But try telling that to the high-powered exec in Shanghai who e-mailed me a few months back, saying he didn’t have time for anything else but finding women on the Internet. Some guys are busy and online dating — even if it is racist — is better than nothing.
Or does it have to be that way?
What if Asian men could improve the online dating odds? What if there was a way for them to achieve results that could match or surpass those of white men?
That’s what JT Tran (aka “The Asian Playboy”) and Alice Zindagi of ABCs of Attraction are promising in their new e-book Online Dating For Asian Men: The Scientific Method to Dating Girls Faster, Easier and With Less Rejection.
I sat down with JT and Alice to learn more about their e-book, from why they’re calling it “revolutionary” to some of the online dating tips they’ve uncovered. (Disclosure: JT Tran is one of the advertisers on my site.)
You’ve called your online dating experiment “revolutionary” when it comes to online dating. How is it revolutionary?
ALICE: Our experiment is revolutionary because the dating world almost always fails to acknowledge the difficulties of dating for minority communities, especially Asian men. Everyone knows that dating when you’re a tall, handsome white guy who looks like a carbon copy of Channing Tatum or Bradley Cooper is basically playing the game on easy mode and that being short or different is practically an online death sentence. But the majority in America have grown up with white privilege and they don’t realize that having a different race requires a different approach, especially when the media emasculates Asian men. You can see the direct result in every online dating study ever done that shows Asian men are universally the least responded and contacted group of men out there. OK Cupid did a study that showed AMs receive a lowly 22% response rate with Asian women responding even LOWER to Asian men than they did to other races. There are numerous products and services out there designed to help men improve their online dating game, but Asian men have been almost entirely left out of that equation. Until now that is.
JT: I’ve actually always avoided online dating and discouraged all my clients to stay away from it as well. Online dating was so slanted against Asian men that I felt that it was completely pointless to even try. It’s far easier and more enjoyable to meet real women in real life. However, I would get literally hundreds of emails every year from my fans who desperately wanted internet dating help. I resisted until Alice showed me the pet project that she had started on. And from there it exploded into the monstrous research project that you see before you: over 3000 messages sent, over 60 profile pictures tested, and a dozen profile descriptions written. We finally cracked the code and were able to achieve results that not only matched Caucasian male response rates, but also in some cases, SURPASSED THEM. If you had asked me if it was possible for AMs to completely conquer online dating and beat every guy out there, I would have said that was impossible. But not now.
Where did you get the idea for this online dating experiment?
ALICE: The idea initially surfaced when the Creepy White Guys tumblr made the rounds on Facebook in 2013. It’s basically a collection of screenshots from some of the creepiest white men with yellow female fever. I wanted to see if I could provoke the same results, so I created my own set of profiles but I didn’t encounter any racism until I made specific mention of having an Asian male preference. What was more interesting than the racist creeps, however, was the fact that Asian men were nonexistent in the absence of an Asian preference, but they flooded the inbox when they discovered a girl with a stated preference for Asian men. It was then that I realized this could potentially be a problem for Asian men in online dating if the only women they were contacting were Asian women and the rare non-Asian woman with a stated preference for AMs.
JT: All credit goes to Alice. Once she showed me what she had started, I gave her carte blanche to crack the internet dating code. I directed her to a perform a series of experiments using control profiles (White Males) and Asian profiles (one of them being mine). We also experimented with attractiveness level (Athletic, Average, Nerdy) and 9 types of openers. After a while, it took on a life of its own and became this massive undertaking. I was not only surprised with some of the data we were getting, but also really excited that some of the results were bearing fruit and showing me that internet dating for Asian men was not hopeless at all.
Could you share with us some of your results? What surprised you the most?
ALICE: In general, the global response rates (that is, the averages from every kind of opener we tested combined into one number) were higher for white profiles than for equivalent Asian profiles. We expected this. But what we found to be interesting was that profiles of men who bordered on being nerdy or even fobby did better than profiles of average men. When we took the fobby men and cleaned them up with better haircuts, styling, and poses, their results were actually lower. These results indicate that, at least now, being a bit nerdy can be an advantage, which is a huge godsend for a chunk of the Asian male population. With the increasing acceptance of many elements of typically nerdy or fobby subculture and fashion, such as gaming and even heavy glasses, this is less surprising.
JT: A great many things surprised me. There were certain things I had assumed would make for a better online dating experience. For example, the most successful type of pictures wasn’t what I had originally thought: that of a well-dressed man in his profile picture or being surrounded by women. Neither scored very well. Or the type of openers (i.e. email conversation starters) that worked the best also surprised me. Using my own profile, I could at best only achieve a 30% success rate (equal to a white male). But when combined with the most optimized picture, optimized profile, and optimized email opener, I got a 40% response rate! Almost 200% more than the average 22% that Asian men get. When combined with the success rate of asking her out and getting her number (date template of which is included in the book), I could realistically GET A DATE EVERY SINGLE DAY FOR A WEEK by only working at it for an hour.
Can you give us a preview of one or two pieces of advice you’re offering men?
ALICE: Don’t try too hard to be sexy. It’s true that men who are classically handsome are going to have better results than men who aren’t. If you look like Takuya Kimura, you’ll get better results than William Hung. That’s just the way the genetic lottery is played and there isn’t much you can do about it. While you should make an effort to change the things you can, like your hair or fashion, when you try too hard you can often forget to be you and might lose some of the charm or quirks that draw women to you. If you’re not classically attractive, it’s not profitable to focus too much on your looks. That’s why it’s better to emphasize how interesting you are and give girls a different perspective. A picture of you rock climbing, dominating a basketball court, or wrestling a grizzly bear speaks more volumes than a bathroom selfie showcasing your $200 KPop haircut.
JT: Don’t try to have extended conversations online. I discovered that once a woman started to respond to my emails, I could easily get her number within about 3 emails and setup a date. Anything more than that risked getting lost in the friend zone or, even worse, risked you getting Catfished (a scam artist who intentionally targets Asian men because of our reputation for spoiling women). Any real emotional and romantic connection will come from when you go on your first date with her. It’s a lot easier than you think to ask for her phone number and go on the first date.
Many of the men who read my blog are not native English speakers and therefore when they write to women online, their English isn’t going to be perfect. How much do you think that matters to women in online dating?
ALICE: Proper English is only important to a certain degree. If your grammar and vocabulary are so bad that you have to use Google Translate to construct a sentence in English because you don’t actually speak it, then you might have a problem and I would recommend taking a break from online dating to pursue an English class. But there’s nothing wrong with not typing perfectly. If anything, some girls can be intimidated by perfectly written English. It can make you look like you’re trying too hard and can put the pressure on her to match your perfection. Errors and mistakes are fun. People like emoticons. People don’t waste time with perfect punctuation if it’s not an essay for school. You have too much time on your hands if you do. As long as a girl can understand what you write, she’s not going to care if it’s written perfectly.
JT: This is why I think meeting people in person is so much better for Asian men because you can communicate with someone using just your body. About 33% of my clients are ESL so I’m not going to teach them useless verbal routines in order to hold a conversation with a girl. Instead, he can communicate with her using his body and subcommunication. Having said that, however, there are templates in Online Dating For Asian Men: The Scientific Method to Dating Girls Faster, Easier and With Less Rejection that they can use. There are screenshots and even transcripts of conversations that go from initial contact to getting her number that anyone can use regardless of their English skill level.
Where can people buy a copy of your e-book?
JT: They can pick up a copy right here online.
Thanks so much to JT and Alice for this interview about Online Dating For Asian Men: The Scientific Method to Dating Girls Faster, Easier and With Less Rejection. To learn more about their work, visit the ABCs of Attraction website.