A friend asked me briefly yesterday for my thoughts on a particular dating site; he stated that he thought it was less of a “cattle market” than the others he had seen. I agreed that it was but went on to add in my usual negative fashion that I reserve for this topic that said site had been a dead loss for me.
I make no bones about it; internet dating and I are not a match made in heaven. I suspect it’s in no small part due to the fact that I like quick results, so after half a dozen dismal attempts at finding the man who will emotionally complete me via my broadband connection I’ve “logged off” the whole idea. But my conversation with my friend did cause me to realise that my impatience is possibly due to my previous career in sales on the battlefield that is the city of London …
This was a job where strategies were not given an infinite amount of “time to work”. If there was no sign that you were making significant progress after deploying all your heavy artillery then you either a) completely re-thought your strategy or b) scrawled it off your prospect list and started hunting elsewhere.
I really was that girl. I was the one in the Armani suit stood on Waterloo concourse huffing and puffing because the train was ten minutes late. I was the girl sat in the American Bar at the Savoy sipping champagne with my girlfriends on a Wednesday evening just because we could.
I was also the girl that brought in £3.5 million worth of new business for my employer eighteen months before they decided to dispense with my services when I tried to return from maternity leave. So you see, it’s not always glitz and glamour … at least not once you’ve had a child.
The taste for all things designer and bubbly soon left me. Having a baby tends to do that to a woman. Priorities not only move, they get completely re-written. But the one thing I’ve never lost is the understanding that to get someones interest, be it in your product, your ideas or even you, you have to whet their appetite first.
To this end I would suggest anyone writing a profile for a dating website look at it in the same way as writing a sales proposal.
What you’re selling is you of course, but what you want to do is stir enough interest in your audience to motivate them to contact you. Don’t worry that you might be contacted by people you’re not interested in, of course you will, but you need options when it comes to internet dating and plenty of them.
The first thing anyone needs to decide is what type of match are you looking for. In the interests of keeping this post sensibly concise let’s suppose it’s someone like me; someone looking for a relationship but not to be engaged by Christmas and married in the spring. Here are a few pointers you might like to consider …
Photograph– Make sure you include one; not posting one looks suspicious (I’ve already talked about that). And make sure you’re smiling on it; in the main it’s only professionally-taken shots that don’t make unsmiling people look like convicts. Another vital point is make sure you’re properly dressed … a man naked from the waist up spells out P-L-A-Y-E-R only. You may be proud of your gym attendance record but keep it in your back pocket for now.
Written profile– Keep it relatively brief, two paragraphs only. Remember this exercise is only about getting people interested in you, they don’t need to know every last detail at this point. Mention any avid and passionate interests you have (that aren’t related to sex) and never, ever, ever mention your ex. Ever. Make sure your spelling and punctuation are correct … trust me, a thinking woman’s crumpet does not start off “well where i start im new to this my mates say i look great for my age i luv a good laff and im looking for that special laydee ….” You get the picture I’m sure.
Follow-up– When people contact you either initiate conversation with them or politely tell them “no thanks”. Don’t ever ignore them. The world is too small these days to risk gaining a reputation for being ignorant for the sake of not typing a quick message.
So, I’m sure there are those of you out there who are thinking “so if she’s so red hot at this, how come she’s single?”
The answer is this … you don’t always have to believe in the product to be able to sell it. You just have to get the buyer salivating at the thought of it.