10 Strategic Steps to Finding Love Online
By Laurel House
Online dating can be very overwhelming. Although it’s probably the best place to search for a potential partner, it can also be a very frustrating journey if you don’t put a lot of thinking into it.
You probably wonder why you’re getting few to zero responses or feel like there are no good, high-quality, your-type prospects. If you can’t figure out what you’re doing wrong and you are ready to experience online dating success, you’ve come to the right place.
What’s Your Strategy?
Online dating is no longer a numbers game. It’s a strategy. A no-games, smart, efficient, and effective pre-qualifying strategy that includes profile mapping, photo analyzing, and asking specific questions in order to elicit substantive responses. Simultaneously, online dating is your opportunity to Show and Tell who you are and what a life with you would look like.
To improve your online dating success, follow these 10 strategic steps to find love online:
1. What Are You Looking For?
Before you get online, you have to be honest with yourself. What is your dating purpose? What are you looking to find? Is it fun, self-exploration & expansion or a serious relationship?
Perhaps you’ve recently got out of a relationship and really; all you are ready for right now is to see that there really are other pretty great fish in the sea. You’re not actually ready to date, but you are excited to window shop.
With thousands of active dating sites thriving on the internet today, there is absolutely a dating site to fit every agenda. If education is important to you, try Elite Singles. If you are marriage-minded and seeking your better half, most likely eHarmony is the place to go.
2. Write Your Profile Towards That Purpose
You want to reveal something about yourself that comes from your core values, your essence, who you really are. If you have something funny about yourself, share that. The last thing you want to write is a bland, canned, throwaway profile that says nothing. The purpose is to give a few peeks into your life. Exposing a side of you that makes the user feel intrigued, as if they noticed something that might not have come across in your photos. Maybe it’s something that makes them feel like they get you, and definitely something that they can personally relate to.
3. Narrow the Playing Field!
THE most essential, but often ignored strategy when it comes to online dating is ELIMINATION. Yes, one of the benefits of online dating is that you are expanding your reach and jumping into a huge pool of potential partners; still it’s important to narrow down your options.
Take a proactive approach and tell a story about who you are and what describes you best. I’m not talking just about the physical description of your height, age, location, etc., but more about what you like to do in your free time or what core values are important for you in a partner.
An authentic profile is an invitation to attract certain people- the ones you share things in common with, while simultaneously filtering through the wrong matches.
4. Match Their Purpose With Yours
As you know your dating purpose, you now want to examine others’ profile to make sure that they match yours. If you don’t, chances are high that it simply won’t be a fit from the get go, as the both of you are looking for different things.
5. Profile Mapping
This is how you set your standards and compare each person using the same strategy, and it’s your first pre-qualifying opportunity. Train your eye to “map" every profile in the same way, scanning for your specific relationship needs based on priority. What are your priorities? Career, kids, religion, health, interests, education? If your main criteria aren’t fulfilled, move on.
NOTICE that I didn't mention “looks." Although extremely tough, you should try and look at the photos LAST. When it comes to lasting love, do looks really rate higher than core values?
6. What Do Their Photos Describe?
Once you start looking at their photos, before you look at their face, examine their environment, what activities they are doing, who are they with and where were the pictures taken. Their photos can reveal a lot on who they are, what their lives look like, and help you determine if you are more interested or less.
7. Are You Attracted?
Once you’ve given an in-depth look into their profile, getting a good enough picture of who they are, you should obviously look more into their profile pictures and see if you feel attracted to their looks. As I mentioned, there are other factors that are just as important, but looks mean so much to us and are usually the initial drive to make that first step, so don’t ignore it, just save it for last.
8. Start Communicating
If they sent the first message- great! If not, send them a short message (not a wink or instant message), referencing something from their profile that you relate to. Make sure to also ask a question, giving them a reason to respond. DO NOT just say “you’re hot, let’s meet!” but be more personal and tell them what you are interested in.
9. Avoid Fraud – Do Your Research
If you start communicating with someone, before you disclose any personal information like your last name, phone number, place of business, or email address, run a little background check to make sure their profile is not a scam. My best advice is that if their profile looks too good to be true, it must be fake. Don’t worry too much, most online dating sites have great security features that provide a safe dating experience overall.
10. Initiate a Call
If after several substantive back and forth email messages you’re still intrigued, schedule a phone date or better yet, a video call. Dating sites like Zoosk provide a built in video call feature that makes it very simple to connect.
This call should truly be like a date- set a time, then talk for as long as you feel right. Be real and revealing and learn about your dynamics. If, by the end of the call you’re STILL interested, set a date!
The Hard Work Pays Off
Yes, if you really want to get the best out of online dating you have to put a lot of effort in creating that successful strategy. But once you get the hang of it, you will find that this prequalifying technique actually helps to make your online dating experience more efficient, effective, and fun!
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