Recent years have seen a surge in the number of professional wingwomen, who are paid to help shy guys approach women in bars and clubs.
They are the latest twist on the ''wingman"- a sidekick who helps his mates approach women. The term was popularised by the 1986 movie 'Top Gun'.
Wingwomen approach other women solo at first, warm them up, and then have their male "clients" come over a few minutes later. Professional wingmen have been flying around nightspots since the late 2000s.
But women are now growing inured to wingman tactics. Marks, 31, a self-professed "former IT nerd", who has a squadron of eight wingwomen working for him in Melbourne, Perth, Sydney, Brisbane and the Gold Coast says clients are discreetly screened before meeting the wingwomen and believes the public nature of their work makes it safer.
About 40 men have used the Melbourne service since it started in February, compared with about 100 men who have opted to hire one of his wingmen."It really works - if a woman approaches other women, they will let their defences down," the Age quoted Marks, Marks, founder of the Modern Man agency, as saying.
"Some women are becoming very snobbish ... they just won't give us the time of day," he added.