So, you’ve met a girl and she gave you her number – off to a great start! Now, you want to keep the positive momentum going by making sure that your first text not only receives a response but creates attraction. A strong first impression is everything.
That’s why I’m going to help you concoct a first text that sets the tone for your communications going forward and paves the way to a first date. I’ll also cover the general rules of texting someone you’d like to have as more than friends. With this guide at your fingertips, you’ll routinely ignite intense feelings of chemistry and attraction in the women you desire, and keep them in anticipation of your next message.
After all, you already built up the courage to introduce yourself and performed well enough to get her number; it would be a shame to blow it now by making the same mistakes so many other guys make.
Avoid These Common Texting Mistakes
Before we get into strategies that work, let’s talk about mistakes to avoid when texting a girl that you want to like you. If you’ve ever wondered why girls don’t return your texts, you’re probably making one or more of the following errors and killing whatever attraction she may have felt initially.
1. Don’t Be Overly Available
One of the biggest – and honestly, most forgivable – mistakes guys make is to always make themselves available to a girl they like by responding as quickly as possible to every text, no matter the time of day. Consider calming down a bit and not jumping at every opportunity to demonstrate your excitement. She won’t find that very attractive for long.
What are you, her pet golden retriever?
Making yourself overly available to a girl you like makes it seem like you have nothing going on in your life, or that you’re perpetually ready to clear your schedule on her behalf. Neither of these is an especially attractive message to send.
Neediness and dependency are not hot. So, even if your social calendar is every bit as empty as your immediate replies suggest, mix up your response times a little and give the impression that you’re a guy with plenty of excitement going on in their life.
2. Don’t Remind Her Who You Are
As long as we’re discussing habits that convey a complete lack of self-confidence, I should also warn you against reintroducing yourself in the opening text to a girl that you just met. What better way to announce how utterly forgettable you see yourself as being than sending one of these depressing icebreakers.
Oof. See, guys will get a girl’s number and then be mad that she never responded when they’re shooting off low self-esteem opening texts like those. Confidence is especially crucial during these earliest interactions. Try not to assume that you’re so ordinary and forgettable that she needs a reminder of who you are and where you meant.
I mean, a proper introductory text should help identify the person behind this strange number texting her, but you don’t come right out and say it like a boring lump. There are strategies to these things – which we’ll get to shortly.
3. Don’t Be Lazy or Boring
I know I just told you not to reiterate who you are and where you met, but don’t undersell your enthusiasm to the point of laziness either. Your texts need to hold her attention and reintroduce the same excitement and overall vibe from when you first met.
I refuse to believe your introduction was as bone-achingly dull as, “Hey. How’s it going?” Surely, you were more charming than that when you got her number (unless you’re ridiculously attractive or wealthy).
No matter how bright you shined the night you met, it’s going to be near impossible to maintain by sending those empty calorie texts. Most girls get an absurd amount of attention – especially when you count the social media DMs they’re forced to sift through every day.
An opening text needs to reflect your charming personality and reference your first interactions together in a creative, slightly indirect way. Get back to the fun that landed you the number, right away!
4. Don’t Be Too Enthusiastic or Complimentary
Now that I’m writing these out, I guess my general advice in all five points is to not go too far toward the extreme in any one approach. It’s true, that building attraction through texting requires a certain level of social intelligence to execute.
You can’t be too timid, too boring, too lazy, or too available – then on the other end of the spectrum, now I’m telling you not to be overly enthusiastic or complimentary either! Still, people feel uncomfortable with an opening barrage of unprompted compliments.
Relax on the “horny old grandpa talking to the diner waitress” pet names, for one. As for that abomination of a follow-up, I’m too old to be using the word “lit” and only included it because it made me hate the text that much more. But it could just as easily be replaced by something like, “I’m so happy we met last night” and my point would remain.
Don’t lead with one of these combos.
It’s normal to feel a certain buzz when you meet someone new and there’s an initial attraction. We all experience it to an extent. At the same time, you don’t want to telegraph that this is unusual territory for you.
Sincerity is a wonderful trait in most situations, but it will do you no favors this early in the game. Nine times out of ten, it’ll make you look like either a desperate boob or an inauthentic wannabe Don Juan “charmer” type, who calls every girl he meets “honey,” “sexy,” or “gorgeous.”
Neither archetype is very attractive to most girls. The first dude will probably end up in the “gay best friend” role, and you don’t want the kind of girls that fall for that last guy’s shenanigans. Save your flattery for when it’ll actually hold value to her.
5. Don’t Jump the Gun
While I appreciate the thought process behind this approach, I’d also warn you against going straight from exchanging numbers to scheduling your first date. It’s an attempt to ride the momentum from your initial meeting, which makes sense, but I think you need to build a little attraction through text first.
Even though your last interaction was positive, your emotional connection doesn’t necessarily carry over with the same intensity to the next day. However, a proper opener will help you recapture that vibe and open the door to make date plans a few texts later.
Open the conversation with a unique reference to when you met, escalate the flirtatiousness anytime she reciprocates that energy, and then ask about making plans. Your odds of scaring her off will drastically decrease.
Send an Icebreaker
The icebreaker is the first message you send a girl, preferably very shortly after getting her number. In fact, sometimes the best time to send it is while you’re still standing right next to each other.
The point of the icebreaker is to get her used to communicate with you via text. You want her to feel the same level of comfort she felt with you after meeting. Waiting too long risks losing too much of the momentum you’ve created in person.
Don’t fall victim to flawed social myths like the “three day rule.” We’ve all seen characters in movies and television instructing their friends not to call or text the girl whose number they just got for at least three days – sometimes longer. The theory is that by waiting, you’ll show her you’re not desperate.
In the real world, the longer you wait, the more likely she’ll forget about you. You must strike while the iron is hot, while still not coming across as needy.
There are a few basic rules to follow when constructing an icebreaker:
- Keep it short.
- Don’t ask any questions.
- Include your name (or a unique identifier – more on that in the next section).
Here’s a basic icebreaker I sent to someone I met at the Hard Rock in Vegas a few years back. We ended up dating for a few months.
See? Short and sweet. I sent it within about 30 minutes of getting her number. We hadn’t even stopped hanging out for the night!
She responded the next day and brought up the sushi restaurant we’d discussed the night we met. It was a clear invitation to set up the first date.
You can also send an icebreaker with her phone (or let her send it from your phone). Instead of exchanging numbers, take her phone or hand her yours.
Enter and save your contact information, then send a text message to yourself from her phone. Make it flirty and funny – maybe acting like the message was written by her – to set yourself up for a clever response that lays the foundation for your next interaction.
Write a Text That Only She Understands
Okay, this step is why I usually only use icebreakers like the one above on the same night I’ve gotten a girl’s number – preferably before we’ve left each other’s company. If your first text isn’t coming until the next day or later, I recommend starting with this strategy.
The first time you text a girl, the goal is to do more than remind her who you are – you must remind her of the connection you both felt, and the fun and excitement you shared. The best way to accomplish this is to formulate a text so unique to your time together that she’s the only person who would even understand what you’re talking about.
The best way to do this is by retelling jokes that got a big response and making references to specific people or events that played a major role during your first meeting. The crazier and more hilarious the reference, the better.
Here’s a text I sent a girl I met at a coworker’s house party. He was given the nickname “Duck” at some point in the evening due to his large butt and the terrible Donald-Duck-esque hat he was wearing. The art project had to do with an enormous tour of cans and bottles we built in his kitchen after he passed out, and “cowboys don’t chase” became a bit of a rallying cry as we were taking shots straight up without chasers.
Basically, we were horrible guests who took too many shots together, made inside jokes about our mutual friend and host (if you knew him, you wouldn’t feel bad about this treatment), and created a big mess together (co-operative mischief is a surprisingly strong aphrodisiac). Rather than focus on the negative, my opener revisited the silliness of our night by hitting all the highlights.
A highly personalized first text also makes you stand out from the crowd. Most guys make the mistake of sending a boring message like “hi,” and then reintroducing themselves, complete with a full reminder of precisely who they are and where they met.
My strategy accomplishes all the same things, only without being boring and coming across as if you expect her to have forgotten you. If you assume that you’re forgettable, you will be!
If you’re fortunate enough to have created hilarious drunken content together, that’s even better. This is a text to a girl I met at a music festival. We ended up spending the entire night together, bouncing from stage to stage. At some point, we saw a nearby sign for a ridiculously named gas station mini-mart.
“Pump n Snack” quickly became the theme of the night, resulting in a long, chaotic video being saved on my phone. I sent it her way; we both relived the amazing concert experience for a bit and ended up meeting back up for the final day of the festival!
Cliffhangers Are Your Friend
A first text needs to hook its audience and leave her waiting in anticipation of your follow-up. One of the best ways to achieve this goal is to use an age-old trick that’s been used by television and media forever: cliffhangers.
Briefly introduce yourself, then make a statement or ask a question that leaves them needing more information. It should also elicit an emotional reaction. As with the previous tactic, the answer should include a specific reference to your first encounter.
Wouldn’t that pique your interest? There was something funny about the way we met? Tell me!
Not only does that question demand a follow-up, but it also gently triggers your self-esteem and makes you curious. When the answer ends up being complimentary and charming, it’ll be a welcome relief. Now, your conversation is off to the races!
Spelling and Grammar Matter
Now that we’ve covered attraction-creating text openers, let’s talk about a general rule worth following no matter when you’re texting a girl you want to attract.
Don’t write your messages like an idiot; practice good spelling and grammar. The same goes for any online dating profiles you may own.
According to a 2015 Wall Street Journal article, a Match.com poll asked more than 5000 singles which criteria they valued most when assessing dates. 88% of women said they cared about grammar most, ahead of a date’s teeth and confidence! The only quality singles cared more about than grammar was personal hygiene.
The piece goes on to explain that people interpret bad grammar and spelling as a lack of effort. “People use quality of writing as an indication of work ethic,” says Max Lytvyn, co-founder of Grammarly – a popular automated proofreading software company.
If that’s how women feel about bad spelling and grammar in online dating profiles, why would the same not apply to text messages? Don’t make yourself seem lazy; demonstrate your intelligence, attention to detail, and work ethic by communicating with proper grammar. Those are qualities that build attraction.
Have a Purpose
The best texts have a purpose behind them. Even if you’re just reaching out for no reason beyond wanting to talk to her, try not to telegraph that fact. The occasional “hey, what’s up” or “hey, I was just thinking about you” text is fine, but they’re not as effective at capturing her attention and building attraction as a message sent with a purpose.
Don’t send a basic greeting and leave it up to her to direct the conversation in whatever direction. Set the tone from the start by making it seem like she entered your thoughts naturally and you wanted to tell her why.
It can be as simple as saying that you saw something online that reminded you of her – maybe in reference to a previous conversation you had. Maybe you saw an actress in a movie that you think she resembles. The purpose behind your text doesn’t need to be profound, it just needs to exist.
Leave Her Wanting More
Text messaging is a limited form of communication; you can only show her a portion of your personality via written form. So, try to avoid participating in long in-depth conversations through text. After all, the goal of texting is to hit the important points, create attraction, and set up opportunities to meet in person.
When a text conversation is flowing well, it can be tempting to keep it going for as long as possible. Be careful not to wear out your welcome. No matter how charming and flirtatious you’re coming across, the excitement can only be maintained through text for so long. Then you start getting diminishing returns.
Once things have heated up and she’s responding to your personality, it’s time to plan your exit. Rather than wait for the conversation to lose steam, pivot towards making plans, then promise to pick up where you left off in person. Creating attraction is all about timing and knowing when to advance from one stage to another.
Ask More Thoughtful Questions
If you’re looking to keep a conversation going and stand out from other guys and their boring, typical interview questions, throw her a curveball that also helps you get to know her better. Keep things light and playful, so she’s excited to see you again – since you always make things interesting.
Women receive lots of attention and get sick of making the same old small talk. Avoid asking her things like “What do you do for a living?” or “Where are you from?”
Instead, ask her something that forces her to come up with a thoughtful answer. A few ideas for these types of questions could be:
- What do you wish more people knew about you?
- What has made you smile today?
- Would you rather fight 100 duck-sized horses or 1 horse-sized duck?
- If you could sleep with one historical figure, dead or alive, who would it be?
- Would you help your best friend hide a dead body if they asked?
- If you had to pick one song to best describe who you are as a person, what would it be?
- If you could Freaky Friday body switch with anyone you wanted for a day, who would it be and what would you do?
- What’s the worst text you’ve ever received?
Whether they’re bizarre hypotheticals or probing personal questions, the idea is to make text conversations with you feel different than everyone else. Remember, you wouldn’t ask her something like this as an icebreaker; they’re more to restart your texting for the day.
Find Text Equilibrium
This is another general rule for texting a girl that you like. Make sure to maintain a balance between the effort you’re both putting into the conversation. Don’t get overly excited and find yourself sending long, well-thought-out texts, only to receive short low-effort replies.
Try keeping your texts to roughly the same lengths as hers, if not slightly shorter. If she starts sending long detailed messages, great! Then you have the green light to respond in kind. However, if she’s not matching your enthusiasm, dial your texts way back. You don’t want to come across as too eager or needy.
Turn Your Questions Into Bold Statements
Women receive tons of attention from men, so they end up being asked the same boring questions over and over again. The next thing you know, it feels like you’re interviewing the girl and she’s responding with direct answers to your questions, leaving you without much to work with. It’s nearly impossible to build interest, much less attraction, this way.
So, how can you get some answers about her life that you need without getting lost in the crowd? What can you do to get the same basic information while building interest and increasing her investment in the conversation?
Instead of asking “what do you do for work,” bait her with something a bit more provocative.
- For example, you may say, “I don’t know why, but you look like a schoolteacher to me.”
- Another good one would be, “I could totally see you being a schoolteacher!”
You’re still asking about her profession, only in a playful way.
All you need is a flattering explanation for why she resembles a teacher. Have that planned before you send the first statement.
Advance Beyond Texting
I already touched on this in the “Leave Her Wanting More” section but it bears repeating. You can only create so much attraction through texting. The goal isn’t to be the best texter in the world; it’s just one form of communication to use while you build towards going on a date. It’s a means to an end!
Once the conversation is going well and you’re both vibing, it’s time to think about parlaying that energy into plans. Don’t just text indefinitely without it leading anywhere. You must capitalize on whatever attraction you’ve created before it dissipates!