William M. Ballance
Creator | Founder | Believer
Founder & CEO of Sorter AI
I believe in a world where data facilitates deeper, effortless, and seamless personal relations.
A world made more subconsciously beautiful by understanding your unique mind.
A world where failure is not a setback, but a launchpad to a larger opportunity.
I believe if you think bigger, move faster, and do more then you will be granted the ability to do good for the world and thus well for yourself.
If you persevere.
I am a marketer, startup founder, and explorer. I am driven by innovation, seeing what does not exist, and creating it.
Some ideas work, some do not. Try, fail, try again. Keep creating.
I am on a lifelong journey to meld the art of storytelling with the science of data to create more meaningful connections and a more beautiful human experience.
Do Well &
This is the foundation of my belief system and the core of why I pursue entrepreneurship.
I believe that if people stay in pursuit of doing good, and they do not give up, they will do well for themselves.
This became the core of my foundation in 2015 after helping save a women’s college in Virginia, Sweet Briar College.
All I wanted to do was help, but what happened was a butterfly effect. Doing good lead to me leaving my job, starting a company, identifying a more important problem, meeting an outstanding co-founder, pivoting my company, and being sent down a path to change the way the internet is experienced.
But it all started with wanting to do good. To connect people. To use my marketing experience to solve a problem.
I am a connector and creator by nature, and this is my story:
My alma mater, Virginia’s Hampden-Sydney College, is the 10th oldest college in the country and has been on a mission to “form good men and good citizens” since 1775.
Grounded in the Revolutionary War, Hampden-Sydney fosters a uniquely revolutionary and proactive mindset in its students.
I studied Government with a keen interest in Austrian Economics, free market capitalism, and entrepreneurship as a way to develop economies and governments.
I wrote my senior thesis on using Microfinance as an Instrument of Economic Development and wrote a theory on structuring self-selected governance based on the principles of Homeowners Associations.
This is where my earliest entrepreneurial ventures began.
Following college I had a pivotal choice: work at a public policy think tank in D.C. or pursue the tumultuous startup world.
I chose to work at an e-commerce e-mail marketing startup in Atlanta with $30k in total sales. As the second hire, I spearheaded efforts to grow the business to $2.5MM in 2 years.
I led the market launches of Candle, the first digital subscription spa platform, in Atlanta, New York, and San Francisco. I also managed the partnerships with Stylecaster, Lululemon, Graze, HowAboutWe, and other national brands.
This opened my eyes to how big brands used data to optimize their marketing. I was offered an opportunity to be very early at a data-driven e-commerce marketing automation platform, Springbot, still in the ATDC Georgia Tech incubator.
While there I was able to consult with thousands of online stores, including Kim Kardashian and Venus Williams, to help leverage their data and build more efficient and more effective online strategies using the power of personalization and automation.
"Let us not weary in doing good, for at the right time you will reap the harvest if you do not give up."
A pillar of my startup journey has been a guiding North Star and belief that if you aim to do good, and you do not give up, you will reap the harvest.
This quote has been the cornerstone of my belief system in the highs and the lows. It came to me on the eve of the announcement that Sweet Briar College was closing, and it set off my path into entrepreneurship.
At Sorter we strive to think bigger, move faster, and do more so that we may have the opportunity to do good for others and do well for ourselves.
In 2015 Sweet Briar College (SBC), a historic women’s college in Virginia, was closing. Having attended the all-men’s counterpart, Hampden-Sydney College (HSC), I wanted to help.
I knew my background in marketing could make a difference.
I launched the HSC for SBC campaign and Shop for Sweet Briar shopping event to raise awareness and funding. These campaigns received national press coverage and mobilized our base.
Sweet Briar was ultimately saved and I saw a need to help alumni connect and fundraise easier.
I created Alum, a mobile app for alumni chat and giving, used by alumni from over 300 colleges.
I began to understand how different selling to school administrators was compared to e-commerce entrepreneurs.
I sought to optimize my own marketing — solve my own need — and envisioned a personality marketing tool.
I aim to more deeply understand how people connect, communicate, and collaborate.
I envision a world uniquely tailored to you. Where data will enable you to live a more personalized and comfortable life.
At Sorter, we are building toward a more subconsciously beautiful internet.
We predict personality traits and suggest marketing and interface adjustments based on the psychology of the recipient.
We are democratizing neuromarketing to make it accessible to marketers of any sophistication level.
We are obsessed with using data science and machine learning to enable marketers and builders to create more uniquely individualized, personalized and psychologically optimized experiences.
Our mission is to fundamentally alter the way people and brands say hello, and to build a more subconsciously beautiful internet.
I'm William Ballance
and I envision a more subconsciously beautiful internet.
An internet driven by data to optimize, predict, and facilitate a closer connection to the people and the world around you.
Online and off.