4 tips for getting the conversation started online
Conversation can be difficult at the best of times but when it’s online with a stranger many people aren’t sure how to get the conversation started. We understand this process and have developed tools to help you
1. Use the resources available
When you are matched with someone and you view their profile for the first time, on the right hand side of the screen you will see a number of options available which you can use to make the initial contact. You can send an ice breaker which is probably the best way to establish whether the interest is mutual.
If you use guided communication you can ask and respond to questions which will help you both establish whether you want to get to know each other better. Some people find this form of communication limiting and want to skip to emailing directly – this is fine if you are both ready to do that but don’t be pressured into anything that you are not comfortable with.
The other advantage of using the guided communication process is that you will get to view more information about your match including their ‘must haves’ and ‘can’t stands’ and you can even share your personality profiles if you choose to.
2. Stay safe
Online communication can create a sense of comfort and intimacy but we can’t stress enough how important it is for you to take your time getting to know your match. We encourage you to use eharmony’s secure email system until you feel you know enough about matches to want to meet face to face – until you have achieved this avoid giving any personal details out online especially your address or phone number. Think about what you need to know in order to feel happy and confident enough to meet up and don’t be afraid to ask questions to help you achieve this. If your match seems inconsistent or vague in their replies then listen to your intuition and remember you can always call customer support if there is anything you are unsure about.
3. Something to talk about
In order for any conversation to be interesting there needs to be good subject matter. In the case of meeting matches the information you have gleaned from each other’s profile is all you have to go on at the beginning. Make sure your profile is as full and rich as possible and answer as many of the questions about interests and hobbies as you can – these are all potential conversation topics.
Read a match’s profile properly and ask them about specific aspects of it – the music they like – the photographs they have posted – how they came to be on the site. Interesting people are interested in others and it is much better at this stage to keep the conversation about neutral topics rather than sharing your life stories and giving away personal details – remember that even though we do everything possible to ensure your safety some people may still misrepresent themselves. Assessing a match’s truthfulness and honesty is ultimately your responsibility.
4. An equal exchange
Talking and listening are both equally important when it comes to establishing a rapport with someone. You may be very good at one but not so good at the other and this trait will be more obvious when you begin communicating online because you can see the whole conversation as it builds. If you are sending long carefully constructed emails with details of all your hopes and dreams and your match is responding with a one liner or witty remark them this is a good indication that you are mismatched.
Write short snappy emails – preferably 4 sentences or less – and keep them light and fun in these early stages. What you are trying to do is give enough information about yourself to capture their interest so that they want to meet you but not so much that if nothing comes of it you are left feeling exposed or vulnerable.
Read their responses properly and follow up on things in your next email to them. Tell them if they made you laugh or if you were pleased to receive a response from them – people like to feel that they make a difference so acknowledging that tingle of excitement when you see a message from a match is a good way of being emotionally honest without revealing too much about yourself.
Avoid, wherever possible talking about problems or grievances as this stage – keep it light and remember to not get too invested in the outcome of your conversations before you meet up in person.
If this article gave you the confidence to find your match, try eHarmony today!Join Now