“New Year, New You” is an ongoing blog series focused on on getting your mind, body and spirit ready for dating in 2013. The series will feature posts by Dr. Helen Fisher, biological anthropologist and scientific advisor for Chemistry.com, Bela Gandhi, Dating Coach and President of Smart Dating Academy, and Amanda Ebner, M.A.; M.Ed.; and personal trainer for FitOrbit.com, an online personal training resource.
By Bela Gandhi, Dating Coach and President of Smart Dating Academy
As a dating coach/owner of Smart Dating Academy – I get asked this question daily: “Do people really read online profiles?” The answer is a definite “Yes!”
Believe it or not, a well-written, memorable online profile that can make someone smile is as important as great photos. Think of your profile as your personal advertisement in cyberspace – differentiating you from the millions of other men and women online. You need to be fun, positive, specific and interesting to capture someone’s interest. If you follow the tips below, you’ll be off to a GREAT start:
- Show, don’t tell
Tell unique, original stories about yourself to show off your best attributes. Don’t just say I’m kind, smart and loving” or use boring clichés like, “I’m just as comfortable in jeans as in a ball gown.” Instead, be specific. If you’re thoughtful, show how with a one to two sentence example. “I’m the one who will make you my Grandma’s secret Chicken Soup from scratch when you get the flu.”
- Display your warm, positive side
Most people are seeking positive, happy, balanced partners. Show these sides of you – again, with authentic and memorable examples. “I’m the cool uncle that takes my 3 nephews and nieces to Six Flags, for a day of roller coasters and winning stuffed animals.” Showing your warm side humanizes you – and makes the reader want to contact you!
- No negativity or baggage
Don’t talk about what you “don’t want”, your dog with cancer, divorces, or make statements like this, “If you’re just looking to hook up – please delete my profile” or “If you don’t at least have a Green Card, please don’t write to me.” Negativity is terrible online – and a BIG turn off.
- Be concise
Your profile isn’t the place to tell your life story (that will come later)! Be vivid with your examples – but keep them to one to two sentence stories. We recommend a profile that is no longer than 300-400 words total.
- Spell and Grammar Check, Please!
People will assess your intelligence based on how you write. We live in a texting, smart-phoning world, where it is very common to see language mistakes/abbreviations. If you want to attract someone smart and articulate, make double sure your profile is mistake-free (have a friend or two proof-read it!)
- Write an interesting and memorable username/headline
Usernames and headlines are valuable real estate in a profile, and so often thrown away! Think about your attributes, and come up with an interesting username that goes with your theme. For example, if you’re a great cook, and a nurse, you could be “ZagatRatedNurse!” And your headline could be, “Can perform instant triage in the kitchen.”
So, dip your quill in some ink, and get writing! Follow these tips, and you’ll be hearing from many great singles, and soon!