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Lead Generation 3 Made US$1.4m over BFCM
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Making $1.4m over BFCM

Case Study Laptop Makedo

Meet the Business | The new toy everyone is talking about

Bringing joy into children’s lives, global retailer Makedo sells a collection of cardboard construction tool kits designed to inspire the next generation’s imagination and creativity.

Unique and sustainable, Makedo’s products aren’t just for kids to have fun; they promote collaboration, nurture well-being and focus, and develop fine and gross motor skills through open-ended play.

In short, Makedo exists to inspire kids to create, learn and laugh by building a wonderful world of upcycled creations with cardboard.

To achieve their mission – of planting a seed of critical thinking into the minds of tomorrow’s problem solvers – Paul Justin & Johann Louarn came to Megaphone in search of year-on-year revenue growth. Fast forward to today and they’ve not only done that in spades, but they’ve expanded their international reach (from the US to Australia) and solidified their position as a market leader and player to watch.

The Makedo journey

Despite being founded here in Melbourne, it was actually across hemispheres in the USA where Makedo first made waves.

Over its journey, Makedo evolved into an omnichannel business. While primarily selling its affordable yet high quality product on Amazon and DTC, the brand also built a strong distributor network in the education market, launching in thousands of schools and workshops. On top of that, they also ran in-person events like Maker Faire, helping spread the joy and creativity of their products face to face.

Makedo recognised that they had built serious momentum when they sold out of all their products — they couldn’t keep up with the exponential demand. So they went back to the drawing board to fully optimise their operations and build a new online store on Shopify 2.0 to set themselves up for years of success.

Post-overhaul, Makedo had a clear product market fit and a reliable supply chain enabling the business to grow. Makedo was ready to scale two years ago and started by focusing their efforts on organic social and influencers. 

Once the foundations for growth were well and truly set, they sought out a partner who could pour fuel on the fire – a partner who could promote widespread adoption and make a dent in the saturated kids’ toys market. Enter: Megaphone.

The Megaphone events have been great for networking and meeting the team!
The Megaphone events have been great for networking and meeting the team!

Choosing a partner that shared their vision

The main reason Makedo went shopping for an agency was the heavy workload; Johann and the internal team couldn’t effectively implement the strategy they had built – the best way for them to expand was to hire an agency that understood their vision and could execute their scaling plan with significant creative testing.

Having already seen success in the US market, Makedo needed a partner who could continue their growth in North America. However, since Makedo wanted to also expand beyond the US, they needed an agency that understood the ins and outs of the Australian market – a partner who knew what it took to stand out in the highly competitive industry. 

But that wasn’t the only requirement; they needed a partner who could also handle the influx of customers during peak gifting seasons AND who shared the values of creativity and innovation that Makedo stood for. After all, as a high-energy and youthful children-focused brand, Makedo’s biggest revenue drivers are gifting seasons; Black Friday, Christmas, and EOFY. 

So, after shopping around for the perfect growth partner who could scale their accounts AND truly cared for their vision, they chose Megaphone in August 2023. 

This was ultimately because of the in-depth, no-fluff strategy that Lauren and the team proposed. To quote Johann, “We also had a good feeling about the team and trusted that we could grow together.”

From that point, Megaphone helped Makedo sell over AU$2 million in 2 months, and the rest is history.

Coming to Megaphone with a lofty goal

Never settling for second best, Makedo aimed for significant year-on-year revenue growth and wanted to expand their community, with a focus on squeezing the absolute most out of the peak gifting seasons. 

With that in mind, Paul, Johann & the Megaphone team got together at the start of the partnership and set a lofty goal: achieve a record-breaking Q4 with a forecasted target of approximately $150k in November/December. This was alongside an ambitious (or so it seemed) 130% revenue growth target during the Black Friday period. 

Fair to say, the goal was absolutely blown out of the water.


The 5 Strategies for Serious Success:

It was important for the Megaphone team — led by Nat (Marketing Strategist); Adam (Data Expert), Lauren (Creative Expert), and Sam (Google Expert) — to make sure they fully understood Makedo’s goals, values & customers first by having in-depth discussions with Johann & Paul around.

Once the foundations were set and expectations were clear, the team tailored a strategy that involved creative marketing, consumer psychology, data-driven testing, holistic business strategy, and non-stop innovation. 

Weekly meetings between Nat (Megaphone) and Johann (Makedo) were spent diving deep into data and making sure the foundations were set for an aggressive growth strategy. 

These meetings are often where the magic happened — Megaphone’s expertise and out-of-the-box ideas would combine with Makedo’s drive amd creativity to result in strong marketing strategies across the board.

Plus, the team was well-equipped to make informed decisions backed by past performance and current trends by harnessing Megaphone’s 11 years of data and unique relationship base (Google, Meta and TikTok Premier Partnerships).

The 5-step strategy went as follows…

  1. Preparation: Attracting new leads with a competition lead generation campaign

Nat and the Megaphone team started with a strategic lead generation campaign to build a robust database of new potential customers

The strongest plan of attack? A competition.

The benefits of a competition — building an email database of interested window shoppers at a low cost  — were twofold.

One, it would help create brand awareness; two, the email database would become a useful asset in upcoming promotional periods. 

Already aware of the power of having a warm email list, Makedo was keen to test this out. So the whole team got together for a workshop session and crafted the right messaging (based on data from the competition itself).

The added bonus? The competition data allowed for better targeting and segmentation for future marketing efforts, leading to even higher conversion rates.

Many new leads were generated, and website traffic increased significantly. With Black Friday just around the corner, the next step was to strike the hot audience with an irresistible offer.

  1. Creating an offer that was too good to refuse

At first, the client had a few Black Friday offers in mind, however, they were slightly overcomplicated.

So the team went back to the drawing board to stress-test which offer would drive the most overall revenue. After looking at the previous Makedo account data, Nat’s team presented the ideal promotion structure. This discount deal would not only stop the scroll but also entice people to make a purchase.

The offer looked like this: one strong promotion based on a tiered system (15% to early VIPs, up to 20% over Black Friday and up to 20% over Cyber Monday).

Once the offer was locked in, the team strategically sent out an email announcement to the database and then hit them with another front-of-mind touchpoint with targeted Meta ads. 

Across the board, this rollout resulted in a fantastically low CPA of $0.79.

  1. Building a collection of eye-catching strategic creatives that drove sales

Creating the perfect offer was merely one part of the equation. Creatives that stopped the scroll were the other.

So, the Megaphone creative team developed a series of eye-catching creatives highlighting the product’s main benefits and the brand’s unique selling points. It was just as important to emphasise the sales offer with an unmissable overlay. The fuel on the fire here was Makedo’s already existing (and strong) creator network. With so much content to leverage, the team could test more diverse creatives, faster; which meant more sales and a better ROAS.

By using a mix of static and video creatives and incorporating user-generated content (UGC) for authenticity, Megaphone was able to connect with the target audience on a deeper level and drive much higher engagement and conversion rates.

  1. Targeting the right people at the right time (and expanding internationally) 

Before, during and after the Black Friday period, Nat and the team needed to make sure they were targeting the new leads acquired through the competition in the most cost-effective way possible.

The core of this part of the strategy was a retargeting ad set. These ads were tailored to nurture leads and drive conversions, ensuring that Makedo remained top-of-mind during the critical Black Friday/Cyber Monday period.

The US-based audience went crazy for the Cyber Monday sales, but it was the flawless expansion of targeting to the Australian market during this period that most delighted Paul, Johann and the team, tapping into new audiences and driving additional revenue.

The expansion from the US to Australia was so successful that Makedo ran out of southern hemisphere stock and had to go on pre-order!

  1. Extending the Black Friday sale to keep momentum strong

Once the sales started to pour in from the US and Australia, Megaphone wanted to make sure it wasn’t a flash in the pan. To keep the snowball effect in motion, we extended the Black Friday sale for an extra couple of days, keeping the excitement and buzz going.

This decision paid off as they saw a surge in sales on the extended days, with many customers taking advantage of the opportunity to grab deals before they were gone.

This also gave Makedo a chance to reach out to any potential customers who may have missed the initial sale period and encourage them to take advantage of the extended offer.

Results

Makedo’s 2023 Black Friday sales with Megaphone
Makedo’s 2023 Black Friday sales with Megaphone

At the beginning of our partnership, Makedo’s revenue was strong, but there was plenty of room for growth.

During the initial three-month collaboration with Megaphone, Makedo increased revenue by 668%, going from mid 5-figures to mid 6-figures (USD).

Then, across November and December, revenue soared to just under USD $1.4 million.

As for the Shopify store performance; Store sessions increased by 200% and online conversion rate rose by 10%.

Q4 2023 was a massive success – the brand hit its first million-dollar month, setting a new baseline moving forward.

How is the client feeling about it all? 

Simply put, Johann and Paul are stoked. They have repeatedly expressed immense appreciation and are eager to continue scaling and growing with Megaphone by their side. 

And the cherry on top? The increased brand awareness, particularly through Meta ads, significantly boosted Amazon sales as well.


“Obviously, we brought our understanding of our brand and business as well as our experience. Megaphone, on the other hand, understood our growth strategy and applied their specific expertise, which is what we needed. The team could launch and scale our Meta and Google accounts sanely and quickly (less than 2 months).

We’ve wanted to explore new creative avenues, but we couldn’t produce as fast as we would have hoped. Collaborating with Megaphone makes us accountable for providing the best content possible”
– Johann Louran, Head of Marketing at Makedo


Holistic Business Wins | Looking to 2025 and Beyond

When Megaphone helped Makedo achieve its highest sales volume to date, surpassing all of its lofty goals and targets, it started a chain reaction of positive growth.

Thanks to the success of Makedo’s Black Friday campaign, not only have they been able to encourage creativity and play in countless more young minds, but they’ve also been able to take their business operations to the next level.

Megaphone and Makedo’s two-way strategic marketing tactics, the thorough creative testing approach, and the data-first mindset allowed Makedo to successfully capitalise on the peak shopping seasons, surpassing all of the founders’ expectations and setting new benchmarks for 2024 and beyond. 

Plus, by implementing pre-orders and efficient supply chain management, Makedo has now laid the foundations for years of further market penetration.

As Makedo continues to innovate and expand its reach, the children’s toy industry is on high alert.


Working with Nat has been awesome. She’s very responsive and always quick to respond to our queries. Since we started collaborating, we’ve had weekly catch-ups. She’s very organised and makes things happen!

The best thing about working with Megaphone is that the team is filled with positive and good people. Second, we speak the same language, and our mindsets align. The last strategy meeting we did was great and we want to keep progressing and build our brand together!

Nat Makedo Spotlight