Hi Evan ,

I have been reading your information regarding how men have to be unique and different when contact women just because of the sheer numbers of contacts they have. But do women have to do anything extra ordinary? I have looked at a few websites, and some women seem to not really try to attract as much attention as they could. Blurry pictures, pictures of pets, the dreaded bathroom mirror picture (why do they do that), no information in the profile, the list goes on. Do they still get attention and contacts?

Jim

A young attractive woman using a webcam photo could write, “I hate you, I hate you, I hate you” as her profile essay and still receive 100 emails a week.

Dear Jim,

A young attractive woman using a webcam photo could write, “I hate you, I hate you, I hate you” as her profile essay and still receive 100 emails a week.

So yes, they still get attention and contacts.

However, your question allows me the opportunity to address something that I don’t know I’ve ever addressed before when it comes to online dating – how women sabotage their own experience by not trying harder.

Everyone knows that men’s profiles, on the whole, are even worse than women. We can debate why, but, for the most part, I think it’s ignorance. Most men simply don’t know that a profile is the equivalent of a resume – if you don’t have a good one, you’re not getting called for an interview. Especially in a competitive job market.

Women have the same ignorance about the importance of a profile, except they don’t experience the same failure as men. As a result, they have no way to learn their lesson. As long as women keep receiving a steady stream of generic emails that say, “Hey, great profile. I think we have a lot in common. Would love to learn more about you,” they’re convinced that they actually have great profiles.

They don’t.

The only reason that many attractive women get these “great profile” emails is that the men writing to them need SOMETHING to say. Unless he wants to write a “you’re hot” (or more likely, “your hot”) email, all he can say is “great profile”. Why? Because you didn’t give him anything specific with which to work.

When women ask me (and boy, do they ask me), why do all the WRONG men write to them, I always have a two part response: 1) By your standards, 95% of men are the wrong men. So don’t be too surprised if you’re not enamored with 9 out of 10 emails you receive. It makes perfect sense. 2) Your profile is likely not attracting the small percentage of “right men” out there – which is something that we can easily change.

It’s because we – men and women alike – haven’t truly figured out what makes us unique. And unique profiles not only get more responses, but they get higher quality responses in return.

Yet some women really get indignant – they poured their heart out in their profile, put a ton of effort into saying what they really feel. And when I take a look at it, 9 times out of 10, she did just that. Except Nancy pouring her heart out as a 45-year-old divorcee in Seattle sounds just like April pouring her heart out as a 35-year-old single girl in New York. The lists of adjectives, the lists of hobbies, the lists of bands and countries and books and TV shows, the cliches, the personal philosophy about life and love and honesty and trust. You’ve seen it before. It’s perfectly articulate, perfectly earnest, and perfectly generic because most woman arrive at the same conclusions.

So when every woman’s profile sounds the same, what do men have to write to?

That’s right. Your looks.

And then we wonder why the level of discourse in online flirtation is so abysmal. It’s because we – men and women alike – haven’t truly figured out what makes us unique. And unique profiles not only get more responses, but they get higher quality responses in return.

One of my favorite online dating anecdotes is of a JDate woman I courted in the summer of 2004. She had a wildly entertaining profile, which included this line: “You’re witty and intelligent and consider me fully worthy of the 5,000 gold coins and two camels that my family has offered as dowry.”

My response:

Subject: Low on camels, high on yams

In the Trobriand Islands, anyway, yams are a very popular dowry staple. That’s about all I got out of cultural anthropology from my freshman year of college, but I think it was worth my parents’ $20,000.

In any case, you’re interesting. Very interesting. And, at risk of being cheesy (I risk this a lot), there’s something behind your eyes. It could be an optic nerve or a sinus, but I’m thinking that it’s some sort of intelligence or mischief or both.

If I’m wrong, well, no yams for you.

Evan

If you don’t like the responses you’re getting, it’s incumbent upon you to change how people are reacting to your profile.

She became my girlfriend a month later.

(She dumped me a month after that, but that’s not the point of the story).

Anyway, Jim, I know I’ve hijacked your question to say something that I’ve really wanted to say for awhile, but it’s an important point. If you don’t like the responses you’re getting, it’s incumbent upon you to change how people are reacting to your profile. This is why I offer E-Cyrano profile writing (www.e-cyrano.com), where you can fill out a questionnaire, talk to a writer, and have a one-of-a-kind profile within 48 hours. And if you are really serious about maintaining creative control, I offer all my profile writing secrets to you in my audio series, Finding the One Online (www.findingtheoneonline.com) and even give you a 35-page workbook to practice until you get it right.

At the end of the day, both men and women can coast by on their looks, and never feel compelled to have to improve their profiles. If you’re attractive, you will always get attention. But unless you bring your A-game in your essays, you’re probably not going to get the intelligent, witty responses that you crave.