Like a lot of people these days, I have an online dating profile. It isn’t anything special; there’s some information about the things I like, and an invitation to whoever’s reading it to send me a message.
Recently I’ve been wondering if my writing skills could improve my profile. There are several principles that make good writing, and I don’t see why these couldn’t work on dating websites.
I’ve pointed out several of these principles below. If you’d like to give your profile a refresh using them, you’re more than welcome to.
There’s no guarantee these principles will make a profile more appealing, so don’t blame me if you’re still single after reading this blog post.
Know your audience
A message is what you say, and tone of voice is how you say it. Your target audience usually determines the latter. On dating websites, your target audience is prospective romantic partners. But what else do you know about them?
There are loads of dating websites, each with their own niches and core user groups. If you know what kind of romantic partner you want, it’s worth learning which websites they’re most likely to use and creating your profiles on these.
Write a great headline
A headline should always grab your reader’s attention and make them want to read more. There are many ways you can write a headline, including:
- Highlighting a benefit. Show you reader how dating you will make their life better.
- Using social proof. People like doing what other people do, especially if it benefits them. A social proof headline should bare a universal truth, like ‘We all like surprises on a first date’.
- Using the rule of three. Odd numbers are aesthetically pleasing, and everyone likes spotting a pattern. If you’re ‘Caring, passionate and love a good conversation’, tell your readers.
Keep your profile short
When it comes to writing for the web, it’s best to stick to short paragraphs of no more than 5 lines. Most people don’t read beyond the second paragraph of any given web page, which means the most important information in your profile needs to be in the first two.
Use features and benefits
Your profile isn’t about you; it’s about your reader. They need to know how going on a date with you will improve their life. Tell them something about you and what they’ll gain from this.
Show, don’t tell
Anyone can say they’re clever, funny and like keeping fit. But you read 3 books a month, regularly tell jokes at your local open mic night and are training for a half-marathon. See what I mean?
Finish with a call to action
This is what turns your reader into a do-er. A call to action is a positive, inviting statement or question. Something like ‘If you’d like to take a walk along the hill at sunset, get in touch with me’ or ‘Why not tell me about your favourite restaurants?’
If you choose to apply these principles to your online dating profile, I wish you good luck.
If you have any advice for writing great profiles, share your romantic wisdom in the comments section below.