First Five: First Contact

** As I began formulating these, I wondered from which angle I should approach them; speaking to men, women or both; online, in person or both. So I guess I’ll try to tackle it from both perspectives as best I can. Considering most of my readers are female and my experiences are generally online, that will probably be the focus most of the time. If you have any questions or suggestions, please let me know. **

First Contact is that initial communication you use to reach out and elicit a response from someone you are interested in meeting.

It used to be that opening line (a.k.a. pick-up line) you would use to try to strike up a conversation with someone at a bar, dance club, laundromat, grocery store or wherever you met potential partners.

You’d see someone who physically got your attention, fueling that desire to want to meet them. Experienced pick-up artists would always have a good opening line that would spark a woman’s interest, while so many others would use some cheesy pick-up line, comment on her eyes or smile, only just say “Hi” hoping she would just open up to him, or heaven forbid some would even be crude or just mean (thinking any type of conversation would lead to an opportunity to build rapport with her.

Not much has changed in the online world.

So many of the same mistakes are being made by guys on Match, eHarmony, PlentyofFish, Tinder, Zoosk, FarmersOnly, you name it. I have lots of women (whether exes, past dates, or just friends) sharing their experiences with me, and guys don’t seem to have changed much. Some think that a simple “Hi” will open the gates to Heaven, while others fall back to the standard comments about eyes or smiles, some still try cheesy lines like “Did it hurt falling from Heaven?”, or worse yet, are perverted, crash or vulgar.

And I have to compete with these idiots on a daily basis! No wonder it is so hard to break through with a woman when she’s bombarded with these kinds of guys every time she opens up her dating site.

Look, let’s be honest here, there are a lot more men online looking for women than the other way around. Dating sites all “report” the ratio is anywhere from 60/40 to 50/50. But once you remove the fake, spam, and illegitimate profiles, the true statistics report that women are outnumbered anywhere from 10-1 to 100-1 depending on the site and metrics (age range, population size, etc).

And yes, dating sites intentionally publish fake female sites in order to even out the numbers to keep the men around. Otherwise the men would see how truly imbalanced it is and just not even bother wasting their money. Hence the fake and spam profiles which pollute the dating pool. It’s something women really don’t have to deal with.

OK, let’s get back on track.

Here are a few DO’s and DON’T’s when reaching out to the potential Mrs. Joe Singleguy.

DON’T:

  • Just say “Hi” or “Hey”. The ladies don’t like that and won’t respond to it. Trust me.
  • Comment on her smile or eyes in the first message. And please, I beg you, don’t use a line like “I like big butts and I cannot lie,” or even worse “Wow! I would love to motorboat those.” These are all verified comments made to women I know. So …
  • Use a cheesy pick-up line like “Someone had better call the cops because you just stole my heart.”
  • Try to infer her real name from her profile name. Even if you think you know it, don’t try. Women find that annoying. Let her tell you on her terms.
  • Comment on her kids if they are in her pictures. Do you want to advertise that you have a Blue Dot over your house? Now, she shouldn’t really have pictures of her kids on there anyway, but stay away from commenting on them just yet.

Now for a few things to actually DO:

  • Actually read her profile! I can’t stress how important this is. You’d be surprised how many guys just peruse the pictures and have no idea what’s in her profile. It’s a dating site not Playboy.
  • Pick something from her profile that really intrigued you and comment or ask her about that.
  • Take it a step further and pick something from near the end of her profile to comment or ask about to show you actually read her profile completely.
  • Be witty (if you can, I understand some guys think they’re funny but really aren’t). Try to work something about her profile into a witty comment that will make her chuckle. Believe it or else, women really do want a guy to make them laugh. That is the biggest hook for most women, and thank goodness I’m funny.
  • Keep it short! Don’t write a book the first time. Pick out one or two things (max) to comment on. You’re just trying to open the door here to get your foot in the door with her, not fit your moving truck with all your baggage in it. Maybe you’ll get that far if you’re lucky. But not this time.
  • Try to avoid saying “If you like my profile maybe we can talk sometime.” Grow some balls, show some confidence and say “I look forward to hearing from you soon.” What do you have to lose? Nothing. This is ground Zero. If you think you’re embarrassing yourself with her, who cares. Better than showing her you’re a sniveling weakling begging for her attention. Act like you deserve her attention.

Following these steps won’t guarantee she’ll respond but it definitely will increase your chances and set you apart from all of the “other guys” out there.

And if all goes well and she does respond, then start peeling back the onion of your life. Take it easy and follow her lead.  Don’t ask too many deeply personal questions right away. Don’t ask for her kids’ names and stuff like that. She’ll share that stuff when she’s ready.

And whatever you do, don’t – and I repeat DO NOT – send her inappropriate pictures of your “junk”, and definitely DO NOT ask her to send you inappropriate pictures of her. Don’t be a classless douche.

There is so much more to cover between here and getting to the First Date. But we can’t cover that all here. But if you have questions, feel free to ask. I’m more than happy to help.

In the next installment, I’ll talk about the First Date. I’ll briefly discuss getting the First Date, but mainly focus on the DO’s and DON’Ts of what to do on the first date (if you really are interested in a relationship).

So please check back for more, or you can click the “Follow” button on the right to subscribe to the blog, or follow me on Twitter to get all of the latest updates and more.

And as always, Thank You for reading!

 

Dating Profiles: Up, down, on, off, what do you do?

So, you’re dating someone, it’s early on still – no serious commitment level. Maybe you haven’t even had sex yet.

But once you started dating, you had the conversation about your dating profiles. They tell you that they took hers down or hid it because they wanted to focus on getting to know you. So you do the same thing, maybe because you have no problem doing it and think it’s the right thing, maybe you don’t have anything else going on in the dating world so you have nothing to lose for the moment, or maybe you just do it out of respect for them doing it.

So now you both have your profiles hidden.

But after a while, it comes out that your date has been talking to another person and has another date coming up.

That in itself is not the issue, nor something to get all whacked out and crazy about. The issue is what do you do with your profile?

The premise of turning off or hiding your profile was to “focus on getting to know” each other, their words not yours. But they have other people on the line and other dates scheduled.

So what do you do? Do you keep the profile hidden, because you had the conversation and said you would hide it. Or do you open it back up, because they whole “focus” thing isn’t applicable anymore (you didn’t void it, they did), you don’t know if you’re wasting your time with this person now, plus they are talking with other people – so why can’t you? OR do you have another conversation about the status of your profiles, even though they still have theirs hidden but are talking with other people, to gauge their response and get their opinion.

Now, in that last option, I would expect the “fair” answer to be a dominant response. They are going to probably tell you that “it’s fair for you to open up your profile again because they are talking with other people.” Now, they might actually be OK with that, or – if they like you – they’re probably just trying to say the right thing even though they don’t want you to be “back on the market.”

But, honestly, if it was me and I broached the subject, I would ask the question and say I don’t want to hear the “fair” answer, I want to hear their honest answer. Their true gut feeling answer. It’s kind of test, if you will. If they honestly tell you they think it’s ok to do it, that’s not a good sign. But if they tell you they would prefer if you didn’t open it back up, then that would generally be seen as a sign that they are actually interested in you and in pursuing something with you.

Again, I understand people start dating multiple people at a time, it’s totally normal. That’s not the issue. Once you’ve had the “profiles” conversation, and they are still talking to someone they met at about the same time they me you, what do you do?

Let me hear what you’ve got to say on this.