How To Write Compelling Plenty of Fish Messages

Recently, I joined an online dating site called Plenty Of Fish, and quickly realized that I should have worked out and ate right for a year before joining the site.

Challenge: Get girls to respond to my messages.

Solution: Take the time to craft personalized, sincere messages that say, ‘I’m interested in more than just getting a whiff.’ However, even with a concerted effort, the responses haven’t been as bountiful as I would’ve hoped.

I thought I’d share a few of the messages that I’ve sent in case you guys are able to give me some pointers. Note: These are actual messages that I’ve sent to women…I’m so super serial…

Update: If you’d like me to craft a personalized message for a girl/guy you’re trying to court online, send me a link to their profile via the comments section and I’ll do my best!

Background: She indicated she was an engineer.

Hi there,

My name’s Mike. That’s cool that you’re an engineer!

Sometimes I’m amazed at bridges…I mean, they are supporting multiple vehicles all day long…we should really have a National Bridge Day, or maybe National Engineer day would be better. National Bridge Day would mean Starbucks would be full of 65-year old women wearing white, thin, doily blouses, eating coffee crisp, swapping the daily gossip.

Talk soon 🙂


Background: She posted a video featuring one of those dancing flash mobs.

Hi there,

My name’s Mike. I’ve never understood flash mobs.

I mean, when there’s a flash fire, it happens very quickly, with very little planning. Flash mobs, on the other hand, appear to my naked eye, immaculately planned and organized. But perhaps they are channelling the mafia version of the mob rather than the riot version. In that spirit, I believe, ‘flash organized mafia dancers following choreography’ might be a more apt title.

But flash mob rolls off the tongue a lot better, I guess…

Talk soon 🙂


Profile Pictures on POF

Background: She indicated she was a TV Commercial Coordinator

Hey there,

My name’s Mike. Is that for real that you’re a TV Commercial Coordinator? That’s cool…depending on what you’re coordinating. Like, if you’re the casting director for a commercial, I can imagine it’d be maddening, especially if you have to pick people that are amazed at shamwow’s…

‘Please, a little more excitement….no, excitement with your face, not your arms…next…’

Talk soon 🙂


Background: She said she was a country girl.


I’m a country guy, too. Ok well maybe not. I like the country because it’s dark and I can see the stars. Ok I’ll admit: I’m more of an astronomy guy.

Close enough?


Women Don’t Want to Date

Background: She said she believed that there was someone out there for all of us.


I’m not so sure that there’s only one person meant for us. If we’re compatible now, but who we are fundamentally changes, it would make sense that we’d go our separate ways.

Probably the worst POF message ever. I mentioned breaking up after saying, ‘hi.’


PS – At the time of writing this, I did believe that when people changed, that meant that they should separate – I’ve changed my mind about this. I think that even when a couple changes, they can make it work because what they do doesn’t make them who they are. That said, they should probably be on the same page with regards to kids. If one person wants kids and the other one doesn’t, I can imagine how that would work.

Furthermore…”That is, we understand that we are entities passing through a life in which the entire life drama is a curriculum for our awakening. We see that the life experience is a vehicle for coming to God, for becoming conscious, for becoming liberated. And we understand that ultimately that’s what we’re doing here.” – Ram Dass, Grist for the Mill

Background: She mentioned that she likes a guy that plays instruments.


I remember my friend Mark and I were the best recorder players in grade 3, and Mrs. Euhlarek had us play Good King Wenceslas for Mrs. Vodden, the Secretary. Her reaction escapes me, and we may or may not have been interrupted by a phone call.


Background: She said she loves to draw.


You sketch? I’m not that good at it. I paid my friend’s little brother $2 to do my sketchbook in grade seven. The teacher gave me 50%.

Turns out that a brown guy with a sketchbook full of anime isn’t as believable as I thought it might be…


Background: She indicated she was a singer (songstress?)

Hi there,

My name’s Mike. You sing?! That’s awesome. I’ve played instruments all my life, but after puberty found it tough to sing to r&b, you know? Not you know as in you’ve experienced it, because I think it’s only guys voices that crack, but you have an idea of what I mean when I say Boys II Men were no longer accessible sing-a-long songs…

Talk soon 🙂


Background: She didn’t write much on the profile, but I noticed something in the background in one of her pictures.

Hi there,

Thought I’d say hi. Nothing much to go on, so I’ll compliment you on your smile, hair, and mandatory hutch in the living room 😉

Talk soon 🙂


Background: She indicated that she liked eating cookies in bed.

Hi there,

My name’s Mike. That’s odd…there’s nowhere on your profile that indicates hot yoga, travelling, reading, ambition, and the other things that I thought every girl does nowadays.

You know…soft & chewy chips ahoy used to be better…I don’t know what they did with the formula, but there’s a weird aftertaste to it now…I got a red underline spelling mistake indicator for aftertaste, but decompounding the word into, ‘after taste’ sounds like an instruction rather than a description…

Ok so I think that kind sums me up.

Talk soon?


Background: She said that her profession was Karate Hockey.

LMAO karate hockey – I think there was a guy in the teenage mutant ninja turtles who founded that style…Casey Jones was his name, and he called the style Hockey-do (way of the white man). Great was he.


Background: She indicated that she was skeptical (she spelled it, ‘sceptical’) about online dating.

Hi there,

My name’s Mike. I guess you have a good reason to be skeptical about online dating…there are a lot of weirdos out there, which is exactly something a weirdo would say to gain your trust, but I figured I’d state the elephant in the text box just so it’s out in the open.



I met a guy that told me that, according to Tony Robbins, I’m a state changer. Thanks, Daanish!

Michael Jagdeo


About Michael Jagdeo

My name's Michael Jagdeo, and I refuse to write about myself in the third person. I'm a Comedian from Toronto, Ontario, Canada. In addition to honing my stand-up comedy act, I maintain this blog and write the weekly comedy article for
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26 Responses to How To Write Compelling Plenty of Fish Messages

  1. womanwhowritesstuff says:

    LMAOIMHBIAAW….Laughing My A@# OFF IN MY HEAD BECAUSE I AM A WORK! By far, the funniest thing I’ve read all day! Great post.

    • Hey Woman!

      My name’s Mike. So you’re at work eh? I never liked working in an office, mostly because after awhile I noticed that I was the uncool one. Like, the other people would talk by the watercooler, go to each other’s desks and hang out, but people would only come to my desk when I was late with a deliverable, or to ask the obligatory, ‘Can we get you something while we [not you, but we] go out for coffee?‘ So yeah, corporate life was like high school in that regard…

      That said, I’m glad that some of my textual misadventures were able to bring a smile to your face as you pressed ‘Send/Receive’ hoping that an interesting, non-work related email, was about to trickle down the internet pipes.

      Talk soon? 🙂


  2. hahaha…love the sham wow tv commercial line!

  3. Hmmm! I met my hubby online – and some of these responses would catch my interest, and some would make me think you were bored and focusing on the trivial. Then again, I didn’t talk about myself in a trivial manner so perhaps if this was all you had to work with…? I’d advise the same as with comedy – find a common ground and use that to start a conversation.

    • Hello again HTBS!

      Yeah, often times there are online dating profiles that are quite succinct, so I just try and latch onto an interest and run with it.

      There’s a concept in marketing called the Just Noticeable Difference (JND) that’s influencing my decision to go abstract. In a sea of advertising, marketers were told that their messages would have to be unique/engaging enough (pass the JND threshhold) to grab their target market’s attention. So that’s the type of approach I’m taking…

      But the biggest thing that women are initially attracted to is the physical, especially on sites like these. That’s why I’ve lost 7 pounds in the past week and am working out everyday lol.

      I should mention that these messages would never have happened without the influence of one of my new favourite comedians is a guy named David Dineen-Porter, who to me is the absolute king of going abstract and making it hilarious…he’s also very intelligent, so the abstractness is also surprisingly accurate and full of connotations. This clip should do the trick (especially 1:00 – 2:00)…

      His performances have taught me that there is a whole world in your mind that you often keep tucked away…a world that, while initially weird, can paint some of the most interesting/compelling pictures imaginable in the audience’s mind.

  4. How would you do ones for a universal job such as, looking after kids in pre-school or loves books?

    • She Looks After Pre-School Kids

      Hi there,

      That’s so great that you work with kids! I love playing with my nieces and nephews, especially because when they get mad, I can just pawn them off to their parents and close my room door. It’s like having kids, only better!

      Talk to you soon!


      She Loves Books


      Wow! You sound like you read a ton, and that’s so hard to find these days. What have you read lately?

      I read a lot, too. Well, I mean, I listen to audiobooks. Does that count?

      I mean, in a way, it’s a lot better than reading, because you can close your eyes and use your imagination to conjure up images while the professionally-trained actor does the heaving lifting.

      So yeah, you should listen to audiobooks instead of reading. Perhaps we can make a date of it? We’ll get together put on an audiobook of our choosing.



      PS – You’re not the type of person that talks during the audiobook are you? I hate people that do that.

  5. Tyrone says:

    All in the girls profile it said she liked sushi

    • Hi Miko,

      You’re a fan of sushi? Noooo way – meeee toooooo!

      What’s your favourite menu item? Man, I loooove the beef teriyaki and chicken wings. How do they get it to taste so chinese!?


      Tylone (that’s what the waitress calls me)

      *Chun-li voice

  6. Bill says:

    I have one with not much said… she likes football, the vikings, pow wows, and the general stuff, cooking, movie, hiking, fishing etc

    • When they don’t say much, it’s tough, but here goes…

      Hi [InsertName],

      Shut the front door – YOU’RE a Vikings fan?!? Me too!! Who’s your favourite Vike? Mine’s Erik the Red. Man, the way he named it Greenland to trick the folks back home into thinking that he was discovering bountiful lands so he could get more funding – brilliant!! And then…um, ok…nope; that’s all I remember about the Vikings.

      Finally! Someone I share some actual common ground with.

      Your fellow explorer,

      Bill the Red*

      *That’s my Viking Name

      PS – I really hope we invest in a Cornerback. Seriously.

  7. james says:

    I have one that say she love to cooking and is a geek as she love watching movies and tv all the time

    • Hi [Insert Her Name]

      My name’s James, and I love to cook. My specialty is [insert specialty]. My secret to a perfect [insert specialty] is to [insert secret].

      While I love watching tv and movies, I’m more of an outdoorsy kind of person. I use television to rest, but nature to rejuvenate.

      Wishing you all the best,


  8. Luke says:

    She wants to manage a hotel and love travelling

  9. Jay says:

    She said she is looking for a man who is funny, go with the flow, honest and fun. And she is new to online dating and she has a 13 yr old son.

    • Hi Jay,

      Hmmm…what do you get when you’re trying to date and have a son? A one-night stand!

      OK seriously. Hmmm…I really want to help! Could you paste her profile text in reply to this message? I need a bit more to go on.


  10. tlake412 says:

    Hi Michael,

    She mentioned she love to have fun, caring girl and love to try new things. Not sure how to write an opening message. I thought you would help. Thank You

  11. Joe Roman says:

    Hey Michael! Just wanted to say that your messages you posted seem really great and original and something I wouldn’t really have thought of. Anyways I was wondering are they your first messages that you send to all the women?? And what is your success rate in the women responding to your first messages that you posted up for everyone to read?? I was also wondering if you could possibly help me out with a message I could write to this woman I am interested in. Some of the stuff she stated is she enjoy witty banter, sunshine, spring and summer, evening walks, yoga, and a good book. Also, finding a good educated man that has a career. Anything you can come up with would be helpful. Thanks! And again I loved reading your post and your video clips of your stand up comedy.

    • Bonjour FontaineDouze,

      Il faut que je lis En Attendant Godot! Moi, je suis un grand [comment je dis, fan?] de Camus, et Le Mythe De Sisyphe a change ma vie.

      Did that make any sense? I hope it did. I feel that since you took the time and effort to tell me about yourself, that it’s only fair that I invest an equitable amount of time explaining who I am, and, perhaps, persuading you of the merits of joining me for (a) drink(s).

      You said that you’re a fan of the old school man. I can honestly tell you that I am that (in the tat tvam asi meaning), and sometimes that involves being an alpha male. However, I don’t like to wear that suit unless I have to. If the old school man you have in mind treats you like a lady AND comes to you in his time of need, then I’m the old school man you’re looking for.

      FontaineDouze, what I might suggest is that we pour our whole selves into a conversation accompanied by a drink, and as Ram Dass put it, ‘…recognize that we must take our words very lightly, because what we come to talk about is subjective – not objective – and therefore cannot be experienced and interpreted through the logical, rational mind. So we must pay attention to the space between the words.’


      PS – Here’s the thing, though: you want someone who is going to be faithful and loyal to you, and that is going to be difficult for me. You see, I have been fashioned with the instincts of an animal, by no choice of my own. Ha, for sure, being a master of one’s moods is a privilege of the larger animals (Camus), but embracing these moods is sometimes how we honour our incarnation as we stretch for a oneness with the isness behind it all (Ram Dass), isn’t it?

      That said, life has taught me that it’s just when I think I know what I want when something (or someone) comes along that turns my perspective upside down. Maybe I’m that person for you. Maybe you’re that person for me.

      Maybe, and this would be the ideal case, we’re that person for each other.

  12. Joe Roman says:

    Hi Mike!
    I wanted to say this is an awesome post and many great ideas. By the way what is your success rate with women responding to these messages you sent to them? I was wondering if you could help me out and provide me some examples I can use? I would appreciate it very much. Her link is and I am very interested in this woman but not sure since I am new to online dating and on what I can send to her as a first message. Thanks my friend!

    • Joe Roman says:

      I just saw what happened. I made another message when I did not see my first message appear and when I wrote the message again I had put the wrong link when I was looking at the different profile of Fontaine. Without realizing I was still on the profile and not the other profile that I really wanted you to see to create a message. I ended up putting her link which the id is 79038291 without realizing and I guess you saw that second message and the link and you wrote the great message directed towards her on my first post which has the original link of id 82239573 to the profile. I apologize for this whole mix up. Anyways hope your weekend is fantastic!

  13. Joe Roman says:

    Hi Michael,
    Thanks for your help! I really liked the clever message you came up with. I will probably try that message on that girl and try my luck. However, it seems there has been some mix up on the profile I wanted you to write a response. Somehow I guess I gave you the wrong link to the profile but the one I wanted you to write a response was a different one and not the Fontaine girl. Her profile is Believeingoodness and the link is Hopefully this time you will see her exact profile. Sorry about the mix up and sorry to bother you with asking the favor to do an extra message for me from this girl’s profile.

  14. Carlos says:

    Hey Mike! Mind if you help me out? Seems like this girl is in to the Bulls. Happy New Year’s by the way.


      It sounds like you stumbled upon the Prototypical Indian Millennial: she likes the gym, astrology, bollywood movies, yoga, traveling, and a sports team! One thing to note is that she mentioned the Bulls twice; both in the First Date and in her Interests. PS She’s 28 and wants kids, so…


      Regardless of who she is and what her interests might be, the purpose of your initial message is to elicit a response from her. She has to see your message in her inbox, have the thumbnail of your image provoke her to open the message out of the 100s she has to open, and then type a response!

      Therefore, we need a:
      – Profile picture that seizes status (C)
      – Terse and pithy message that DEMANDS her attention and a reply (D)


      Pick a profile picture that displays aspects of wealth, power, status, and celebrity. This could be a picture in front of a monument, or with a celebrity, etc. Four pictures max. I’d include a wedding picture, celebrity picture, monument picture, and a sporting event picture. This would effectively mirror her images.

      Oh, add a rugged picture. Cooking outdoors, camping, wildlife, skiing, etc. Sports and the outdoors means you can be a Protector. Oh yeah – include a picture with an animal, regardless of whether it’s yours or not. She likes animals.

      D. MESSAGE

      She’s a banking professional that works out, goes to major sporting events and does yoga. She’s also looking for someone real. What she’s actually looking for: certainty/security, novelty/variety, fun, and the opportunity for contribution, growth, significance and love (Robbins).

      If she decides to open your message, it means that your pictures and profile have sufficiently piqued her interest. She is inching towards messaging you, one micro-decision at a time. Next, she’ll read your message. She has the power. Upset that power relationship as follows:
      A) I dunno…you seem pretty straight-laced and I’m an adventure/traveller kind of guy. Are you afraid of getting your hands dirty?
      B) Yeahhhh right! You’re too perfect. Banker, yoga, Bulls…what am I missing? Weird pet? Stage Five Clinger? Obsessed with chaat masala? 😛

      E. EXEUNT

      Thanks for the question. Best of luck. You seem like a genuine dude, and genuine people deserve to be with genuine people.

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