dating transformation logo
Episode #5

How to Start a Conversation on a Dating App

Featuring Helen Virt
listen on Spotifylisten on Apple podcasts

Learn How to Start a Conversation on a Dating App on this podcast with Hily's Helen Virt

Chances are, you struggle when it comes to how to start a quality conversation on a dating app. Maybe you get few (or zero!) good matches, or the connections that you do get don’t lead to dates.

And if you struggle on the apps, it can lower your confidence and make you want to give up on dating.

The great news? This episode of Dating Transformation will give you some game-changing online-dating tips to help you know exactly how to start a conversation on a dating app with a girl.

Today, Connell is joined by Helen Virt, one of the bright, innovative minds behind the Hily dating app. Hil—which stands for Hey, I Like You—is among the top 10-ranked dating apps in the USA. And in Connell’s opinion, it’s the best dating app for men… period.

Connell and Helen talk about how Hily has grown so fast (25 million users worldwide), and how you can use Hily to take your dating life to the next level.

This episode will reveal…

  • The biggest online dating mistake you’re making… and you don’t even know it!
  • Connell’s favorite dating-app opener that works 80% of the time
  • Exactly what to write on your bio to ignite quality conversations
  • PLUS: How Hily’s innovative features can help you learn how to start a conversation in online dating.

So listen now, and go from endlessly swiping and swiping… to starting quality conversations on Hily, or any dating app.





Yes, you can use the icebreakers that are featured in our app to start a conversation, but if you really, really like someone, then make it more personal, more authentic.

- Helen Virt

My tip for all the singles out there is to keep trying, be yourself, and talk to people. Even if everyone stays at home and goes virtual, people will still go on dates.

- Helen Virt

To summarize everything into one sentence, it is to be authentic and take action. You have to put yourself out there. You have to keep going at it.

- Connell Barrett

Featured in the episode

Helen Virt
Chief Business Development Officer at Hily Dating App

Connell Barrett
Founder and Executive Coach of Dating Transformation

Connell Barrett is a NYC dating coach who's helped thousands of men all over the world find their soulmates while dating with integrity and authenticity. His Dating Transformation podcast gives valuable tools and tips from industry experts on how to get a girlfriend. You can find Connell’s book, Dating Sucks But You Don’t, in bookstores nationwide.


00:00 Introduction
03:15 Why is HILY different?
06:16 The purpose of the compatibility quiz
10:52 Things that Connell and Helen recently discovered with their partners
12:49 HILY's icebreakers
19:39 Managing fake profiles in HILY
24:04 Is A.I. involved in the matchmaking process in the HILY app?
27:30 Thoughts on having portraits as profile photos in the app
29:22 Research and studies conducted to improve HILY
38:17 How to be your authentic self on dates
43:08 What does the future hold for HILY??
45:44 Signup now with HILY and get a free trial

Produced by Heartcast Media.

Related Episodes:

How To Flirt With Girls

How To Be Confident With Women

Best Dating Photos For Guys


Connell: All right. And we are back. And I'm really excited to talk to today's guest because today's guest has a really cool job. She works with the HILY dating app. Now, what's the HILY dating app? The HILY dating app is a dating platform that serves about 25 million users around the globe, and HILY is also one of the top ten dating apps in the U.S. market and one of the top-grossing apps in the world. Now, HILY is H-I-L-Y, which stands for Hey, I Like You. I love that name because it's about being vulnerable, direct, authentic, and clear. And hey, I like this app a lot. It's really fun to use. It's easy to use. There are a lot of cool toys and fun features that make it really fun to use. And basically, the HILY dating app is all about how to start a fun, quality conversation with another user. Because as they say it HILY, and I totally agree with this, a quality relationship starts with a quality conversation. Now, my guest today is Helen Evert with HILY. Now, Helen is one of the very bright minds behind HILY's success. She's one of the most inspirational and influential women in the dating industry. She's the chief business development officer at HILY, and she supervises all of the major HILY partnerships with Apple, Google, Snap, Facebook, you name it; she's on top of it. And she also oversees HILY's communication team. And she is one of the women featured in the women in Dating PowerBook 2021. What does that mean? That means she's a true innovator and a mover and shaker in the dating industry. So before we talk to Helen, let me just give you a couple of places where you can find out more about HILY. You can go to HILY dot com online. You can find HILY on Twitter at HILY App. So that's H-I-L-Y app on Instagram as well, HILY under the underscore app. And they also have a really great YouTube channel which features video dating tips from a certain redheaded dating coach that you might know named Connell Barrett. Anyway, okay, enough of the intro, Helen. Welcome to the Dating Transformation Podcast.

Helen: Now, thank you so much for inviting me over. It's my pleasure to be here. I hope we'll have a great conversation today.

Connell: Well, we better because Haley is all about a great conversation. So if we don't do that, oh, man, the pressure's on. But I think. I think we'll find a way to make that happen. So, yeah, let's start with Haley. Look, there are so many dating apps out in the world. There are dozens, and maybe there are even hundreds at this point. And when I first connected with HILY and got to try your app, I was just blown away by how simple, how fun, and how easy it is to use, in your words. What is it that makes Haley unique in a landscape of so many dating apps? Why? Why, why is HILY special?

Helen: It's really great to hear how you were talking about HILY. I really, really appreciate that. We're doing our best to help in depth. And so Haley's main goal is to make dating a high-quality experience that is safe and entertaining. And we as a team believe that Dayton should be fun. Not frustrating or stressful, or confusing. People should have fun while they're dating. That's why we focus on conversations between singles and give them all the tools for meaningful interactions. We've developed a whole range of tools within the app to make sure that our users can have quality conversations and actually take their anything acquaintances out into the world. So like one of the

Connell: Go ahead, please.

Helen: One of the things that I like most about HILY is that we don't push people into classic dating scenarios like yes or no. So on a regular dating app, you would send the like or dislike to a person right away. So you're kind of making a decision on whether you want to build a romantic relationship with the person most HILY. We are not pushing people into that. We would give them an opportunity to know each other better before starting their dating journey. So we've implemented a wide range of features where they can actually get to know each other before they make any kind of decision, and they can make any kind of decision. They're not saying that they have to go romantic after that. They can be friends. They can just hang out with anything they want.

Connell: Wait a minute. Let me get this straight. Are you saying that you think dating should be fun?

Helen: Absolutely.

Connell: If that's what, dating shouldn't be fun. It's all about stress and anxiety, and rejection. Come on, now. I totally hear you. One of the things I write about in my book is basically you want to be authentic and yourself when you're dating, and you also want to find ways to have fun. Because in my experience, if your date or the person you're messaging with on a dating app, if they're having fun with you, then there's a much higher chance they're going to want to meet you and possibly, possibly have romantic sparks happen. So I love your idea of fun.

Helen: I absolutely agree with you. I mean, we already got enough stress from the outside world that you have to get to the date, you have to marry, you need to get the kids by 30, whatever. So, yeah, I think that you should enjoy the process, like shrug off all the stress and just be yourself, just enjoy the process, and then it will actually lead to something nice.

Connell: I also there's another thing there are a couple of things that make Haley stand out in my mind as different. Differentiating from the competition HILY creates a compatibility quiz. When you first sign up, members take a compatibility quiz. Can you talk a little bit about why there's a compatibility quiz and just about the importance of that on a dating app to help people make connections?

Helen: Yeah, sure. So I was actually among the founders of the compatibility quiz on the app. At some point, we were doing research in the app, trying to figure out what users wanted to have on the app and what features would actually be useful. And this was one of the things that stood out. So they wanted to actually know if they're compatible with the person and if any kind of interests overlapped. So we decided to develop a compatibility quiz, but we didn't want to make it boring because it's available online, but they usually just match you if they reply to the same question the same way. We thought that it's quite boring, so we wanted to put science behind it. So what we did we got in touch with a licensed clinical psychologist, Joe Salonen, and he helped us to pull together 30 compatibility questions that actually match you based on a very complex mathematical algorithm. So we were among the first ones to implement this feature in the app. Overall, it consists of 30 questions. But to get a compatibility score, you need to fill in at least ten, and it will show you the percentage of your compatibility with someone while you're looking at their profile, and you can see what aspects you're compatible with and where you're not compatible if your compatibility score is over 80. You can send a message to the person at once without actually liking them and waiting for their life back. And if you have already started talking to someone and you want to check your compatibility, you just need to make sure that both of you filled in a couple of questions, and you will see the score right away on your profiles.

Connell: Mm-hmm. So is the benefit here. So you're on HILY, and you're messaging different people. You're looking at different people to potentially have a conversation with. The idea behind the compatibility quiz is there's a much higher chance the two of you and a given person will have chemistry, will have compatibility, and potentially hit it off versus other apps. Is that the benefit?

Helen: Yeah, exactly. You see, if you match within the sum, if you have any interest, if you're a match, or if you match some basic views on life, you can actually see compatibility, both laugh compatibility, and friendship compatibility. So it's not like romantic compatibility stuff. You can just see whether this person is someone. You have something to talk about, basically.

Connell: Right. This is so important because one of the biggest problems in using dating apps for many men, for the average man listening to this first, he's struggling to get the kinds of connections he wants. But then once he starts to get them, then the issue is, Oh, I'm meeting all these nice women, but they're just not right for me. We're not compatible. But for example, last year, after I came out of lockdown, I started dating a lot, and I met up with a woman, and we hit it off in terms of chemistry. And then, two or three dates in, we realized we had completely incompatible views on politics. I mean, 180 degrees off. And I thought, Oh, no, we wasted two or three dates here because she's a nice person. She was interested in me, but I just said, I can't be with you. You support this person. I can't go there. So I would have loved some kind of better alignment of our compatibility before that first date.

Helen: Yeah, that's true. Like, I think it's the same for women. Like, you're figuring out stuff while you're talking to the person. And compatibility helps a lot, but, like, you need to remember that the compatibility quest is not 100% compatible. So, like, you still need to talk to a person. You still need to discover something about this person I married recently, and I'm still discovering stuff about my husband, so. And, yeah, it takes time to see a lot of stuff about your partner, so don't just rely on a compatibility quiz.

Connell: Okay, give us one example. I'm going to put you on the spot, but not  to embarrassing. What's something about your husband you didn't know going in and you thought was interesting? I didn't know that about you, honey.

Helen: Oh, that's so hard.

Connell: I'll give you one from my girlfriend when my girlfriend and I cook. She's an amazing cook, Jess. And I'm a bad cook. And I realized she kind of bosses me around in the kitchen, and I find that really attractive. But sometimes I feel like she's like, Oh, you didn't do this with the palm on the pan. You didn't put the butter on the pan. And I'm like, Well, I don't know. I'm not great at cooking like here. So all these little things, we're always revealing different things about ourselves, even in a relationship.

Helen: It's a little bit. It's actually probably a bit of the opposite in my case because I recently discovered that my husband is completely not capable of bossing someone around. So like, even though he's strong and he's independent, he does a lot of stuff and takes responsibility. He is just not capable of a boss and someone around.

Connell: For the record, by the way. Jess, if you're listening, I'm not saying you're bossy. I'm just saying that in the kitchen, you can say bossy things. And I'd never seen that side. But that's okay. We can all be bossy. There's nothing wrong with being bossy. My. My girlfriend's an amazing Girlboss. Okay, let's talk about icebreakers and how, not just how to, but how HILY helps users send that opening message. Because I would say then maybe the number one biggest problem that the man listening to this wants to fix or top three problems is, oh, what do I write? What do I say when I connect with somebody on a dating app? Do I ask how their day is to ask a question? Do I flirt? And you have a feature on HILY called icebreakers, which makes it so much easier to send that first message. Tell me a little bit about the icebreakers feature.

Helen:  Yeah. So icebreakers are not new. You can see those on many apps. I think that what makes HILY super different from any other dating app in the market is that we have icebreakers that you can send from multiple spots on the app. So it's not only when you open the message that you can send an icebreaker. You can actually see those in many places on the app and start the conversation in multiple ways. So, for example, first off, we have personalized icebreakers based on interest. So we see what interests are listed on the profile of a person you are messaging, and we will offer you personalized icebreakers related to that interest. So, for example, if, say, I'm messaging you, and you have indicated movies as an interest on your profile, then there will be several icebreakers related to movies. What type of movies do you prefer, top three or favorite movies of all horror movies or comedies? So you can start talking about some interest, and that sparks a conversation right away because that's the person's interest. All right. Got it. Then we also have a profile answer feature. So overall, on HILY, when you are registering on the app, we give you a couple of questions that you can answer about yourself. And these questions and answers will be listed on your profile. And our second type of icebreaker is based on that. So we will see what kind of answer you're given on your profile. And when it comes to matching, we offer the initiator of the conversation the ability to start the conversation using the icebreaker based on that. Yeah. And then the third one, the very standard and to provide short phrases. So, for example, if you are too lazy to fill in your profile, which is actually a big mistake in dating. Yeah, we have two simple lines like I have your date and how your date is going. Want to talk, eager to chat. So like short lines that you can send right away, but do fill in your profile on a dating app that really increases your chances of getting a good conversation there.

Connell: Yes. Fill out your taxes and fill out your dating profile. If you don't do this, you're going to be in trouble. You're in. Okay. No, fair enough. You may not have invented icebreakers, but I've been on a lot of dating apps. Helen and I like the HILY icebreakers the most because some of them are very silly, which is like catnip to other singles, just having fun being silly. So I'm on HILY right now, and for the record, I have a girlfriend. I'm on a date. This is business only. This is research on me. I'm a faithful boyfriend. But I do have.

Helen: A very serious talk with your girlfriend after this interview.

Connell: Yes. If my phone rings during this conversation, I have to take it. I could be in big trouble now. Okay. I'm on HILY right now. I'm matched with a very nice young woman, and I'm getting some options of what to write because most men say, Oh, wow, I finally got a quote match. Now, what do I do now? What should I write? Some of these are so fun. There are very simple ones. What if I told you I love this? What if I told you I knew exactly how to make you smile? Now that's a really good icebreaker because what that's doing is its kind of like clickbait. You're saying to the other person. I know something that is going you want to know. I have a key that can help unlock your smile. So that's going to make so many people on the other end of this dating app want to say, well, what is it? What are you going to tell me that's going to make me smile? And then you've got women writing you that man back. And that's one of the biggest things I want to help men do is be able to make sure they have a fun opener, and then they get that fun conversation or get a conversation started from a fun point of view. And I also like it. I mean, there's another, oh, there's a poem here. I've actually used this because of HILY. Roses are red, violets are blue. I can't rhyme. But can I date you? That's really good. And the underlying concept here is your opener doesn't have to be amazingly funny. Perfect. Incredibly, you don't have to be Shakespeare. But if you can find a way to have fun, be silly and playful. Which icebreakers on the app help you to do? Then you're going to get so many more women writing you back. I'm talking about the male point of view. Does that make sense to you?

Helen: Absolutely. I was actually going to add that, though, since we have icebreakers, we have analytics behind us, and we know which ones work best. So the silly ones, the easygoing ones, definitely work much better than the serious ones. Sometimes even icebreakers with the shortest ones work so well compared to some well-prepared phrases. Yeah, but like, I think the worst thing you can do on a dating app as well. It's not about our icebreakers anymore, but like, I hate when men just write one message and copy-paste it to every single girl they are talking to. So that's like the girl sees that right through. Like, you can see that right away. Don't do that.

Connell: Gotcha. Okay. You just inspired me. I'm going to text my girlfriend right now. This is not a joke. Okay. I'm going to send her up. I'm going to send her a poem. Ready? The Roses are red. But I'm colorblind. It's true. I am so glad that you are mine. So I'm going to send you that right now. And we'll see if she writes back. Also, I'm trying to preempt my calling her bossy, so hopefully, I don't get dumped. Okay.

Helen: Very sweet.

Connell: Okay. Let's see if Jess writes me back in the next 20 minutes, but let's move on to a different topic. Another thing that people hate, hate, hate on a dating app. Any dating app is catfish fake profiles, people who just aren't what they say, or they're not even who they say they are. Tell me a little bit about what HILY does to keep all or most of these people off of the platform.

Helen: You know, so generally from a dating app developer standpoint, I can say, but we can't remove a hundred percent of this kind of profile, but we are trying to implement as many features as we can to help you with that. Starting up a very background verification of users that we are doing on our end if you don't see it. But then also we offer each user a number of tools that you can use to make sure that a person is a real person. I guess, like one of the greatest features, there is the video of all kinds of video features. So we have a video chat on HILY. So before going on a date, before taking it offline, before sharing any kind of personal information with the person, you can actually hop on a call with them, see them on the video, and see if their profile picture matches the person in the video. And it's very alarming if it doesn't. So you can just do a 20-minute video chat or drink a coffee chat about some common interests or hobbies. First of all, you will make sure that it's a real person. Secondly, it will save you a lot of time because you will understand whether you want to meet that person face to face. So yeah, but generally, like, one of the things that also can help you a lot is to make sure that the person is not captive on the platform apart from like all the video stuff is actually being a responsible user before they do that. So whenever you see someone that is not real, it would help everyone a lot if you reported that person. And every app offers that because if the person gets a couple of reports, our team has a closer look at them and removes them from the platform if it's catfish. But from a safety standpoint, I guess my best recommendation to everyone would be, do not share your personal information. Do not share your bank account details. Keep that until you're married to the person. Now, before that.

Connell: You're right. I'm totally fine with people, especially women. But anybody not even sharing a phone number yet until you meet. Absolutely. It's totally fine. Now I teach my clients. I say it's okay. It's perfect. You're perfectly within your rights to ask for her phone number. But if she says, Oh, I'm not comfortable with that, let's stay on the app, don't push her, don't make it a big deal, because just showing that empathy for the other person is showing that you get that he or she, especially as she is coming from a place of having to be extra careful and think about her safety, that goes a long way with somebody realizing that, Oh, this person's actually not focused on a great date, they're actually caring about me. That will actually help you have a better date if you meet. So yeah, don't push hard for a phone number. And so you want to make the other person feel as safe as possible.

Helen: That actually works the other way around as well. So if I were on a date and platform and the guy was pushing to get my phone number, I could actually think that this is catfishing because, like, why is my phone number that much? So we've actually seen many profiles being reported for catfishing just because people, real people, nice people, but they were just behaving in a very weird way. So don't behave in a weird way. Oh.

Connell: Yes. Just be normal, authentic, and respectful. That goes a long way. It really does with women. Women just want a guy who has some cool things happening in his life. He has some self-confidence and knows how to be a gentleman and not push too hard. What I want to ask you one more tech question before we get into some fun, practical dating tips that I'd love to talk about, but I wanted to ask you about this. Is it correct that there's A.I. technology involved? The way Haley works is involved with the compatibility part of it or any other aspect of the app?

Helen: Well, A.I. is a very loud word you can say about basically every app on the market right now. Basically, yes, we do have very complex algorithms behind how we are showing people when we are showing your people. So we are constantly testing that. We see, for example, we are seeing which picture on your profile works best, and we will show that more to other people, or we will see how many people we need to show you when you open the app to make sure that you spend at least a couple of likes. So these aren't like very small things, but there are, I guess, hundreds of them that make a good experience on the app. So we are turning that all the time to make sure that you see the right people, the right people see you, that you see people within the right distance that yeah. Especially when you don't choose their distance on the app because you can set it. But then, if you don't, we are adopting that to make sure that you are seeing people within the distance that you can actually date, and you're willing to date. You can do that. Technically, it's very complicated. I'm not a tech person myself, so that's something that I'm overhearing at the meetings. But overall, yes, there is an algorithm. It's very complex, and they are working on it constantly.

Connell: Gotcha. When I think of the Terminator computers, computers are taking over the world. So if you would like to admit here that Haley is trying to take over the world with giant computers, you know, it'll be a scoop. We'll break some news here. By the way, I wonder what Arnold Schwarzenegger is in Terminator. I wonder if he'd be a good first date. Um, I would just spend the whole time. Would he shoot that? He'd be shooting the waiter as he tried to. As he brought drinks here to your table.

Helen: That's true.

Connell: Okay, let's have some fun. Let's talk about some of what I call game-changing dating tips. So far, with all the guests I've had on my podcast, I like to say, hey, let's talk about three game-changing dating tips. And so, since you're here today, I thought I would share with you three of the game-changing dating tips that I've seen help my clients and the readers of my book. Help them get more connections, get more dates, and have more confidence, and then you're welcome to give feedback. If you agree or disagree, maybe you have some tips for throwing in. How about that? So I'm going to give you my three game-changing dating tips, and you can give me the Helen Slash HIGHLY point of view. Sound good?

Helen: That sounds great. Okay.

Connell: Game-changing dating tip number one. And this is for men and women, but I'm primarily talking to single straight men. Tip number one is to take a great portrait instead of another selfie with your seven chins and bad lighting. And Hey, it's me in a garage, go outside or go find some natural light, put on a nice collared shirt, and have a portrait taken of you giving your best authentic smile. Well-dressed. I found that a really good portrait is the most important photo on a given person's profile. What are your thoughts on that tip?

Helen: Yeah, absolutely. From a HIGHLY development team standpoint, a nice picture really makes a great profile. So at Portrait, one is perfect. So if you can do that, go ahead, do that. If you can't afford that, you need to at least make sure that your picture looks nice, that you have a nice background, that it's not some fuzzy selfie, that the image is quality, and that it's nicely cut the to your face is in the center, that your face is in there. So yeah, like we can see on our end that profiles with nice profile pictures, especially with professionally taken profile pictures get way more reactions than a profile with some blurry, low-quality images. And I'm actually a very bright example of that because I've been using dating apps for a while before I met my husband, and while I was never too popular there. But then I had a really nice photoshoot, good. Those photos were out there, and I started dating my husband two weeks later.

Connell: So nice.

Helen: Works.

Connell: So you said that that date you had with Arnold Schwarzenegger was the last bad date you had, and then you met your husband. So that's good. Yeah. You probably said, oh, that guy's like a robot. I just didn't feel that compatibility, anyway. Okay. By the way, thank you for mentioning something. You mentioned something a couple of times, which I think is great. HIGHLY does a lot of research. You have a lot of data to write about things that work and things that don't work. Can you talk a little bit more about the fact that there's a lot of information, stats, and data that you at HILY put together to help it help its users? Could you elaborate, please?

Helen: Yeah. So we do have, again, a complex algorithm, not an algorithm, but a program that is embedded into the app where we can actually collect insights from our users. We're not only doing that on the app, we're doing that on outside sources as well, but we believe that as an app developer, we really need to have all the information and know what our users think if we want to build a really great product. So we are talking to them about all of our features. Whenever we launch something, you were always asking for feedback, and we were also collecting data on all the kinds of fronts, fun stuff, fun topics, just to make sure that we know our audience well and then to share this information with our audience and with the rest of the world so you can read our blog. There are so many stats there. So yeah, I can tell you about a fun one that we've had recently if you want to.

Connell: Please go away.

Helen: So the most recent one I remember was about prejudice, prejudices based on human literacy. So we were researching the user's decision to continue or not to continue to communicate with grammatically challenged people, ignoring their personal qualities and what they think about grammar. So yeah, we found that women are more likely to date someone good at spelling and they pay way more attention to detail and take text more seriously than men. Moreover, one out of ten women who would never go on a date was a poor speller, which was extremely surprising for me because I never paid that much attention to it anyway. But yeah. And when it goes to when we talk about men, three out of five men said that they don't care about their date spelling skills at all. I think that men are probably more forgiving towards their date's grammar flaws because they don't get as many dates as women, especially through dating apps. Well, that's the stuff women get more likes and more dates for.

Connell: Yeah. Oh, that's so, that's so helpful to know because you just confirm something with hard data that I've always suspected, which is I told my clients I was looking at my client's profile yesterday on a different dating app, and I noticed two different misspellings. And I said, Hey, you got to fix these things because if that's important to a lot of women, she doesn't want to date somebody who is either can't spell, either can't spell, or is too sloppy and lazy to spell check his profile.

Helen: Now, one of the things actually like if we don't think about spelling too much like we had many different outcomes of this survey. One of the things that cheered me up, and I think it will cheer up most of your listeners, is that both genders would prefer someone who may not be a creative writer. So you might misspell your heart, but if you're fun to be around, if you have a good sense of humor and an open mind, this person will definitely go out with you.

Connell: Okay. Great to know. So there's still hope. You don't have to be a perfect writer, speller, as long as you're fun and have good company. The date is what you're saying.

Helen: Absolutely. You just have to be yourself. That makes the best date and the best conversation.

Connell: Yeah, absolutely. It's all about authenticity and finding, getting in touch with your value and your worth, and really leaning into that best authentic self. Okay. Before we go to game-changing, game-changing, tip number two. My girlfriend wrote me back. She wrote to me. She wrote me a poem. I'm not kidding. Here. Here's her poem back. Pansies are lots of colors. Cats are, too. I want to kiss your face. I must see you. Oh, so. Yeah. Anyway, Okay. Poetry with your girlfriend. With HILY. Thank you for the rose. It all started with. It all started with my icebreaker.

Helen: Okay.

Connell: Let's go to tip number two. Game-changing. Tip number two. Number two for me is we already talked about this, but we can go a little bit deeper. Send a fun, personalized opener after you get that connection, that match, as opposed to a copy-and-paste opener. So, for example, the roses are a red icebreaker. I love that. I love that icebreaker. That HIGHLY suggests. However, what I would probably tell my client is to add something specific to that poem that makes it about her. Maybe use her name in that poem. Or if you're not going to, maybe you might ask. You might ask a question. But don't ask. Hey, how is your day? That's boring and lame. Instead, ask. Oh, I see that you just adopted a rescue dog. What is her name? How are you liking being a dog, mom? That's going to be so resonant to the person you're writing to because it's personalized to them. What's your thought on the importance of a personalized opener?

Helen: Yeah, absolutely. So we can do as many personalized messages for you. And yeah, you can use icebreakers, of course. But if you really, really like someone and if you really want to start a conversation, you need to make it personal. So what I would do, I would look through the pictures the person has on their profile. I would look through their interest profile and make sure to compile some personalized messages. Like, even as you mentioned, adding a name into the message actually makes a change because there are so many people that don't even say hey at me, but just say hey. And that is a game changer, at least for a girl. I can talk from my standpoint, but I was much more attached on a date inside when I was actually getting a message, or my name was mentioned, or something from my images from it was mentioned. I was right away open to talking to this person because if you get a generic message, you're just sitting there looking at it, and you just don't know what to reply, even if you want to reply to that person.

Connell: Okay. So it's not just that. Let me ask you from a formerly single woman's point of view. So it's not just, oh, this person didn't try. It's this. It is generic and copied and pasted. What you're saying is that even if you want to reply, it's if it's not personalized, the person isn't giving you as much to work with. Is that what you mean?

Helen: Yeah, exactly. So, like, if you get generic. Hey, how are you? Yeah, you will. You can reply. I'm fine, thanks. But then that's all. The conversation is over.

Connell: Right.

Helen: And both people don't know how to continue it. So the first message is important because it gives you a chance to start this conversation and to give some topic that you'll be discussing later that will actually lead into the conversation.

Connell: Great tip. Great tip. Okay, game-changing. Tip number three is this might be the biggest one of all. Which is to let your authentic personality shine through parentheses instead of sounding like everybody else. So what do I mean by that? I'm talking about online dating, of course, but I'm also talking about when you meet in person, when you're chatting on the phone, when you're texting. Letting your real true personality come out. And the reason why this one came to me today as I was getting ready for our conversation is, you know, HILY has all these cool ways on the app of letting your personality come out. There's the Livestream, right? There are personalized icebreakers. There are video dates. So I always feel like, look, there are 7 billion people in the world. There are billions of single people. But there's only one of you. There's only one, Helen. It's only one Connell. There's only one John Doe listening to this. You're one in 7 billion. So put that authentic, real personality out there. Let people feel who you are, and not everybody's going to like you or want a day, too. But the people who are going to like you and want to date you, they're really going to like you because you're completely unique. What's your thought on that tip?

Helen: I absolutely agree with you. Yeah. So many people pretend, and first dates pretend in first conversations to be someone they are not. And they don't realize that three, five, ten these dates later, you will actually open up, and you will have to be yourself because you can't wear a mask your entire life. And I believe that so many couples split up because of that. So, yeah, you definitely need to be yourself on an app in the real world to make sure that you match with the person right away and that you are the right people for each other because you won't have a chance to change. Or if you do, you will split up. So that's the first thing I'm done from a dating app standpoint of you obviously take this opportunity like apps give you like HILY and all of the apps in the market give you so many opportunities to express yourself, do a nice profile, indicate your interests, add a lot of stuff to your profile that actually shows you that will eliminate all the people that don't like you right away. So once you actually start talking to will definitely be, you will have higher compatibility right there, and it will definitely lead someone to something bigger. I'm HILY. Yet you mentioned live streaming. Live Streaming is not a typical feature of a dating app at all. I know, and that's the feature we're having there because it actually helps people to showcase themselves to everyone on the app. So we have live streams in a separate tab, so they don't overlap with your date and experience, so you don't have to use them if you don't want to, but you surely can and you should actually. So we created live streams for two reasons. First off, it's a great way to spend your time on the app while you're waiting for a message from someone you like. So you will not miss this message. You will not forget it, and you will get back to it. But most importantly, it's a great way to showcase yourself, to show your true self. And whenever you start in a Livestream on HILY, you will be seen by all the people that are online in the app. So you can see they can see you and message you right away, comment on your stream, and send you a reaction so you will get seen much faster. Because, of course, people have to go through all of these profiles on the app to find someone. And if you do a live stream, you are right. People see you right away. And we actually noticed with the live streams that there are many, many people that start their conversations in the comments section on the live streams and then move on to personal messages. And it's not just between the person and the streamer, but it's also just between the people that are watching the stream, which is very nice. It's a really great dating feature as well, even though it seems like it has nothing to do with dating.

Connell: No, it's such that there are so many great upsides to it. But to your point, it lets you be center stage and convey that true personality to attract your type potentially. Yeah. And to your point. I didn't think about it until you just said it, but if I just sent a message to somebody and I'm waiting for them to write back if I leave the app for 3 hours, and they write back, they might lose interest, or they might read than be off the app. But it gives me something to do for a few minutes while I wait for that attractive someone to hopefully write to me back so I can watch a live stream or do a live stream. It's really innovative. It's a really cool, innovative feature. I haven't used it myself yet on HILY, but it's really badass. It's really smart. I don't know who came up with it, but you could jump on that being me.

Helen: When you do, I watch your Live Stream.

Connell: Excellent, excellent. It'll be a live stream, and I'm just going to read poems. Roses are red poems for the whole time. I'm sure I'll get a million watchers doing that.

Helen: So I'll be texting with your girlfriend in the comments section.

Connell: All right. We're almost out of time. Helen, I want to give you the final word. Is there anything we didn't talk about that you'd like to mention in terms of HILY, either feature on the app or maybe what's the vision? Where do you see HILY and yourself a year or two or three years from now? Feel free to share any final, important thoughts about what your app is bringing to the dating world.

Helen: Yeah. So generally, I can't say that anyone on the market can predict now what's going to happen next because the last few years were amazingly surprising for the whole world. So I think that the best thing that everyone on the market, like all the apps in the market, can do, is to really listen to their users and adapt to their needs. So when people were once on lockdown, obviously implementing media features was a great thing to do and whoever did it first won the prize. So it's, and it goes for all the upcoming years as well. I really can't say that I have predictions on what happens next. Of course, they are talking about virtual reality and all the stuff that is coming in terms of this, and more people are staying home. So yeah, online dating is growing in terms of that. But I guess one of the tips that I would want to give to all of the voters out there, all of the singles out there, is just keep trying. Be yourself. Go there. Talk to people. Like, even if everyone stays at home and even if everyone goes virtual, people will still meet offline. People will still go on dates. They will still look for someone to spend time with because like. Right, I can't see a development in this world where you will be locked up in a room with no one there, and you will not be willing to find someone for you. So don't stop. Go on dates, have fun, and enjoy yourself. And apps like HILY will be there to help you.

Connell: Great advice. If I had to boil my whole message down to one sentence, it's Be Authentic and take action. You have to put yourself out there. You have to keep going at it. Whether you want to approach people in real life or try a new dating app, do a Livestream on HILY, but be yourself, but keep taking action because action leads to progress and results connections. So that was a really good final tip for people who want to test out HILY. Give it a try. Where should they go? Is there a free version? They can see if they like it. What would you recommend somebody do if they've never tried HILY but they're interested?

Helen: Yes, they can just go to the App Store or play store to download the app, and then you can use the app for free. If you like it, you can get some paid features if you think you need those. Also, you can sign up for a free trial where you can get the full version with all the paid features for a couple of days to test it out. If you like it, you can continue with it. If you don't, you can stay on the free version. So. Yeah, okay. Give it a try.

Connell: All right. I'm going to finish with a poem that I'm going to write right now for you. Here we go. The Roses are red. Violets are blue. You're a very good podcast guest, so thank you. Genius. Genius. Right.

Helen: You are ingenious. Indeed.

Connell: I'm just being silly. Helena Vert with HILY, thank you so much for being here. Check out HILY,, Instagram, HILY underscore app, and Twitter at HILY App. And they have a really great YouTube channel, the HILY YouTube channel. Thank you, Helen. And that's all for today. Till next time. Bye, guys.

Get Transcription
Dating Tranformation with Connell Barrett

Welcome to the Dating Transformation podcast. I'm coach Connell Barrett, and I help men build confidence + connect with women by being their own authentic selves.

dating sucks but you don't #1 Amazon bestseller

Get this Book & Attract Your Dream Girlfriend


NYC Dating Coach Connell Barrett

106 W 32nd St, New York, NY 10001

linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram