“Hi, this is suchandsuch from The Dr. Phil Show…”
As soon as I read the email while sitting in a coffee shop, I realized two things:
- My website had just exploded into a shitshow.
- At least 80% of the people seeing and sharing it, absolutely hated my guts and thought I was a disgusting freak or some kind of loser.
I briefly considered calling the number the representative provided…
… and then thought better of it.
Why bother? I could imagine any number of scenarios where I was lured onto the show and then condemned for being superficial, mocked for being odd, or some combination. Years ago, a businessman I was learning from almost ran into the same trap, when an HBO show called him.
Instead, I continued wading through the 258 unread emails in the special inbox I set up. A new one appeared every two minutes or so. Separating out the hate mail was easy because gmail lets you see the first few words of every email. I simply selected all of them, marked them as “read” and dragged them into a Hate Mail folder I created.
My plan is to print out all the hate mail in a stack and make art out of it
Speaking of email, let’s break down the initial numbers – plenty of people have asked me.
Hate Mail: A little over 900 messages.
Cheerful Mail: A little over 250 messages.
Media Requests: A couple dozen.
Mail from women interested in me: Around 100 messages.
Let’s dive deeper because numbers can be very deceiving. I’m surprised the hate mail figure is so low. My website had a form you could enter a message into, without even providing an email address. It doesn’t get more anonymous than that, which most haters require.
Still, for a few days, 900+ messages aint bad
Around 100 messages from interested women aint bad either. But that’s not all it seems. The vast majority of these women are from all around the U.S. and even some in Europe, Australia, South America, Asia… which sounds amazing (it is) but it’s not like I can meet all of them in-person tomorrow. Although now that I’m writing this, I’m realizing that I should travel the world because meeting one great person is worth the effort.
But I’ve also met women locally. On my way to meet one, I wondered if I were being catfished. There was only one way to find out (and, no, I wasn’t).
The most popular questions I’ve gotten so far are:
- Aren’t you meeting a bunch of gold diggers?
- Any psychos?
No and no.
A genuine gold digger is going to be very precise in their targeting, and are often the aggressor. They look for certain signals. Someone offering a free vacation as an attention-grabber is not displaying one of those signals. I’m sure any savvy gold digger who heard about my offer, instantly knew I’d be financially aware enough not to be taken advantage of long-term.
And psychos? Easily spotted just from email.
Two more things before I end this first update:
First… if you want more in-depth how-to of the marketing behind this – both what I did well and what I horribly screwed up – you can get on the list at shouldyoudatenate.com.
Second… the 250+ messages of cheerful mail
I was not expecting them. They were vastly outnumbered by the hateful comments, and didn’t have the same predatory cleverness… but they impacted me much more. I replied to every single one, thanking the writer (although I think a few slipped through the cracks as I waded my way through all the emails – if I missed yours, I’m sorry).
And some people reached out because they needed a little kindness themselves. I was honored to hear from them. I hope I cheered them up even a tiny bit as much as they did me.