If you’re familiar with this blog, you will know that my advice generally caters to both sexes. For girls I offer a guy’s perspective on the online dating world, and for guys, I can tell you what has worked for me over my last few years of online dating.
However, I do occasionally like to get a little specific with my advice. Sometimes it can be different, depending upon whether I imagine I am talking to a man or a woman. And when it comes to men emailing prospective female matches, I think there are a few “extra rules”. So if you are a man, you should read my non gender specific email tips, but you should also bear the following advice in mind.
Don’t Use Physical Compliments
Okay — I have said this before, but it bears repeating. Please do not use physical compliments! It has been proven that there is a direct correlation between physical compliments and reduced reply rates when it comes to online dating emails.
Even if you don’t believe the statistics, just consider the logic. Imagine you’re a girl, and a guy walks up to you on the street and says, “Hey baby, you look beautiful”. Now if the guy is really charming he might get away with it, but that particular scenario is likely to result in a big fail.
Now take that same scenario online. Women can’t see you, they can’t absorb your body language, and they don’t really know what you look like. A physical compliment online can’t come across as anything other than creepy.
So whilst you should certainly compliment a woman on her personality and/or interests (based upon what you have read in her profile), leave the physical compliments at the door.
Avoid Creepiness at All Costs
This point follows directly on from my previous one. I recommend that you always re-read your emails before you send them. Ideally, allow yourself a little breathing space so that you can come back to it fresh.
Why? Because words can easily be perceived in a different way to how they were intended. Your playful joke may come across as insulting, or even threatening in some way. My rule of thumb is to never push it to a point where I feel I might be approaching the line. I want to stay well away from the line.
Consider this — it is all too easy to have a misunderstanding when you are on a first date — when you don’t understand each other’s characters and personalities yet. Therefore, imagine how easy it is to misunderstand a complete stranger’s intentions from a written message.
Don’t Give Her Your Number
I have never given out my number to a woman first — it is almost never necessary.
I consider it to be one of those “comfort” things. When a woman is ready, she will give you her number. At that point, feel free to give her yours. There shouldn’t be a reason why you would need to give her your number otherwise, and doing so can seem a little bit forward (I’m tempting to use that “creepy” word again).
There is really only one situation in which you might have to, and that is if you have agreed a date and she still hasn’t given you her number (which is highly unlikely). In that case, you should give her your number, “Just in case”.
Take Your Time
This is my final and most important piece of advice — when emailing a girl, take your time.
Don’t be one of those guys who thinks that his best chance of success is in emailing every girl he sees a single line template message. I would rather spend the same amount of time emailing five girls a carefully considered message, than send a quick template message to twenty five girls. And I’m willing to bet that the reply rate would be just as good, if not better.
Unless you’re looking for a quick fling (in which case, you’re on the wrong site), you need to have a little respect for your potential match. If you are genuinely looking for a meaningful relationship, you’ve got time to send personalized and thoughtful emails.
Creative Commons image courtesy of CarbonNYC