Woops! Macarons and Gifting used marketing automation to accelerate sales and rebuild a franchise

Automation Success Story: How Woops! used marketing automation to accelerate growth



The Challenge

  • Needed to accelerate digital sales
  • Find a tool that allows them to manage new and existing customers
  • Wanted to create a more personalized customer journey for ecommerce clients

The Solution

  • Now use campaigns to create an online presence and nurture relationships with new and existing customers
  • Use ActiveCampaign CRM to store data and help better-informed decisions
  • Sales and marketing automation sustains this fast-growing business
  • Deliver a unique customer experience, increasing sales and building customer loyalty
"ActiveCampaign automations improve relationships and deliver the continued engagement we need"

The fast-growing macarons brand saw its growth plans rewritten by the pandemic. Easy-to-use marketing automations through ActiveCampaign have provided even...

New York City
Company Size
1-100 employees
ActiveCampaign Marketing + Sales

The fast-growing macarons brand saw its growth plans rewritten by the pandemic. Easy-to-use marketing automations through ActiveCampaign have provided even tastier options for driving revenue.

For Ben Woodruff and his fellow founders of Woops!, being an entrepreneur means being ready to respond to the unexpected. It’s been that way since they launched their high-quality macarons business with a pop-up store at a Bryant Park, New York Christmas market. Because their initial success felt accidental, they named the company after it. 

Woops! signed its first franchise agreement with a couple in Austin, Texas, and within a few years, it had grown to 50 locations across the country. Then the pandemic hit—and suddenly, everything changed. 

“We ran into a little thing called COVID-19, and we had to shut down along with the rest of the world,” says Woodruff. “80% of our businesses were in malls, and we didn’t even know if malls would be a thing anymore. So we allowed our franchisees to exit their franchise agreements, and about half of them did. That left us with many questions about just how we would keep this thing going and alive.” Woops! needed to find a new recipe for its revenue streams. Woodruff and his partners found one with ActiveCampaign.

The path to accelerated sales started with automation

As they pursued their franchise-led growth post-pandemic, Woodruff and company dove further into the world of digital marketing using ActiveCampaign marketing automations. “We were doing a little bit of eCommerce on our website and always had a corporate gifting business, but now we needed to accelerate our digital sales. We needed an engine to handle the marketing, power the momentum, and drive the traffic,” says Woodruff.

An advertising agency recommendation introduced Woops! to ActiveCampaign. Straight away, ActiveCampaign’s marketing automation tool felt different from the other sales and marketing tools that Woodruff had worked with previously. “Frankly, it’s one of the best sales management tools I’ve ever seen,” says Woodruff. “Salesforce and other specialist franchise platforms we’d used were very heavy with so many layers. I just wanted the ability to track my prospects from Step 1 to Step 4, which is the close. Salespeople are visual thinkers, and visually, we found ActiveCampaign so easy to use.”

The advantages marketing automation gave Woops! during their road to success

“There were many advantages to moving to the platform, and we’ve been super happy with the decision.” says Woodruff. Those advantages center on the more sophisticated use of marketing data that ActiveCampaign makes possible, which helped fill the gaps left by franchisees through increased corporate gifting and retail sales. “We couldn’t create data tags and marketing flows before, and now we’re able to do things like target a small group of people who are having a birthday tomorrow,” says Woodruff. “On the corporate gifting side, many purchases came from HR leaders reaching out to employees working at home. We were able to integrate the data that we had from other sources, and use it within ActiveCampaign to segment those audiences and deploy marketing campaigns.” Emails designed to generate demand were just the start of the experiences that Woops! could build on ActiveCampaign to grow. 

Innovative sales and marketing automations helped to build out the Woops! customer experience in the absence of in-person stores, opening up new lines of business and putting the company finances on an even keel. Behind the scenes, ActiveCampaign customer experience automations took care of key elements of the customer experience, routing gift orders to local franchise operations for pickup where available—or mailing items from a central location when it made sense. ActiveCampaign automations also acted as the voice of the Woops! brand, helping to bring its all-important personality to life. “ActiveCampaign automations improve relationships and deliver the continued engagement we need,” says Woodruff. “I know our customers are all getting a super nice email thanking them for their business. Even if a deal doesn’t happen, they’re still getting a nicely worded flow saying we’re sorry we’re not able to work with them this time, but we’re excited to help in the future.”  

Rebuilding their franchise model with ActiveCampaign Automations

Over the 2021 holiday season, Woodruff was able to re-open the Bryant Park pop-up store that started it all. But, future plans for Woops! aren’t just reverting back to old ways of doing things. “We want to keep pushing, growing our corporate sales, and generating leads to grow our eCommerce sales,” he says. “Franchising is going to be a key strategy for us as well—we’re going to launch a new franchise site and get back into that area. What’s really cool, though, is we can now use ActiveCampaign as the marketing engine for that, as well.”

Woops! Finds a New Recipe for Success with ActiveCampaign

The journey from a potential franchisee showing their interest to a new kiosk café opening is long and complex. It’s not just a question of closing a deal, but rather building a relationship. “It’s a long sales cycle that’s much like an interview process,” explains Woodruff. “We’re looking for someone with the capital to invest, but we also have to ask ourselves if they have the fortitude, the experience, and the willingness to learn what we need. We have a very experienced sales team bringing franchisees into our ecosystem, and ActiveCampaign will be valuable in keeping those people engaged. We can segment our data into buckets, adopt the right contact or remarketing strategy, and pick up conversations that get interrupted. ActiveCampaign has new sales engagement modules that are really helpful for us.”

Sometimes, the simple things make a big difference: like the ability to automatically send timely SMS to a potential franchisee rather than adding to the emails flooding their inbox. “The ability to do SMS is one of my favorite things about ActiveCampaign,” says Woodruff. “People are like me. If I’m out of the office for a day, I return to 250 emails that I will never read properly. But I never come back to 250 texts. I’ve always thought that being able to reach people on their cell phones is a must-have for a marketing platform.”

Woops! keys to success

With ActiveCampaign, Woops! continues to deliver a unique online customer experience for their customers, and through marketing automation, they continue to increase sales and build customer loyalty.
If you want to learn more about the platform that Woops! uses every day to create a personal experience for their customers and franchisees, try ActiveCampaign for free starting today.

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