Are you are Cyrano de Bergerac? Can you quickly write tomes of flowery yet witty banter? Are you able to see and write about a person’s best qualities- and even present their flaws as endearing quirks? Then you just might have what it takes to become an online dating site ghostwriter cum virtual dating assistant.
eHarmony, Match.com, OKCupid and other online dating sites offer their members various add-on services. One of these services involves having a freelance writer produce the member’s description. This is a good start for someone who may not be adept at writing or for whom English is a second language.
However, what happens when that person is then contacted by an interested party to engage in some small talk? If they are not a profuse writer or tend to go off on boring tangents, that first contact will fall by the wayside fast. Alternately, they might say something inappropriate (up to and including the classic bartender no-no’s of sex, politics and religion), causing a would-be courtship to fizzle.
To prevent such online tragedies, there are several virtual assistant agencies that contract with freelance writers to bring interested parties together on online dating sites. These agencies will work with a client from starter profile and description to photo captions to regular chats and email exchanges, up until that client is ready to go out on his or her first date.
Where can you apply to be a dating site ghostwriter and/or virtual assistant?
ViDA– Virtual Dating Assistants, a company based out of Atlanta, hires contractors for their writing services and pays from $10-$17/hour (rate dependent on performance). The starting rate is $9-$10, but writers who get past training and gain clients of their own are bumped up in pay fairy quickly.
Applications are accepted online and involve a 90-minute writing test where the candidate pretends to be a man sending messages to a woman he met online. If this writing test is passed, the candidate then conducts several telephone interviews. Once hired, the contractor goes through a rather regimented training program in an effort to know and convey the ViDA brand.
From there, the ghostwriter performs the following tasks on a 20 hour/week basis:
Personal Dating Assistants– This site caters mostly to men seeking women for love and companionship. PDAs hired on at PDA do a number of tasks on a part-time to full-time basis:
As you can probably tell from the duties described above, PDA offers a suite of services for its clients, from profile creation to date coaching- and beyond. As a contracted writer, you would probably be hired on to do mostly dating profiles, emails and text exchanges. Pay rate is not advertised on this site, but it could be equivalent to that of ViDA, especially given the fact that PDA mentions that its “dating assistant service works out to $9.50 per hour on average.”
The PDA application procedure is interesting, to say the least. You are expected to talk about your dating history as ‘proof’ that you can do this job. Links to your personal website and online dating profile are appreciated.
iDatingAssistant– This site occasionally lists opening for contract writers that will be tasked with profile writing/editing, email composition, photo captioning, and even texting. The pay rate is not disclosed, but it might be around $10/hour given that the company’s deluxe package costs $499 and includes 30 hours of work (equaling about $16.67/hour).
This site may or may not pan out for prospective ghostwriters, given that its newsletter subscription service isn’t functional right now and the site has sparse content, even though the domain was registered back in 2011.
Not everyone succeeds when attempting to find a job at ViDA, PDA or iDA. So, where else can you go to look for this kind of work?
Start with Google
Input the search term ‘online dating ghostwriter’ or ‘online dating assistant’ into Google and you’ll be served with several different search results that mention writing and rewriting of dating profiles. You’ll also find want ads for dating articles, which are not a bad way to get started in this line of work and may help eventually qualify you to work at ViDA and/or PDA.
Go to online dating sites
Match.com, Bumble, Tinder and other online dating sites often post openings for online dating writers. It doesn’t hurt to reach out to them and inquire- even if there is nothing posted directly on the site. Alternately, you can try inputting online dating site names into job boards on Indeed, Monster, and GlassDoor.
Start your own ghostwriting service
Many online dating ghostwriters get their start by helping out their friends and colleagues with their dating profiles. If they are successful, they are often referred to others. This can snowball into a full-blown business, as evidenced by Scott Valdez of ViDA.
Online dating ghostwriting and you
As an online dating site ghostwriter, you might raise a few eyebrows regarding the ethical implications of your side gig. What you do- and won’t do- for your clients will probably need to be established and then reestablished several times. This gig will also give you a newfound appreciation of the nuances of human psychology. At least it won’t be a boring job- and it will certainly help you out in your own dating experiences.