Guest Post: The Dos and Don’ts of Profile Writing
Monday, June 1st, 2015
There is such a lot of conflicting advice out there on how to write your dating profile and let’s be honest it is important to get it right. I’ve found it helpful to think about your profile rather like a cross between a CV and a great piece of PR. Does that sound tough? Well, if you want to stand out from everyone else online then it’s well worth spending some time thinking about what you want to say and how you want to come across to potential dates. It’s about showing rather than telling. Nobody wants to read yet another profile about loving country walks, watching films curled up on the sofa, having a good sense of humour….yawn!
With a good few years dating experience behind me and now with the wonderful job of helping people create an irresistible dating profile these are the dos and don’ts of profile writing that I’ve learned.
Facts not fiction – if you are a couch potato don’t talk about your fitness schedule…unless you’re looking for someone to help you off the couch
Do be happy to stand out – celebrate your unique qualities.
Be interesting – what’s the most interesting thing about you?
Be succinct – not quite Twitter like but make your profile snappy
Be specific – instead of saying ‘enjoy Friday night’s out in the pub’ say ‘Friday evenings I can be found enjoying Cabernet Sauvignon with my oldest friends, catching up on each others latest adventures.’
Paint a picture of your life – fitness might be important to you (and 2 million others) so say more – you get your annual skiing fix in Boulder Colorado, you’re working towards the next Ironman.
Be different – share your unique hobbies or leisure activities. Stand out. Free diving, growing bonsai trees or burlesque dancing…share it!
Be playful with your username and headline….create a hook. You want possible matches curious to know more.
Do share some of your values – talk about those things that are important to you in life, you’re more likely to attract those who are compatible.
Make sure you’re in a great frame of mind before you write your profile – play your happy music and wear your lucky T shirt.
Give details – If you say you love music, say which band and when you last saw them. If you love cooking say why and who inspires you. If you love exercise say how it makes you feel…. You get the picture?
Don’t be shy and uncertain about yourself. Go easy on the self deprecation.
Don’t tell lies, however minor because you will be found out! And a relationship that begins with a lie will not recover. If you’re 43 don’t say you’re 38. Just don’t.
Don’t make demands on the type of person you’re looking for…this is not a shopping list. Don’t start a sentence with, “you must be…” or, “I’ll only date someone who is…” Get over yourself!
Don’t be a victim, don’t badmouth your ex and don’t talk about dating disasters. It’s not nice.
Don’t TELL what a cool person you are…..instead SHOW by sharing some great stories of adventures or a snapshot of your life.
Don’t start each sentence with “I”…that’s boring. Mix it up a little. Instead of “I love cycling and went to Paris to watch the final stage of the Tour de France. It was brilliant” How about, “Standing on the Champs Elysée for the final stage of the Tour de France was a dream come true for the avid cyclist I am. Being surrounded by so many likeminded people was inspiring.”
Don’t go on about things you dislike…it’s not attractive
Don’t go overboard on exclamation marks, emoticons…you’re not a teenager.
Don’t be afraid to say what you want…looking for a life partner? Say it.
Don’t be lame – ‘my friends made me sign up’, ‘I don’t know what to write’, ‘my character? Don’t know really but my friends say I’m fun to be around’….pleease…just don’t do it!
Rebecca is the author of Best Knickers Always: 50 Lessons for Midlife and founder of RebPerkins.com She is a personal performance coach working with women to navigate the transition of midlife. She has much to say on midlife and has appeared on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour and BBC Radio London. She writes regularly on a variety of topics for the Huffington Post. She was one of the judges at the UK Dating Awards 2014 held in London.