Occasionally, the world of online dating in the 21st century can learn something from the medieval code of “31 Rules of Courtly Love” which was written by Andreas Capellanus, a Frenchman in the 12th Century. The 18th rule states “good character alone makes a man worthy of love” and when applied to online dating the easiest way to convince a lady of your good character is to have a great profile. The easiest way to convince someone that you are worth talking to more than the next guy is to have a unique profile — and since guys initiate most internet dating exchanges, and only get a response about 30% of the time for all their trouble, a unique internet dating profile is very important if they want to succeed at online dating.
Why does it matter that your online dating profile is unique? Your potential date may have dozens, maybe even hundreds, of people getting in touch with them. The more attractive she may be, the more cyber-suitors she may have. Making very obvious statements like “looking for a date” or “likes to laugh” don’t really help advance your case. Of course you are looking for a date or you wouldn’t be on the site. Would anyone want to meet you if you didn’t like to laugh? If they felt they could get on well with someone who detests laughing, do you think you would want to meet them?
Some people will actually say things like “I like to have fun.” They may feel this importantly sets them apart from all those people who find fun a tiresome chore, but it won’t really narrow down a search enough for most people to choose them, particularly other people who think that it’s fun to have fun.
Actually discuss something about yourself, and develop it a little. This often works well in story form (not necessarily like a novel, more along the lines of “last summer, while I was queuing at the pizza stand at the Glastonbury Festival…”). Sometimes simple bullet points are just as good, but don’t be too general by saying “I like exercise” when you can say “I like to run on the beach by the ocean” (where you can bend the truth a little and maybe get away with it)
There would also be some benefit to balancing this out with some simple facts, and maybe some details without giving away too much of your personal identity or location. You may want to discuss the kind of food you like to eat, why you like to eat it, where you like to eat it, rather than just list it, and the same goes for music you listen to, movies you see, TV you watch and books you read.
One of the larger dating websites publishes behaviour trends amongst its customers and suggests that when you have a profile that shows some sort of passion or enthusiasm for something, anything, you are much more likely to be treated favourably in terms of replies to messages that you initiate.