You need to direct your attention to where it does the most good: the people who are already checking you out. After all, dating is all about putting your best, most authentic self forward and we associate marketing with an attractive line of bullshit that’s intended to lure in a bunch of suckers eager to be separated from their hard-earned money.Your messages can be awesome, but unless you have a profile that makes them stop and pay attention… So I’m about to impart to you the secret to online dating success: you need to quit thinking like a lover. Worse, when you bring “marketing” and “internet” together, what’s the first thing that comes to mind? You want as many people as possible coming to see your profile and you want to keep those people around long enough to dazzle them with your brilliance (or at least baffle them with your bullshit) and make them decide that yes, they attention, the kind you don’t want.

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In online marketing, this is known as SEO or Search Engine Optimization: the art of ensuring that you show up more prominently in search engine results than your competition.

The idea applies to online dating as much as it does trying to get your blog to the first page of Google search results.

Most dating sites allow you to narrow your search to specific parameters.

What you want is , you want the people whom you’re hoping to date… The very first thing that people look at when they get your message in their inbox and are trying to decide whether or not they’re intrigued enough to write back is your profile photo in the thumbnail. ladies” shirtless photos; all it does is make women think of The Jersey Shore – and not in a good way.

so you have to know how they think, what they’re looking for and, critically, how to grab them by the eyeballs. Your profile – your screen name, your photos, your vital statistics and your words – are your packaging and even slight flaws can make potential customers (dates) go off in search of products that strike them as more appealing. If you don’t snag those eyeballs right from the get-go, you’ve already lost them. You need your first photo to be one that impresses. Just your smiling face, possibly with a splash of color somewhere to help stand out from the other sea of photos. If you don’t have enough imagination to figure out how to get a photo from your time at the beach or waterpark to show that you’ve got more cuts than Tiesto then you really shouldn’t be worried about online dating in the first place.

The first step is to think like a marketer: you have a product (you) that you’re trying to move (i.e. This means that your primary photo, the one that appears next to your screen-name in your online dating profile, needs to be a clear shot of your head and shoulders. Not something awkwardly cropped from your vacation snaps. The other aspects of your dating profile in descending order of importance: , you can’t just toss your profile out into the great digital sea and hope that somebody stumbles across you by accident.

You want to send up signs and search lights that lets the right people know: YOU ARE HERE.

Online dating can be an annoying, frustrating experience at times.

For something that’s frequently hailed as the dating salvation for the introverted, the socially awkward, and the shy, sometimes all that happens is… Your winks and messages get sent out and all you get for your trouble is deafening silence.