The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by AndytheBro on Sun Oct 09, 2016 8:12 pm

Aw, why thank you very much! You've succeeded in putting a goofy grin on my face. Thanks for the advice. Yeah, I kinda figured that people my age or looking to date people my age wouldn't really be trying online dating yet. That was why I told myself I'd try dating offline first, and yet here we are. The fact that I'm putting in effort on my profile and stuff that I'm sure a good chunk of people my age aren't, should hopefully set me apart from the rest in a good way.

I should be able to do that with at least 1 friend. I feel like thats kinda embarrassing though, and maybe the other person would assume that I'm depressed or something and completely unable to find any good qualities about myself. I guess I can just make myself clear that its for online dating, but I kinda don't want to admit to that either just yet, lol.
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Prajnaparamita on Sun Oct 09, 2016 8:40 pm

AndytheBro wrote:Aw, why thank you very much! You've succeeded in putting a goofy grin on my face. Thanks for the advice. Yeah, I kinda figured that people my age or looking to date people my age wouldn't really be trying online dating yet. That was why I told myself I'd try dating offline first, and yet here we are. The fact that I'm putting in effort on my profile and stuff that I'm sure a good chunk of people my age aren't, should hopefully set me apart from the rest in a good way.

I definitely think it will. And if you go into it understanding that there aren't a lot of other people your age on the site, you can get comfortable with rejection while also learning how to write a good message and cultivate a profile. Think of it like a super low risk (but also low reward) test, you're dabbling in it for the time being while waiting for your options to expand.

AndytheBro wrote:
I should be able to do that with at least 1 friend. I feel like thats kinda embarrassing though, and maybe the other person would assume that I'm depressed or something and completely unable to find any good qualities about myself. I guess I can just make myself clear that its for online dating, but I kinda don't want to admit to that either just yet, lol.

I wonder if this isn't just a female thing to be more comfortable with asking about this kind of help, because my best friend and were ghostwriters for each other's profiles, swapping back and forth drafts of the text and brainstorming together. So I guess I never saw it as anything embarrassing, it was more like a bonding ritual, something we would do on "sleepovers" (what we called crashing on each other's couches because we were both dorks as kids and never got invited to real sleepovers and so made up for the lost time as adults) between giving each other massages and gossiping about boys. Anyway, I think a way to make it clear you're not depressed is to ask in general, not just about positive traits but how your friend would describe you in general, both positive and potential negatives. Now obviously you're not going to write a dating profile all about your negative traits, but it sort of helps to know what kind of person you might be seeking to attract, what sort of persona you're seeking to project to the world.

I don't know if everyone really looks at it this way, but for me dating profiles were about creating a persona that had just enough of the tropes and characteristics that someone would likely describe me with--less like a mirror and more like a cartoon. No one profile will ever capture anyone perfectly, so you're just trying to make a sketch and an interesting impression in the hopes of hooking someone whose sketch you likewise find intriguing. Does that make any sense?

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by AndytheBro on Sun Oct 09, 2016 9:38 pm

Yeah, I get what you mean. Kinda wish I had a friend I was that close to, haha. Definitely sounds like a plan I can work with. I understand the persona thing too. I guess that means I should limit the amount of questions I answer, huh?
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by BasedBuzzed on Mon Oct 10, 2016 8:10 pm

Saw your rant in the other thread, so here's a few tips on quicker messaging on OKC:

-Pics-only profiles deserve stock responses unless the pic is really distinct. Travel, music, commonly watched series, are my stock phrases. "Been to any cool places over the summer? I went to X, <insert quirky detail>", "What genres of music are you into? I recently discovered Y, it's ideal for the summer/when I need energy/<insert quality here>", "Anything good on Netflix? I can recommend Z because <insert quality here>" Two of such questions should suffice. Copypaste, send.

-Do not expect people to star you back unless you sent a message. Women are flooded and they don't always keep up, most can't even see who favs them.

-Over time, you will notice similarities in type and thus be quicker in flinging out a message.

-Try to gauge which types want to nail down a date quickly versus which types take time. Extroverts usually are more impatient and thus don't want to be bogged down in endless messages. Don't rush, but err on the side of sooner than later.

-Have a stock anecdote or (non-Google traceable) joke ready for people who want you to be funny.

-Hide any and all people who do not fall into your perimeters to speed up the process/not bump into them twice when switching to Quickmatch.

-Lurking near the New Matches might mean you don't always have an idea of how well you suit each other, but it also means the girl isn't yet swamped by messages.

-Always clear out stock messages after you've send them, it saves you from backlog maintenance later (which can be depressing when you see how much stuff you've sent) and it will also save room for convos you want to keep because you hit it off pretty well.

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by KMR on Mon Oct 10, 2016 8:16 pm

If you're struggling to think of ways to describe yourself because you can't think of positive things to say, maybe you can approach the process a little differently. Many of the traits (or hobbies or interests or what have you) that people have aren't inherently positive or negative. They'll be appealing to a subset of people who happen to value those traits. Meanwhile, people who don't value those traits will either find them unappealing or just be indifferent to them.

So rather than thinking about it as "I have to talk about all of my most appealing qualities," you can instead just describe yourself in relatively neutral, matter-of-fact terms and let the people reading your profile interpret them as they please. People who react negatively to the kind of person you are or the interests you have are probably not going to be compatible with you anyway. Meanwhile, the people who do share your interests and values will be more likely to view those same self-descriptions in a positive light.

Additionally, the way you phrase your statements can put a more positive or more negative spin on them, much like the old adage about the glass being half-full or half-empty. For instance, if I want to demonstrate that I'm an introvert, a sentence like "I prefer small groups and quiet settings" sounds more appealing than saying "I don't like to go out much" or "I'm not a people-person."
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by AndytheBro on Mon Oct 10, 2016 9:14 pm

Good advice all around! Thank you both! If only I was able to link my profile, then I could actually get it rated, lol.

-Do not expect people to star you back unless you sent a message. Women are flooded and they don't always keep up, most can't even see who favs them.

That makes sense. I couldn't either, until I took the plunge to try the alist for a month. I just thought that even if they didn't know, if they saw my profile and liked what they saw, they would star me, and then we'd find out that we starred each other. But maybe thats just me being too afraid to message anyone who hasn't starred me, haha.

-Have a stock anecdote or (non-Google traceable) joke ready for people who want you to be funny.

Don't really have a real gut buster yet (or anything close). I guess I should get more experiences in life in order to find something really funny/weird that happened to me.


Last edited by AndytheBro on Mon Oct 10, 2016 9:18 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by AndytheBro on Mon Oct 10, 2016 9:17 pm

Thinking about myself in neutral terms seems like something I'm capable of, so I'll try that. Maybe I'm trying to hard to please everyone, instead of people who'd be interested in someone like me. I guess I should focus on being somewhat polarizing then.

-For instance, if I want to demonstrate that I'm an introvert, a sentence like "I prefer small groups and quiet settings" sounds more appealing than saying "I don't like to go out much" or "I'm not a people-person."

Good example! I can work with that. Just hope that extroverts don't completely pass me by because of that, even though I'd be willing to try their way of life for a bit.
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by fkloa on Mon Oct 10, 2016 11:07 pm

Hello.  I've finally worked up the courage to try one of these sites.  It's my first time messing with one of these and I'd appreciate any advice.  Thank you.  I can't post links yet, but I'm on okcupid as koestemj

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by AndytheBro on Mon Oct 10, 2016 11:18 pm

Hey there! I'm (incredibly) new to online dating as well, so I'm pretty much just saying things I've heard other people say. In any case, what jumps out at me is the length of your self summary. It's more like an essay than a summary, you know? Also the way you list your credentials kinda reminds me more of a "Why should I hire you" rather than something you'd put on a dating website; try to keep it casual.

I'd also pick a different profile picture. Your other photos look good, its just that the main one should at least be from your head to your shoulders, maybe include the chest area as well. I'm sure the others with more experience see other things that I don't though, so I'll leave it to them.
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Prajnaparamita on Tue Oct 11, 2016 7:44 pm

Hey Andy, I actually reactivated my OKC account so I could check out your profile and give you some feedback! Right now I think it's okay but pretty bare bones, nothing that's a turn-off for sure, but nothing that would really capture my interest either or make me want to message. Still, a good starting foundation, and I think with some work you can really punch it up.

First off, your profile pic. I know you're making a kinda weird face lol, but I like it, it's original and fun and doesn't look just like what everybody else has. It makes you look like a fun free spirit, and I like that. Could use a full body pic though, and I don't really love the headphones in ears selfies. Yours isn't bad, they're just soooooooo ubiquitous with guys on OKC and thus really won't be a plus at all.

As for your actual profile, it just seems very dry and boring, like you're simply listing out facts rather than trying to convey a sense of who you are with those facts. I think a good profile comes from a mix of "show, don't tell" and using stories and anecdotes mixed in plentifully with your statements. For example, take your statement: "improving myself slowly but surely by learning more about myself and the world around me." That's nice but super generic, like something out of a press release. How are you improving yourself? What have you been learning about yourself, where are these lessons coming from, how have you changed, what's one example of something that's really wowed you about this process? Oh I know you have stories, I've read your comments on DNL prime and you seem to be very thoughtful about how you approach issues and your understanding of them. Show some of that intelligence and emotional maturity that I know you have, it'll really stand out to women your age.

Other places where you could work in stories or anecdotes or at least detail to make your character come through more and your profile more vibrant--what is it that appeals to you about salsa dancing, or board games? Where did your parents come from? (You make a vague note about them coming to New York, it sounds like there's a story there) What interests you about social justice issues/feminism? Those are some pretty big categories, name some issues you really care about and how you feel about them. Basically, give me more of your character, as captured in meaningful details and anecdotes, this is how you create the sketch of yourself that other people can come to know.

Finally, what's with your six things list? I totes get that it's a bullshit question, but really it's only purpose is to try and give you more of a chance to show character. So a good way to make that come through and use the space well is to not only list the items, but explain briefly why they're so important to you, hopefully giving a glance at your personality and key characteristics to anyone who would read it. Right now, things like "Necklace" and "Journal" really don't mean anything and don't tell me anything more about you, but rather leave me a bit confused. ("Dihydrogen Monoxide" is cute though, I like that lol)

Message me if section seems good though. Hope that helps!

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by AndytheBro on Tue Oct 11, 2016 8:51 pm

Thanks for all the advice! I'll try to use it effectively, but I'm not gonna be able to fix my profile all at once, as that will just lead to headaches and discouragement. I actually had a dream that had ok cupid in it, and I don't think thats a good sign, lol. I'll just try to trickle the edits over several weeks. Now to figure out how to respond to the points.
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by AndytheBro on Tue Oct 11, 2016 8:54 pm

-Right now I think it's okay but pretty bare bones, nothing that's a turn-off for sure, but nothing that would really capture my interest either or make me want to message. Still, a good starting foundation, and I think with some work you can really punch it up.

Thanks for the help! I guess it makes sense that its bare bones though, because I really have trouble putting to words what is it that differentiates me from the rest.

-First off, your profile pic. I know you're making a kinda weird face lol, but I like it, it's original and fun and doesn't look just like what everybody else has. It makes you look like a fun free spirit, and I like that. Could use a full body pic though, and I don't really love the headphones in ears selfies. Yours isn't bad, they're just soooooooo ubiquitous with guys on OKC and thus really won't be a plus at all.

I honestly have no idea why I was making that face, haha. It was just one of the very few photos I’ve taken of myself, and I thought it was semi interesting. I understand the other one being common though. Honestly I’m just gonna wait until I hang out with friends again before I edit my photos, since then I’ll actually have photos of myself to pick and choose from.

-As for your actual profile, it just seems very dry and boring, like you're simply listing out facts rather than trying to convey a sense of who you are with those facts. I think a good profile comes from a mix of "show, don't tell" and using stories and anecdotes mixed in plentifully with your statements.

I guess I was just answering the questions super literally, instead of using them to portray myself in ways different from what they ask you. I saw that other profiles used them to put in details that are irrelevant to the question, but not irrelevant to getting to know them, which is the main goal of the profile.

-For example, take your statement: "improving myself slowly but surely by learning more about myself and the world around me." That's nice but super generic, like something out of a press release. How are you improving yourself? What have you been learning about yourself, where are these lessons coming from, how have you changed, what's one example of something that's really wowed you about this process?

I mean, isn’t the goal of trying to be the best person you can be in itself generic? I can definitely work answers to those questions in there, I just hope that my profile doesn’t end up essay length like the Doc warns against, lol.



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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by AndytheBro on Tue Oct 11, 2016 8:57 pm

-Oh I know you have stories, I've read your comments on DNL prime and you seem to be very thoughtful about how you approach issues and your understanding of them. Show some of that intelligence and emotional maturity that I know you have, it'll really stand out to women your age.

I think I can work it in their somewhere, its just that I didn’t really see a method to show off my maturity. I know the stereotypes of nerds are that they are very immature, so I should try to show off that that’s not the case with me (I mean, I am in some aspects, but I’m more of a dork than an immature nerd).

-Other places where you could work in stories or anecdotes or at least detail to make your character come through more and your profile more vibrant-- where did your parents come from? (You make a vague note about them coming to New York, it sounds like there's a story there)

There really isn’t much of a story though. Just typical immigrant parents moving from one country to another in search of a better way of life and a better future for their kids. That was like almost 10 years before I was born, so I don’t exactly have the immigrant cool factor working for me. In these neck of the woods, people with immigrant parents are a dime a dozen, but I guess it’d be appealing to those whose parents were born here.

-What interests you about social justice issues/feminism? Those are some pretty big categories, name some issues you really care about and how you feel about them.

I’ll work on adding some common knowledge stuff that relates to why I care about feminism. Just not sure the common person knows what “Toxic Masculinity” is, or why I despise it. Not only are they probably not gonna take the effort to google it, but I’d rather not spew genuine hatred on a profile that’s supposed to show my good side, lol.

-Finally, what's with your six things list? I totes get that it's a bullshit question, but really it's only purpose is to try and give you more of a chance to show character. So a good way to make that come through and use the space well is to not only list the items, but explain briefly why they're so important to you, hopefully giving a glance at your personality and key characteristics to anyone who would read it. Right now, things like "Necklace" and "Journal" really don't mean anything and don't tell me anything more about you, but rather leave me a bit confused.

Again, I guess that was just me answering the question I was given, without adding any supplementary information. I was also kind of ticked off while answering it, since I couldn’t really think of 6 things I couldn’t live without, no matter how hard I tried. But that just ties back to my whole “I’m not passionate about anything” deal, which I’m trying not to show in my profile. I’ll just work on adding meaningful details.



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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Enail on Tue Oct 11, 2016 9:07 pm

Btw, Andy, if you click the "Quote" button on the top right of a post, the post will appear quoted in the Quick Reply box at the bottom of the page or the Post Reply page (and then you can edit in quote and /quote tags to split the post into several quotes if you want to reply piece by piece) . You can also click the "Multi-Quote" button on several posts, and then they will all appear quoted consecutively in your post when you click the Post Reply button.
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by AndytheBro on Tue Oct 11, 2016 9:11 pm

Thats nice to know. Will do that in the future!
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by fkloa on Tue Oct 11, 2016 11:26 pm

AndytheBro wrote:Hey there! I'm (incredibly) new to online dating as well, so I'm pretty much just saying things I've heard other people say. In any case, what jumps out at me is the length of your self summary. It's more like an essay than a summary, you know? Also the way you list your credentials kinda reminds me more of a "Why should I hire you" rather than something you'd put on a dating website; try to keep it casual.

I'd also pick a different profile picture. Your other photos look good, its just that the main one should at least be from your head to your shoulders, maybe include the chest area as well. I'm sure the others with more experience see other things that I don't though, so I'll leave it to them.

Thank you for the advice. I've cut out a fair amount from the first 2 paragraphs and merged what was left into one, so hopefully that helps a bit. I'll have to do some digging for a better picture. Don't keep too many of myself beyond what's already up there.

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by BasedBuzzed on Sat Oct 22, 2016 2:28 pm

A lot of bots out today (can't imagine why my Likes nearly doubled over the course of the weekend). This is actually extremely hilarious, because it propels you towards a more attractive category (assuming the bots only target dudes) while you don't see any annoying spam (I believe they used to tailor the bots into also visiting your profile, if memory serves).

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by AndytheBro on Sun Oct 23, 2016 2:19 am

I got a random email saying I'm "among the most attractive people on Ok Cupid" Umm, I kinda doubt that? Has everyone else here gotten this email at some point? I mean, I'm pretty sure I'm just average looking, lol.

Is the return rate of people messaging you back about 10%? Or even lower? Out of around 30 messages I've sent, only 3 or so have actually bothered to message me back, even when I put genuine effort on making a conversation starter through using their profile. Only one person has actually started the conversation first, although I guess thats to be expected.
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by BasedBuzzed on Sun Oct 23, 2016 7:33 am

You probably are, but it's probably based on Likes, which can be accidentally boosted by bot likes (also, if you put a tiny bit of effort into your messages you are already among the most attractive people by default).

Your message back rating is usually around 1/3 at most, and also pay attention to profile visits. Even if she decides she's not interested based on that, she still took the effort to check (which probably ain't happening with hi's or how are yous).

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by CP96 on Thu Nov 10, 2016 5:30 pm

After my break up a few months ago I'm looking to dip a toe back into the dating scene. If anyone could cast a critical eye over my new profile I'd be appreciative.

http://www.pof.com/viewprofile.aspx?profile_id=132188010
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by BasedBuzzed on Thu Nov 10, 2016 6:01 pm

Mix of pics is good, I'd go for one without shades as your first one.

As an aside, POF has garish layout.

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by CP96 on Thu Nov 10, 2016 7:10 pm

BasedBuzzed wrote:Mix of pics is good, I'd go for one without shades as your first one.

As an aside, POF has garish layout.

Yeah, I'm not a huge fan of POF's set up. It's just that along with Tinder it's by far the most popular site in my area. OKCupid has like fifty people total in my area that meet my basic criteria. Cheers for the photo advice.
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by CP96 on Fri Nov 11, 2016 4:10 pm

Eh, nevermind. Took me less than 24 hours to get thoroughly sick of it and delete it.
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Solvi on Thu Nov 24, 2016 8:17 pm

Hey, so I know I'm kind of more a lurker here than a poster, but I recently made some revisions to my profile, and I'd be eager to hear some feedback.  OKC's really been feeling like a ghost town, lately -- the last real connection I made with anyone through the site was almost a year ago, and although it was nice to chat with someone new, it didn't lead to a date -- and I'd like to know if maybe there's a problem with my profile that I need to address.

Thanks in advance for any advice you can offer.

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Enail on Thu Nov 24, 2016 8:52 pm

One thing that jumps out at me is that your "what I'm doing with my life" section reads like a resume for a job. I'd suggest you cut down on that first paragraph, make it easier for someone to get a quick handle on what you do, and keep the detail simple and focused on showing who you are and what you're like.
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