Online Dating Results, Week of 10/31 – 11/7

Let me start this post by saying that a gentleman doesn’t kiss and tell.

Having said that, I do think the entire online dating industry needs a big dose of transparency and, for that reason, I submit to you, dear reader, my results for my first week back to online dating in quite some time, the week of 10/31 – 11/7:

  • Completely re-wrote my profile
  • Contacted 41 women
  • 7 of those profiles went dark in the same time period (a 17% churn rate*)
  • Received responses from 14 women (a 34% response rate)
  • Proactively contacted by 2 women
  • Received 5 phone numbers (12% of initial messages)
  • Went on 3 dates
  • Message-to-meet ratio for the week: 7%
  • Second dates planned after first dates: 0.

This was all Cupid, and I should mention that not all of this “reduction” through the funnel was women blowing me off: out of the 5 phone numbers I got I deliberately chose not to pursue two of them.

From all my reading and talking with friends, the above numbers seem like a pretty middle-of-the-road, average experience for a male in his 20s or 30s on OkCupid in a medium-sized urban area. My city is about 500k people (with 2 million in the surrounding metro area).

Here’s the other side of the equation, my input:

  • 1-2 hours on profile rewrites and message sending
  • $20 – 30 on dates
  • Level of certainty that I would not want a second date with all three women I met, arrived at either prior to actually meeting in person, or within 0.05 seconds of them arriving at our chosen venue: 100%.

I am trying to portray, as honestly as possible, that this online dating thing is tough — even for a guy who has a pretty good idea of what works and what doesn’t.

I view my current situation as a sort of boot camp; what I’m doing is clearly not working very well for the current dating market I’m trying to crack. But I’m committed to refining and tweaking my approach until I do crack it. And, since I suspect that almost literally ever other dating market in the U.S. is easier than my market, I will be in an even better position to advise other guys on how to maximize their results from online dating.

So there you have it. I hope this has post has been illuminating to you on some level — and I hope it inspires you to post your own stats, either in the comments below or on your own blog!
*An earlier one-week test rendered a 30% churn rate, which suggests to me that this metric is pretty highly variable.

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