I first met Patti back in 2011, when she became my mentor and introduced me to the matchmaking industry. We’ve kept in touch throughout the years and she’s always kept a fresh outlook on dating and relationship trends. For High Rise Life February issue, I wanted to offer readers content that encompasses everything that my job and the month of February represents: love and helping more people find it.
We’re focusing in on the world of online dating and where it’s headed in the future. Are people completely over it? Has there been more success with finding love online throughout the years? According to a 2015 study conducted by eHarmony, a record of 40 percent of people online date. With a percentage like that, there’s a steady chance that people will continue to seek love through dating apps.
Regardless of if you’re seeking love virtually or working with a matchmaker, quality photos are necessary. I always encourage my single friends to take the time and get some professional, good photos of themselves taken. This just shows that you’re serious and willing to put your best self out there when searching for a partner. You’ll thank us later.
Here are Patti’s answers about the future of finding love online this Valentine’s season.
Q: What are some online dating trends that you think will emerge in 2018?
I think the online dating industry is going to become even more popular with niche sites. For example, if you are a vegan, dog lover, runner, hiker – anything that holds your interest, there will be a site or online community where you can meet other singles. However, the problem with the community has been lack of presentation. People don’t put much effort into their photos or write anything in their profile to let the user know who they are, then they complain that they can’t get a date. In the old days of the online digital community, we had profiles with statistics on height, location, income, etc. Millennials don’t really give it much thought, though the average online consumer is 46; as we age we want much more information about who we are dating, and we don’t want to go to Instagram or Facebook to find out.
We demand they give us that information up front or we won’t pop on to that community anymore. I’m horrified by men’s pictures on their online profiles. Men just don’t care – some of their images look like mugshots, but women are taking pride in their appearance not only with Botox and a stunning wardrobe, though they’re following the Kardashian system and taking beautiful selfies. I think people need to become better photographers or take a professional shot to get ahead of the curve. I also believe matchmakers will not go away. I think they are in a time of reestablishing their brand because high-end wealthy singles often get overwhelmed by sitting online and going through a thousand photos a day and not getting anywhere. Matchmakers will begin creating their own individual maps with their own databases to cater to their high-end clientele.
Q: What is some online dating advice you would offer women?
Because we live in such a dangerous time, as in the Craigslist Killer, it’s important to use apps such as Spokeo and Intelius to perform background checks. Not just before you meet them though before entering a serious relationship. I don’t think catfishing is the biggest problem anymore. People take words at face value and that’s dangerous. I tell my girls to use the apps to check them out. You can always use Facebook, check his business website, look at Instagram, everything. Every Instagram tells a story. One other thing I recommend is taking a car service such as Uber or Lyft to protect yourself because sometimes dates go wrong and you need to get out of there fast. Always meet in a public place, make sure your friends know where you are.
Q: What is some advice you would give men who online date?
For men, it’s a different story: always offer to pick up the woman, though, again, she will probably meet you in a public place and drive herself on the first date. The biggest problem with men is that once they start chatting online they don’t ask for the girl’s number right away. So, I always tell them you can ask for their number as well as give your own (assuming you are comfortable). Don’t hesitate, make a date. Women loathe texting and chatting back and forth. Women cannot fall in love unless they hear your voice – it’s biologically impossible. They do not get invested as they fall in love between the ears. So, if you don’t call, you are screwed. She will go MIA and ghost you unless you take the time to pick up the phone rather than text her all the time.
Q: For my successful and single friends, where do you recommend they find their next date?
A lot of people refuse to get out of the house and believe online dating is the only way. That should only be 25 percent of your search. You still need to mix it up by attending social events, charity events, going to private clubs and then 6th degree it with friends. Go to opposite-sex parties. Go with your male friends to the gym if you are a woman and vice versa. If you don’t like someone, but think they are a good match, pay it forward and give a referral. If you fix up a friend, have them set you up. Keep 6th degree’ing it and everything will pan out. It’s the law of averages and all it takes is one.
Q: How can I help my friend find a good match?
To be a good matchmaker the secret is to give the person what they really want. And that doesn’t mean only friends and family. It could be a stranger. Figuring out their type is key, then start fixing them up. Don’t get involved once you fix them up – let it ride. Once they thank you and take you to dinner you’ll know they are dating. It can be anyone from your Doctor to Lawyer to a co-worker to a friend. Look up and look around; there’s someone for everyone.
Q: How do I get back into dating after getting out of a long-term relationship?
The hardest part about getting back into dating after a long-term relationship is to be open. Don’t try to recreate the ex in the new guy or girl because you’ll be looking for a needle in a haystack. The first line of defense is to stay productive. Dopamine and endorphins make the body feel relaxed and will help you feel confident; you might even lose a few pounds in the process. The next step would be to tell friends and family you are open to meeting new people. I’d also suggest going to social events and lastly, getting online. Start picking out who you are interested in, give a like, and let men or women pick you. Open your social circle and get away from the same people you always hang out with because that’ll only lead you to a dead end. Make new friends and they will lead you to the one.
Featured Image Photo by Mark Rutherford
About Author: Erica Arrechea, Lead Matchmaker and Co-Founder of Cinqe.com Matching Singles in Silicon Valley, San Francisco, Orange County, Los Angeles, and VIP clients across the US