We're all familiar with LinkedIn as a professional networking platform, but, with it being Valentine's Day, I think it's time to blend love and tech by visiting the idea of using LinkedIn to find love! Any other day of the year, this article might be a stretch for ZDNet; however, not only is this an exercise in searching for love, but you'll also be learning some investigative skills, as well as honing in on ways to use LinkedIn that will transpose well to professional endeavors you may seek in the future. So keep that in mind and, without further ado, let's get this party started.
I'm no stranger to the online dating scene, but the last time I utilized an online dating Web site was over 5 years ago. Back then, there was Yahoo Personals (where I met the wonderful woman who still puts up with me to this day :) ), eHarmony, Match, and perhaps a couple of others. Pickings were pretty slim between all of them for a number of reasons: 1) everyone put their profiles on all the same sites, 2) the ratio of men to women was grossly disproportional, and 3) of the infinitesimally small number of female profiles, it seemed that a large majority of them were fake.
Today, however, there's an abundance of dating sites! Unfortunately, of the people I know who participate on them (all males), it seems they fall victim to the very same factors I listed above. That got me thinking, "where could I find a site that satisfies even one of the three criteria currently lacking on dating sites?" Well, considering how much I use LinkedIn, the unorthodox seed was planted: "What if you could actually use LinkedIn as a sort of dating site?" I laughed to myself at the onset of the idea, but as I began to think it through, it seemed plausible!
Accordingly, I offer no guarantees with this. This is just something I would seriously considering trying if I were single, simply due to the thought that using LinkedIn as a dating site seems to satisfy much of what I consider to be the problem areas of dating sites -- perhaps the most paramount being the fact that there are great pickings for both men and women, and the factor of fake profiles seems to be greatly diminished. Neither of those are fool-proof, of course, but as I continue to delve into all of this, I hope to make my point to the extent that at least one of you out there can give it a shot and maybe even post a comment here if you successfully meet someone from LinkedIn with romance in mind! Wouldn't that be a cool story to tell?
Things you need
1) A LinkedIn account (free!)
2) Google (free!)
3) Know-how (free, courtesy of this very article!)
InLove with LinkedIn
For this segment, I figured I would turn to YouTube and record a video that shows and explains what would otherwise take far more effort to craft with words, steps, and screen shots. Plus, I don't know about you, but I'm much more fond of live instructional over that of text-based instructional! Here we go (watch in 1080p, full-screen so you can see the details):
Let's go Catfishing
Some might consider this next segment to be a bit more extensive than necessary, but I don't think it is at all. As a matter of fact, I think it's a very necessary component to help you save time, energy, and perhaps to keep you from getting your hopes up unnecessarily.
With that said, some of you may be familiar with the documentary or T.V. show, "Catfish." Basically, the movie and T.V. show both document individuals who are currently in online relationships, but have never actually met (or actually seen, for that matter) who they've been dating for X amount of time. Is it really that person or not? The show uses techniques I've been preaching about in various capacities for years now, so we'll use them to help you figure out a little more about your potential love match. Sound fun? Let's get to it! Once again, a video segment from yours truly (watch in 1080p, full-screen so you can see the details):
Well, I hope you found this to be something unique and different. But even more than that, I absolutely love the idea of one of you really connecting with a love interest on LinkedIn based on the information contained herein! Naturally, there are no guarantees and there are other hurdles to consider, such as what you will say to first break the ice with those you're interested in. That, I will leave up to you! Just remember, the last thing a person on LinkedIn expects to happen is to meet someone in a romantic capacity -- but that's not necessarily a bad thing. With the right words and the right person, you may just end up giving them the gift of a story to tell that not a single person they ever meet will have in common -- never-mind giving them the gift of yourself, right?
So, if you do happen to someone via the methods herein, then please consider commenting to let everyone know how it all went down -- especially if you end up finding real potential for long-term love and happiness. After all, who said LinkedIn can only be used in a professional context? No one, that's who. So get out there, get your search on, and find you some love on LinkedIn!
Last of note, if you enjoyed the search/investigative methods herein, then be sure to check out the related articles in the upper-right-hand side of this page. I've written extensively on topics related to greatly enhancing your search skills, so definitely check them out if you're interested. Thanks for reading!