Teenage boys get a bad reputation; they are seen as grumpy and moody (something which is not universally true). However, behind the myths about male teenage behaviour, there is one fact. Their bodies see a huge surge in hormonal activity which has one single biological purpose – to get a girl.
Young men and young women are at their most fertile up until their mid-20s. The hormone changes seen in teenage boys is part of human design, all geared to ensuring that we reproduce.
That means that getting a girl is what the surge in hormones is about. Yet some boys seem to have more luck in achieving this than others.
Now, new research from Australia shows that some boys are almost twice as likely to get a girl than other teens. Surprisingly, the boys that are most successful are not necessarily the most attractive hunks on Bondi. Neither are they the ones with the most successful Facebook pages or Twitter accounts. Instead, what the research shows conclusively is that the boys with this amazing track record in appealing to young women are those who are able to understand the emotions of girls. In other words, they are empathetic.
The study found that the boys who are most appealing to teenage girls are those who see things from the girl’s perspective. These boys are almost twice as likely to get the girl than other boys.
We should not be surprised. Other studies on dating, for example, consistently demonstrate that the most appealing men are those who spend less time talking about themselves and more time talking about their date. Self-obsessed men who show little interest in their potential mate are the ones that get dumped the quickest. There is a clear biological reason for that; men who cannot see beyond themselves are going to be useless in helping females nurture their young.
What this new research does is add to the significant amount of research that demonstrates that we are biologically geared to want to mate with people who see things from another perspective than their own. That has clear biological and reproductive advantage.
So what has this all do with the Internet and your web presence?
The vast majority of websites and social media pages are self-obsessed. They are all “me, me, me”, or in a company’s instance, “we, we, we”. Self-obsession is rife on the Internet.
When your website starts to see things from the perspective of others, you start to engage. When you stop talking about yourself and talk about the world others inhabit, you start to become more attractive. When you start to behave online like a successful teenage boy, empathising with your audience, you start to win them over.
You still might think that teenage boys are grumpy and moody. But the successful, empathetic ones can teach most business websites a valuable lesson; it is not about you, it is about them (your target).
Graham Jones is an Internet Psychologist who studies the way people use the online world, in particular how people engage with businesses. He uses this knowledge to help companies improve their online connections to their customers and potential customers and offers consultancy, workshops, masterclasses and webinars. He also speaks regularly at conferences and business events. Graham is an award-winning writer and the author of 32 books, several of which are about various aspects of the Internet. For more information connect with me on Google+