Things Internet Marketers Can Learn From The Pickup Artist

by Jeremy Schoemaker on November 25, 2007 · 111 comments

Shoemoney Pickup Artist

Last year VH1 started a new reality show called The Pickup Artist. The show brought world renowned dating romancer Mystery and his 2 boys to teach 8 total losers how to score with women. It was a very entertaining series but I think there is many things that internet marketers can take away from the show. (you can catch most of the episodes online at stage6)

Peacock theory

In episode 2 Mystery teaches the guys that in order to be noticed and remembered you need to stand out. For examples he says that women wear shorter skirts or show more cleavage to separate themselves from the crowd. He goes on to say Men can wear tighter pants or go crazy with their hair. Now if I had not experienced this in real life I would call bullshit but when Dillsmack bet Marcus Tandler 100$ he would not wear his lederhosen out on the town in vegas… we saw exactly the kind of effect this peacocking had on women. They came out of nowhere and were all over Markus asking him where he was from and where he got his outfit. Markus won the bet and got all the attention from the ladies.. win win for him.


So what can internet marketers learn from peacocking? Well several things. For one you need to make your website stand out. For traditional websites this might mean some subtle things like using alternate colors or interesting branding techniques. For people looking to collect email addresses maybe you dont go with that standard 90 page in 1 page email submit thingie…. for people selling ebooks maybe you smack people in the face with a picture or audio right off the bat to let them know you are real and not like the 10,000 other people selling books to get rich over night.

Be interesting and people will be interested in you

In episode 3 of the PUA Mystery says nobody will be interested in you if you are not a interesting person. Looks can only get you so far.

I do not think you have to look to far to see parallels here with marketing. You can have the greatest looking site on the planet but if it does not have any meat to it people are going bye bye… A great example of this is plenty of fish Sure it doesnt look like much but it sure is interesting. The site does not need flashy graphics to sell its product (free dating). So the real lesson here imo is focus on your core product and not so much on a great design.

In blogging this is probably easier to draw corelation. John Chow, Problogger, myself and many others all have been making over there blogs. But all of our blogs were successful WAY before we went for a nicer design. Functionality should always be key.

Making your date feel secure and safe

In Episode 4 Mystery brings in some girls for the guys to practice kissing to see who is the best kisser. But the real lesson was not so much on how well you can kiss… Its kind of like what sun tsu says “the war is won or lost before the first battle” so before you go in for a kiss you need to have made the girl feel secure and safe with you. They go through many steps on how this works.

How does this relate to internet marketing? Well you are not going to sell anything unless people feel secure and safe buying from you. There are many little things you can do to make your visitors trust you. One such thing is just by adding a phone number to your site. Another is by adding one of the secure tags like hacker safe or thawt or another one of the many things that have been proven to increase conversion.

Self Confidence

For episode 5 the lesson was in Self Confidence. All the guys were to go swimming with beautiful women in nothing but spedos. Pretty humbling.

The lesson here business owners/internet marketers can take away is the “act as if” mentality. A lot of times when I speak people come up and talk to me and talk about their websites. Many times these people are just getting started and they start off with “well its not much but..” or “I am just a little guy” nothing turns me off more then someone who starts off like that. To me it means they value their business as not very serious and if they do not take it very serious then why should I. On the opposite side you have a company like photrade who approached me about their product at the blogworld expo. I was really impressed and was happy to test their product and help them launch. Other very well known sites wrote about them to citing my post. Now what you don’t know about this company is its run by people who also have day jobs. They have no VC funding and they beg, borrowed, and stole their way to get a booth at blogworld. They acted “as if” and very clearly believed in their product and because they convey such confidence in their product people will take them much more seriously.

Listening and Learning

For episode 6 the guys have to watch a lingerie show from the models Mystery as brought in. During the show the ladies are talking about what lingerie they like the best and why. Course the guys are not really listening because they are distracted by the looks of the models. When Mystery gives them the challenge for the day they are to assemble a lingerie outfit for the models based on what they were communicating when they were modeling. As Mystery says “You should always appreciate beauty but never be distracted by it”.

The Pickup Artist

So what can an internet marketer learn from this? Well since you cant always hear feedback directly from your users you can study their behaviors and patters and really that is how you will listen and learn. Using tools like Google Analytics you can tell what pages users like, how long they stay on the pages, and many many other things your customers are telling you. Also I am a huge fan of heatmap tools like crazy egg which will show you a heatmap of your site and where your users are clicking. This is your customers voice and its vital when you are testing or measuring value.

Approaching moving targets

The challenge for episode 7 for the guys is to approach a girl who is walking by and try to pick her up. Mystery says “objects in motion tend to stay in motion” and talks about how much more difficult it is to pickup a girl who is on the move. Its really quite a interesting episode as the guys fumble around trying to pickup girls walking or running by them.

Your customer (surfing the internet) is moving super fast and is in-motion. You need to approach them and stop them. How do you do it? This is something you need to think about ;). For social media traffic this is super important. There are some tactics you can use to specifically target these people. (more on that in the next few days)

Shoemoney Pickup Artist

Shoemoney Final Thoughts:

Really the Pickup artist is mostly lessons in psychology and self worth. I can see why people who go and do Mystery’s course have a life changing experience.

full disclosure

About the author...

– who has written 2895 posts on

Jeremy "ShoeMoney" Schoemaker is the founder & CEO of the ShoeMoney Blog, Elite Retreat Internet Conference, & the PAR Program. In 2013 Jeremy released his #1 Amazon Best selling Autobiography titled "Nothing's Changed But My Change" - The ShoeMoney Story. Jeremy currently lives in Lincoln Nebraska with his wife and 2 daughters.

Anna recommends you check out these amazing posts:

  1. work-in-progress Progress and Completion
  2. money Sneaky Facebook Advertising Tricks – Dialing In Your Campaigns Part 2
  3. shutterstock_68611039 How To Profit From Invading Your Users Privacy


1 ferro

good article… I preciate

2 iantrepreneur

your right! internet users move uber fast – that is why so many users use tits and women as avatars to stop users and readers in motion to take a look and stop. I think that is why avatars of women are more popular and in use that regular users photographs.

sometimes obscure headlines and titles stop users as well

3 jim

Very clever post Shoe and some good points, I particularly like the one about moving targets.

4 Free webmaster ebooks

TV- The Time killer has taught Shoe some valuable things and now we are learning it from him. Great post and there is no doubt that we should stand out from others

5 Ricardo

I gotta admit the PU philosophy also changed my life.

But I didnt need to apply for a tv show for that ;-) . Kudos to Marcus. That man has some balls if he really showed off in that costume.

6 Blog Contests

A tip for everyone in here

7 Seo Smarty

Listening and Learning – is the best one!

8 The Monetizer

Excellent post here Shoe. I only caught a few episodes on VH1 but the points you make are dead on for blogging and making money online.

9 TJ

Good post!!!!

10 30 Day Man

Yeah I thought the same too. But I had never heard of ‘Mystery’ before. Is he a US based guy only? Reminds me of the ‘Cat in the Hat’ from the UK.

11 Common Sense

Great points. One of my MBA instructors always said that the most important business anyone is in is marketing for “Me, Inc.” Even though another company is giving you your paycheck, “you” is your primary employer, and if you fail to market yourself, you won’t excel in the business world.

12 Garrett Leyenaar

Awesome post! I also like the one about “moving targets”

13 priya

Excellent post here Shoe. I only caught a few episodes on VH1 but the points you make are dead on for blogging and making money online.

14 youfoundjake

The biggest item that stood out is the small fish in a big pond point. man oh man, thats a brutal one to confront. was it socrates or aristotle that said “nothing is new under the sun”…? How do I stand out? the $64,000 question.

15 Prija

nice twist to that Shoe.. I wonder how next season will turn out.

16 Milov Patel Blog

Great post, but were the videos exactly necessary ;)

17 Milov Patel Blog

Agreed, but like I said weird videos

18 Dave

The link you have pointing to mystery’s website is not actually his site. Due to reasons too lengthy to discuss here, he has split with his business partners (the guys who currently run and was unable to secure his domain name and his new site and business can be found here:

19 andre

Awesome!!!! I can’t believe Shoemoney’s into PU

20 Jason Brailow

Frickin loved that show

21 Reverse Funnel System Blog

Very nice article

22 dave dugdale

the next session you teach at the search conferences should be geared around this post.

23 ShoeMoney

Actually I always try to draw parallels whenever I speak. At blogworld I showed several RL affiliate programs and how people benefit from them…. and why you should use them on your blog

24 Hustle Strategy

agreed good stuff. gotta think beyond the norm and a few steps ahead.

25 Bjorn Solstad - Devenia Internet Marketing

I’ve just finished reading the book called The Game where Neil Strauss explains about how he started the whole pick up artist business together with Mystery. I really recommend reading that book, since it reveals much more details around how they managed to make a system out of picking up.

A few years back when I was single, I tested out a similar approach as they teach nowadays – and it sure works.

Using the same approaches on the web as they do in the pick up business is a sound strategy in my opinion – I guess you can confirm that Jeremy? ;)

26 Mike Huang

Great post, but I never heard of it before.


27 賃貸 大阪

Great post. It reminds me of the Purple Cow thing. Need to stand out from the crowd and be remembered.

28 賃貸 大阪

Are you going to wear that hat at pubcon?

29 King Jacob

Very true, All a pick-up artist does is sell themselves. Also I never heard of this mystery guy but hes got to be a pretty good marketer to charge almost 3 grand for a sessions.

30 Rob

Hey Shoemoney, like an earlier commenter mentioned, Mystery’s actual site is The other one is a former business partner trying to leech off Mystery’s success.


I get a lot of social media “moving targets”, so I’ll be watching in the next few days for more tips on how to better engage their attention.

32 Tracy Robinson

Neither can Dr. Shoemoney, lol

33 Tyler

This is a great post!

I’ve learned a lot from reading the book The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists which details a lot of what you just wrote. I especially like the part about the standing out, because in this crazy world of blogging, that’s exactly what you need to do.

34 Tyler

Great post! I’ve learned a lot from reading The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists. I especially like the part about standing out because in this crazy world of blogging it’s what you need to do.

35 Travis Cannell

Haha that picture is great! A new hat to wear out at conferences.

36 serge

long post, I’ll read it in the morning when I am doin my nine to five.

37 Affiliate Unleashed

Great post. What an amazing way to relate all of that to internet marketing.

Keep it up Shoe!

38 Affiliate Unleashed

Wow. That really sucks for him.

39 Affiliate Unleashed

Sorry to double post but does anyone notice how this guy’s LP is very inspired by Lol…

40 lyricsreg

Old stuff in a new presentation …

41 lyricsreg

Yeah … right

42 bloggernoob

you’re a big fan of reality TV. TV in general. Every think about producing your own internet tv show?

43 Marcus

I´ll definetly bring my new lederhosens to vegas this year – and I´ll even wear them without the 100 dollar bet :-)
see ya next week!

44 ShoeMoney

isnt it always? ;)

45 ShoeMoney

its funny believe it or not I have had that hat for like 2 years

46 ShoeMoney

yea nad he sells the shit out of them

47 ShoeMoney

hmm maybe ;)… it might be a little warm for vegas

48 ShoeMoney

I do like reality tv.. its pretty much a study of human behavior

49 CatherineL

Great tips Shoe – especially the one on making people feel safe buying from you. They need to feel that they have some way of getting a refund if the product doesn’t work for them.

50 $1000 Dollar Project

i love the moving targets one lol

51 Gecko Tales

That’s a great post! I love the way you can take almost anything and get a lesson from it. Maybe it’s the Dad in you that makes you so good at finding life lessons in normal life.


That’s one of the reasons I keep coming back.

53 DefogMyBlog

I really enjoyed reading that post. It made me think and yes I agree it is easy to focus too much on the design and think that is going to make it all happen.

54 commandos

the problem is most will change their nature because they know the world is watching them …

55 commandos

same here , maybe we will get it in canada next year lol

we are always late …

56 Link Snitch

Totally Agree. Great post

57 Svakanda

thats a BITCHIN hat you got on Shoe!

58 commandos

and maybe that’s why he has 13k subscribers

59 OmegaSupreme

LOL @ 8 total losers ! Great post.

60 Josh

Nice article, wouldn’t have ever compared pickin’ up ladies to marketing a site.

61 Gary Lee

Yo Shoe! . . . that was a great post . . . my friend just got me started on watching the Pickup Artist and as retarded as the concept it, I catch myself totally immersed in the show . . . you showed a lot of creativity tying that show into blogging . . . much props . . much props indeed!

62 lyricsreg

true …

63 lyricsreg

But usually the subjects are not right in the head (preferred for ratings)

64 lyricsreg

Do women like fuzzy hats ?? Time for me to go on ebay

65 Reverse Funnel System Blog

I must admit thats very interesting show.

66 Rich Sage

Hi Jeremy, any thought on if some of the Pickup Artist stuff is fake/staged?

67 Derek Baker

Good post. The comparisons are all true. I will have to watch this show sometime never seen it before.

68 julia wilkinson

Great post…I just had to say I love the lederhosen..and I would have laughed so much if I had seen them..but in a good way…I would have appreciated the courage and humor it took to wear them. And really they are cute.

69 Will

Hey I’ve heard of this guy… I always thought the show was a joke, but I guess not lol. I think I’ll check it out now. thanks for the link.. I don’t get vh1.

70 Joeychgo

something about you is just not right jeremy :) great post.

71 Neon

nice post to apply the concept to internet marketing. similarly for the 36 stratagems or art of war. understand the concept and it could apply in situation with a twist.

72 Tim

Killer post!

We we’re actually discussing the show today at work. Certainly not in terms of SEO or marketing but for the life of me(or anyone else), I couldn’t remember the name. Never thought I’d find the answer here:)

I’m curious if the “reverse” works. Maybe I’ll go out this weekend and tell all the ladies about my link portfolio, how I reached the top of google for my keyword phrase, and how I make $5/day on adsense. Watch out ladies…here I come:)

73 James B.

Being interesting as you stated is definetly one of the most important things in marketing your blogging and in writing it.

74 Secret Classroom

That hat is awesome! How many pics did you take before you got that expression down?

75 Master Pick Up Arts

good post. Inner Game is absolutely vital in leaning pickup. You have to be the attractive guy and not just fake it. Inner Game contains one of the most important and obvious part of any interaction: Confidence.

76 Pick Up Artist

Ha-Ha. Top Post!

77 PUA

Very good article. You can go even more into by examining backwards rationalization for the reason people buy online. A very big PUA term.

78 Playa

Man I love how you just combined pick up and marketing, my 2 favorite things. Truly a genius Shoe.

79 Pick Up Artist Tips

I love the pickup artist and have a blog where I give news and tips about picking up women… you should check it out…

Love how you tie picking up women to marketing… and the brown fuzzy hat is totally you Shoe :-)

80 hp micr

Wow, who would have related picking up women to picking up customers. Could you send me a list of the foods you eat, because apparently my brain is not getting the nutrition it needs. Thanks for opening my eyes.

81 11 Forgotten Laws

It is interesting how you were able to bring out the parallels between pick-up artistry and internet marketing. Really liked the tip about self confidence and how people show how they value their business by the words they use to describe it.

Cheers for the interesting post,

82 jon

interested in finding a good wingman to pick up girls with, check out this site

83 Black Ink Cartridge

Is that show cancelled. Yeah, I can see the correlation between the show and internent marketing.

84 Jack Depp

Nice lesson, really. Very good post

85 Fred Tracy

Hahaha. Having watched the series, and followed the pickup scene for awhile, this is great stuff.

86 Freeman LaFleur

I do find it funny that the basic principles that a pickup artist uses can apply to business as well. In particular, I have found that confidence has been one of the number one keys to success.

87 Empowered Training

Not only internet marketer will learn from this. Entrepreneurs like me will learn a lesson as well.

88 Quibids

You draw some interesting parallels. I’d like to see more such parallels in the future. I think they are good to drive home a point but of course one shouldn’t take those too far either. It is quite interesting though, nice post!

89 DirectMobi

LOL! Very interesting parralels you drew there. Its funny how true they are. I believe its very true that once you believe in what you are doing, you WILL do it much better. Like the guys that need more self convidence in themselves, you need to have self convidence in your site/blog or product. Without this convidence you will surely fail – Not by failing, but my giving up too soon! Great article!

90 Rodney

lol that show was hilarious. wassup wit dude and all those hats tho..

91 Love Tumblr

Hilarious and informative… the pictures in this post had be rolling.

92 Joe

I especially like the part about making your “date” feel safe and secure. In over thirty years in the sales and marketing business, I’ve always believed that trust has two components, a conscious and an unconscious. The conscious part of trust comes from being perceived as an expert in what your target audience is looking for. The unconscious part comes from creating an expectation and going about fulfilling it.

93 Don Lawrence

The continued “willingness” to failure has the opposite effect of success. That is the ying and yang principal of life. Having no fear in the face of failure breeds success.

94 Adwello

Yes, you can really achieve anything with high self esteem and cocksure confidence because you always get the outcome you expect, and your body language and approach shout what you expect to get long before you speak. Good eye contact is the starting point, and keeping your head up, moving fairly slowly with a touch of swagger. Arrogance attracts. Ignorance repels. Position your marketing as bold and confident – YOU are the one with the solution – your competitors are also-rans! Be bold and carry off the profits.

95 Pharmd0

Hello! deeaagg interesting deeaagg site! I’m really like it! Very, very deeaagg good!

96 IvoryPearl

It is very interesting how you related the nerdy show to us nerdy IMers….we need to all look at shows like this…what take away can I get from this show that will help me in my business…act as if is already!

Previous post:

Next post: