Dating ad tips


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Laura Schaefer,  in her recently published book "Man with Farm Seeks Woman with Tractor: The Best and Worst Personal Ads of All Time" [Thunder's Mouth Press, April 2005] presents a collection of personal ads from the past 300 years. Some excerpts:

"YOUNG MAN, MODERATE circumstances and who has glass eye, would like to form the acquaintance of young girl who has a glass eye or some other deformity not more severe; object, matrimony. Address—."
The Coshocton Daily Age Ohio, August 17, 1903

"Eliza, you can return to the house. The boil on my nose is gone." -- Godey's Lady's Book April, 1873

"A lady, young, pretty, bright and poor, desires to make the acquaintance of a man with the opposite qualities, with a view to a happy marriage." Davenport Tribune, 1894

-Excerpted with permission. © 2005 by Laura Schaefer. Buy Laura's Book at

There are profile writer who will write an ad profile for you and you upload it to your dating site.  It costs about $90 and they will Write a Complete Profile with Photo Selection and Enhancement. 





Not getting responses from the right people to your online dating ad? Find it hard to write about yourself in your dating profile? You've come to the right place.

Example mistakes & Profile writing tips

Following are

  • 1) some examples of common mistakes (lets call them potential profile killers...) in online dating profiles, and
  • 2) profile writing tips- ideas on the kind of things one can write about in their dating profile.

The best way to write a profile is to imagine yourself meeting someone new for the first time in a casual setting- a bar, a coffee shop, or at a friend's party. Think about the kind of things you would tell about yourself to this person- your dating profile is the same idea extended over the Internet.


Example / mistakes

...."I am an honest, spontaneous, creative, imaginative (..other personal adjectives)  person..."

Very few people think they are not, this is very subjective! Avoid using personal adjectives in your ad. Define yourself concretely-better to say "I am a guitar player in a band, I write novels, or I am a cardiologist" rather than "I am creative or spontaneous."

..."I am sexy, flirtatious,... I like kisses on my back, full body massages from my boyfriend/girlfriend..."

Keep sexual innuendos out of your profile. You will have plenty of time to exchange raunchy emails if you are addicted to writing sexual stuff... but in the first impression, keep them out. Would you say this to a guy or a girl in a bar who you met for the first time? If not, then don't say it in your ad either.

..."I am a funny, witty person with a great sense of humor...."

Funny and witty people never write that directly. Instead of saying this, add a touch of humor to your profileThe correct answers to the questions "Are you a funny person?" or "Do you have a good sense of humor" is always a "No!"

...."My ex-husband/ex-wife used to spend too much time at work, with her friends, not leaving enough time for us..." or "my ex-girlfriend was so beautiful, you have to be very pretty too..."

Avoid talking about previous relationships in your profile. Take the new person as they are; no one likes being compared to previous lovers and partners.

...."I like taking walks by the ocean, or watching TV, or going camping with my friends..."

Unimportant details. Most people like these things, and these are hardly good criteria for finding a partner (it is unlikely you won't like going out with someone just because they don't like walking the beach or watching TV with you). Your hobbies is where you put these things, and more specifically-e.g. snow-boarding, or playing basketball.

...."I am looking for a REAL man/woman, with all the letters of REAL..."

Sounds like you have had some bad experiences in relationships, but that's over now. Come with a positive attitude to online dating, ready to meet new and interesting people.

...."I like blonde women, but if you are dark-haired and very beautiful, write me anyway, maybe you can change my mind...."

Turn-off to both blonde women and dark-haired women. Don't play both sides of the coin, generally backfires. Better not to say anything if you are not sure.

...."I am not interested in guys who are bitter and boring..."

No one is. Use the Ad mostly to tell what you like, not what you don't like. Just as in real life introductions, agreeability is a must have in dating profiles. 

And many more...

Profile writing tips

Follow a factual but casual approach to writing your personal ad. You want to let the people get to know you, but at the same time, your ad shouldn't come across as a boring resume. Sprinkle it with some humor, exclamation marks;  make it fun and interesting. 

A good profile has 200-250 words, with 150-200 words for yourself, and 50-100 words describing the kind of person you are looking for.

Discuss your career history and plans. What kind of jobs you have held, what your future career aspirations are, etc. These are generally looked at as positive. Think of it as the first conversation you are having with someone, don't we usually talk about we do? Excellent stuff to write about in a profile. Be brief, of course- you don’t want to go on and on about selling shoes, delivering the mail, or designing and fabricating cars, for that matter.

If you have children, tell a little about them. This is an important part of your life, and interests the people interested in dating you. Mention their ages, and if they live with you. Don't describe them too much-but giving their ages for example, makes you come across as a normal parent.

If you have moved around a bit in your life, mention the places where you have lived. It gets more people interested in you and wanting to write to you. For example,  if you are presently living in Los Angeles but have lived in Dallas, someone who has a Texas connection is more likely to write to you. If you have lived internationally, all the better-people are always interested in life in other places and cultures.

If you have just moved to where you are living now, mention that. People love playing tourist guides. They are eager to know new faces from other parts of the country or the world. They can also help you settle down in the town more easily-so even if nothing happens romance-wise, you can always make some good friends.

If you speak a foreign language, mention that. It attracts attention. Along the same lines, mention a little of your family genealogy, as people may find a connection there as well (e.g. I have a Scottish or Chinese mother).

Talk about how you entertain yourself. This is where you can be funny and witty, so exercise your imagination. Mention about your social circle. Are you a social person? Do you have many friends? Do you go out with them a lot? What activities do you do with them? If you have a good relationship with your siblings, your parents, and your family, mention it. Mention if they live close to you, and how often you see them. 

  • Mention if you like pets, and have any of your own.

When you are talking about the person you are looking for, be clear in your requirements, but make sure you don’t limit yourself unnecessarily. So if you don't want to date men who have kids, say so. Or if you don't want to go out with smokers, say it clearly in your ad. But again, be careful-you are restricting potential mates here, so put things only if you are very sure what your potential partner absolutely must or must not have.

  • Mention if you are looking for a stable relationship or if you are just looking to make friends and will see how things go from there ("looking for nice and interesting people to hang out with").


You may want to make up a false name.

It cab be a good idea to use a false name for your first email message to someone if you are on a public dating site like Craigslist or Yahoo Personals. Depending on your motivations you want to pick the false name carefully because it is going to be one of the top things she remembers. Men named Chris get laid more than any others; Edward, Dylan, and Frank fare the worst

A dating Web site called polled almost 20,000 men (and a similar number of women) who use their site to find out who’s having the most sex. The results show that guys with an “S” at the end of the name fare the best.



According to the results, men named Chris, Charles, Matt, Dennis [NOTE: The D.E.N.N.I.S. system works!] and Luke had more sexual partners than many other common names. Men named Chris averaged 11.3 sexual partners, Charles averaged 11.1, Matt averaged 10.9, Dennis averaged 10.8, and Luke averaged 10.7.

The names Edward, Dylan, Frank, and Jason fared the worst for men, averaging around one sexual partner each.

As a whole, men averaged 5.2 sexual partners while women averaged 4.4.

On the women’s side, Vanessa, Angela, Tamara, Diana, and Sheila were the top five female names giving up the golden portal the most ranging from 10.2 to 9.4 sexual partners.

Girls named Dorothy fared the worst, averaging 1.3 partners (though still higher than the Edwards, Dylans, Franks, and Jasons of the world).

Warning to Parents – Think Twice Before Letting Your Daughters Date Guys Named Chris, Charles or James survey finds men with names ending in “s” are the biggest “Players” and they have more Sexual Partners

They has discovered that men with first names ending in “s” have more sex partners in their life span than the average man. The website conducted a survey, asking 19,300 of its male members how many sexual partners they have had, and found out that Chris, Charles, Dennis and James said they were more sexually active than members named David, Brian, Jason or Bruce.

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The survey found there were six “s-ending names” in the top 10 – Chris averaged 11.3 lovers, Charles 11.1, Dennis 10.8 and James 10.4. On the other end of the scale, names like Edward, Frank and David counted less than two lovers.

“They conduct unique surveys as part of their ‘Smartdate Labs’ research. In a previous survey they discovered that women whose names end in A are more sexually active.”

The female survey discovered 8 “a-ending names” in the top 10 of most lovers – Vanessa led the way with 10.2 declared lovers and Angelina was a close second with 9.8 lovers.


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This site was last updated 04/12/11