You’ve seen the advertisements, the ones with breasts and the slogan FIND TRUE LOVE*, but did you know that True.com also has handy advice for online dating? In case you were ever having trouble coming up with good subject lines for emails to people you want to see naked, True.com offers the article entitled “6 Surefire Subject Lines.”
“You’ve done your quick search, and sproing! There’s the picture. That girl’s hot enough to melt butter. That guy’s steamy enough to be the designated no-shirt guy on a reality series.
Or maybe you’ve done more research – browsed your compatibles, read the profiles and found somebody who’s a good pairing for you.
Time to send an email. But how are you going to stand out from the crowd?
First of all, sproing?
Second, is it obvious that this site is having trouble reconciling their advertising with their message? If I made a movie called “True.com: The Movie,” the lead role would be played by a schizophrenic writer who, while writing these articles, is haunted by a horny devil on one shoulder and an optimistic angel on the other. Then, in an ironic twist, she would meet the love of her life on True.com who would leave her not when he found out about her illness but when he learned that her antipsychotic medication would make her gain weight. So she would go off her meds and try to win him back by following him around and killing everyone who rejected him on True.com. It would be a romantic comedy.
Anyway, the article continues:
TRUE surveyed active members to get their most successful email subject lines. The main rules are:
• The more personalized the email, the more response you’re likely to get. The more canned it seems, the less likely you’ll hear back.
• People respond well to humor. You don’t have to be funny, but keep it light, at least at first. If you’re still angry from your last relationship, emails are not the place to vent.
I don’t know about that last one. I always thought that going with a subject line like “Re: my last girlfriend was a stinking slut” told the girl that you were serious about finding a relationship. But what do I know. Apparently these six suggestions are the way to go:
• Want to know a secret?
Nobody can resist a secret. Were you ever left out when your friends were telling secrets when you were a kid? Weren’t you dying to know? This one’s a winner.
What they fail to mention is that you actually have to follow that up with a secret. Otherwise your email will say:
Re: Want to know a secret?
So how’s it going? What do you do for a living? Loved your profile. I’m totally into exercising too.
• You’ll never guess what happened after my last email!
This works best when followed by a sentence that personalizes it for the recipient. The first sentence of the email could read "…I didn’t get to meet you. I’m glad I get to now."
She’ll never guess that you didn’t get to meet her? Because she’s blind and has no way of knowing when you’re in her house?
• You’ll swear by me, not at me!
Members we surveyed reported humor as their best technique for getting email opened. However what you find funny might not make somebody else laugh, so run it past a friend first. You have to funny, not whiny and not obnoxious.
I once sent an email to a Jewish girl with the subject line “Don’t pass me over.” I’m 100% serious. And 100% seriously, she did not reply.
• We have something in common.
The best approach is to personalize the email with details out of the member’s profile. This shows that you cared enough to read the profile and make an effort. A weaker version of this is to say that the thing you have in common is your desire to meet someone online, and then to talk quite frankly about your experience doing this. Most people appreciate honesty. Another version of this is: "We have a friend in common – each other" (which, strictly speaking, isn’t a logical statement, but when you’re trying to start a conversation, who’s counting?)
I wish everyone reading this could be here with me right now, at my desk, laughing with me after I read that. “. . . which, strictly speaking, isn’t a logical statement . . .” There’s nothing I can say that could make that any funnier.
• Your screen name rhymes with ______________!
For instance, if someone’s screen name is Paulb, you might say "your screen name rhymes with date me" or if your screen name was TrueDish, you might says "your screen name rhymes with my wish." An alternate version of this is to say something off the wall, but engaging, for names that have no rhymes like "your screen name reminds me of my second grade teacher." And in the email … "Were you Mrs. ScaryOrange at Pearson Elementary in 1985?" And then go on to be funny.
To: Belligerent Intellectual
Re: Your screen name rhymes with indigent homosexual!
Were you the indigent homosexual I gave money to on the subway this morning? Call me!
• Adventures in dating.
Tell what those adventures could be, but don’t be pornographic.
Adventures like “We could go to Brooklyn for dinner”? Or adventures like “I know we just met over the internet, but doesn’t white water rafting sound fun”? Or maybe adventures like “Either one of us could be psychotic and a killer, but still we’re going to give this a shot because this is the only way I can meet people while working ten hours a day and being that the advertisements show smoking hot women, this seems like a great place to start, and that, in itself, is a pretty big adventure . . . plus I want to meet your hoo-ha”?
* It’s like starting a charity to raise awareness for skin cancer, and in the advertisements for the charity you show tanned teenagers laying out on a beach smoking cigarettes with a slogan across the top like “Be Cool – Don’t Get Cancer.”