5 Winning Rules – Online Messaging Etiquette

First impressions are everything. In the realm of online dating, these words still hold true. With this in mind, what is your first interaction with that potential lover? Your message, right? Which is why you need to be diligent when it comes to messaging. You want to have an engaging conversation with this person which will eventually lead to a date.

Oftentimes, people struggle with this stage and it isn’t necessarily because they have the social skills of a turnip; it’s because the online dating interaction is much different from the face-to-face interaction. Your messages are not always understood by the recipient as you intended them and as such, rules are needed. I have comprised 5 winning rules for online messaging etiquette:

Rule 1

Give to your conversation what you would your future relationship.

In other words, don’t skimp on your messaging effort. The man or woman you are conversing with might just be your soulmate. Avoid responding to them or greeting them with a simple “Hi”. These interactions will cause the conversation to fall flat, fast. While these greetings are appropriate in a face-to-face interaction, online dating is much different and we need to use conversationally rich messages.

Rule 2

Questions are your best friend, use them often.

Direct questions are always going to be the bread and butter of online dating conversation. Try to avoid “dry” questions like, “How are you?” These won’t get the responses you are looking for. Include questions that are geared toward their profile. Consider reading through their profile and asking questions that would naturally come up. “It says you like traveling, which are your favorite places to travel?” Feel free to include your favorite places to travel with this question. Someone who is passionate about this will give you more than enough to talk about.

Rule 3

Don’t overwhelm yourself with too many conversations at once.

It can be tempting to try to interact with as many people as possible to get the quickest result. The problem with this is that you won’t give your best effort. Try to limit your potential interests to a few. This way you can focus better on conversation topics.

Rule 4

Give your best effort for a timely response.

Time can evade us all. If communicating with someone online, try to make your best effort to reply promptly if interested. I highly suggest you respond within 24 hours.

Rule 5

Show enthusiasm with punctuation.

“That’s exciting! I love The Walking Dead too!” Isn’t that much better to read than, “I like that show too.”? Feel free to go wild with your enthusiasm. It shows the other person you are engaged with the conversation. This enthusiasm can also be flattering.

What To Do When Your Online Conversation Comes To A Halt

So, you finally find someone online with an exciting profile. You’ve messaged them a friendly “hello” and they’ve responded. Nice!

Well, not so much. You message them back and the only thing you get in return is the sound of crickets chirping. What’s a smart, sexy single to do?

First and foremost, take a deep breath and remember that this person isn’t yet a part of your ‘everyday’  life. So if this online pen pal doesn’t lead to a relationship, it’s not a big deal. There are plenty of other people available online.

Second, if you really think there may be a connection and you suspect that your potential special someone may be wondering what to write back to you, then there is something you can do: send a follow up message with a question that expands the conversation and makes it easy for them to engage with you.

Let me give you an example.

Perhaps in your initial message you gave a friendly hello and asked a light and breezy question about something in their profile — like, “You went camping in the Grand Canyon? I love it there! What were your favorite hiking trails?” They respond to your question, to which you say, “I LOVE that trail, it is so beautiful!” And then… silence (chirp, chirp!).

At this point, you could either wait for their response, which you may never get, or you can message them again and ask another light and breezy question: “Where else have you hiked?”

The beauty of online dating is that people usually list their favorite topics in their profiles. So if the Grand Canyon conversation is a dud, you can refer back to their profile and ask another question about something else they’re passionate about. Perhaps they’re also addicted to “Game of Thrones.” Hopefully your additional message will re-engage them. If everything goes really well, you’ll soon talk on the phone, meet in person and perhaps go on from there to an amazing relationship.

But if you send that additional message and they don’t respond, just move on. There’s no shortage of singles online and there’s no need to exert too much energy on someone who isn’t giving you the energy and attention you deserve in return.

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Online dating can be a lot of fun if you choose to invest your time only on the people who are available and quickly forget the ones who aren’t.

I hope you find what you’re looking for online and please let me know how you’re doing on my facebook or twitterFor more dating tips please check out my book, “Flirt For Fun & Meet THE ONE,” and cheers to your dating success!

The 3 Best Questions to Ask Your Online Date

The entire point of online dating is so you can meet someone online with the intention of meeting “offline” or in real life. Unless you want to remain a virtual dater, I always suggest you create a successful strategy to online dating that will help you to go on more first dates and increase your chances of meeting someone you’ll connect with. A great way to know if someone is worth meeting, is to have a set of what I call K.Y.D’s “Know Your Date” questions.

Here are the 3 best questions to ask your potential online date and why they are important.

What are your current relationship goals?

It’s a good idea to know right off the bat whether you and your potential online date share the same relationship goals. This is one of the first things you want to clarify outside of whether or not they are single. Some people who are dating online are there for various reasons and at different stages in their dating life. You could be dating online because you’re bored in your current relationship, you recently broke up with someone and now want to play the field or you could be at a point in your life where you are ready to find Mr.Right, have babies and settle down within the next year! Asking someone what their relationship goals are seems pretty common sense to me.

 

What are five things you can’t live without?

I love this question because you get great insight about what’s really important to the person you’re dating. He may say his mom, his iPhone6, his boys night of poker, his Jack Daniels, his German Sheppard, Sunday night football or his X-box addiction. The answers are limitless and what you get is an opportunity to imagine what life may be like to live with the things he can’t live without. Are you really interested in competing with his season tickets during his favourite sports season, or dealing with his heavy metal music play list before he goes to bed every night? I am not suggesting that all the items in his list will be terrible or incompatible, however there may be some deal breakers and red flags for you to take note of.

 

What are your deal breakers or turn-offs in a relationship?

This question is really a gift to you. Knowing his automatic turn’off’s is a key factor to determine compatibility. A great way to see if he’s ruled you out of his dating pool if anything he mentions is a deal breaker you possess. There’s no point in pretending that you don’t smoke if he says that smoking is deal breaker or going to church on Sundays when that’s where you know you’ll be on the weekend. What if the guy you’re interested in says that he hates women who wear a lot of make up. You happen to be a make up artist, have the largest make up collection ever and wouldn’t be caught dead without your lipstick and bronzing powder before leaving the house? Clearly this is something you don’t have in common.

There you have my suggested best 3 online dating questions to determine whether the guy you like is worth meeting offline and going on a first date.

5 TMI’s To Avoid In Your Dating Profile

Your online dating profile is an effective way for you to market yourself to other great singles such as yourself! Think of it this way, you are the product and you need to sell that product to your target audience. Who is your target audience? Potential partners you are trying to attract! You do this by being a quality product of course, but you also do it by promoting that product the right way. This is why you need to have a great profile picture, a catchy tag line and a stellar profile!

 
One thing that makes a profile more interesting is leaving something to the imagination. Many times people write all the wrong information in their profile and it does not paint them in the best light. A big mistake I see all too often is people putting too much information which ends up scaring potential dates away. In order to market yourself better when online dating, here are my 5 TMI’s to avoid in your dating profile.

5 TMI’s To Avoid In Your Dating Profile

1. Personal Identifiers
Someone shouldn’t be able to identify where you live, work or any personal contact information from your profile. This includes taking pictures in front of your house or workplace. Remember safety first because stranger danger is real! Don’t be paranoid but don’t put yourself at risk either.

 

2. Previous Relationships
We’ve all had failed relationships, some of them ended in not so pleasant ways. There is no need to go into excruciating details about your previous relationships and why they ended and how much your ex did you wrong. When you do that you show that you’re still not over them or the situation which will scare people off.

 
3. Health Issues
While any major life threatening or debilitating illnesses should be discussed, you don’t need to talk about minor health issues or bodily functions (no one needs to know what happens when you eat chili). If you do need to discuss a health issue, you don’t need to be very specific about it, leave details to when you get to know each other more.

 

4. Sexual History
You don’t need to discuss your “number” or how many notches you have on your belt. You should avoid discussing your fetishes or your sexual activity preferences as well. If you associate yourself with a particular lifestyle that is important to you, then make sure to state it but don’t get into too much detail.

 

5. Baggage
Everyone has baggage, but if you have unresolved issues you have to be careful about how it affects the way you date. Your online dating profile is not the place for it. You don’t need to discuss how you don’t speak to your family or how you were severely mistreated as a child or how nobody loves you. It won’t serve you well.

 

When creating your online dating profile, make sure it reflects who you are while still showing your best self to prospective partners. Avoiding TMI in your dating profile will help you show that you are a quality partner who is worthy of a second glance. By marketing yourself better online you will not only attract more people, you will be able to take it to the next level and, ultimately, find your happily ever after!

Single? Make Online Dating Your #1 Resolution!

Make 2016 your year! It is time to break out of your comfort zone and open yourself up to the world of online dating!

Here are 7 reasons why you should make online dating your #1 New Year’s resolution!

 

  • Date outside your friend group – Break the habit of dating a friend or someone in your social circle. I think we default to this because we are scared and find comfort in knowing a little something about a person prior to dating them. Also, it doesn’t help that all your friends are telling you to go for him/her when in your heart of hearts it feels like a forced relationship. Try something a little different this time and explore the prospect of finding someone online. Many of you will say “but I’m not desperate yet…” Making an online profile does not determine you are desperate, it proves you are open to a world of possibilities! I guarantee you will meet people you would have never met otherwise!
  • Bigger pool to pick from – Online dating provides a much bigger pool to choose from, when selecting a potential partner. At PlentyOfFish we see a whopping 4 million people logging onto their profile daily. With numbers like this, I am surprised when single people tell me they aren’t actively online dating!
  • Peak season – This is the best time to shine! Historically, right after Christmas until after Valentine’s Day, PlentyOfFish experiences a permanent increase in signups of over 20%! If you have ever wondered whether you should try out online dating, right now is the ideal time for you to take the plunge and test the waters.
  • It’s genuinely fun – You have the power to make your online experience what you want it to be. One of the best ways to approach this ample world of opportunity is to have an open mind and a positive outlook! Checking out profiles from afar can be really fun, without the pressure that you would typically endure in a traditional setting like a bar or party. Crack a bottle of wine, slip into your pjs and start scrolling!
  • Save money – Online dating is not only extremely convenient, but it is rather inexpensive as well! You can create a profile on PlentyOfFish for free and immediately start talking to singles. Going out with friends to check out the opposite sex can be really fun, but doing this on a weekly basis will make a significant dent in your bank account.
  • Practice – As they say, practice makes perfect! If you are newly single or in an extended dry spell, online dating is a great place to start. You have the opportunity to really chat with someone before you decide to meet them or not. Taking baby steps will help you find your stride again.
  • Accessibility – The start of the new year tends to be a little chaotic as you’re attempting to nail down your routine for the months to come. By the time you get home from work, you realize you haven’t had a solid conversation with anyone because you were glued to your monitors all day. Well you don’t have your busy schedule as an excuse anymore, because dating has evolved! Mobile apps make the world of dating much easier for those on the go! Sign into PlentyOfFish and set up a date while on your way to Starbucks in the morning or on the treadmill after work! dbf34e1f49f74deb1193b743029c2594

 

 

Online Daters Are About To Break The Internet

Fueled by the weight of new resolutions and prying family questions around the dinner table, singles will flock to online dating sites on Sunday, January 3rd 2016.

Just as we’ve come to accept other seasonal traditions as inevitable, PlentyOfFish can now predict the exact time every year (down to the hour in fact), when single people everywhere collectively decide they’ve had enough – this year will be the year for them to find love.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the date doesn’t fluctuate much every year. The holidays have a way of constantly reminding single people of their relationship status with an unrelenting stream of love-based messaging. First you notice every other commercial seems to be for De Beers, then the mistletoe shows up at the Christmas parties, and when enough people have asked you about your New Year’s Eve kiss come January 1st… your online dating profile is basically halfway filled out.

It’s the perfect holiday cocktail for love (perhaps with a dash of exasperation), and it comes to a head on January 3rd, specifically at 3pm PST, the moment you’re quickly coming down from the last spiked eggnog of the season. Signups to PlentyOfFish will jump by a whopping 24% over 24 hours.

And it’s not just a one-day affair, either. The winter days are short and cold, social lives usually aren’t at an all-time high, and even solo Netflix marathons start to seem less fulfilling – so the signups continue. Historically, peak period in online dating starts the day after Christmas, and runs straight through after Valentine’s day, resulting in a permanent increase in signups of over 20%.

Further, these impressive numbers are set to pay off for hopeful singles. More signups mean more traffic, resulting in more conversations being started and eventually more matches being made. Users who sign up in the first week of January find their partner an average of two weeks faster than those who sign up later, an average of 10 weeks compared to an average of 12 weeks throughout the rest of the year.

So there you have it, time is on your side when it comes to online dating this winter. And with over 2 million singles predicted to sign up to PlentyOfFish in January alone, you’ll be in good company.

How 10 Minutes Of Daily Online Dating Will Change Your Life!

Singles tell me all the time that online dating “feels like a full-time job.” And I know what they mean–there’s a lot of effort that goes into searching, messaging, planning, and ultimately, dating. Maybe you started online dating because it seemed like an efficient solution to singledom, but now it’s become very inefficient instead. What’s an eDater to do?

It’s been said that the more time you invest in something, the more you’ll get out of it, but with online dating, consistency trumps time. After working with thousands of singles as the founder of eFlirt, I can tell you that it is more powerful to spend 10 minutes per day logged in than inconsistently finding an hour on a random day every once in a while. When you make online dating a habit, it moves your love life forward smoothly with less dramatic ups and downs.

Stick to these micro-movements in your digital dating life to make it a daily habit!

1. Make it a habit:

When you log-in daily, the dating site considers you “active.” On some sites, that means prioritizing you in search results so you’re seen by more matches. It’s also a signal to others that you’re approachable and responsive. When your profile mentions you’ve been “online within 24 hours,” a match may reason that it’s more likely you’ll respond. It could mean the difference between getting a message from a match…or an empty inbox. So even if you don’t have time to do anything else on this list, consider this a hack for getting a little boost in your inbox.

2. Take your pick:

It’s easy to get stuck replying to what’s in your inbox, combing through those people who want to meet you. This is especially true for those who get a decent amount of messages, but you should not be defined by your inbox! Who do YOU want to meet? Do a search of your own and find the people you’d prefer to meet so who you’re dating becomes a bit more specific. Send a message to at least one new person who didn’t write to you first per day. When you’re limited in time, it’s best to do an advanced search, so you can get specific with who pops across your screen. If you’re struggling with what to say, download the free chapter of my book on messaging, which will teach you how to craft emails that get replies.

3. Clear the clutter:

I notice that singles who are in a rush read new messages in their inbox but don’t delete anything — including that guy who sent you a “hey baby” or that gal who is wearing a wedding dress in her main photo. Leaving the negative energy of bad matches lingering means you see it every time you log in. Who needs that? More importantly, keeping a clean inbox forces you to make decisions in your love life, a skill that will come in handy when you’re not sure what to do about that so-so date you just went on. Before you log out, make conscious decisions to either continue each conversation…or delete it.

If you find yourself with a bit more time on your hands, 30 minutes per day is ideal so you can get more accomplished. You can always call in help from my team of experts too if you feel like 10 minutes per day isn’t getting you enough dates. Remember that actions – no matter how small – are what will help you meet someone amazing!

Want to Get Real in Your Relationship? Get Online!

So many people are meeting through online dating these days. It is a great, sometimes easier way to find each other with less intimidating first introductions and more opportunity to get comfortable as you take steps toward creating a bond. But there is a lot of navigation that needs to go on in order to progress from that immediate (but not yet very personal) connection to taking the relationship into the real world. In my experience working with couples, there are three common, essential “dos” to pay attention to if you want your online relationship to make it offline, too.

Jump back online so you can carry on your search in picking a partner with potential!

Keep it real.

It is easy to feel close to someone when you communicate with them regularly through texts or emails, offering tidbits of your lives, censoring what you’re sharing. It is important, however, to not fall into what I call “Creature Comfort Contact,” where you feel like you are already in a relationship with that person because you’re touching base at the end of each day or week. The real connection comes in making plans to actually meet and spend time together. I have seen a lot of patients keep the relationship online for months, lingering with messages and texts but never taking it into real time. If you meet someone this way, it is fine to give yourself a little while to get to know each other and become comfortable. But unless there are circumstances you can’t control, such as travel or an illness in the family, a two to three week block should be all you allow before taking the next step.

Keep the flirty at bay.

Along the same lines, make sure your focus is not simply on making each other feel good with lots of flirting and sexy repartee. Lots of times online connections feel so powerful because they are driven by desire, loaded with a strong dose of sexual energy, and about making one another feel hot and excited. It also feels safer to flirt behind the mask of a purely digital interaction. The risk, though, is if this defines your interaction, it can perpetuate itself and continue to be all you share. So instead of letting that happen, think of flirting as a beginning point of attraction from which to grow, not as a destination where all you are looking to do is maintain a feel-good, sexy relationship.

Be decisive.

If you have been dating someone you met online but have decided it is not working with each other, get on with it. Given how easy it is to look in and see what people are up to, curiosity can pull you backward and keep you hanging on. If you said good-bye to someone, whether you wanted to or not, now is the time to look forward to a new person whom you would like to get to know instead of spending your time checking out your almost-ex on POF or Twitter. If you continue to track who you were pining over before, you are going to use energy that can be better invested in checking out someone new who might end up being the real deal.

 

Tune into the Doctor on Call radio hour on HealthyLife.net every Tuesday at 2 PM EST, 11 AM PST. First and third Tuesdays are Shrink Wrap on Call, second Tuesdays are HuffPost on Call, and the last Tuesday of the month is Let’s Talk Sex! Email your questions dealing with relationships, intimacy, family, and friendships to Dr. Greer at askdrjane@drjanegreer.com. Connect with Dr. Jane Greer on Facebook, at www.facebook.com/DrJaneGreer, and be sure to follow @DrJaneGreer on Twitter for her latest insights on love, relationships, sex, and intimacy.For more on Dr. Greer, visit http://www.drjanegreer.com.

How to Write a Great First Message to Your Online Crush

 

Writing a great first message to your online crush is as crucial as choosing your best online dating profile photo. If you want to make a great first impression to your online crush, you must follow my three essential F rules to online dating. When you are online dating looking to get any man’s attention, you want to be FUN, FEMININE and FLIRTY!

Let’s explore how we can focus on the essential F’s in creating a great first message online!

Fun or Funny

What guy doesn’t like a sense of humour? Guys dig women who can make them laugh, and more importantly who can laugh at their jokes! Having a compatible sense of humour is a huge plus and turn on for a man. Perhaps you have a dry sense of humour. You may be sarcastic, you may be silly or you may like your slap stick humour. An important element to a great first message is saying anything that will make him smile, chuckle and if you can do it, get him to laugh out loud – like for real! LOL It’s not hard to to be funny if you do have a natural funny bone. If you struggle with humour you can always search for a great funny joke online to share with him. Here’s a joke I found for someone who is NOT into fitness.

“Saw a couple holding hands while jogging and it made me hopeful that one day, I will meet someone who will hate them with me.” I would end it with, what are your thoughts on this? Care to join me?

Feminine

O.K ladies, this piece of advice may be challenging for some of you because there are a lot of you women who play the Alpha role and boss lady in real life. Most guys don’t want to date a bitchy, demanding, over bearing know-it-all. You know the type? The kind of woman who doesn’t NEED a man? The kind of woman who has it all covered, who can hold her own door and pay her own bills. If you come off as someone in your first message as the type who talks all about herself and how great you are, it leaves no opportunity for the man to be the hunter. You’ve heard that men like a challenge right? They don’t want competition. If you want to write a great first message you want to showcase your softer, feminine, gentle and caring side. It doesn’t mean you appear fragile and helpless, it means that you are certainly leaning more towards your “girly” traits. A great way to do that is to write something that you are really impressed by. You can also ask him a question about his work, and his hobbies or indicate that you’ve always wanted a man who was good with his hands… Essentially you are showing him that you are impressed by him and that you could use his help in some way. The damsel in distress move will always bring out the hidden hero in a guy.

Flirty

Ladies, men love it when you give them positive cues of interest and when you can open the door for flirty dialogue. Being flirty doesn’t mean that you are easy or overtly sexual. Being flirty does suggest a playful intention of sexual interest and the key is to remain feminine and classy. Now, if you are the type who is more liberal and are open to sexual dialogue early then go for it. After all, you should be clear on your dating goals and attract men who are on the same page as you. A simple key to being flirty is to complement his physical appearance or anything on his profile that turned you on, something that caught your attention. Being playful allows him to play back and begin the process of modern day courtship.

5 Signs You’re Terrible At Online Dating (And How To Change That)

Online dating can seem a lot like online shopping, (So much selection! So much fun to scroll through shoes, er.. men!), but the similarities end there. If you’re treating finding a relationship like a casual browse for sale items, it’s time to shape up! Take a look at these signs that you’re headed for trouble with your online dating profile and what you can do to fix it.

Problem: You have a strict list of criteria that you’re not willing to budge on

We hear from our girlfriends all the time that we shouldn’t compromise on what we want in a partner. But who’s perfect? I certainly wouldn’t want to be held up against that standard. Be realistic with your “dealbreakers.” Does he really have to be at least 6 feet tall? Will that matter when you’re 70? Having a strict list of criteria that you’re unwilling to compromise on, (“I would never date someone who drives a jeep,” or “He’s just a carpenter.”), means that you’re discounting a huge number of people right out of the gate that could be great for you. Having hard and fast rules about who you are willing to date will only hurt you in the long run.

Exercise: Try going on a date with someone that your friends pick for you. No arguments!

Problem: You focus on the negative

Your profile reads like a laundry list of everything you don’t want in a partner, relationship, or on your pizza. While you might think you’re being specific, all that negativity is off-putting to any potential partner. Online dating is all about being positive. You should always be honest, but no one wants to date a complainer. This goes for messages too. Stay away from negativity in your first interactions and instead focus on what you like to do and who you want to date.

Exercise: Start a new conversation where you don’t make any negative comments in your chats.

Problem: You go online exclusively for validation or positive reinforcement

Swipe, swipe, swipe, get match, experience surge of endorphins, repeat.

We all know that little twinge of excitement you get when you get a message, match with someone, or when you get likes on a photo; it can be a little addictive. Some argue that there are online daters out there who aren’t even interested in a relationship, but only in making themselves feel good with a bit of attention. While there’s nothing wrong with enjoying the little ego boost when you get a new message notification, if you’re barely serious about finding someone, you’re just wasting everyone’s time. Channel that positive feeling you get from online interactions into meeting someone new; it might be just the thing you need to approach dating with fresh energy!

Exercise: Actually go on a date. Just one 🙂

Problem: You stop responding just because it feels like too much work

We’re all busy, and it can be hard to feel motivated to continue that conversation. I’ll be real with you: online dating can be a lot of work. This might mean you have to have a few boring conversations or go on a couple of bad dates before you find one that makes it worth it, but bottom line: you have to put in the effort if you expect anyone else to. If you stop responding to messages or go AWOL on someone, you’ve stalled before you even get rolling. As challenging as it may be, if you want to be successful, you have to keep your energy up, keep responding, and keep going on dates. It WILL pay off in the long run.

Exercise: Don’t let 24 hours go by without sending a reply.

Problem: You stand people up

This is just bad manners. If you’ve committed to making plans with someone else, show up. If you really can’t make it anymore (and I mean really, not just that you decided to stay home and watch Netflix instead), then give them as much heads up as possible. Think about how much energy and preparation goes into a first date, and be respectful of other people’s time. Nothing leads to Online Dating Burnout and feeling discouraged faster than feeling like you’re wasting your time.

Exercise: Don’t back out of any dates for a whole month.