I got this idea while reading the Frumster Shoppers blog post on venturing out of ones hashkafic realm on frumster.
I would call myself an experienced Frumster dabbler, I was member when it was completely free, I was a pissed off member when they started charging and I have done my fare share of “temporary profile removal” during positive looking relationships. Through all of my frumster history I have learned several things, first of all that just making a profile, uploading your picture and looking through profiles is nice, but it is not all there is to it. This informative post is all about frumster market research, and how to get the most out of your frumster profile, because although they claim 50 are married every month- I noticed that you weren’t married.
For much of my life on frumster I had an obscenely long profile. You all know what I am talking about, usually it is the weirdos and eccentrics that do this. First their hobbies and interests take up half a page and then you are greeted with 3 pages of descriptions, quotes and cheesy poetry. For most people, obviously not including me- this is where they click out of the profile. People have a short attention span and you are trying to sell yourself, you cannot do that with a very long profile. With that said, if the description of the person was less then one full paragraph I almost always clicked out. Another red flag for me is when the profile starts like this “I am really new at this and I don’t want to sound like an egotistical person” but here goes…. That is probably the common similarity between profiles.
Actually I usually clicked out after reading hobbies and interests that had anything to do with going to the mall, shopping, tanning, hanging out with friends, going online, talking on the phone and only simchas browsing. This was my red flag, as well as hobbies that were the prerequisite for admittance into the top seminaries, like cooking, cleaning, shietle shopping, and baby breathing practices. Don’t get me wrong, a girl who can cook is prime, but if it is followed by those sort of kollel wife keywords I wanted nothing to do with it.
I am definitely not the right person to tell you how to utilize the box for the description of self and mate. But do use capitalization, full sentences and please avoid, especially if you are over 20, the use of words like b4, u, ur, lol, cuz, btw, um, and i- I understand that many are likely to criticize me for saying this due to my poor grammar skills, BUT, I never use words like those that are used for quick text messaging. Ladies, please sound like you are mature enough to pop out children and know what a mortgage is.
How to Label yourself:
I think it may have been frumster that originally split up modern orthodoxy into two groups. Originally those who wanted to cover their hair were lumped in with those folks who felt that modern orthodoxy had a leniency for eating milchigs out and having proms at their yeshiva high schools. Then frumster came along and invented Modern Orthodox Machmir and Liberal. Right away you could see the differences, it was as simple as Teanack and the Upper West Side vs. Washington Heights and Kew Garden Hills, brilliance- oh and it gave me so much more material as well.
As a side note don’t think by writing “labels are for can” or “I don’t like boxing myself in” that you are being original. You are not, in fact you are so typical- they should have a category called “I’m not your typical (circle your choice) girl.” The girls who usually have to say they are not your typical fill in the blank girls- are Stern, Brooklyn, Five Towns, Shulamis, and Bais Yaakov. Usually they may throw in something like “out of townish” attitude- red flags for me.
The two largest categories on frumster also happen to be these so tread lightly. I was placed by my hashkafic values and years of honing my “out of the box” attitude or as they say in frum communities he is “open minded” which I never understood because that is like saying, all those that are not modern orthodox are closed minded- and suddenly instead of being my cool out of the box type I was thrust into a world of normalcy, for I became modern orthodox machmir. Well actually my economic theorizing brought me to the conclusion that the largest category and most searched throughout frumster would be that one and therefore, purely for marketing purposes I chose that one. My theories proved to be correct, and I enjoyed the freedom of girls looking at my profile, instead of being cast aside like those of the Shomer Mitzvot category- which I could never really understand why they were different then any other sort of orthodoxy. I came to the conclusion that they had the same hashkafa as yeshivish modern, but instead of using the “suf” they sounded things with a “tuf”- basically they said Shabbat shalom instead of gut shabbos.
Later on in the frumster market research project I came to the conclusion that modern orthodox machmir and liberal sometimes ventured out of their hashkafic realm, as I noticed myself becoming bored with my group and started venturing to the shomer mitzvoth, carlebachian and even yeshivish modern. I had an idea, I had had enough of the cookie cutter “I want a normal guy” profiles of the machmir crowd, they all had something claiming not be the typical (insert place or institution) girl. Like I am not your typical Brooklyn, Stern, Shulamis, Upper West Side- girl, followed by a brilliantly mass produced profile that sounded exactly like all the others.
“I have never done this before and don’t want to sound egotistical, but here goes… my friends think I am…” Then there would be a bunch of ordinary descriptive words that her friends tell her she is. Well that’s great honey, but how about telling me about yourself, your friends would never tell you the truth anyway. The ending would always be “I just cant seem to find a normal guy.”
So you can see why I had to leave the world of Touro grads who wanted to become speech pathologist, physical therapists and occupational therapists- solely for the purpose of baby making and stay at home momdom. I wanted something more, I needed passion, so naturally I went for the weirdoes. I ventured into the Carlebachian and Hassidish- which on frumster means ex-Charedim and Lubavitchers- for all you who are not inclined to click outside your hashkafic realm.
Suddenly I had an idea, if I was leaving the modern orthodox machmir ghetto for greener pastures, others were doing the same and since categories like Shomer Mitzvot and Carlebachian were rather small, maybe two pages of profiles- that means that all of them would get looked at, and that raised my chances of being found in the see of good looking investment bankers and balding, potbellied flakey Jake shabbaton attendees. So I made the switch to Shomer Miztvot, which I found kind of hard cause I knew more then anyone that I was not shomer mitzvoth, yes I did keep the main stuff, but I rarely said shema on time and never did the targum part of shnyim mikra v’echad targum, that stuff would just have to be left out of my secret life until the third date or so.
Suddenly my world opened up and there were hundreds more girls looking at my profile every day, the emails started flowing in, albeit from some pretty weird girls, but my marketing move was successful. Use the categories to your advantage.
Look I don’t want to talk about this because I know many of my friends and readers are of the bigger type. I myself have been attracted to and dated what one may call “chunky” girls, so I am not knocking the curvy type, but pay heed because unfortunately most guys are not like me, most guys weed out the frumster profiles in the master search by choosing average, athletic and slim- thereby avoiding all of you gals and guys that tell the truth. Average is very ambiguous, what average are we talking about here anyway? I know a girl that wrote average and she was well over two hundred pounds and of a guy who had a 32 waist and wrote average- so you see my friends- at least you get some traffic.
Now I am not telling you to lie, by all means put up a realistic picture of yourself. I find that even though I hit the profile because they wrote average, if the picture does not suit my needs, I click away- unless the profile is amazing- which sometimes it is. Putting a normal picture- without the “frumster effect” is important to me. The frumster effect is when you have no idea what their body looks like, either they are bending down- almost always in some sort of wedding picture, or they are standing diagonal in a darkened hallway, they are all false advertising. Many frumster pictures remind me of those fast diet ads that show two images both before and after “she lost 59 pounds” and I swear that they are never the same person- or they can really suck that tummy in.
I used to write average, then I switched to athletic, I liked how it sounded better, and I could get away with it. As long as they didn’t see me with my shirt off, it was all good. Average is the best way to go, because pretty much everyone on frumster is average, which judging by the obesity issues that face our gluttonous Kiddush club society is beyond that of the national average, unless you happen to be in the deep south where fat is a way of life.
I am sure we can argue all day long about the merits of the frumster “who has looked at your profile” feature. I used to love it because it allowed me to gauge my progress, were people actually looking at me, or was it the same folks over and over again, begging for me to look at theirs signaling something similar to that of a note being passed from the girl to a guy in opposing sides of the dance floor at a bar mitzvah.
I like it because you can see who looked at you, click on them and if they or you are interested- your profile was fresh in their mind, it also happens to be that although we are adults, the ladies still like to be contacted. They like to show you who’s boss or something, although several months back before my previous relationship I was going through a hot streak in which tons of girls were emailing me, unfortunately they were ones that try every six months to get me to go out with them- and I hate to block- it seems so cruel.
On the other hand, this feature allows people to see when folks looked at their profile. So for instance after a shabbaton I went to, this girl I met with and I guess flirted with- although I flirt and have no idea I am doing it- was always the last person to look at my profile. I refused to give in to her stalking motives, because I knew once I clicked the profile, I would receive a message. It went on for several months and stopped all the sudden, presumably she gave up, because I was about to email her and tell her, I wished to see some other girls as the last girl who looked at me.
Then of course you have situations when you want to show your friend the profile of a girl who just contacted you and was extremely weird, but you realize that she will see you are clicking on her a bunch of times, and start to dream of all the kinderlach you will have together.
My frumster status:
I haven’t reactivated my profile, because Facebook has had a proliferation of shidduch clubs, where people just stand around and don’t write on the wall for some reason or another. Then of course there has been a proliferation of shidduch blogs, mostly by angsty young girls who are pissed off that all their friends are getting married and they are stuck in the “shidduch parshah”, and of course I like to save money and if I meet people on frumster I have to go through the painful device of whether to tell them about my blog before they google me and go nuts. So I have not reactivated my account on frumster and it lies in its dust waiting to be revived.