Online Dating: Luck Or Work?

online dating

... a little bit of one & a lot of the other!

People have a love-hate relationship with online dating. If they go on a couple good dates, they love it. A couple bad dates in one week? Not so much love. And then there are the people who are too afraid to give it a shot at all.

I always tell the cynics, if you meet the love of your life online, you may not have the best "how we met" story, but you won't care. You'll just be happy that you met each other at all! The Secret To Successful Online Dating

I always knew that the right guy was out there for me, but somehow I hadn't seemed to find him though friends, work or school. So I decided to join an online dating site, which is now the second most common way for singles to meet. I had dabbled in the past over the course of a few years, even having some short relationships come out of it. This time, though, I was going for it, full speed ahead.

Having an analytical background (I was an economist for over seven years before quitting to follow my passion of helping people with online dating), I thought it would be fun to experiment. If I switch my main profile picture, do I get more responses? If I send a long vs. short e-mail, are men more likely to get back to me? I even kept a spreadsheet tracking my response rate. I found some interesting results, but the people at OKCupid took it even further, analyzing their data to see which messages get the most responses. The results are fascinating. Why Your Online Dating Profile Doesn't Work

I went on date after date and I always tried to maintain a positive attitude. However, after hearing, "What do you do for a living?" for the 100th time, it's tempting to just make something up, like, "I'm a hand model." And then finally, in December of 2009, after 120 or so dates, I walked into the bar and met Jeremy—my last online date. We've been happily together ever since.

When people tell me, "You're so lucky you found Jeremy," I have to laugh a little. It's true! I'm extremely lucky for having met such a wonderful guy ... but was it luck or work that led me to him? I'd venture to say a little of one, a lot of the other.

Online dating is no cake walk, which many people don't realize. They think they can just throw a profile up (and not even a good one at that) and wait. That's like expecting to lose weight simply by signing up for the gym. That's just not how it works. I also realized that most people don't actually want to put in the work, which is how I hatched the idea for my business, A Little Nudge. I give people a little nudge (or a big push?) in their online dating lives because I truly think it's an amazing way to meet people.

The naysayers, of course, will always have their complaints: Why You Should Take Your Chances When Online Dating

  • "It's too hard to write about myself." No problem! Let's chat for an hour and I'll ask you some questions. Based on that, I'll make you stand out in your profile. 
  • "I have no pictures of myself." You know there's a good smile in there somewhere! Less is more when it comes to pictures. I recommend no more than 4 or 5. 6 Tips For A Perfect Online Dating Photo
  • "None of the people who I like are writing to me."  You need to write to people, too, which some people (especially women) don't realize. You need to go for what you want. (I wrote to Jeremy first, by the way.)
  • "But what will I say in the e-mail?" Just write something short. Take into account both your personality and something from his or her profile, and end with a question. I'll even give you suggestions on who to e-mail and what to say. Etiquette: Online Dating And Facebook Friending

Yes, online dating takes work, but so do most things in life that are worth the outcome. I'm here to lighten the load and guide you through the process. Trust me; it'll be worth it in the end! 

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