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As any guy who’s ventured onto Tinder or OKCupid knows, that first message is daunting. Should you lead with a compliment? A simple “Hey, how are you?”
To find out, the dating site Plenty of Fish asked more than 1,000 people who had met their spouses online what their first message said.
Your best bet: Mention something specific in her profile, like her Raiders T-shirt or your shared obsession with Game of Thrones. Nearly 20 percent of the women surveyed said their husbands used this trick.
That doesn’t include comments on her appearance, like “You have beautiful eyes.” Only 9 percent of the marriages started that way.
Cherry picking a detail out of her profile shows that you’ve done your homework—beyond checking out her pictures—and gives her an idea of what you have in common, according to women we spoke with.
“My profile described my deep love of grotesque horror films,” says Cat, a 36-year-old writer from Columbus, Ohio. One guy sent her a link to an upcoming scary movie marathon, which became their first date.
They hit it off, and now are hitched.
Kaitlyn, a 32-year-old grad student in New York City, could tell she and her fiancé had a lot in common when he referenced her literature Ph.D. program in his OKCupid introduction.
“He asked me what time period of literature I studied and told me about his thesis in literature,” she says. “He was clearly smart and focused on what we had in common.”
So scour her profile for a quirk or hobby that intrigues you. Beyond how great she looks in a minidress.
If her username references a band, see what she thinks of their latest album. Or if she’s wearing a Mets tank in one of her photos, ask her out to a game. It just might be your last first date.