In 2005, marketing professional Jodi Manfredi was recently divorced and juggling her career and raising her son. She also wanted to jump back into the dating pool, so she joined the growing number of online daters by creating a profile.
While her profile was a success and attracted many men, she had no idea she’d eventually run a business dedicated to writing strangers’ dating site profiles.
So how exactly did Manfredi go from writing her own profile to becoming a dating profile writer? Read on to find out.
The First Spark
After Manfredi’s success with her own online dating profile, several of her friends requested she craft their profiles as well.
But it wasn’t until 2011, after Manfredi’s friend asked her to write a profile for her sister, that it first occurred to Manfredi that she could get paid to write online dating profiles.
Manfredi didn’t know her friend’s sister, so she got acquainted with her through a phone conversation.
“The next morning, I delivered a profile to her,” explained Manfredi. “She called me and said: ‘This is awesome — you nailed it. This is exactly what I’m looking for and exactly who I am. Why aren’t you doing this for a living?’”
Making Passion Pay: How This Dating Profile Writer Started a Business
Manfredi took the praise to heart. She began researching the ins and outs of the dating profile business and looking at startup costs. It was clear to her this was something worth trying, so in 2012, Manfredi founded Dynamic Dating Profiles.
Initial costs were minimal — Manfredi only outsourced the work involved in building her website and did the rest herself. She marketed her services through Facebook posts and blogging, and she worked on the business as much as time allowed.
But, while she was still in the midst of building Dynamic Dating Profiles, the unexpected happened: Manfredi received an offer for a full-time marketing position she couldn’t refuse.
So, Manfredi kept busy writing profiles and building her business during evenings and weekends. Six months after she started Dynamic Dating Profiles, the business took off.
Eventually, Manfredi decided she wanted a life and hired other profile writers to help her shoulder the workload. Now, she spends two to three hours per week on the business and occasionally writes profiles, while spending most of her time on her full-time job.
The business charges $119 for a full profile, which includes a profile of 300 words or more and a review of up to five photos. For $49, the company will review and give feedback on an existing profile.
Manfredi’s writers earn $35 to $52 per hour, depending on their skills and experience. Each full profile typically takes a writer two hours to complete. That includes the get-to-know-you phone call every client receives.
“I believe that you need to talk to someone — you need to hear their tone and make it conversational,” said Manfredi.
Then, the writer compiles the information they’ve gleaned from the phone call and writes an engaging, humorous profile — one that’s designed to catch the reader’s attention quickly.
Next, the writer edits or rewrites the profile once more, if necessary.
Could You Write Online Dating Profiles?
Manfredi says an online dating profile writer must have basic writing skills, including a grasp on grammar, spelling and syntax.
But being a good writer isn’t the only essential for a profile writer. Manfredi also considers a gregarious personality a must to get an open conversation rolling. A sense of humor is also paramount.
“In my mind, (dating profile writers) need to have razor-sharp wit. Because (making the reader laugh is the) most attractive thing about a profile,” said Manfredi.
While she’s currently backlogged with writers, Manfredi says you can get her attention by submitting a “very well-written profile that makes (her) laugh out loud.”
Most of her revenue goes to the writers she employs, but to Manfredi, the satisfaction of the work is worth more than the money she makes.
“It’s rewarding when (clients) get back to me, and they tell me that they met somebody or that they’re getting a lot more activity since they changed their profile,” said Manfredi.
If you think you’d love helping online daters create the perfect profile, here’s how you can get started:
- Hang out your freelance shingle like Manfredi did. Freelancers on the web list prices anywhere from $100 to $400 to review or rewrite profiles and/or critique their photos.
- Apply to become a profile writer at an established company. For example, at e-Cyrano, writers earn 60% of the profile fee (at the time of this writing). According to the site, profile fees range from $78 to $120, and most writers have one to two clients per week.
Your Turn: Do you think you could write an awesome online dating profile?
Carimé Lane is a Vancouver-based freelance writer who writes about health, fitness and the restaurant business and loves discovering new ways to make a living through the written word. She attributes her ability to stretch a penny to her Dutch heritage.