We all know the expression “you never get a second chance to make a first impression.” What a lot of people don’t realize is that this phrase is just as significant in the dating world as it is in the marketing world. Actually, dating and marketing are exactly the same thing. While I was born in 1981, and not technically a millennial, I figure I’m close enough and can give a few pointers on marketing yourself for dating. The first time I tried to write this post for our blog swap, it turned into a memoir or sorts, and I realized that no one really cares about my life – and if they do, they can read my blog on a regular basis. So coming from someone with no marketing background, but a serial dater/attorney/semi-psychotic 20 something – here we go…
- DO always put your best (well-fashioned) foot forward. Dress appropriately for the date. Always remember that you could meet someone at anytime, anywhere. I’ve met dates at the grocery store, walking my dogs, at the gas station, and walking to work. When I see someone who looks athletic, I’ll try starting a conversation about the training I’m doing for the half marathon. If he’s in a full suit and reading the Wall Street Journal, well, lawyer-V comes out to play ball.
- Scenario: I’ve never been one to wear gym shoes to walk to work. My feet have been through hell in high heels but one day, I got a brand new Michael Kors heel stuck in a street grate and started to fall, when I was scooped up by a passerby. This passerby was gorgeous, but unfortunately also holding coffee, which then spilled all over my white coat. After a brief discussion now out of harm’s way on the sidewalk, we decided to meet for drinks that evening and he was insistent on paying for my dry cleaning bill. Personally, I was more concerned with how to get this gorgeous man to kiss me at the end of the night. While my feet and heels suffered, I secured a three month relationship.
- DO NOT order a fruity, girly drink. These drinks scream high maintenance. Sure this goes mostly for women, but yeah, for you guys too.
- Scenario: One of my best straight (slightly questionable) male friends absolutely loves pina coladas, so a bar here in Chicago named a drink for him – “Mike’s Manly Colada” served straight up in a beer glass with no fruit on top and an extra few shots of liquor – which is occasionally set on fire for extra manliness. Either way, I am still embarrassed for him and not-so-secretly wonder if it’s that drink that ends his stories with “and then I went home alone.”
- DO put some thought into your online dating profile if you choose to go that route. That profile is your first impression – and while you can easily manipulate it to show what you want it to show, remember that the truth will always come out.
- Choose pictures that show you. Today. Or at least within the last 3 months.
- Answer questions openly and honestly.
- Put creepy fetishes up front so you don’t waste someone’s time (see: wtf? for the actual story on this one).
- DO choose conversation topics wisely. It is not okay to discuss past relationships, the number of sexual partners you have had, how many children you want and that you want them before you’re 30, what cut diamond ring you will say “yes” to, and if you’re in the city, apparently it’s date suicide to mention you want to move to the suburbs. Put a little thought into what you want to learn about your date and what you want to reveal.
- DO NOT drink too much and get slutty. This goes for men and women.
- Scenario: Too many to detail. Lessons learned – err, sort of. This should actually be self-explanatory.
- DO NOT order the most expensive thing on the menu, or the least expensive thing on the menu.
- DO try out a cheesy pick up line! I love these. I think it’s hilarious when a guy pulls out a cheesy pick up line circa 1994. It shows you have a sense of humor, and can make conversation with anyone – very important qualities for a man or a woman.
- Him: Can I have directions? Me: To where? Him: To your heart. Me: Awww…you’re funny. I’m V.
You know what works for you, and if you don’t – you need a lot more self-discovery before you can figure out what you want in someone else. You should know how to manipulate your flaws, and show your strengths. The main thing to remember is putting a little thought, time and effort into meeting someone and making that positive and lasting first impression. Whether it is at a bar, on the street, online, in class, at work, etc., look your best to feel your best. It will show and already give you a leg up.
V and I are both members of 20 Something Bloggers, and recently participated in a blog swap. Check out the site, connect with us, and who knows - maybe you'll be swapping with one of us next time!