Cheat Sheet: How to Write an Online Dating Profile
By: Laurie Davis, Founder
One of the things that Certified eFlirters do best is write your profile. There’s something to be said for a totally objective opinion, one that picks up on the qualities about you that even your friends wouldn’t mention in because they know you too well.
But before you start typing your backstory, don’t click on other people’s profiles. The last thing you want to do is sound just like everyone else. Instead, think about your perfect match — the one who has it all. If you met in real life, what would you spend the most time chatting about? What would he or she be most interested in about you and what would you want to have in common? Start your profile there.
Keep in mind that the first and last sentences of your profile are the most important. The first sentence needs to grab your matches’ attention and keep them wanting more. Make sure it isn’t mundane or cliché and speaks to who you are. The last sentence is the final thought your match would have. After they’ve read it, they’ll either want to message you or click the next button. Making sure you leave them with a strong statement is key.
However, a lot happens in between your first and last lines. Below are some common pitfalls to avoid so you can make your profile sparkle on screen:
Adjective overload. One of the most common mistakes online daters make is using too many adjectives. They are "witty, intelligent, down to earth and unique"... and their mom says they’re special, too. Listing a bunch of adjectives that describe you isn’t actually descriptive.
Show, don’t tell. Revealing a personality trait through narrative will always resonate better than simply listing it. Rather than stating you are intelligent, show your knowledge through your interests and the books you read. If being funny is your thing, use a sarcastic tone or tell a joke. If you’re adventurous, mention the trips you take or places you explore.
Get specific. Mentioning precise interests like a favorite restaurant or vacation spot will go a long way. These details will give your match a better idea of what you like and if they find something in common with you, and it’s easy to mention specifics via message.
Be confident. Confidence is key both in-person and online, so make sure your statements exude this quality. Never justify why you’re dating online or say things like “My friends think I’m…” When viewed on digital paper, it’ll appear as though you’re not comfortable with yourself — or online dating in general.
Don’t repeat information. Repetition gets boring. If your match is bored, they’ll just move on to the next person without contact. A great profile will continue to reveal new information in each section, not only to keep your match engaged, but also to truly give others an idea of what you’re about.
Keep them wanting more. Length is a crucial element to a good profile. Too long and your matches will leave without so much as a wink. Too short, and you won’t catch your matches’ eye — and they won’t know enough about you to send a message. Ideally, the main part of your profile (often known as the “all about you” section) should be two or three short paragraphs.
Be careful with wit. Humor doesn’t always read well digitally, especially if you’re a rookie to the online dating world. If you’re going to be witty, you’ll need to use that tone throughout the profile, not just in a single sentence here and there. When in doubt, read your line alone on its own. Does it sound strange or creepy? If yes, remove. Immediately.
Talk about your match. To attract the perfect match, you need to tell people what you’re looking for. Don’t make this a list of ultimatums (too specific and you’ll turn away potentials), but do write a couple of sentences on the topic. It’ll show that you’re serious about meeting someone and not playing games.
No negativity. Maybe you’ve had some bad dating experiences. Maybe you’re feeling down on yourself. Whatever the case may be, those feelings need to stay far, far away from your dating profile. Being negative in your first impression with a match is like sulking in the corner at a party; it won’t attract anyone.