Your online personal ad is what makes most people decide whether to contact you or not. Get it right and your internet dating experience will most likely be a great and happy one. Get it wrong and it could be very frustrating. Here are a few steps for writing a great profile.
Know what you want: This may seem easy, but ask most people why they are in online dating they will only tell you “to find a date”. Being more specific will not only help you find the right dating site for you, but also make your dating profile come alive. List down what you want from the type of relationship (short term, long term or marriage), age, gender, sexual orientation. Include also, things like whether you want (or have) children.
Create a list of must haves, good to have and no-nos. Must haves are things that you can’t do without. These could be passions or hobbies as well as other interests. Remember the movie “Must Love Dogs”? The title is based on a must have that was posted on a popular dating site. Good to have means just that; things your potential mate might have that you like, but could do without. The no-nos are things you can’t stand or will not tolerate. You could consider including specific interests and hobbies you’d like to enjoy with someone special, the goals and dreams you’re hoping to have in common with your potential match and so on.
Make a list of things that make you… well, you. What makes you unique? Don’t be afraid to mention an interest that may, on the surface, seem insignificant, unpopular or even boring. The fact that you’re an avid fan of classic black and white films might not appeal to everyone, but it just might be the interest that makes someone special take notice. This will help create more “fodder” for your dating profile.
Brainstorm a catchy screen name: Your screen name, also known as your handle, should be concise and easy to remember. Don’t be just another “Sexygirl26” or “workingstud35”. Make it meaningful. Let it say something unique about you. Try including things you like to do, what you looking for, or some activity you participate in.
Post a good photograph: The first thing that people see in your dating profile is your photo. Profiles with photographs get many more responses than those that don’t. The picture should show the best of you without being pretentious. It also should show you as you look like today. And by all means, smile.
Start with a good, attention-grabbing headline: Most dating sites usually provide a box for a 100 character (typically) headline. This is perhaps the second most important aspect of your online dating profile, after your picture. It is what makes prospects decide whether or not to read the rest of your profile. Treat this the same way as your screen name. It should be meaningful and give a hint of who you are or what you want (of course, without revealing too much personal information). You could study headlines that attract your attention in your chosen dating site(s) and emulate these without directly copying them.
Be positive: The saying that “misery loves company” does not apply here. Be positive about yourself and others. Avoid saying things like “no losers please”.
Be honest: If you lie, it will catch up with you somewhere down the road. You want someone who will accept you for who you are, not who you wish you were.
Start writing your profile based on your notes. Most people make the mistake of writing their profile right there on the dating site. Don’t do this. Draft it on a separate piece of paper or on your favorite word processing program (such as Word, Word Perfect, Word Pad etc.). Write as fast as you can without hurrying. The objective here is to get your words down. Don’t pay attention to spelling or grammar at this stage. And do write like you speak. Imagine your ideal “date” seating right there in front of you, and tell her/him what you want and why you are the best choice for her/him.
Polish: Save your profile for at least a day, and then come back and edit. Correct any grammatical and spelling errors. You can add anything you think might make the profile better or remove anything that seems needless.
Post it: Now all you have to do is post your online dating profile. You may need to edit it farther to fit a particular dating site, but the hard work is already done.