Friday, April 11, 2014

How to Create a Successful Tinder Profile

When I heard about Tinder, I thought it sounded like the most superficial thing in the world.

Well, about a month ago, I decided I'd at least give it a shot. I have to say, my opinion has changed. It seems like it's actually a pretty useful app that can help people meet. Particularly for introverts, it's a comfortable place to start. Plus, when you match you automatically know that you're attracted to each other, and though attraction is not the top priority in a relationship, it's pretty important. So before you even talk, you both know you have at least that going for you.

Unfortunately, when it comes to Tinder, it seems there are some people just looking for something superficial and stupid, but I think (at least hope) most people are genuinely open to something bigger and better.

If you're one of those on Tinder not just to mess around or boost your self confidence with a plethora of matches, but you're legitimately open to starting a relationship, I've come up with a few (okay, several) tips to help out your profile.

  • Make your first photo a good picture of only you. Don't put up a picture of your abs, you and your friends, you in the far-off distance, you wearing a mask, you making an ugly face, or you doing something nutty. You have more leeway with the rest of your pictures, but even so, don't go too crazy with the photos.
Wait, I have no idea which one is you. Plus I can't see your face.
  • Don't put any pictures up that aren't you. I don't need to see a landscape from that one time you went hiking or the sunset at a beach. I'm here to get to know you, so put up ones that tell me something about you. If you don't have six good pictures of you, put up three. If you don't have three photos of yourself, then you really need to take more pictures.
  • Don't put up pictures of you being close with someone of the opposite sex. It looks like you're dating someone, even though clearly you're not since you're on Tinder.

  • Don't make all of your pictures shots of you doing something crazy. Skiing, wakeboarding, skydiving, whatever. Maybe it's just me, but it seems like the majority of guys are crazy outdoorsy around here, and that's the only side of them I see on Tinder. Not that I don't like outdoorsiness, but I'd like to see more than that. Put up a variety of photos that show different parts of who you are!
  • Avoid bathroom selfies. If you must take a bathroom selfie, at least make sure the mirror and counter are clean.
  • Just say no to gym selfies. Who takes pictures of themselves at the gym?? And on that note, don't dwell on your muscles, unless you want a girl that only cares about your muscles. I haven't seen girls' profiles, but I'm guessing they often do similar shots of their bodies. Just, no.

  • Use good quality photos. If you've zoomed in so much that the photo is grainy, don't use it. And noticeably cropping someone out of a photo is bad form.
  • Write a bio! This is the biggest sin I see on Tindereither no bio or something lame like the following:
    • Using a famous quote.
    • Quoting a random line from a movie. 
    • Giving their Instagram username. I didn't even know that many guys used Instagram, let alone wanted strangers to be all up in their business. 
    • "Just ask me what you want to know." I call that lazy. You should at least say something about yourself. 
    • "No one ever reads these." Um, yeah, we do! At least I do.
Tinder has this reputation for being extremely superficial, and when nobody writes a bio, no wonder! We're judging whether we're interested in each other based solely on photos. So let's write bios. If you write an intriguing bio, it can be a great conversation starter for when you get a match. 
You can tell a lot about a person by what they write, so here are some tips on writing a good bio.
    • Use correct spelling, grammar, and punctuation. Some people seem to think that correctness in language is inconsequential. It's not (especially to me). It's important for clear and intelligent communication. If your bio is one huge run-on or it doesn't make any sense, I can already tell that chatting with you will be torture. And if you're over 20 and still don't know the difference between your and you're, seriouslyit's time to figure it out.
    • Don't talk about how much you love working out. You sound like just a jock.
    • Don't be boring. Don't say "I love my family. I like sports. I love hiking and talking to my friends." First of all, almost everyone likes those things. Give yourself some life, man! Find a way to communicate the essence of who you are. If you're funny, show it by writing a bio that makes people laugh. Don't just say you're funny. That's super duper lame. Some things can't be communicated in a bio, so just don't try. For instance, there's no constructive way to say you're a good listener. It's something you just figure out later.

    • Take some time on your bio. You don't have to write it in two minutes. You can take twenty if you want to. Potentially hundreds of people are going to see it; you should take the time to make it worth reading.
    • The bio is a great place to disclose important information. In my area it's common to put "LDS" or "non-LDS" since typically, people are looking for one or the other. It would probably be good to mention if you have a kid too. The big things.
Perhaps if Tinder users represent themselves well and reserve their right swipes for people they could legitimately be interested in (and not just to see if that guy/girl swiped right too), this app would be more useful to people than it seems to be currently.

Hopefully you got something out of my thoughts here.

Over and out.

Oh wait! P.S. hopefully this is a "duh" moment for you, but when you actually meet Tinder people, do so in public place; safety first. And don't get addicted to the app. Like any other piece of technology, remember its usefulness and use it for a good purpose.

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