In sales terms, your well-crafted first message to a woman is the cold call. When she visits your online dating profile, your best pictures are the soft sell. After your pics make the cut, your written profile is the closer.
That’s where a lot of guys lose the sale.
The problem is, many guys are uncomfortable trying to “sell” themselves – but think their online dating profile must do this.
I can always tell when a guy is “selling” himself, because his profile seems forced, arrogant, or vague. It’s usually similar to this:
“I have a lot to offer. I worked hard to get where I am today, and I have a good job. All that’s missing is that special someone. I’m fun-loving, easy to be around, and my friends and family mean the world to me. If you like what you hear, hit me up.”
It’s like he’s just saying what he thinks all girls want to hear.
But he’s not giving me, personally, anything to work with.
When I see his profile, I think: “OK…but what does “fun” mean to you? What motivated you to work so hard? What qualities in a friend do you value the most? What’s your typical “easy-going” Sunday afternoon like? What do we have in common?”
An online dating profile shouldn't sound like a used car salesman, talking up the “selling points,” but glossing over the crucial details.
Your online dating profile should be like an ad for a performance car, creating specific points of desire:
Your profile creates a feeling: excitement…comfort…safety. You’re unlike any other man, and you’re about to change her whole world.
Write your profile like that, and you’re Don Draper. You can have any woman you want.
Hell, take me.
Here’s how to close the sale and write a great online dating profile:
2. Don’t try to define yourself.
Defining who you are is hard to do – so don’t do it.
Guys who try to create the big picture always end up saying general, boring things, like, “I’m Mike. I’m not very good at writing about myself…but I’m a responsible, funny guy who likes to have a good time.”
I skip over those profiles because they all sound the same. They don’t show girls what a guy’s really like, and they don’t show me what we have in common.
To succeed at standing out, your profile should identify the reason why you’d say you’re “easy going.”
For example, maybe it means you can take a good ribbing. It could also mean that you’d rather chill on the couch with a beer and a movie instead of hitting the clubs on Saturday night. Always identify the things you do or feel that are why you're “responsible,” “fun-loving,” “active,” or “kind-hearted.”
3. Think small.
The most successful online dating profiles use lots of little details to create the big picture of the man. Look at that Porsche ad again: “Precision engineering…uniquely honed balance…distinctive sound.”
Break yourself down into smaller parts, and be specific about what they are.
What is your job? What weekend activity do you live for? What band are you going to see next month?
OKCupid breaks the basics down into manageable steps. Start by answering those questions like you’re talking to your best friend. Your real voice will show through. Girls will like that because you’ll seem relaxed and confident, and not trying too hard to impress.
(If you’re not on OKCupid, poach their list of essay questions as a springboard for your profile, anyway!)
4. Be specific.
The goal of your profile is to help girls find common ground with you, so they want to talk to you.
To do this, stay away from big concepts (“I like to have fun”) and focus on the specifics.
When you identify the big concept (“fun-loving”), ask yourself, Why/What/How?
How do you like to have fun? One man’s disc golf is another man’s Broadway show. Why is The Godfather your favorite movie of all time? What makes you love your job?
When your profile makes it easy for a girl to identify connections, she’ll be excited to talk to you and respond to your message. Be it your interest in black and white photography, your search for the best BBQ sauce on the planet, or an unapologetic love of Nickelback – whatever makes you you – your profile should share as much specific information as possible.
For prompts, check out this list of questions to answer in your profile.
Or simply make a list of everything you like in life. Mangoes, sinking a three-pointer, riding your motorcycle at sunset – anything. An eclectic list of what gets you psyched is always fun to read, and shares a ton of information about who you are and what you’re like. You’ll cover a lot of ground without being self-conscious about “writing.”