
- Schedule in advance
- Drag-and-drop design editor
- Daily billing & analytics
- Simplified audience targeting
- Real-time reporting
Pricing: Adacado offers a lot of features for free while the important ones require you to pay a fee.
Review: Adacado only has one old review on G2. Read their customer case studies for a complete overview.
An all-in-one platform may be better than a creative automation platform
Of course, the problem you’re looking to fix is your asset production. Creatives on auto-pilot mean you can spend more time thinking about strategic design decisions, running A/B tests, and getting a positive return on your ad spend.
But here’s the thing: Automating your creative production is only one part of the equation. Your campaign doesn’t end with creating the assets you need.
You still have to expend resources on launching campaigns, monitoring them and optimizing them manually for different ad networks, channels and markets.
Choosing a platform like Hunch that combines creative automation, testing and campaign launch into a single tool lets you run omnichannel campaigns—from a single platform. This saves you from switching contexts often, paying for different services, and frees up even more time so you can focus on running successful campaigns.
With flexible pricing options for brands and agencies, Hunch has helped launch over 120+ million automated ads. Chat with an expert today to talk through your needs!