It’s no exaggeration to say that there’s been no better time for online dating than there is right now. With all this extra time on our hands we might find ourselves aimlessly swiping and scrolling for hours on end just to cure the boredome.
But how do we filter out the noise and actually make the most of this time for our online dating lives? Dating expert Frances Kelleher shares her secrets…
“In this time of quarantine, we need to do all we can online to really make our presence felt as it is busier and more popular than ever before.
“Having a great profile enables you to make and leave a lasting impression. Here are a few tips that will not only make you stand out from the crowd but will have men remembering you long after their computer is turned off.
Pick your best photos right and you’re halfway there
“Men are much more visual than us,it’s no surprise that they look at profiles differently. They are extremely focused on the photos. Also online is a visual game in itself. You need to make an immediate impact because there is so much competition online. Take them outside in natural light as it is the most flattering. No sunglasses and no selfies. Do not hide your face! It can make you appear dishonest.
“Only have you in the picture and if you have a pet pose with them. Those pictures get more likes. Have a full body photo too. People with a full-body photos get 200% more messages. People that wear outdoor apparel in pictures get 20% more messages.
You’re never fully dressed without a smile
“Doing this alone will make you stand out. Having pictures with you “in action” (doing things be it cooking or skiing), will create an opportunity for a conversation starter and reflects your lifestyle. Aim to show someone who you are rather than tell them. I would say five photos is plenty.
Make your profile unique
“Sometimes you do not have a lot of space, so choose your words very carefully. People do not want to read a thesis anyway. Think quality not quantity. Think interesting, original not cliché and hum drum. Be honest. It’s the number one thing people look for in a person.
Women tend to lie about their weight and men about their height. Do not lie! You are good enough just the way you are, and your perfect match will see that.
Be as creative and unique as possible but be yourself
This will catch the right person’s attention. Being funny is always a winner. Ask yourself after you have created your profile: What short film of my life am I showing? Think of the impression you are making.
Be positive – negativity is such a turn off
Everyone loves positivity. Don’t highlight anything negative, be it relayed to dating or an ex. For instance, avoid saying things like ‘no hook ups’ or ‘not interested in becoming pen pals’. If you say this that is all you will attract, and it does not make you look upbeat and fun. What you focus on grows so only concentrate on what you want. That is how you will draw it to you.
Don’t leave anything blank
“It makes you look lazy and that you could not be bothered to try. A paragraph is enough. If you are joining a dating app like OkCupid, long profiles are the norm so I advise writing two paragraphs about yourself and one on who you are looking for. The magic formula says that you should speak about yourself for 70% of it and the other person (what you are looking for) for 30% of it. Research shows this is the magic ratio in a profile.
“In the last 30% don’t list all the things you want in a partner. It’s a turn off as it makes you look shallow and demanding. Instead focus on the type of person you are looking for and the values they possess.
“For example, you could say you’re ‘looking for someone who values family and being active’ or ‘looking for someone to climb mountains with’. Asking a question or throwing a challenge at a person gives them an easy way to connect and message you like ‘I love cooking, what’s your favourite dish?’ or you could say ‘message me if you can take being beaten at chess’. Men love a challenge! Make it easy for men to reach out.
“It is the details that can make your profile memorable. Don’t just say I like to travel, say where you are planning to travel to next and why. Research has shown simple language is best. Don’t just talk about your job, talk about what you are passionate about-cooking, volunteering, tennis. People that like the same things will be taking an interest in you if you mention these things because they like them too.
Pick which dating app suits you best
“There are a lot of dating apps out there and each has a different vibe. Tinder brought in the swipe culture and is seen as fast paced and as having a lot of hook up culture.
“Bumble, which is the fastest growing dating app, gives women the power to make the first move. On this app where the women make the first move, they tend to be more serious. Profiles are short, sweet and to the point.
“Plenty of fish are introducing new features soon called ‘conversation power’. They will be the first to allow users to voice call or send voice notes to their match that they are talking with. I predict this will massively increase their pulling power in the dating app world.
“The app Hinge uses prompts to help you fill out your profile which is helpful but makes it harder for you to stand out because everyone is getting these same prompts.
“With Tinder, anything goes, long or short profiles, as it is so well established. Ultimately, I would say shorter is better as it is so fast paced so you could just write something like this- ‘cat lover, skier, cook’. Men prefer less waffle and more directness in everything not just online dating. It is just the way they are built so I firmly believe less is more.
The first message you send is so important
“Firstly, I advise looking at their profile. When you see something that stands out to you or that you feel you have common ground with, start with that. For example, you could say ‘I see you ski, where is the best place you’ve been skiing?’ This type of message shows you have put effort in and are genuinely interested in the person.
“Asking a question also encourages more conversation and connection. Asking open ended questions and listening are huge in dating. I cannot stress this enough! Keep the personal questions for down the line. Do not paste and copy messages. Everyone is a brand and you want to sell yourself best you can. First impressions are everything.
Limit your time on dating apps
“To get the best from them only go on them for 20 minutes at a time. Research says that after this time the experience starts to go downhill. Think in terms of sprinting not running a marathon.
Get offline as fast as you can
“This is so important, I’ve become a broken record when it comes to this but if research even shows that the longer you talk to someone online, the less chances you have of getting a date! It kills the passion; the curiosity and you have nothing left to say on the first date.
Have a short and sweet first date
“Have a coffee or go for an ice cream and a walk. It eases the pressure and nerves, and let’s be honest, who wants to be on a three-hour dinner date with someone they do not fancy? Your time and energy are precious. Do not waste them.
Don’t take rejection personally
“Online dating can be a shallow and fickle business and also a rewarding and great experience. One in three couples find love online. Do not take it personally if people reject you.
Some people like tea, some like coffee. If someone rejects you it actually has nothing to do with you. Research shows that it is down to their experiences and biochemistry. So, you can rest easy that it truly is none of your business.
Never give up on love
“If online does not work for you there is always the real world. Your guy is out there looking for you too so do not get disheartened by all the frogs you meet. When you meet your prince, I promise you that you will thank them all for being the steppingstones to meeting him. The difference with people that succeed at life and love is they do not give up. Simon Cowell, the music mogul, even says himself that the reason he is so successful is because he would not take no for an answer!”
If you’re looking to make the most of your dating profile or are just looking for some help in finding love then contact Frances for help at firstname.lastname@example.org or 086 0756842.