Whether you’re a guy or a woman, you have surely started an online conversation with someone you’ve matched with or someone whose profile you like. After all, it’s a necessary step to increase your chances of happily ever after.
The question is, whether you’re doing it right. There’s a number of things which are quite commonly said online but are, in fact, terrible conversation starters. Here they are:
I may surprise you, but “Hi!” (or “Hello!” or any other greeting) isn’t a great conversation starter. It’s lazy and you’ll most probably only get either a “hi” or nothing back.
2. How are you?
Used with or without “Hi” a “How are you?” question is another thing to say that doesn’t really add any value on its own.
3. Asking a question that was answered on the profile
Some people polish their profiles until they shine, others say just a few words about themselves. While a sloppy profile may be a red flag in terms of whether it even makes sense to talk to a certain person, asking a question an answer to which you can find on someone’s profile is simply rude.
You’re showing you have not enough interest in the person you’re talking to, to even read the few lines about them, they considered crucial as their life’s synopsis. Why even bother talking to them at all?
4. Hey! U cute.
This one is more for guys than women (I think, but correct me if I’m wrong!). Now, I may be a bit biased here because I love words and languages but from complaints I’ve heard from my single girlfriends I gather that many find this kind of a conversation starter annoying.
Firstly, a sentence requires a verb so if you insist on using abbreviations at least say “Ur cute”. Secondly, you may find that saying a full sentence “You’re cute” instead is actually not that much more of an effort and yet, it will make a better impression on your prospective date. Last but not least, she knows she’s cute and hears it all the time. Say something else, like about her personality and shit? Otherwise you sound like this guy from the best rap song ever:
5. Hey! What u up to?
For tips on how to make sentences please refer to point 4. This question is not very enticing to your future date because you’re giving them no reason to want to answer it. Perhaps it strikes you as weird that people don’t always feel like explaining to absolute strangers what they’re doing but, well, they don’t.
It’s yet another lazy conversation starter that makes a person feel not special at all and not inspired to talk to you.
I’m not writing this post to just criticise, though. For some people these conversation starters may be lazy moves, but I’m sure others simply don’t know what to say. You should remember that you’re one of many available options, so if you want to be able to spark interest in someone whose profile you like, you need to do a bit better than the bare minimum.
What works instead?
- Showing interest in the person you’re talking to
This means reading their profile. You may think it doesn’t matter during an initial conversation but the respect you show to the person you’re talking to suggests a lot about the way you treat people. Whether you’re inexperienced or simply unwilling to put any effort into the initial conversation, it looks all the same to the person on the other side because they don’t know you.
The easiest thing to do to strike up a conversation that may win you a date is by saying something related to the profile or something you’ve picked up from their pictures that shows that you have something in common.
Something as simple as “I see you like running. Me too! Have you ever run a marathon?” will work well. Two things to remember: don’t share a long story in your first message (tldr) and don’t talk only about yourself.
That’s it! Here’s the secret of a good conversation starter: it needs to be personal, show that you have some interest in that person and point out something you have in common. No one likes to feel like they’re just one of the million people you’ve approached, even if it’s true.
The follow-up conversation will prove whether you have enough of a spark to go on a date and from there… statistically nothing will happen! You still need to keep trying and eventually, the luck will strike.
Are you guilty of using any of these conversation starters, Dear Rinser? What’s your best line ever? Share your thoughts with me.