Online Dating Blog

Should I Email Again If My First Gets No Response?

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A reader wrote in asking if it is worth his time to send a second email when a woman didn’t respond to his first.

First things first, not getting a response after the first email is normally a sign to move on. If the woman is using the site actively, reads your email and then doesn’t respond there’s normally a reason. In “real” life, it is not uncommon for a man to pursue a woman who turned him down the first time. Often this man will eventually have success. On the internet though, repeated contact rarely works because (unfortunately) it can come off as creepy. There’s no interplay and there’s no way for her to tell if you’re actually harmlessly interested or someone she should avoid.

Basically, I don’t recommend sending second emails because I think the odds of success are too low. With that said, if we’re going to assume failure because of no response after one email, there really is nothing to lose by sending a second email (aside from your time). Here are some tips when trying your luck with a second email:

  • First and foremost, wait a little while before sending your second email. It is not good to send a second email the next day. I think three or more day is a fair time to wait.
  • Do not say anything like “I’ve seen you been online but haven’t gotten back to me”. Maybe you have noticed she’s been online but saying so will only make it look like you’ve been obsessing over her.
  • Keep your email short. The odds of response on a second email are low so this is as much to save you time as it is to follow the rules established in my First Email article.
  • Almost without question I think you need to come off as fun in your second email. This is because sending a second email can appear either desperate or obsessive. Keeping things light will combat this. Also, my opinion is that the odds of a second email working when the first didn’t are really low so you may as well have a good time with it.

Below I provide some examples of what I would envision this type of email looking like. This is not an endorsement for second emails as I don’t see them as a very good investment of time. Still, if we’re taking the got-nothing-to-lose angle, here you go:

Subject: Email Issues
I received so many contacts last week that Match.com had to clear out my inbox to make room on their server. I’m assuming your response was lost in this purge but I’m still really interested in talking to you so drop me another line and I’ll get right back to you.

Subject: Are you playing hard to get?
Because that would be weird. On a dating site. I’ll just assume you’re dead. That makes the most sense considering how awesome I am.

Subject: Hey, it’s me, Mr. Right again
I know it’s a major faux-pas to send another email but I still like your profile, maybe you could give mine another look :)

Subject: An email even more impressive than my first
It’s really hard to live up to a heading like that! I’d still like to chat sometime if you’ve changed your mind.

Subject: I’m not as strange as a second email makes me appear
Really. I swear. Let me prove it over dinner sometime.

If you decide to give sending second emails a try, remember to not spend much time writing them. That time would be far better spent contacting new people!

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About the Author:

Brad initially struggled with online dating but over time became quite successful using it. He met his wife using online dating and has been giving advice and helping people improve their results since 2007. He has written a Free Online Dating Guide to help others find success with online dating. You can learn more about his personal experience using online dating and running this website here.

Discussion

  1. Lana  October 7, 2011

    A guy sent me an email that said “hey whats up??” his profile was cool, we had some things in common so I simply wrote back that I was doing well and that I’m pretty new to the online dating and asked how he was. I even asked my guy friend and he said it was fine. He’s been online and hasn’t replied, though I suppose it’s because I was vague? Opinion?

    (reply)
  2. Brad  October 8, 2011

    Hey Lana – I hear this frequently from women. I also hear a similar situation where a guy winks at a girl and then she winks back but never hears anything from him again.

    I would say you should feel free to reach out to him again. However there’s a chance that this guy sent “hey whats up?” to 100 women – some guys do mass emailing like this and if he did then you might struggle to get his attention if he had a lot of replies.

    That having been said, I wouldn’t try to read too much into guys not responding after they started the email conversation. Whatever the reasons, this seems to happen a lot so I seriously doubt it was your email or your approach. To me it sounds like your response to him was fine.

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  3. Austin  March 25, 2012

    Brad,
    This is in reference to whether or not to send a second email. My situation new to online dating and had a girl wink at me very shortly after being on the site. I was nervous and didn’t respond for a few weeks and then sent her an email. It was 3-4 sentences and asked her about traveling and how she enjoyed certain countries she had listed. I didn’t receive a response back, was I not assertive enough, did she think I was a flake because I waited so long. So should I chalk it up to lesson learned and move on or try for the second email which I understand could be creepy. Thanks for any advice.

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  4. Brad  March 29, 2012

    Austin – It’s hard to say if she thought you weren’t responsive/assertive enough. It could just be that she doesn’t pay for the service so she can’t write you back (winking is free). As I said above, though, while the odds aren’t great I do think it would be reasonable to give it another try.

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  5. Debra  March 11, 2013

    Hi, I’ve been in a similar situation and not sure whether to send that email. I was having a convo over a week with a guy and had lots in common. I gave him loads of compliments and he did me. He repeatedly said that he did not believe I was real. He was 5 years older than me and called me young, hot and cute at one point. He seemed surprised that I liked him and kept asking for me to send photos( he stipulated not pervy, just of me) one night halfway through our conversation I just logged off without saying bye. His next message said “where have you gone? Maybe your busy!”
    The following night I apologised for disappearing mid conversation. He was quite distant and wasn’t as talkative as he’d been the days before so i told him I was signing off and would speak soon. He replied by saying “can’t wait;-)”
    He hasn’t been online now for a month. He’d given me his private email address to send some pics so I emailed him about 3 weeks ago just to say that I hope he’s back online agin soon. I didn’t hear back from him. I’m now wondering if I should email him one last time but ask a question so I know that if he doesn’t reply then he really is ignoring me. Then I can move on. Any advice would be a godsend?:-)

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    • Brad  March 17, 2013

      Hey Debra – given that you’ve waited quite some time and given that you don’t have too much to lose at this point, I think it would be fine to try contacting him again. I’ve seen quite a few people have success waiting some time and then trying again…I suspect this is in part because sometimes people decide to stop talking to us, then regret it but don’t know how to go about re-opening that line of communication. Now I’m not saying it always works, reaching out again, but I have seen quite a few successes in the years since writing this article.

  6. Courtney  September 2, 2013

    Hi, maybe you can help me better understand online dating. I am a successful, divorced black woman who works long hours and can’t meet people by traditional means. I’m not trying to sound vain but people always tell me I’m beautiful and have a great smile and personality. I have been on Match.com for about three months and have sent out 200 emails (I have counted) and I have heard from a single person!!! I read profiles and write personalized emails to each individual but nothing and I don’t get it AT ALL! I have a good profile with a good variety of pictures and I say I am open to all but NOTHING! This can’t be normal……or is it?!?!

    (reply)
    • Brad  September 2, 2013

      Courtney – this is pretty tough to answer so I’m sending you an email. Maybe if I look at your profile I can give you better advice.

  7. Frustrated Dater  November 23, 2014

    Has any one else had this situation?

    There is a profile of someone I think would be really interesting to meet on Match.com. She always shows up on my search results, and according to the system, we are a 100% match. I emailed her about six months ago, but I never heard a response. I followed it up with a second email about two weeks later, and still no response. About a month later, I noticed her profile went dormant. I was still interested so I sent her a message again. I never had a response, but I was not really expecting one. I have been messaging her about once every 3-5 weeks, and have not heard anything. I am trying not to be creepy, I just want to let her know I am still interested if she ever wants to talk. Recently it looks like her profile is active again. So my questions:

    Other than being involved with another person, is there any reason why someone would ignore a nice genuine original message sent from someone else who is an exact match.

    I am worried that I have forever been put in the “Do Not Reply” pile. Is there anything I could say to start a conversation?

    Is there any way to know if someone has blocked you on Match.com?

    If anyone is wondering. Yes, I am sending messages to other people, and have gone on several other dates. It is just frustrating, because every time I run a search, her profile shows up at the top of the list.

    (reply)
    • Brad  November 26, 2014

      There’s lots of reasons that someone wouldn’t reply: she might not be a paying member first of all. If that’s the case, she won’t even be able to read the email. She might also get lots of emails and wasn’t able (or wasn’t willing) to read them all. She may have also started to date someone and wasn’t comfortable communicating with other people because of that.

      I seriously doubt you were blocked, although when you say emailing her every 3 to 5 weeks…how many emails in total do you think you’ve sent? One option, if you really find seeing her every time you do a search, is to block her profile from search. If you did that, you’d still get an email from her if she ever responded to one of your old emails, but you’d not see her when you are looking around.

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