Founder Stories: Shane White On Building The Match Artist

In today’s Founder Story, we feature Shane White, Founder of The Match Artist!

Read on for lessons he has learned from launching and marketing his business.

1. Please introduce your business and share your role. 

Hello, I’m Shane, and I started The Match Artist. Through an intriguing style of photography and facial expression coaching, we craft men’s dating profiles so they have access to a more fulfilling dating life. 

In 2017, I was struggling to get matches online at the same time as my friend had a budding photography business. He coached me on my best looks and took a few photos. Overnight, I received more matches than ever before, and soon after met my now-wife.

At The Match Artist, I oversee the technical aspects of our company. This includes managing developers, SEO, and software used to manage our operations in cities around the US.

2. How did you prepare for, and go about your launch? 

Initially, we needed to test our idea that this style of photography would work for others. We found people in internet dating forums and began offering free shoots in exchange for testimonials. We started early with a strong SEO strategy and started building backlinks for our website. Today, this is still responsible for the majority of our business.

3. Since launching, what types of marketing campaigns and designs have worked best to attract and retain customers?

Nearly everything for us has We’ve tried a variety of different social media, and YouTube ads, but none have been very successful. However, SEO has been by far the most powerful lead driver. We continue to work with top experts in this field to drive even more traffic.

4. What have been the most influential brands for your business? Whose branding and marketing do you aspire to and why?

My favorite brands are those who took a boring business and turned it into something really unique. There are 100s of driving ranges throughout the country, but TopGolf was able to turn a boring driving range into something you do on a Friday night. 

Alamo Drafthouse is also a great example of this. A movie theater is typically rows of seats in front of a large screen where you watch the latest films and eat popcorn. With time, they reimagined how a theater experience could feel. They introduced a bar, seat-side waiters, and an extensive menu. They also found a way to fill the theaters by showing old movies.  They wrapped great branding around a basic movie theater, and now they have a very loyal customer base of moviegoers. 

5. What are your favorite marketing platforms/tools?

Ahrefs is by far my favorite marketing tool. SEO is our biggest channel of growth, so we use many different SEO tools. You can learn a lot about how to acquire links just by peeking at what others are doing. 

I also really enjoy With a lot of landing pages, it’s hard to keep track of different SEO positions. makes it super easy to monitor every landing page in real-time. If a page starts slipping in the rankings, they let me know right away, and I can take action.

Finally, we ditched Google Analytics, and now only use Plausible. Plausible is so much easier to use, and they have a great API, which allows us to build custom dashboards of our lead flow.

6. Looking ahead, what are you most excited about?

We are launching more long-form content, and really diving into providing deep value in our content. Recently we just wrote a 20,000-word article about How to Use Tinder.

We’re hoping to launch more long-form content like this in the near future and this is part of our broader SEO strategy to increase traffic.

Additionally, it’s been really fun growing our team of talented photographers. We’re trying to build a culture where it’s the most fun photography company to work for. 

7. Who or what inspires and motivates you?

Even though The Match Artist is a photography company, I really like SaaS. I’d say my first inspiration was listening to Startups for The Rest of Us. I started listening in 2011, and Rob (founder of Drip) taught me about starting a niche business in the software realm. Seeing all of these niche startups gave me a better idea of what was possible in terms of software, and gave me a better vision of what I could create for myself. 

8. What are some lessons you’ve learned along the way that you would share with entrepreneurs hoping to launch or who have just launched? 

Just launch. Don’t worry about planning a big launch party, and have high hopes for a successful product hunt. Launching is just the starting line and progress is made in 1,000s of little steps. The sooner you can get started, the better. Many people focus too much hype on the actual launch, and not enough about what comes afterward.

9. What do you believe are the qualities of a good entrepreneur? And what makes a team successful?

Someone who doesn’t give up. To be an entrepreneur, you’re going to fail a lot. This is okay, but it’s gotta be in your personality not to let the failure get to you. Success favors those who keep making progress even on the bad days. I would also encourage newer entrepreneurs to find an office somewhere, even if it’s a co-working space. This allows you to meet new people and learn from what they have already started. 

10. Let us know where we can go to learn more!