Putting the finishing touches on your profile

If you’ve read this far you’ll realise that putting together a good profile for a dating website can mean the difference between receiving messages and being ignored.

You should now have substance of your profile – your best qualities. You’ve written them in an interesting and engaging way, as outlined in yesterday’s post.

Now you need to put your profile together. Think of it like a mini story. It needs a beginning, middle and end. Introduce yourself. This doesn’t mean give your name. It means offering an interesting opening line. For example: “Energetic hiker and movie buff looks forward to the future and a new partner”.

Write a bit more about yourself in a relaxed, conversational style. What have you done recently, what do you get passionate about, and what are your plans?What things are important in your life?Do you have children?If so, it’s worthwhile mentioning them briefly.

Don’t feel you have to be perfect – you can sound human! There’s nothing wrong with saying “I’m working on losing those few extra pounds I put on over Christmas and will be in great shape for my best friend’s wedding this spring.”

Use humour but use it carefully and in good taste. Consider using favourite quotes or reference books/films that appeal to you – maybe a friend has said you remind them of a certain kind of character in a book or film.

Some dating websites separate out the “who you are” section and the “who are you looking” for section.If this is the case you will need to pull-out the last part of your profile and describe the kind of person you see yourself with. Write about the kinds of people you get along with, or who you hope to meet.

There is nothing wrong with high standards, but be flexible too. If you live in a rural area but only want to hear from tall, dark, handsome men with great career prospects your chances of success are going to be limited.

Remember, be honest, be yourself, and sell yourself. Also, don’t forget to be very clear – meaning is important.Don’t write “I’m an easy girl” if you mean you are laid-back and relaxed. To improve clarity, set your your profile aside and leave it for a day or two. When you go back to it with fresh eyes you will see room for improvement. No-one writes perfectly the first time around.

End your profile positively, with hope, and with an invitation. A simple “Looking forward to hearing from you” or “If you enjoyed reading this I’d like to hear from you” are good options. Done your best? Give it a final spelling and grammar check and then upload your profile.

In the next couple of days I am going to look at common pitfalls in dating profiles, and also how to write about the importance of writing a good headline, and selecting a picture.

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