Shotstack will be a company to look out for with explosive growth in the near future. Very exciting what they are doing in the video space with automation. Having personally integrated and experienced their brand and service, I’m a big fan of Shotstack.
They haven’t received funding as of yet so there’s not a huge amount of publicity online, but the business is doing quite well bootstrapping and on target to hit some big goals.
Shotstack enables anyone to massively scale their video production capabilities using automation. It’s a video editing API and high availability rendering platform that can edit 1000’s of videos concurrently.
Their vision is to build a platform that enables the creation of new kinds of video based applications never thought possible before.
Founded by Jeff Shillitto in April 2019, he left his full time job and was accepted into a business accelerator program in Brisbane. Commuting back and forth between Sydney and Brisbane, he was committed and soon landed his first large client.
Derk Zomer joined the company in 2021 as Jeff was looking for a co-founder to handle business operations and take things to a new level. Together they have adopted a new pricing model, hired a few extra programmers and are on track to hit $40k – $50k MRR by the end of 2022.
Shotstack currently has an entry $49 plan which includes 200 credits and subsequently 200 minutes of video output. They also have a free plan which I found incredibly helpful to get started with their API and build something useful before investing further $$. Their higher tiered plans are great for enterprise users and this is where they seem to be obtaining the majority of their revenue to date.
It seems the best use cases for their service is mass scale data oriented videos for industries such as real estate, or automotive, but the potential opportunities are endless.
The limitation of their service right now is the technical coding requirements to get started. They are working on GUI options to enable easier creation of templates but the service is ideally aimed at coding level integration.
If you are technical like myself, I found their API quite easy to learn and integrate with.
There’s definitely opportunity here for a middle-man type vendor who can provide a tailored solution for specific verticals. I.e integration with specific CRM’s or databases to output specific custom made templates.
Having personally integrated with Shotstack using the Laravel framework on PHP, I found their API quite straightforward. Not professionally a programmer myself but I do like to play around and build my own custom web applications.
The videos I created were new candidate profiles who I have spoken to that are looking for a new job. The idea is to post these candidate details on LinkedIn and other social sites to attract hiring managers. The benefit of video is that it attracts more attention than just a text or graphic post.
What I did was implement an API connection with my CRM so that when certain candidate fields are updated it would automatically grab that user information, and send a CURL request to Shotstack. Once the video was rendered, it would send a notification back to my Laravel application which would then update my CRM with the video url.
I use Zapier to automatically post that video and associated information to various social sites and my CMS.
You can either use a web hook request with Zapier or you can simply use the RSS zap. It’s easy enough to create a RSS feed from Laravel with all the candidate details and video urls. When Zapier requests that url it outputs a feed of new candidates, but also runs other functions to find updated candidates and send new requests to Shotstack. This meant I didn’t need to set up a CRON job or server automation which is a nice little trick.
The main benefit being it just works on autopilot when I update a field in my CRM. This is where I can see a middle man opportunity to work with companies in specific verticals that utilise unique CRM’s.
It was very interesting to talk with Jeff and get his viewpoint on bootstrapping and his challenges and triumphs along the way. I’m not a Startup Investor (yet) but I dare say they are prime for investment funding to scale up their team and service offering.
Looking forward to seeing how this company evolves in the coming years.