3 tips for successful online dating

Having a hard time online?

Last month I opened things up for readers to share stories and experiences with me about online dating. Check out the video above for what we found.

Here are our findings from the most important question asked…


Online Dating How To (no matter your age)

1) Develop a thick skin

Online dating is kind of crazy. It’s like being in the best bar and the worst bar at the same time. You have great guys who are trying to find an amazing relationship, while you have others sending you weird, dirty messages our of nowhere.

2) Be quick about it

If you see someone you like, message them. What’s the worst that could happen? Avoid generic small talk (‘how’re you?’ ‘what’s up?’…). Instead comment on their profile (‘I commend you for being the only guy man enough to admit that Titanic is their favourite film!’).

3) Show don’t tell

“I’m funny, I’m smart, I like movies, I like to travel…”

‘Shopping lists’ like these become UNBELIEVABLY boring. People won’t actually read through them, and so rather than describe yourself with a bunch of words, describe something you’ve been through, or a moment in your life that meant something to you.

Question of the day…

Have you ever found yourself dependent on online dating for meeting men? How can you ensure that that doesn’t happen, and that you’re still working on the skills that will allow you to meet guys in real life?


Do you want to ensure that you’re the most attractive version of yourself that you can be? So that when you do meet with people you’ve engaged with online, you know how to build chemistry, how to connect, and how to move things forward…

I have something that will help you with all of these steps. It’s called The Man Myth, and you can check it out here.

75 Responses to 3 tips for successful online dating

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  1. Dean Brook says:

    Really amazing article. Enjoyed the way you have given the tips for a relationship! Thank you,

  2. Ajay Ravat says:

    Thanks for the valuable tips.The information provided in this blog is very helpful.

  3. Geoffrey Wyrosdick says:

    Wow, stunning site. Thnx …|

  4. Emily says:

    Hi Matthew. I saw you on Marilyn Denis show a few years ago talking about dating and tips for your online dating profile. I took your advice and shortly after met my fiancé Kyle. We’re getting Married this August!!!! Thanks for your help. I’m trying to convince all my single gf’s to take your advice too. Thank you for helping me get my “happy ending”

  5. Adria says:

    Thank you Matthew! I’ve been totally NOT interested in online dating AT ALL! but… it’s been 5 years single with some dating and I just haven’t found anyone interesting enough that I’ve wanted to spend time with so…. I thought I would try online finally. It’s been 2 days and I already feel like prey to the sharks! I can’t stand it! Getting emails and winks and likes… it’s kinda freaking me out! I’m a pretty social person, I own my own business and talk to many walks of life all day long but this is SCARY! You’re advice is great and if I can’t transfer all my info over to my friend who is a little more into this I will be cancelling regardless of the 6 months I committed to! I don’t know what I was thinking! I am a full member of all you stuff from the beginning and now I know to stay with that… much safer!Thanks for your thoughts as I also completely agree… just not for me! My photo came down on day 3! x

  6. Jaidyn Judkins says:

    Go am ten years old

  7. Sophie says:

    Hi! great article. I thought i would try online dating for a bit. I met a guy. We’ve been dating for about three months and we actually decided to be exclusive a week ago. We are still getting to know each other but i like were things are going. I disables my OkCupid profile a while back, yesterday i decided to delete it all together. But curiosity got the better of me and i wanted to see if he already has taken his profile down. I found out that he had not, and also was online at that moment which was half an hour after we’ve seen each other. I was kind of put off by it.

    My question is what should i do? Give him some time, because it has only been a week. I don’t want to check up on him later in the relationship. I just want to trust that he will take his profile down at some point, but now i kind of feel weird about it. Or should i say something about it?

    Do you guys have any advice?

    Thanks! Sophie

  8. James says:

    Haha.. in one word Fantastic article, now i am going to join dating sites right now :P

  9. Tomato Gardening And Soil Planning says:

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    Great job.

  10. A says:

    I just created an online dating profile and I must say, online dating is a weird thing!! I totally agree with you that’s it’s kinda crazy, especially because you start looking at so many details and looking for the ideal guy that matches with your expectations 100%.
    I was quite overwhelmed though when in the first three days like six people wrote me a message.^^

  11. Lily Callahan says:

    Did a fair amount of online dating in my 30s, and had quite a bit of fun with it. Was much more successful in Philadelphia, though, than Los Angeles which is a tough market for tall Rubenesque brunettes. Ended up meeting my partner online but not on a dating site but a fan board for one of my favorite authors. As my love says, we had a really old fashioned courtship–we talked together online for a year and a half before we ever met. Chatboards are less popular these days but they are still around and are a good way to meet guys interested in specific fields.

  12. Kelley says:

    Seriously? The ending had me in tears I was laughing so hard! Looks to me as though you need some fresh eyes and someone that thinks outside the box added to your team and I’m just the person!

    And on a side note, I’m an extremely techie person and I despise online dating! Nothing but shopping lists!

  13. Sydney says:


  14. Sydney says:

    I’m not allowed to yell , shout, hit or kill my ex-husband . Or the idiot who almost ruined my legal career and employment opportunities.

    I hate all MEN!

  15. Sydney says:

    I just had a bad day today and I’m thinking very seriously about getting my own company sued. BY ME.

  16. Sydney says:

    why didn’t u have an event in chicago ?

    I’m planning to visit someday, anyway.

  17. Sydney says:

    u ‘ve been objectified!

    Groupie ALARM

    / alert.

  18. Sydney says:

    Spot on, mate!

  19. A says:

    Uncle Matty so funny! I wuv him!

  20. Blia says:

    HAHAHA!!! That last part, I couldn’t help myself but to laugh at your reaction. *Highfives* Well I do hope that your tour continues to be a super great learning and teaching time for you and the women (and maybe men) that will be participating. Be safe and thank you for being such an inspiration.

  21. anna says:

    thanks matt, wow sexy accents :XD

  22. Maria says:

    haha that was HILARIOUS!!! it’s great to see you keeping it light and fun! you are just charming! I’m in Chicago, wish I had made it to the event, but had another commitment I could not cancel. Really hope you tour again and I get a chance to go. Best of luck to you.

  23. Johanne says:

    Hi Matt ! I’ve answered your survey and I’ve been finding some amazing guys on websites (3 boyfriends, one of which I stayed with 10 years !). I loved the end of that little video Matt ! Keep them coming. With the Get the guy online course, they give me a feeling that I know you more and more. It will be embarrassing if I actually get to meet you one day because I’ll say “hi !” like we’re friends and you won’t even know me ! ha ha ha Create a good day !!! JP

  24. Ann says:

    I have looked and been on websites for dating, payed for match but I am still on my own and have been for 8 years, is it this hard to find some one to spend time with. I think online dating is difficult and I don,t really go out that often as friends all have partners so where do women go on there own to meet people. I attended your session and yes there are some points you made maybe it all has to do with confidence. I will look at buying your book to assist with finding my man and keeping him.

  25. Suzie says:

    One of Matthew’s philosophies that I’ve been constantly trying to put into practice is asking myself where my ideal guy would be on a Saturday night, and then go there.

    Trouble is, the answer was usually “at home with a good book, a coffee and his pet cat”. Had me stumped for a while until I realised my ideal guy would also be looking for someone to share that with – he would probably be online, looking for someone like me!

    If you can put your hand on your heart and say you honestly believe that tonight your ideal guy is probably logging in to match.com trying to meet someone like you, then by all means get yourself a profile! If not, work out where he *is* going to be, and go find him!

  26. Casi says:

    Hi Matthew and everyone at GetTheGuy,

    I was at the event in Atlanta yesterday and learned so much. I was told my Matthew to take risk. This made me a bit nervous as like anyone else it is hard to first accept that you may be regected and still move forward in putting yourself out there.

    Today while at lunch with co-workers I noticed a waiter who I thought to be attractive. I glanced his way, he walked over to our table. I got nervous thinking that he would approach me and start a conversation. He didn’t, he poured a glass of water for the lady sitting at the next table. I glanced once more at him and this is when he winked at me and I gave him a smile.

    As my co-worker and I were walking out of the restaurant he stopped me for a short converation and he asked for my number!!! My heart was pounding all the while and I was certain he could hear it. What a difference a glance makes. I can’t believe that I made this happen for myself!!!

    I am not certain what will come, and honestly that does not matter. I am on a high because I stepped out in faith. It was a great boost to my confidence and my ability to create an opportunity.

    Matthew as always you are very helpul and it was an honour to meet you. Here’s to taking risk!!!

    Your friend from Atlanta,

  27. Ashton says:

    Hi Matt,

    I’m newbie to your site, but have found it really helpful and motivating. I’m not much of a fan on online dating but had a question on something similar. I recently met someone but we are both in a industry where we are moving around all the time and now we are keeping in contact via email about once or twice a week. How do I keep the interest and fun going when there will be long periods apart?

    Thanks so much!

    PS: I was crushed about the show, but am still watching online.

  28. Magda says:

    I must THANK YOU- watching you rolling out this big, PINK roll up made me laugh for the first time since a week I guess.
    Thanx :)

  29. Shanti says:

    Will you ever do an european tour? (:

  30. Jaagii says:

    Aahaahaa, the ending was too funny! Almost fell off of my chair, rolling :D

    So cute!

  31. Ali says:

    Hahaha, based on that banner I’m now expecting some kind of broadway show! See you in Seattle :)

  32. Estelle says:

    Guys, I really hate online dating.

    Here are my 8 good reasons why: http://gosayhello.wordpress.com/2013/01/21/8-reasons-i-dislike-online-dating/

  33. Lori says:

    I’m 57 and love your philosophies, Matt! Just ordered your book. Having success with online dating, but it does require a different set of talents than real life. Here are my rules (and I know they reflect my age!)

    1. First impressions start in the gut. I’m not looking for movie stars, but no t-shirts, naked bodies, poses w motorcycles or cars w their hoods open.

    2. If their “bullet lists” start w sports, hunting, camping, motorcycling, they’re a “no.”

    3. They’re suspect if they “like to have fun” as a primary ambition or requirement.

    4. Turn off chat. No good comes from it.

    5. Don’t reply to winks and favoriting. As you say, Matthew, you pick, not them. Besides, you want someone who can express themselves.

    6. Read between the lines of their profile: likes to stay in, wants you to be self-sufficient…signs of no money?

    You do have to be a good judge of character too. But online dating is a process of elimination, and the above tips get rid of 85% of the pool.

  34. Misha says:

    Hahaa…My condolences matt. It is a unconventional banner and your publishers have rather an eccentric taste. In their defense you could pull it off- shocking pink and all the sexiness in one frame. How could they pass on that. Still, funny though how you felt about it.

  35. Clara says:

    Great advice. I must admit before reading ‘Get The Guy’ I relied on online dating way too much. It was the easy way of feeling I was doing something about my rubbish love life!

    Now after the book I am working hard on meeting people in real-life but as someone who lacks a bit of confidence it is a slow process. I am still online but now with a very different mindset, it used to me the ONLY way I met guys and I would put so much pressure on myself before each date – wondering if he would be the one!!

    Now I see them as a great addition to my social life and a fab opportunity to practise chatting to guys and just being myself.

    I dont know if I will meet someone online or in the local supermarket but I do know that my increasing my interactions with guys I am becoming more confident in being myself so when the hot guy does come along it will be so much easier to just be me :)

  36. Audrey says:

    Honestly, I know this great guy that I NEVER would have thought I would be attracted to – give me 1000 photos of men, I prob would not have picked him. I would have missed a very good man.

  37. Kim McMaster says:

    Welcome back Matt! the tv show wasn’t where you shine. We needed the old authentic man who we truly feel just wants to help us on our journey to love, that’s why I have your ebook and your newsletter and followed you on you tube. You are a real strength for us all! Thank you :)

  38. Martha says:

    Hi, Matt!! hahahaa I loved! my point of view is…that this is so uncertain! because maybe: I meet the man of my dreams but I’ll be the woman of his dreams? or vice versa!
    50-50 odds! but Being positive: we’ll see if we exist! hahahaaaa Thx by your vids! I missed in my mail!
    1000 besits

  39. Linda says:

    The ending!!!! Hahahahahahaha. That was the best part. Lololol. Never really seen that humour side of you before and I love it! Hahaha :D

  40. Abby Butler says:

    G’day Matt,
    It’s so great that you are back blogging. We all missed you. I thought I’d impart my experience of online dating. I’ve been on eharmony and had a whirlwind romance which was good for the ego. Now with that over and finished for several months there is this new guy on the site that I winked at and no action. But last Saturday night I unknowingly sat next to him!!
    Talk about your online meets reality!
    I really wanted to talk to him last night at church but all I did was offer him pastries as I was on the serving crew. I think he wanted to talk to me to cos he’s new to church.
    I don’t know whether he knows and I’m expecting your book to be delivered to me any day now for more tips and advice.
    Do you have any advice? Or should I email him via the site to say I wanted to say more to you than offer a croissant?

    Your friend

  41. andrea says:

    Online dating is the worst way to find a guy. I would meet guys for coffee, and they would be like, “I can only meet you from 8-4, because I don’t want my girlfriend to know.” O_O I stayed meeting guys like that. Then, I decided that if I wanted a douchebag, I would just go to a club or a bar – at least I would know what I’d be getting! It’s like sales, y’all, “see the people” Also, if you just take Matthew’s program, you won’t need to go online. Thanks for being there for us ladies and your great insight, Matthew! You’re awesome!

  42. Amelia H says:

    I can’t stand online dating. I think it brings out the worst in people and I tend to attract more than my fair share of over enthusiastic men.

    I do feel a little sorry for you with the giant banners and book covers, your practically a centerfold! lol ;)

  43. RC says:

    Eharmony I was on for about a year. That was the worst site and what they say on TV isnt exact. The matches were not anything I was compatible with nor anything that the long long test said was my match. Plus I think some guys on there can just answer the long long test in a way they think women would want thier answers to be and so they dont answer it truthfully. I ran across more creepers and crazies on that dating site than any other I ever tried. Match was also not that great of a site but better than Eharmony but they spammed the heck out of you even after you cancelled your membership. PlentyOfFish I agree with some the comments about this one. I stopped using the site after 1 a guy I met on their turned out to be a real nut job and two the site wanted us to start paying to send and recieve msgs (i had been on there for yrs b4 they started asking to pay). Datehookup sounds like a bad name for those of us looking for relationships and not hookups but few my friends found at least 1 relationship on there but it hasnt worked for me yet on there just get those ones that chat with you for a short bit then go away. OkCupid is about the only site I have found that is decent. Although it has its faults too. I honestly would probably never join a paying site again because they do not work like they claim to like eHarmony. Unless Matthew came out with a dating site which I know wont happen since he isnt a big fan of online dating. It be nice to find a site that works esp. for those of us that have to have a site thats free cuz we will never be to afford those pay sites that asks hundreds of dollars cuz of reasons such as having health issues and cant work. We deserve love to be loved and find love too. But ya anyways online dating can be great but like offline dating has its problems and its good things as well. In both your going to have good n bad experiences. But ya enough me rambling…just sharing a lil of my 2 cents after watching the video.

    • Louise says:

      Ah, Eharmony. I thought, oo this looks classy. so I did the giant questionnaire, and after that they wouldn’t accept me! They said that there wasn’t a match for me. I don’t think I stated anything too weird, unless you count reading and art and wanting a nice caring man. I think its the site’s bot to blame for that. My cousin said that I should have said I liked kittens and cushions then see what happened. haha.

  44. nabila says:

    you were really right about you said about online dating, hhhhhhhhhhh and nice picture :) :D

  45. Greta says:

    Hilarious – the last part! ;)

  46. Mandi says:

    I tried online dating once. It was far too much pressure. Too many guys not knowing the difference between a 6-pack and a keg of beer on their stomachs, and the fact it just didn’t seem organic to me.

    I know it works for some women, and I say, more power to you if it does, but I felt it put too much pressure on me to perform like a circus monkey than it would if I just walked up to someone and said, “Hey! How are you!”

  47. Kerly says:

    hahahahahahaaa..Oh Matthew!! The last bit of the video made ma laugh so hard!!!:DDDDDDDDDD

    I love you!!:))

  48. Olga says:

    Hi Matthew,
    I have been on-line dating for about 8 years now. Been on Match and Eharmony. Had a success story for a while -was married for 3 years to a great guy I met on Eharmony. Also before that dated a guy for 3 years that met on Match. In general there is good quality of men on line you just have to develop that thick skin you mentioned to avoid getting hurt if someone rejects you. You have to remember they dont know you…they just might not be attracted to your type. Its mainly visual at first. Then once you met it is another “ball game” .
    Best of luck to all that try it.
    My latest update… in a relationship with a great guy so wish me luck.

  49. Ali says:

    I have tried online dating. Mostly OKC for 2 yrs and Match for about 3 months. Match I never got any dates though I messaged. OKC I got dates and eventually a relationship…that was horrible. I don’t know it just attracts men who have personality defects, but I agree with you on not liking online dating. It was great for getting dates since I was shy, but not for finding people who were serious. And the prejudice people have while online dating is incredibly sad.

  50. Stefanie says:

    Hi Matt,

    my friends kept telling me to give online dating a chance. Mind you, a few of them have actually found their current spouse on an online dating site.

    So I did try it and went on a few dates – but it is not really the way for me. Just KNOWING that I am going to meet somebody who could be my next boyfriend and who in turn is hoping that I am his future girlfriend feels odd to me and I cannot be easygoing and relaxed. It is a contrived date.

    I’d rather meet somebody somewhere, get into a conversation and take it from there, I think.

    Cheers, Stefanie.

  51. ccdi says:

    I’ve made some business connections on POF. :)
    Yes, I’ve had to block guys who are just looking for sex, but at least you generally know right away what their intentions are. Sometimes in person, it’s a little less obvious.

  52. Elaine says:

    I like the cover on the book, it’s cute. The large poster is a bit much, I agree…lol, but I think for marketing purposes it will work because you can’t miss it! :*} I Love your reaction at the end of the video. omigod, it cracked me up. Oh, and thanks so much for teaching such good material that I can use. I really, really appreciate it.

  53. Kaye says:

    Hi Matthew,

    I’ve actually had really good experiences online dating – I haven’t met the one, but I’ve met some interesting people. Honestly every date I’ve been has been interesting, after all, people are generally fascinating.

    There are some great things about online dating – people state clearly if they are single and interested, you have a big pool of people so if you decide you want to go on three dates this week, you can pretty easily make that happen.

    My tips are almost exactly yours. I have a photo, but not one that identifies me (I send photos when I open a conversation). I always write a specific message that comments on the person’s profile. My additional tips:

    -ask a question in your message, ideally something specific relating to their profile (I noticed you like X artist, what’s your favourite album and why? I see you made the transition from being an accountant to a wildlife conservation officer , a change that big, it sounds like there must be a story behind it – can you tell me what it is? I see you moved here from Italy, what do you miss most?)

    -correspond for a few days before meeting, you’re more likely to know they are worth your time to meet, and you’ll have more to talk about

    -I re-read their profile before I see them, so I’m prepared with things to talk about

    -On the date I wear something (usually a necklace, or a scarf) a bit unusual that they can comment on (often that related to my work or travel). Guys have often been told they need to give specific compliments, and I think this makes it easier and makes us both happy.

    • Matthew Hussey says:

      Great tips Kaye! Especially love the last.

      I also think a Skype chat would be a great halfway house to feel them out before meeting.

      • laura says:

        Hi Matthew!
        Quick question – you have said that a bad first-date idea is dinner, especially if you’re sitting straight across from one another. Don’t you think Skype is even more awkward? There is nothing to distract if conversation lags a bit.
        Any tips for Skype specifically?
        Thank you ~

  54. Clara says:

    love your straight face at the end :)

  55. Rogenna says:

    Hi Matthew,

    I forgot to participate previously in the online survey, but all your observations and advice were spot on. I have on occasion used POF and others with minimal or short term success. I did learn something new from you which I think can be applied in person is to do away with the laundry list of “likes” and characteristics. Thank you for the advice. As for the dynamic idea of the team, well it’s not too bad, LOL. Why? Because it pairs the live event AND the book together. It will reimind or push the person to buy the book. I recently bought the book and will read it soon. Have fun on tour and stay safe!

  56. alisha says:

    To tell you the truth I was feeling SO shy to carry the book to the counter to buy it. After buying it, I was excited to read it but I had to be extremely careful that nobody sees the cover in the train or the in the bus :D BUT when I came to my room I loved looking at those puppy eyes. The image in the hot pink background is very meaningful to me and so I put it somewhere in my room where I post all my life goals’ pics. I find inspiration seeing you and I hope we will meet. Love!

  57. Ann says:

    Thank you for this! Finally an expert who backs up my reservations when my friends hound me to try online dating. I’m single in my early 50’s. In real life I get the attention of younger (sometimes much younger) men, because I look younger than my age and have a youthful personality. I tried online dating and didn’t get a single guy interested (not even the creeps!). At first it was really demoralizing. But if you look at the men’s profiles, every one of them is looking for younger women, and limiting their search to some random number like 26 or 34 or their-age-minus-one. Even men in their 60’s are limited their search to women under 35.. Online, they just select a handy drop-down list that filters out anyone outside of their fantasy limit. No one was contacting me because no one was even seeing my profile. As Matt says, these are the same guys who in real life might actually be interested. So I’m sticking with real life, and glad to have Matt’s blessing!

    • Matthew Hussey says:

      Really great comment! People don’t know what they want until they see it, and attraction has nothing to do with age, it’s to do with ‘youth’ (irrelevant of age). Best of luck Ann!

      • Ann says:

        Thanks, Matthew. Wish you were around when I was younger! But I’m finally getting it, thanks to you.

  58. Natasa says:

    That outro. Oh gawd XD

  59. Barbara says:

    Love the ending! :D I’m not online dating, but if I ever will then I’ll definitely follow your advice. ;)

  60. Andrea says:

    Thanks for that video. The idea of your team was really great, and they were right. That striking pink color gets the essence across.

  61. Keira says:

    I love the question of the day… Why? It’s a wake up call.
    Yes he’s telling the truth… I think online dating and texting is ‘All up in the air’

    Admirable that you still address online dating ;)

  62. Agostinha Jacinto says:

    You are so funnyy….love the end of the video! ^_^ LOL! *

  63. Judy says:

    Don’t forget there are people who are not invisible and are dating on line above 65+. Are we any different still seeking love and companionship? Thanks for the info on online dating.

  64. Kelly says:

    I’ve tried online dating on and off for years, when I’m single. It seems like all the same people are on all the same sites. Although, Pof has the largest number of douche bags, I have also met some of the coolest guys there as well. Just remember, sometimes you get what you pay for..
    P.s. I love the poster! :)

  65. Jessica says:

    You know you secretly love it Matt. Very deep down inside.

  66. Reena says:

    Your accent is turning American…

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Life is about peaks and troughs…

So good to be back after all of the craziness of the GetTheGuy book and my show Ready For Love!...