Because I don't have to do everything manually, I'm better able to serve more customers since the process is a lot quicker.
Veronica Lieberman, Founder, Make It Hapin
Knowing what you want isn't the same as achieving it.
While working for a fashion subscription box, Veronica Lieberman saw how generic that model was—because these boxes have a fixed inventory, there isn't much room for individual styles to break through. At the same time in her personal life, Veronica tried bringing outfits she found on sites like Instagram and Pinterest to life. Shopping with intention and creating an aesthetic from scratch was no small feat, but it clicked.
She created Make It Hapin to solve these problems, and in the process discovered a way of working that is as individual as the service her team provides for customers.
Her market: Everyone who knew what they liked when it came to fashion, but didn't know how (or have the time) to recreate it themselves. Make It Hapin is a personal shopping and styling service that helps people get their online inspiration into their closets, in their size, and within their budgets.
But like Make It Hapin's clients, when it came to building her business, Veronica wasn't sure how to bring her vision to life.
"I already knew I was going to use [email platform] Mailchimp and [shared communications app] Front," she explains. "But I wanted to get something that could get them to communicate with each other."
Enter app automation tool, Zapier. "When I found out that Front worked with Zapier, I realized that I wouldn't have to be chained to my phone constantly," Veronica explains. "I'd be able to use Zapier to establish a process that would allow me to have a life!"
About Make It Hapin
While style subscription services keep popping up, Veronica knew how she would set Make It Hapin apart from the very beginning. First, let clients submit outfit ideas, and second, don't limit the inventory. Combined, these two elements enable the Make It Hapin team to build outfits at all price points, for every kind of person.
Veronica and Make It Hapin created a platform that helps someone dress in their aesthetic of choice. You don't have to be a fashionista—all you need is to know what you like. Veronica knew she wanted a business that could be as flexible as an outfit, one that could evolve and change and grow. All she needed to do was figure out how to manage it in a way that fit her perfectly.
Make It Hapin's tools
Consolidated communication: inbox, SMS, etc.
Automate it all: Building a business from scratch
Veronica built Make It Hapin to exist entirely in the cloud. A client signs up on the website, submits a photo of an outfit and their payment, and are then assigned a personal shopper who makes the outfit a reality and communicates via SMS.
"There are a lot of moving parts involved with our personal shopping services in how we communicate with our clients and how we present our company to our email subscribers," Veronica explains.
At first, some of these processes were manually administered and managed, and they led to Veronica feeling like she had to be on-call and on alert for new client requests. On top of texting new clients, she was also working on her marketing funnel and trying to figure out how to get the apps she knew she wanted to use—like Front, Mailchimp, and Gravity Forms—to work with one another.
But Veronica describes herself as non-techy—and she knew that in order to get these apps talking to each other, she'd need some tech skills. She started with what she already had: tenacity and curiosity.
Her research led her to Zapier, which integrates with all the apps she planned on using—plus another 1500 or so. With Zapier, Veronica didn't need a crash course in a software language or to study at night and become an engineer; there was no barrier to entry, so she was able to take her idea and make it real.
"Zapier was very easy to learn and intuitive," she says. Connecting apps this way "always made so much sense to me."
Everything starts with a form. Embedded on the website are forms by Gravity Forms, a WordPress forms app. When a client fills one out, that sets a few different Zaps in motion.
First, Zapier sends the client's information from Gravity Forms to the communication app, Front, where the Make It Hapin team has crafted a welcome message that goes out immediately. This sort of quick contact helps Make It Hapin engage with a lead while they're hot.
This Zap powers most of the initial client contact. Whether it's a new account or a new subscriber to their email list, Zapier makes sure Front gets the information from Gravity Forms, so Make It Hapin can start the conversation with clients.
Send Messages with Front for all new responses in Gravity Forms
Veronica created another Zap connecting Gravity Forms to Mailchimp. Like the Zap with Front, this one is all about communication: Once a client fills out the form, Zapier adds them to a specific new user mail list—unless they're a returning client, in which case they'll be added to a different list. And it's all hands-off for the team: Zapier searches Mailchimp for that email address, and adds it to the correct list.
These aren't complicated Zaps, but they kick off a client experience that differentiates Make It Hapin from everyone else in this space.
"Being able to have platforms connect with each other in a unique way, it really helps me think about problem-solving in a different way or creating a more efficient workflow," Veronica explains. And with Zapier carrying the load, it frees Veronica to problem-solve and think through strategy—not how she'll respond to the next text.
Now that she's built and launched her business with a few Zaps, Veronica has a few words of advice for anyone thinking about starting their own company: "When you're looking for new platforms to work with, search Zapier first."
"I won’t consider working with a platform unless they integrate with Zapier," Veronica says. "I can’t entertain working with something that will be excluded from my current workflow."
Want to try to build your own business with a handful of Zaps? Give Zapier a try for free.
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All images courtesy of Make It Hapin.