“Just go out and meet someone!”, “Why can't you just find a nice guy?”, “Let's go to the club and—”
We were lucky enough to speak with Ms. Hoffman about her perspective on the dating apps currently out there, and the ways in which we can most effectively utilize this technology.
Miss Millennia Magazine: Which online dating platform, would you say, is best for Millennials seeking long-term relationships? Why?
Damona Hoffman: Each dating platform has a unique identity that matches a unique set of goals, so finding the right app or site is a varies by the individual. You need to look at the sites’ functionality, selection, and niche in order to find the right one for you. I do, however, recommend being on more than one site at a time–it’s like being in two places simultaneously and can double your chances at finding love.
M3: Tinder gets a bad rap. Do you think that reputation is well deserved? Who would you encourage (or discourage) from using it?
DH: I think Tinder is a great resource for many daters including people coming out of relationships who need to get dating practice. It’s also good for people who are frustrated with the speed of traditional sites and would like to get out on dates more quickly. If you hook up with people you meet from the site then it will become a hookup site for you. If you use it as just another resource to improve your dating skills and meet more people then you won’t be disappointed.
M3: Many young people struggle because they want a more “legitimate” dating site (one with a better reputation like eHarmony or Match), but don’t have the money to pay every month/year. What would you say about free sites like OkCupid vs. a subscription-based membership site?
DH: In general you get what you pay for. Low investment usually means low commitment. However, there are ways that you can pay for a site that are not monetary. In OkCupid, you pay based on time. When you answer questions on OkCupid you are giving the site valuable data and investing your time in having a good experience and making better matches. So, you have a better shot at finding someone who has a similar level of commitment to finding someone special. Yet the biggest dating innovations right now are happening in apps and most of those are free or are based on a model where you only pay for the specific services or premiums that interest you. I think we’ll see more and more traditional sites moving in this direction as the customers migrate to mobile.
M3: What makes Generation Y different in terms of our dating habits?
DH: Gen Y daters are unique from other generations in the way they communicate. Many of my clients who are Gen X or older tend to like to get to know a date offline before they set a date. Gen Y daters prefer to only text before meeting and like to get out into the real world more quickly. I also see that Gen Y daters don’t make as much of a distinction between “online dating” and “dating.” Whether you met on Snapchat, Tinder, or through friends; a date is just a date–not an online or offline date.
M3: What do you think is the biggest pitfall of the online dating generation?
DH: I’m sad to see so many people living in fantasy online relationships. Dating sites and social media platforms should be used as a gateway to connect with people in real life, not as a way to build real relationships. When I led a webinar recently on this “Texting Trap” as I call it, I heard from many Gen Y daters who were stuck in text-based relationships that either ended up being fake or lacked true chemistry when they met in the real world. The Texting Trap keeps you stuck in a relationship that doesn’t actually exist in the real world and is devastating our ability to make real, romantic connections.
M3: How can we effectively use dating apps/online dating to achieve our intended results?
DH: First, do not try to control the outcome. People tire of online dating and become disappointed when they become too attached to what is going to happen in the future. Stay in the now, try to focus on listening and connecting to someone when you are sitting right across from them and you’ll enjoy the experience much more. Also, keep that first date short and sweet. Many people wear out their welcome on the first date, they say too much, they do too much, they drink too much, and they wonder why the relationship never develops. For a flawless first date, you have to keep your date wanting more to make them keep calling and needing to see you. There’s no such thing as love at first sight, only lust and first sight. True chemistry and connection develops over time and you need to give your relationship the space to grow.
Has Damona's advice brought you closer to finding love? Share your story with us!
Damona Hoffman is a relationship expert, media personality and an early adopter of the online dating scene. The former CBS executive, who previously
taught courses for actors focused on auditioning and marketing techniques, successfully led aspiring actors to prolific careers.
She then took the lessons of personal branding and making a good first impression to the love realm. Her aim now became guiding people to positive and healthy relationships. Her unconventional strategy in the online dating space has helped many people find their perfect match by marketing themselves in a genuine way and loving as they are. Damona runs www.DatesAndMates.com, coaches clients privately, in both online and offline dating, and holds regular seminars and mixers.
In addition to writing for The Huffington Post, Damona has been featured by Match.com, JDate, and YourTango.com. Her book Spin Your Web: How to Brand Yourself for Successful Online Dating is currently available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Nook, Vook, and iBooks and has been endorsed by The Millionaire Matchmaker, The CyberDating Expert, JDate, HurryDate, and more. She holds a B.S. in Communications from Northwestern University, coaching credentials from Master Coach University, and a Graduate Certificate from UCLA.
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