09/06/2016 07:57 BST | Updated 09/06/2017 06:12 BST

Three Reasons You Need to Create a Dating Profile that Feels like a Magazine Cover

Picture it: you're browsing the stands at the newsagents, choosing which magazine you're going to buy for your commute. What do you do first? Your eyes flit to the cover image. It lingers there on that main image and without even being aware, you have more or less decided in a matter of seconds - maybe even less - whether you're going to buy that particular magazine or not. But, hang on a minute, perhaps you're still hesitating. So you check out the headline. It usually says something like, "30-Day Body Blitz" or something very simple like "The Fashion Issue". The headline is sucking you in. You like it.


Photo credit: Saskia Nelson, Hey Saturday

What do you do next, the deciding factor? You skim the titles of the articles it features inside. These titles are so well written that they hook you in. You're dying to know more, right. Titles like:

'What it's really like to be Johnny Depp'

'Sleek arms. The 1-min move for jiggle free guns'

'The top 50 most influential women under 30'

'The 10 suits that will get you noticed'

Everything you see on the cover of the magazine makes you decide whether you're going to buy it or not. You might well flick through it before you actually purchase it, but the decision has already been made while you were checking out the cover - often in a matter of seconds.

Imagine that magazine cover is your online dating profile. Creating anticipation and excitement is the only job of your dating profile. Here are three things you can you do to make people click.


Photo credit: Saskia Nelson, Hey Saturday

Choose strong images

Anyone who works in marketing knows that image is everything. Your profile photo is the single most important part of your profile. Just like the magazine cover, people will decide in less than a second whether to continue reading or move on.

The future is visual. People crave a richer visual experience when doing anything online. To get ahead while online dating, you need to connect with people on an emotional level and evidence shows that images do this more quickly and effectively than video, audio or text.

Those guys at OK Cupid have done a whole lot of research, which concluded that a staggering 90% of what people think of you is based on your dating profile photos alone. Choose good quality, colourful and strong images that showcase you at your best and you'll immediately see an uplift in the number of visitors to your profile.


Photo credit: Saskia Nelson, Hey Saturday

Come up with a creative headline

In magazine world, you live and die by awesome headlines. Choose to make a great impression by avoiding those dull clichés you usually come across. Be smart, witty, concise or just share something that gives clues as to who you are. Here are some real-life examples that appealed to me. They're not going to appeal to everybody but that's the point. Use a headline that appeals to the kind of person you want to attract.

45 is the new 30

Guaranteed more fun that your ex

While you're waiting for your real Don Draper

Two things I've never told anyone...

Free 30 day trial

I think we're going to need a bigger boat

Ruthless, uncompromising tea drinker

My dog thinks I'm kind of a big deal

Magic 8-ball says: 'Heck yes!'

Get me off this dating site!

Make them want to click...


Photo credit: Saskia Nelson, Hey Saturday

Always be hooking

Forget about writing paragraphs on your life story. It's all about the hook. Everything you write should be brief - think Twitter-sized anecdotes - and leave them wanting to know more. For example:

'Hmm what's my favourite book? Well my last date dumped me when I told him.'

How badly do you want to know what that book is?

How would you like to wake up the morning after a game-change of a date to discover a text that says...

Surprise, intrigue or delight where possible. This is a tactic used by marketing agencies up and down the country simply because it works.

To follow more of my musings about online dating, check out my blog here.