Marla Martenson Interview – Insights on Matchmaking & Dating
“Hearts on the Line”
Jasbina Ahluwalia interviews Marla Martenson
A few topics Marla Martenson addresses in this interview are:
- (4:20) Men Seek Matchmakers
- (5:17) Men Want Models!
- (6:17) Women Too Busy To Date?
- (7:26) What Women Want
- (9:09) Good Listener: Are You One?
- (11:12) Dating Blind Spots
- (14:44) Date Night Preparations
- (16:15) Appreciate Your Date
- (18:20) Positive Attitude for Dating
- (20:33) Unrealistic Partner Expectations
- (22:47) How to Match Two People
- (24:09) Revolving Door of Dating
Marla Martenson has been a professional matchmaker working in Los Angeles since 2001, helping countless couples connect with their soulmates and go on to marriage. She is also a certified life/dating coach, author and motivational speaker.
Marla has appeared on the Today Show, WGN Chicago Morning News, San Diego Living, KUSI San Diego Morning, Better TV, Urban Rush and over 40 radio shows including Coast to Coast AM, Playboy Radio and The Cooper Lawrence Show.
Marla is passionate about helping others find that special someone to go through life with, someone that makes life sparkle. She is often asked if she has met her soulmate. The answer is yes! She met my Adolfo through a mutual friend in 2001 and they were married in his home town, Mexico City, in October 2002.
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(00:47): Hello everyone and welcome to Intersections Match’s Talk Radio, a monthly holistic lifestyle show focused on the continual evolution into the best versions of our authentic selves.
This is Jasbina, your host. I’m the Founder of Intersections Match, the only elite national personalized matchmaking company focused on singles of South Asian descent nationwide in the US.
I’m very excited to welcome Marla Martenson to our show once again tonight. Welcome, Marla.
(1:17): Hi, Jasbina.
(1:19): Many of you may remember Marla from when she appeared on our radio show a couple of years ago to discuss her previous book. Marla is a writer, fellow professional matchmaker, life coach and speaker. Marla’s most recent book is her memoir entitled Hearts on the Line: The Elusive Pursuit of Love in the City of Angels. Welcome again, Marla.
(1:42): Thanks. It’s great to be with you.
(1:45): It’s a pleasure to have you on. As a professional dating coach and matchmaker, I’m fascinated by insights and perspectives regarding relationships. As a fellow matchmaker, I absolutely loved reading your book about being in the matchmaking trenches. I’m looking forward to discussing your experiences.
What prompted you to write this memoir?
(2:07): This memoir, Hearts on the Line, is the sequel to Diary of a Beverly Hills Matchmaker, which was my first memoir.
I wrote that because I had written two dating advice books. It was really fun and great.
I put a lot of information in there but I really didn’t have anything else to share about dating as far as rules and help goes. I thought, “What else can I write about?”
I love writing. A friend of mine said, “Marla, you should write your memoir.” We’re big fans of chick lit memoirs and Jen Lancaster’s memoirs. I just love memoirs.
A friend of mine said, “Your life is so interesting and funny, you just couldn’t make it up. You should write a memoir.”
I started writing Diary the next day. People enjoyed that so much. They kept asking, “What happened? Did you ever buy the house? What happened with this? What happened with that?”
I thought, “Okay, I’ll write the sequel.” There you go.
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(3:06): I read Diary as well. We discussed it on our last show together. There was the character of Gary the boss.
How true to character is your highly entertaining, and at the same time incredibly disturbing, depiction of how we conduct things in the matchmaking business? It’s a memoir. How true to form is that?
(3:47): It’s true. I took just a few liberties in the writing. I changed names and combined some things. I left a lot out, actually.
(4:05): Maybe there will be a third memoir? I’m just kidding.
(4:11): He was worse than what I said.
Men Seek Matchmakers
(4:20): From your experience, what are the most common reasons that people seek the services of a matchmaker?
(4:36): Mostly, the men pay me.
Elaborating on Men Seek Matchmakers.
Men Want Models!
(5:17): You have two types of clients that you serve. With respect to your male clients, what are some patterns that you see regarding what your male clients are looking for?
(5:34): I talk to a lot of matchmakers. I have matchmaker friends. We collaborate.
The most frustrating thing is how visual the guys are.
Sometimes they will not budge on what they expect their match to look like, which is a model most of the time.
Elaborating on Men Want Models!
Women Too Busy To Date?
(6:17): You have a second type of client. You mentioned women in their late thirties.
They’re thinking, “I’m not quite where I wanted to be at this point.” What are some patterns you see regarding what those women are looking for?
(6:34): The women who come to me that want kids are pretty successful.
I work with a woman who runs a hospital. She’s extremely busy.
Elaborating on Women Too Busy To Date?.
What Women Want
(7:26): There’s a limit to the outsourcing. You can outsource someone to find those people but you have to make the time to meet them and explore a relationship.
Do you see any patterns in what those women are looking for with respect to matches?
(7:48): They generally want a successful guy. They’ll tell me that they want him to be as successful as they are.
Some of the women have supported guys before and they don’t want to do that again.
Elaborating on What Women Want.
Good Listener: Are You One?
(9:09): I say that all the time. Some people look better in their picture and some people look better in person. Like you said, that’s one-dimensional.
I know that most of us matchmakers ask for feedback after the first introduction. We like feedback from both sides.
Do you find any patterns in the feedback that you get from men post-first date?
(9:51): Lately, I haven’t gotten it so much, but they used to constantly tell me that their date just talked about themselves. If both of them told me that, then who was talking?
Elaborating on Good Listener: Are You One?
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Dating Blind Spots
(11:12): I know that blind spots are a big thing for everyone. It’s so much easier to see those blind spots from the outside perspective.
What are some of the most common blind spots that you see in dating? Let’s talk about men first.
(11:44): If they don’t find a woman physically attractive from the get-go, they will drop the ball or start talking about other women.
They will do something to get that woman to realize that he is not interested.
It’s such a great opportunity to meet another person and learn something.
Elaborating on Dating Blind Spots.
Date Night Preparations
(14:44): There are missed opportunities. You mentioned some to-do’s and some not to-do’s on a first date in terms of being a listener and not just talking about yourself.
Do you have any other to-do’s or not to-do’s from your years of experience?
(15:06): The other night, I did a talk for a singles group. I was talking about grooming.
Guys show up with dirty shoes or dirty nails. They might not think about those things because they’re a guy.
Elaborating on Date Night Preparations.
Appreciate Your Date
(16:15): There is a mentality of ruling out rather than ruling in. You have to work through the numbers.
Here is something that comes up a lot. I’ve spoken with other matchmakers and people have different ideas on this. I’d love to hear your opinion.
Do you think women should send a thank you email or text to a guy after a first date?
(16:47): Absolutely. So few women do this.
When they do, I’ve had guys tell me the next day, “She called me to thank me or sent a text or email. No one ever does that.” They appreciate it.
Elaborating on Appreciate Your Date.
Positive Attitude for Dating
(18:20): We hear the belief that attitude and mindset are crucial.
It can be your best asset or it can bring you down in dating.
Which attitudes or mindsets do you find serve men and women the best while they’re out there dating?
(18:43): I worked with a guy once years ago who had gone on over 100 dates between matchmakers and online. He did this in a row.
He kept dating. He’d only had about two second dates out of that. He was so negative that, when he would get on the date, he would sabotage it. He had no personality.
He was negative. I said, “What are you doing? Why are you doing this?”
He said, “Well, it’s not going to work out anyway, so why should I put any effort into it?”
I said, “You need to take a break from dating.” He was duty dating.
Elaborating on Positive Attitude for Dating.
Unrealistic Partner Expectations
(20:33): If you’re burnt out, don’t go through the motions. Take the time. I love that.
What do you think is the biggest challenge that matchmakers face?
(20:51): For myself, as well as what my matchmaker colleagues tell me, it is unrealistic expectations.
Elaborating on Unrealistic Partner Expectations.
How to Match Two People
(22:47): I love that. I always say that being selective is great. But you should be very vigilant about what you’re being selective about. It’s a half inch here or there versus character traits. It’s for the long haul.
What do you tend to use as a basis for matching two people? How has that changed for you over the years?
(23:15): I get to know the person.
- I’ll sit down with them and find out what they’re looking for.
- We’ll talk about their lifestyle.
I have quite a large database. I have recruiters and I’m always getting new people.
Elaborating on How to Match Two People.
Revolving Door of Dating
(24:09): What do you think has changed in dating, relationships and matchmaking over the years?
(24:24): I think there are more and more dating sites. The thing that has changed that’s not so good is that people feel like it’s a revolving door.
Elaborating on Revolving Door of Dating.
(25:15): It’s the perception of unlimited possibilities. Marla, I really appreciate you sharing your insights with us. I’m wondering if there is a last thought or take-home message that you’d like to leave our listeners with.
(25:34): I always say that there is a top for every pot. Don’t give up. Think positive and love yourself.
(25:43): That’s excellent. You have to start with loving yourself. I’d love to thank Marla for joining us today. If you’d like to learn more about the insights that Marla has shared with us today or about her experiences matchmaking, check out her memoir entitled Hearts on the Line: The Elusive Pursuit of Love in the City of Angels. Marla, do you have a website that you want to share with us?
(26:12): Yes, it’s my name, MarlaMartenson.com. My books are on Amazon. I have four books.
(26:23): In case you joined us late or would like to share this show with people in your life, I’d like to remind you that today’s radio show will be archived and available as a podcast on Intersections Match’s website, which is www.IntersectionsMatch.com. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. I appreciate you hanging out with us. Do email me with topics you’d like discussed in future shows. Make sure to join us for next month’s show. Take care, everyone.
What do you think?
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