Personal ads project personalities. Is your online personality really you?
-Kate Houston, BettyConfidential.com
In advertising, the term “Brand Character” describes personality traits attributed to a brand. For instance, ads for Apple always present the products as contemporary and non-conformist.
Personal ads also project personalities. I know because not only do I write ads, I write online dating profiles too. The fact is, certain dating profiles project distinct characters that may inadvertently be delivering an unflattering message. Is yours? If so, take heart. A little insight and a few tips can help you project online awesomeness.
Typically, Divas begin their profiles with “Don’t waste my time if” followed by a list of conditions. Time-suckers in question are men with no jobs, no teeth and no ability to read. Often these women wonder why there are so many “haters” out there.
Bottom line: As an ad writer, I’m trained to consider who I’m writing to and how to appeal to them. So, if you’re a dissing Diva, ask yourself this: do you really think a dehumanized list of insults is going to attract a decent guy? Rather than make demands, lighten up and make clear what you have to offer. After all, good ads promote their benefits before asking for money from a consumer.
The Drama Queen
Though her profile says, “I don’t want drama,” this royal mess of mixed messages rants about all the drama she has, in fact, let into her life. You’ll note I said, “Let into.” After all, her exes didn’t foist themselves and their problems with alcohol, drugs and unemployment on her.
Bottom line: If you’re this surly starlet, then your message says more about you than about the men you presumably don’t want. If you keep inviting drama into your life, then you’re the one with the problem – not your exes. Thankfully, you’re also the one with the power to correct it. So, take responsibility for poor choices, then go online with a profile that’s forward-thinking.
The Prima Donna
This lady posts photos then sits back and waits for men to wink, nudge and flood her inbox. As far as this precious Prima Donna is concerned, her looks are so compelling that all she has to say is “if you want to know, just ask.” That said, some women come across as prima donnas when in reality, they’re just too shy to promote themselves.
Bottom line: Sure, looks are key. However, there are two important reasons to fill out your profile in the most captivating way. First, there are countless women as good looking as you, if not better. So you need the backup. Second, anecdotes and interests give men a starting point for conversation. The fact is, great email chemistry makes for good first meetings.
This sad sweetie’s profile is about as uplifting as an episode of Hoarders thanks to its variations of “still looking” and “still haven’t found my soulmate.” What the Downer lacks in popularity, she makes up for by brightening a room – but in that glaring mistake kind of way.
Bottom line: Imagine a car ad that says, “Still can’t find any takers.” Not only does it send the message that it’s unpopular, it also suggests there’s something wrong with it. So don’t be discouraged or apologetic for looking, and make no mention of how long you’ve been at it. Finding the right match for your amazing self is worth the wait for you – and your future mate.
When I read profiles that say, “Don’t want drama, games, liars or cheats.” I can’t help but think that it’s a country song waiting for its Travis Tritt. Then I shake my head. This negative approach turns off good men as quickly as it attracts the very men you don’t want. That you’ve had your fill of lowlifes means that you do, in fact, let them in (good news for bad guys). In addition, the message presumes you’re so helpless at being gatekeeper, you actually expect bad guys to be good enough to stay away.
Bottom line: Rather than rely on scum to be standup, stand up for yourself. Guys like this are attracted to victims so write a profile that’s positive and full of confidence, and they’ll leave you alone. The biggest benefit is – the more you present yourself with confidence, the more you’ll attract good men and, the more good men you attract, the better you’ll feel about yourself.
I love the Tease. Looking at her profile photos is like seeing Snooki and Tia Tequila unhinged. This girl is one hot mess of booze, parties and cleavage. She also has the prerequisite photo of her and her BFF leaning on each other and looking sexily at the camera. The message? Get her, get her friend too.
Bottom line: When you read the torrid Tease’s profile, you discover she’s looking for long-term and that guys out for sex better back off her booty. Basically, she pulls the sexual bait and switch to attract a man’s attention. Unfortunately a profile that says “sex” only catches the eye of guys trying to get their freak on. So don’t use clever ways to get attention. Instead, write a profile that’s true to what you want so that like-minded men notice it.
Sometimes the One is hard to find, but she exists in all of us. She’s the one with enough trust in her heart that, occasionally, it gets betrayed. She’s the one who makes mistakes and forgives herself for them. She’s also the one who lets go of her anger, then carries on stronger and smarter. She’s also the one who finds “The One” because she has the courage to believe she deserves the best and that he’s out there thinking the same thing.
Bottom line: The One is the one online dating personality that needs no improvement.
Kate Houston has been an ad writer and marketing expert for 20 plus years. She also founded trysweettalk.com, the only service in North America to use ad techniques so that dating profiles, LinkedIn profiles and professional bios stand out and get noticed. Check out her blog and follow her on Twitter or check out her Facebook page.