Amy M. Spagnola


Throwback Article: 9 Ways to Give Yourself a Leg Up When Online Dating

9 Ways to Give Yourself a Leg Up When Online Dating:

The competition is steep. With nearly 40 percent of single lasses and lads looking for love in the vortex of online dating, there’s a lot of people emailing, chatting, winking and hoping that they will strike it rich in a world of fish, tinder faces and so-called matches. But if you’re dating profile has stalled, or you just want a serious advantage in an era of online hookups and meetups, here’s our tips to make yourself stand out and succeed in the crowd of digital dudes and dolls.

1.) Swedes are Swell
Recent statistics show that despite the Kim Kardashian Kraze and the Sofia Vergara lovefest, men and women still love the fair-haired guys and gals. With a whopping 32 percent of people claiming that blonde hair is the most attractive.

     2.) Flattery Will Get You Everywhere
While there’s a variety of tactics and techniques for scoring a date with an online hottie, men and women still report that they often rely on compliments to reveal their interest in another person. Even the most beautiful human specimens rarely get tired of being told they’re attractive or pretty. For guys, be casual about your compliments but specific, don’t go overboard and make it flow into the rest of the email convo, i.e. “you have really pretty hazel eyes” or “I love your dimples, btw.” For women addressing men, something like, “Do you have a favorite gym? I can tell you work-out” or “You have a cute smile.” It might take some trial and error to find the right compliments that don’t sound creepy or too desperate. Play around with lingo in your emails.

     3.) Pictures are Worth a Thousand Words
Always accompany your profile with around three to five shots of yourself. Ideally, three is enough. Remember: quality over quantity. Guys lay off the sports/recreation pics and instead show off your shots from a friends' wedding. (Women can’t tell what you look like in all your ski-Sherpa gear). Women, don’t chose anything too provocative i.e. bikini shots or drunk pics. Include one full face/headshot and two body shots. One shot should include something social with friends or family but try and minimize the other randos in your pictures.
     4.) Cast a Wider Guy Net
Ladies, beware of the boy scarcity numbers in your area. There are 86 unmarried men for every 100 of unmarried women in the U.S. If your dating pool looks more kiddie-sized these days, it may be time to ditch the online dating in your area and pack that moving van for better odds. Austin, Texas, Fort Lauderdale, Florida and Las Vegas (118 unmarried men for 100 unmarried women) all offer more man meat.

 5.) Nice Guys Finish First, Girls Next Door Last
In surveys, women respondents showed a preference for “nice guys” over any other type of bad boy AKA motorcycling rockstar. Guys, don’t be afraid to talk about your favorite niece or your standing Sunday night dinner with mom. On the other hand, men, surprisingly weren’t looking for the Playboy Playmate of the Year, but are instead most interested in a “modern career girl” which even bested the “girl next door” or “hottie.” Ladies, discuss your career goals and dreams in your profile (i.e. you’re finishing up a children’s book or trying to get your party planning business off the ground). Guys are looking for women with drive, ambition and aspirations.

6.) Attractive Pictures are the Best Bait
Even if you have to take professional photos, or sit down with friends and go through all your pictures within the last year or two, and ask for feedback on which shot makes you look best, it will be well worth the time. In a recent online OkCupid test, 10 fake profiles were created with similar usernames, almost identical profile descriptions and stats (i.e. similar education levels, jobs, etc). On the whole, in the fake study, the women received 20 times more messages than the men and the most attractive women received nearly 85 percent of ALL the messages!

     7.) Men: Pull a Hugh Grant
When responding to a profile, men especially need to make sure not to include a generic response. Be funny, brief, lighthearted and specific about something in her profile. Don’t throw out a bunch of compliments and ask, “boring,” questions about travel or education. Try to be clever and creative. Employ your wit and piggyback on things she mentions in her profile. And don’t expect a response from a rose or a wink or a digital teddy bear, she’ll think you’re an online player and won’t be charmed. And lastly, don’t play too hard to get, strike while the iron is hot, and message her back within a reasonable amount of time.

     8.) Women: Pull a Perky Polly
Women should refrain from a tendency to be negative or mention bad dates, health woes, terrible bosses or family dysfunction. As women tend to “connect” by spilling lots of information, it can be a total turn-off to men. Don’t discuss money, religion or sex and keep your profile short and sweet as most people skim and scan profiles. Include recent triumphs (I ran my first marathon!) or uber-unique details (I can unicycle blindfolded).

9.)  Research Your Competition
Regularly search on the dating website of your choice as the opposite sex and try and read the most eye-catching profiles. What are these men/women doing that seems appealing? It’s highly unlikely that they discuss their love of knitting and ceramic cat collection or the discord they have with their stepsiblings and their lack of steady employment. While it may seem obvious, always avoid detailing too much about yourself, good, bad or indifferent. Try to keep it light, fresh and full of fun “bait” for your potential date to respond to. (For instance, you can eat a spoonful of wasabi without flinching or you won a hula-hooping contest in middle school.)

Now, go get your digital dream date!

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