There is nothing stopping you from making a great first impression. And, you never get a second chance to make a great first impression. The pressure is on. But even if writing is not your strong suit, you still have the ability to write a compelling first email. So lets get started…
Most people don’t expect an email response from a stranger within a couple of hours. If you’re responding, you have a couple of days to think about what you want to say and how. If you’re writing to someone whose profile you’ve seen, you have even more time. But you don’t want to wait too long, especially before writing to a new member. Others can see that same profile and may get that person’s interest first.
Approach it as you would a sales letter. Start by sketching out your main ideas, then reorganizing and refining them. Be honest. Be yourself. Point out what is unique and great about you without going overboard. You DO want to send something polished in your final draft. But you do NOT want to sound impersonal, lecturing or flat with a bunch of factual information about yourself. Nor should it sound like a series of questions as if you are interviewing someone for a job. You need to show the person that you are interested in them in a humorous or intriguing way. You need to relay key facts about yourself and your values. The common theme here is: you need to be interesting.
It is always a good idea to be a little bit different, but not weird. Unless weird is the impression you want to make. Most people fit within a range. They are looking for someone a little different from those they have met so far. That’s why they’re still looking.
You need to show you are interested, but without sounding desperate. They will run for the hills if they even suspect you of being needy. Just like in a job interview, you want to show you want the job, but have something to offer other than your need. Making your first contact with an online dating situation is the same except more personal. Accordingly, you should be less formal.
There is no doubt, writing your first email is a balancing act. But take it slow and steady. Curb your urges and think clearly. Write a few rough copies and toss out the first two or three. Then, be bold and send it off. Remember, they are looking for someone too. The fact that you chose them is both a compliment and a good sign you both have something in common.
At least, you think so. Now, just get them to agree.