Brand “You”! Why Is It So Darn Hard (Even For Adlanders) To Write A Dating Profile?

Brand “You”! Why Is It So Darn Hard (Even For Adlanders) To Write A Dating Profile?

In this guest post, Gretel Maltabarow (main photo), senior account director at Houston Group, says that if anyone should be good at writing a dating profile it should be adlanders whose speciality is brands…

Swipe right. Swipe left. Scroll through DPs (Display Pictures, get your mind out of the gutter), or reaching for the ‘Unmatch’. In a seemingly never-ending cycle of tech enabled dating – this girl has no idea how to pitch herself.

Which is ironic. I’m a brand consultant and have been for the past five years. And yet, when it comes to having to write a bio on who I am, what I stand for, and how I’m ‘different’ – I freeze.

To set the scene, I work in an industry that makes its bacon from pitching products and services to customers in a way that’s compelling, enticing and …well, even a little bit, sexy.

Driving preference. Using positioning to differentiate. Creating visuals that look good. No, not just good, great – is what I do for a living.  But when it comes to my dating life, the act of writing a pitch on ‘why me’, seems like a near-impossible feat.

I honestly believe it’s a skill that deserves some kind of job title, or accreditation on LinkedIn.

It takes me back to the days of crafting an SMS with no punctuation, little to no vowels, and zero pleasantries – all in the name of saving what, like 15c?

If we think about how many hours we’ve spent deliberating a funny response to a prompt, whether a selfie is passable or you just look more alone than you already are, or whether to throw it all in and conform to the classic dog-loving, spicy margarita persona – writing the “brand me” pitch can be pretty draining.

I remember the year dating apps became a thing. I was living in Madrid with a good friend from Sydney – both studying, and both single. The year was 2014 (welp) and we both thought the idea that ‘normal people’ would use this kind of platform to find genuine love and partnership was a funny joke. Like JAJA style*.

Well, fast forward almost a decade, and it’s become the new normal.

I’ve lost count of the number of friends that have dated, married and had children with people they’ve met on dating apps.

So – what’s the solution? How does one write a compelling bio? Or respond to prompts in a self-deprecating yet confident way? And curate a collage of Insta-grid worthy pics?  How does one tell a compelling brand story on a dating app?

If I were to put my branding hat on, I’d tell myself to put pen to paper, to block out 30 mins in my diary, preferably in the morning after a coffee when I’m feeling most productive, and to get this shit done.

No more eye-rolling every time you mindlessly open the app to see your bland bio copy. But rather, make a conscious decision to be honest, non-conformist (that’s boring), and to mention things that genuinely bring you joy.

Treat it like a brief. A simple, short, sharp brief. Be creative. Be interesting. But most of all, be you. Because even if it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, it’ll save you the time and effort of having IRL dates that feel like a total disconnect and waste of time.

You know the target audience (you). You know the brief (get some). So, what are you waiting for?

BRB… going to update my bio now…

*How Spanish people write ‘haha’. It’s very funny if you actually pronounce the ‘J’ (You shouldn’t. So don’t). 


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Gretel Maltabarow

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