How to write an (almost) perfect online profile

Loretta

Writing an online profile about yourself can be daunting. What do you say? What is someone else going to think when they read it? How much do I write?

All these questions are normal and I have personally found that when I have written my profiles for the likes of a dating site or MeetUp groups and even LinkedIn, I've mulled over them. 

Once I started to look at writing profiles more as a creative writing exercise, or an expression of myself, things changed and I received more messages and interactions. I also received compliments on the way my profiles were written. 

It doesn't matter if you're looking for friendship or love, the tips I am sharing in this blog can be used in all Let's Meet At bios (that's what we call profiles). I've included some fun things I've also seen on other profiles.

You need a hook

If you take nothing else away from this post, take this one concept - you need a hook or two! A hook is something unique or a little bit quirky that will grab the reader's attention and make them want to read more as well as giving them something to start a conversation with. Hooks should be included in your introductory paragraph.

"Hi" is all very well to start a conversation with but it doesn't give a good lead into a conversation. You might get a "Hi how are you" back but then you're left with having to create a conversation. An example for Let's Meet At members using a hook to start a conversation could be, "Hi, I saw you really love Mexican food, me too. What's your favourite Mexican restaurant?

There's a lead-in question and a commonality to kick off a conversation.

Try something different and have fun with it

I once got a friend to write my profile introduction on a dating site. It was so lovely and honest and captured me as a person from someone else's eyes. This really worked for me and caught the attention of other members who commented on the style. If you're finding it hard to write about yourself, this is a good way around it.

I've seen guys write profiles based on a 'For Sale' ad, usually pretending they're an old car or something. I actually really like these; they are interesting, a little quirky and honest. They'd say things like, "Two previous owners"; "Broken down a few times"; "Usual wear and tear but body still in good shape"; "Loyal and reliable." 

I've also come across profiles that include references from friends and ex-partners. E.g. "Danny is ace at flipping burgers." Best mate since 2001; "Danny will never leave the toilet seat down." Ex girlfriend"; "Danny is the most handsom boy!" My Mum. These ones I think are really funny - even if they're probably made up.

It's creative, it's fun and they can be used as hooks to start a conversation.

Writing profiles is really about marketing yourself

In a profile you're selling your awesomeness to a reader so that they're going to want to message you and ultimately meet you. A profile should read a little like a marketing advertorial. 

Your introduction should include a hook and your USP (unique selling point/proposition); the body should contain all the details; and the end should have your call-to-action. This means that if someone only reads the beginning and end of your profile, you have given them enough of a reason to message you.

Utilise the prompt questions

When I designed the questions for member's bios on Let's Meet At, I did so with a purpose - to initiate conversation. There are prompts on all your favourite foodie items and places (hooks), plus you can let others in on your biggest foodie confession (a hook)! And there's room to tell people what else you're interested in.

Prompts form the body of your profile. Keep the body concise and to the point - chances are that people will skim read the body and just look for key points. Dot points are fine to use - I think that in this day and age, people want information quickly; they don't want to hunt for it.

Add in some of your personality but don't try to be someone you're not. You'll get found out if you meet in person.

Call-to-action

This is your last chance to get them to message you - it's often where you say what you're looking for. It's also a chance to recap on your profile.

For example on Let's Meet At you might say I am looking for..., "Friends who enjoy short walks to the pub, eating ribs and a bit of politically incorrect banter."

This indicates you like to chat, reiterates what you like (going to the pub) and what you're looking for. It has a hook and shows personality, yet it's short and simple.

There's also nothing wrong with being really honest and stating exactly what you're looking for e.g. I am looking for... "Someone who enjoys some of the same foods as I do. Click YEP if you think we share the same interests and you're looking for something more long term." At the end of the day, if you're not going to be honest in your profile, then you're not going to attract the right people.

Bonus extra: If you still want more, here's a brilliant article on writing online dating profiles - 15 ways to make your online dating profile stand out from the pack.

What are you waiting for, login or join and put your profile writing skills to the test.

About the author: Loretta is the Founder of Let's Meet At and passionate about connecting people through their mutual love of food.