There’s likely one person in every subway car who can intro you to an investor, connect you to the perfect freelance gig or make a great new hire for your startup. But let’s face it: we excel at pretending our headphones are playing music and avoiding eye contact with strangers. So how do you meet the people that are going to help launch your project or further your career? Brooklynites are going wild for Shapr, an app that’s made networking as simple as a right swipe on your phone.
Shapr is a completely free app that introduces you to people in the city who share your professional interests. Whether your thing is activism, business, tech or the arts, Shapr will start a conversation with smart, interesting people who are equally enthusiastic about meeting you.
Here’s how it works: You can build your Shapr profile in one click using LinkedIn, which will pull in your job title, photo and a short bio. No sweat if you’d rather start from scratch–it’s easy to get started. From there, you’ll add up to 10 interests in the form of hashtags such as #filmmaking or #cryptocurrency. The app’s smart algorithm then uses these interests to help you match.
Each day, around 15 catered suggestions will pop up in your daily batch. Just swipe right on the people you hope to meet and you can message your match once both people say yes. It’s a bit like Tinder only the goal is professional connections instead of romantic ones.
Artisha Mann is an NYC film producer who was first introduced to Shapr by a friend working in a completely different field. After seeing how easy the app was to use, Artisha started swiping and within a week found a potential investor for her projects.
“Before I knew it, I got in touch with a venture capitalist I never thought I’d meet otherwise–and in a relaxed, casual way that didn’t feel too forced,” says Artisha. “Truly an invaluable connection that made a big difference for me.”
Artisha says she has continued to use the app regularly and finds that the Shapr’s biggest win is introducing other creatives for inspiring conversations.
“I’ve witnessed firsthand that you need to get out of your usual circles if you want to achieve more,” says Artisha. “There is tons of tangible advice and strategies to be learned from people who live outside your social comfort zone.”
So who will you meet? Whether your goal is to land a new job or just meet some new friends in the city this year, thousands of New Yorkers agree Shapr is the easiest way to do it.