Connecting Via Online Dating

In our super-connected world, even finding love has gone high-tech.

As consumer correspondent Susan Koeppen pointed out Tuesday in The Early Show's weeklong series, "How To Date In 2008," millions of people are seeking love with the help of Web sites devoted to helping singles meet.

There are more than 1,000 such sites, helping singles match up by age, religion, activity -- you name it -- it's out there.

Experts offered advice on the show about online dating techniques, and making your online photos and profiles the best they can be. We also heard how a recent makeover of one attorney's online presentation is already helping her in the online dating arena.

Marybeth Rogers, 56, has been single for nearly 15 years, and says she's "very attracted to younger guys with lots of energy. ... I don't go out to bars and ... hang around and wait around for someone who's had enough to drink to say, 'I think I might like to talk to her.' "

Marybeth has tried online dating with what she describes as "disastrous" results. Over the years, she says, she's never gotten many dates using Web sites.

Enter Erika Moore, who runs a company that provides makeovers for online daters. It's called Romance Language.

Moore says, "There are lots and lots of good people online," but most people do a bad job of marketing themselves.

Case in point -- Marybeth.

So, we asked Moore to help Marybeth pump it up a bit and re-do her online profile.

What was Marybeth doing wrong?

"Pretty much everything, honestly," Moore told Koeppen.

To start with, Marybeth didn't have a good picture.

"The picture," Moore says, "is absolutely critical, because, without a good picture, people don't even look."

A bad picture or no picture is a big problem, Moore says.

And that's Roger Kriegel's area of expertise. He's a headshot photographer for Engage Design Studio.

We got Marybeth a new headshot.

Asked what some of the biggest mistakes are that people make with their pictures, Moore responded, "They use old ones. I've literally seen people use their high school graduation picture from you know, the '70s. I mean, it's crazy!"

Next, Moore worked with Marybeth on her screen name, which was mbru4me.

"The way this reads is a list of kind of random letters," Moore pointed out, "so, if a guy is seeing this along with a lot of other people, is he going to remember this? No."

Moore changed Marybeth's screen name to Dancing Defender "because she loves ballet, and she is a defense attorney. ... (Do) anything you can do to stand out."

And finally, putting the right words in your profile to attract the right kind of person is key.

"A guy who can just make me laugh is just heaven," Marybeth says.

Replied Moore: "Great, which reminds me -- you say you know how to make people laugh. OK. How do you make them laugh? Let's be specific."

The biggest miscue people make when writing about themselves online, Moore says, is negativity -- giving a list of what they don't want.

Marybeth's profile needed help in that department, so Moore "injected some humor in it. I put some stories in. I made it very positive, very much. I just wanted to sell her personality."

And boy, how things have changed for Marybeth!

After her online makeover, her profile got more than 100 hits in 48 hours, and probably more than 500 in two-and-a-half weeks. Of those, about 100 have asked to meet her, and she's corresponding with several.

Marybeth says she's not only impressed that so many men are looking, but by "the kind of guys who are responding. They are, I think, quality, quality guys."

So, is Marybeth optimistic she'll meet somebody?

"I think so," she says. "Yeah, I do. I really do."

She's already been on one date and is setting up more.

People get help with resumes, she remarked to CBS News, so why not with love?

The photos run about $200 dollars and up. And to revamp your online profile costs $750.