We analyzed over 500,000 first contacts on our dating site, Ok Cupid.
Our program looked at keywords and phrases, how they affected reply rates, and what trends were statistically significant.
The result: a set of rules for what you should and shouldn’t say when introducing yourself. Let’s go: are nice things to say to someone, but no one wants to hear them.
After all, the way you choose to start your initial message to someone is the “first impression of your first impression.” The results surprised us: The top three most popular ways to say “hello” were all actually bad beginnings.Even the slangy Obviously, all successful Ok Cupid relationships outgrow our in-site messaging feature.But an offer to chat or of an email address right off the bat is a sure turn off.One of the things online dating has going for it is its relative anonymity, and if you start chipping away at that too early, you’ll scare the other person off. ) that are all clearly referencing something important to the sender, the recipient, or, ideally, both.Besides, when you tell a woman she’s beautiful, chances are you’re not.
On the other hand, more general compliments seem to work well: The word is a perfect case study for our point.
As an adjective, it’s a physical compliment, but as an adverb (as in, “I’m pretty good at sports.”) it’s is just another word.
When used as an adverb it actually does very well (a phenomenon we’ll examine in detail below), but as We took a close look at salutations.
Talking about specific things that interest you or that you might have in common with someone is a time-honored way to make a connection, and we have proof here that it works.
We’re presenting just a smattering: in fact every “niche” word that we have significant data on has a positive effect on messaging.
Even more effective are phrases that engage the reader’s own interests, or show you’ve read their profile: , no doubt because of its adverbial meaning of “to a fair degree; moderately” also helps male messages.