My chosen career (and the fact that it’s 2016) means I’m often immersed in talks of big data, analytics, A/B testing, etc., etc. Unfortunately I never took the time to test out my marketing data learnings in my dating life. Well, maybe not unfortunately in a grander sense because things worked out okay for me, but if I had applied my professional data skills to my online dating experiments, they may have turned out differently. Or at the very least I could have gleaned some insights more interesting than “men on Christian dating sites are bizarre.”
Now, granted the the big data takeover hadn’t fully taken hold for individuals outside of data and data-adjacent industries, but it was starting to infiltrate our ideas of romance. At the time, I was probably too sentimental to even consider applying data gathered from past experiences to help predict the outcome of future romantic encounters. But, now, how romantic are those initial encounters with the wrong person anyway?
In fact, reducing potential partners to data points until they prove to be lasting figures in your life, may prevent a lot of heartbreak. And, if you’re lucky, it could lead to a RomCom scene for the ages.
So, how do you make the data work for your dating life? Through a process called lead scoring, in which you evaluate individuals based on the likelihood of becoming a significant other.
1. Establish a points system
This is essentially big data jargon for the thing women do incessantly: over thinking past relationships. Assess the men you’ve dated in the past. Look at how each relationship ended and determine what factors led to its demise. Create a composite of the best and the worst traits with a pro con list and assign a score to each characteristic.
Has a job that doesn’t require a name tag +4.
Owns a bushel of cats -2.
2. Develop in ideal mate persona
This means assigning the top characteristics from step one to build a likeness of a marriageable man. Include age, demographics, interests, goals, education, etc. Bring him to life. Give Mr. Perfect a name and picture. This will be the benchmark as you vet potential romantic leads. Mine looked like this:
3. A/B test your messaging
Once you know the man you’re trying to target, you can shape messaging to appeal to his specific tastes. In terms of romantic relations messaging can be the way you dress, the music you listen to, hobbies, etc. For example, if your persona looks something like this. You should be in a constant state of yoga pants, Listen to Kutless (note the cross necklace), and enjoy talking about protein drinks. You can vary your messaging slightly to see what gets the best response and fine-tune accordingly. In keeping with the aforementioned example, maybe you maintain the yoga pants, but listen to EDM and aspire to become a Proverbs 31 woman.
4. Identify data that indicates interest.
This step is to ensure you’re not wasting your time on unqualified leads. To do this, you must pay attention to your potential mate’s behavior. Does he dig deeper into your content (i.e., ask questions about your likes and dislikes)? What’s his bounce rate (i.e., does he linger or jet during goodbyes)? Is he willing to trade personal information to get premium content from you (i.e., invite you back to his place as opposed to yours)?
5. Nurture or Dump
As potential leads come in, measure them up against the points system you established in step one. This will help determine which ones to spend time nurturing and growing into a future relationship and which ones to let go. This way you only spend your time and energy on leads with potential, saving time, money, er I mean emotional stress.
And there you have it. A data-driven method to catching the man of your dreams