How to Online Date via Different Social Networks
Disclaimer: This is lengthy, because I want you to be happy and lucky in online love. Okay?
“How exactly does one meet men while employed full-time?”*
If this thought hasn’t leapt into your mind at least once, you must be in a long-term relationship, an avid believer in serendipity, or really good at going out on weeknights…and consequently, excellent at feigning a solid work ethic while hungover. Right?
Well, for those of us who aren’t fortunate enough to fall into the above criteria, the natural/immediate response to this question is obvious: Do not work full-time.
However, trust fund babies we are not, so Meg and I spent the evening pondering various ways our oh-so-connected generation could leverage our existing social networks and ameliorate the situation. (Sorry if you’re barfing—I attended business school and solemnly swear to never use “leverage” or “ameliorate” on a date…or anywhere else but here.)
Ready? Here goes…
Yelp: Let’s say you see David H.’s review of CC Club on Yelp, and find yourself briskly swept away on account of his sparkling syntax. How does one approach the situation and casually drop that you’d like nothing more than to try out some bookmarked venues together? Well, this one’s easy if you both happen to be Yelp Elite because there are predetermined events set up for you, complete with free booze. Quick! Become a fan of David H.’s reviews (and note, this is completely anonymous) to engage in some light stalking. Is he participating in Talk threads? Can you contribute to said thread in a meaningful manner? Excellent. Can you determine whether he’s attending an upcoming Yelp excursion? Good. Yelp is basically the Cinderella story of online dating if you can pretend 8 p.m. is midnight (as most events don’t last beyond 2 hours) or happen to be attending a Disney-themed event.
Pro Tip: Becoming Yelp Elite is essential for success. If he’s already in this esteemed group of Yelp folk, you’ll see the badge on his profile. If not, you have a built-in excuse to invite him as your +1 to fun parties, under the guise of “introducing other Yelpers to Elite status.” What a good-Yelp-samaritan, you are!
LinkedIn: LinkedIn is a mullet…business in the front, party in the back. The “back” being your private message inbox. The key to meeting someone on LinkedIn is all about making them feel important and relatively successful. Is this object of your affection already in your network? Great. Suggest meeting for coffee to “catch up” on what they’re working on. Let the conversation gradually move from ego-massaging professional inquiries, to social opportunities. “Oh you’re a part of 4As too? We should attend the next speaker series together!” See? If you’re not already connected to said individual, check out the groups they’re in. Send them a message about something that intrigues you and wait for their response. If you must resort to stalking their group threads and interjecting conversations, go for it. You’re just a savvy networker, not a semi-professional stalker!
Pro Tip: If you upgrade your LinkedIn account it becomes much easier to creep-stalk, though this feature is traditionally reserved for recruiters and job hunters. We do not encourage you to pretend you’re an HR representative from a Fortune 500 company for the sake of acquiring a date. That’s messy.
Now, Twitter, or as I like to call it, the lover’s playground! Do you have any idea how much you can get to know someone over 140-character updates in real time? Twitter is your oyster, young fish in the sea! Not only do you have access to every single thing they’re interested in, but you can respond to their deepest thoughts and immediate frustrations in an incredibly timely manner. (Not to mention that your funniest quips are least likely to be misinterpreted as desperate pleas for attention in this network.) So have fun projecting the more confident, outgoing and thoughtful version of yourself to the world!
Pro Tip: Whatever you do, do NOT lock your profile. You don’t want to seem standoffish and you never know when “the one” might “@” you.
Spotify: Start stalking your love interest’s music taste and subscribe yourself to a select few—so as to not seem overbearing—playlists they created. Notice their impeccable taste in Top 40s, and send them the latest release from Bieber. As the relationship progresses—which it will, because what relationship DOESN’T progress over mutual music taste?—you can co-craft a “Wedding Songs” playlist which you can unironically play at your future wedding. You’re welcome for the cute story.
I think that’s enough material for now. Let me know how you fare, young grasshoppers..and stay tuned for pt. 2!
* While online dating services exist, that is too obvious an option, so I am choosing to ignore them.