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) that are all clearly referencing something important to the sender, the recipient, or, ideally, both.

Talking about specific things that interest you or that you might have in common with someone is a time-honored way to make a connection, and we have proof here that it works.

Maybe they set a more casual tone that people prefer, though I have to say, You had me at ‘what’s up’ doesn’t quite have the same ring to it.

There are many words on the effective end of our list like (double yes!

We know that’s going to piss a lot of people off, and we’re more or less tongue-in-cheek with this advice, but it’s what the numbers say.

does help a person get noticed (reply rate 56%), but maybe that shouldn’t be a surprise on a site that is itself named for a member of the Classical pantheon.

The result: a set of rules for what you should and shouldn’t say when introducing yourself. Let’s go: Netspeak, bad grammar, and bad spelling are huge turn-offs.

Our negative correlation list is a fool’s lexicon: was also a successful word, but much less so (33%).

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Although the data shows this advice holds true for both sexes, it’s mostly directed at guys, because they are way more likely to talk about looks.

You might think that words like are nice things to say to someone, but no one wants to hear them.

On the other hand, more general compliments seem to work well: is almost always used to describe the way something or someone looks, and you can see how that works out. After all, the way you choose to start your initial message to someone is the “first impression of your first impression.” The results surprised us: perform better, bucking the general “be literate” rule.

In fact, it’s smarter to use no traditional salutation at all (which earns you the reply rate of 27%) and just dive into whatever you have to say than to start with all did very well.

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