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A Dating Expert's Guide To Starting A Text Conversation With A Girl

Not sure how to start a text conversation with a girl? You're not alone. For most guys getting her number can be a challenge. And once you've got those precious digits in hand, the pressure is on not to mess up the opportunity.

Mastering the art of small talk is essential, because most singles feel conversations are critical to establishing a meaningful connection.

And that's where we come in. Since 2009, VIDA's team of dating experts has helped tens of thousands of clients improve their dating game. We've optimized profiles, sent countless online dating messages, and started engaging SMS conversations on behalf of our clients. Our years of hands-on experience have left us well versed in the art of sparking attraction!

We're going to cover everything you need to know to start a text conversation, keep it going, lock in the date and meet her in real life.

how to start a text conversation

If you’re like most guys, you’re getting the majority of your digits and dates from apps and sites like Tinder, Bumble, Hinge and Match.

That’s also where our expertise lies, so this article will be approached from that angle. But all the information still applies even if you met her in a bar.

Let's dive into the eight golden rules for starting a text conversation with a girl, then we'll explore some conversation-starter examples. Are you ready to make a lasting impression?

When you first text a girl you like from a dating app, keep these 8 basic rules in mind:

  1. Don't wait too long to send a message
  2. Introduce yourself
  3. Keep your messaging style congruent
  4. Ask open-ended questions
  5. Get to know her better, but share details about yourself too
  6. Don't make texting mistakes like being overly complimentary
  7. Be persistent (but not annoying)
  8. Don't wait too long to suggest a date

Rule #1: Don't Wait Too Long To Start Texting Her

Text message rule

Timing is critical.

Women on dating apps usually have no shortage of matches, and she's likely overwhelmed with messages if she's hot. She shared her number, but probably shared it with other matches as well.

In other words, you're not the only show in town.

Send your first text conversation starter within 24 hours of getting her number (48 hours max).

You don’t want to look desperate or needy by texting within minutes of her sending her number, but you also need to strike while the iron is hot.

Maintaining momentum is crucial in the dating game. If she’s messaging several other promising dating prospects, you don’t want her forgetting about you.

Rule #2: Introduce Yourself In Your First Text Message

Introduce yourself in your first text message

Sounds basic, right? But many guys forget this essential step.

Remember - she has no clue who you are when your conversation starter pops up on her phone, unless she immediately added you to her contacts when you swapped numbers.

(Spoiler alert - she’s probably not going to do that.)

So you need to identify yourself, but you don’t have to be boring about it. If you already planned a date with her via the site or app, send her a playful text to confirm it.

This is a good example of how to start a text conversation:

example of first text message to send a girl

If you don’t have a date lined up yet, you can use your first text message to keep the online conversation you had going.

So if you were having a lively debate about the best Beatles’ song ever on the dating app just before you snagged her number, keep things flowing with a good conversation starter like this:

first text message example

Rule #3: Keep Your Text Messaging Style Congruent

incongruency text mistake

She’s already formed a pretty solid impression of you after exchanging online messages. You want to keep your texts consistent with your messaging style, just shorter in length (obviously).

If the two styles aren’t congruent, she’s going to feel like something’s not quite right.

And if something feels off, she’ll be hesitant to meet you in person.

texting mistake guys make

So don’t go from “Won my soccer game today, grabbed burgers and a beer with the guys to celebrate. How was your weekend?” in one of your most recent dating app messages to “Hey baby, wazzup?” in your first text.

Rule #4: Ask Open-Ended Questions

engaging text message

Open-ended questions are usually better than yes-or-no questions, because her answers give you something to work with and it’s easier to keep a good conversation flow moving toward setting a date.

Even something simple like this should give you plenty to build on:

good text message example

Drawing her out is a good idea, but if your question requires too much work on her part, she’ll most likely skip it. Keep your questions fun and simple.

Rule #5: Make Sure The Info Flows Both Ways

text conversation tips

If you’re peppering her with questions and offering nothing in return, it might start to feel like an interrogation.

Keep the conversation moving towards the date, but make sure you’re sharing little tidbits about yourself as you go.

The opposite also holds true - don't just answer any questions she's asking you.

If all you do is talk about yourself with expressing any interest in her, she'll lose interest fast. Even a simple "What about you?" can make a big difference.

If the conversation is starting to die down and you’re not sure what to say next, just go for the “W” and ask her out.

It’s better to go for it before she starts to get bored.

The minute responding to a text from you starts to feel like a chore, you've essentially lost your shot at meeting her in person.

Rule #6: Don’t Commit One Of These Texting Sins

Text mistake guys make

One of the challenges texting presents is she's still forming an impression of your personality, and she doesn't have much information to base it on.

She's never met you in person, so how you communicate - and what you choose to communicate - has a big impact.

Avoid these 3 common texting mistakes:

  • Being overly complimentary about her appearance - or her anything, really. “You’re pretty” or “I like your smile” isn’t going to impress her. She’s heard it before, and she’ll be more impressed by engaging messages than random flattery in a flirty text.
    Getting creepy or sexual. Very, very few guys can successfully pull off sexting. It requires boss level skills, and unless you know you’ve got them, don’t try.
  • Thinking emojis are just for teenage girls. Emojis are a visual replacement for body language, tone of voice, etc… all those cues you miss out on when you’re not face to face. They’re essential for keeping texts playful and light hearted.

Rule #7: Be Persistent

frustrated man texting

If she stops responding, don’t give up. Follow up the next day with a fresh topic or playful text, and see if you can spark things again.

A text message like this can revive a stalled conversation:

Follow up text message example

But if you’ve messaged twice with no response, cut her loose.

If she gets back to you later, great. But you’re not improving your odds by going all Bates Motel and sending six follow-ups.

Rule #8: Don't Wait Too Long To Suggest A Date

Suggest a date

Odds are, she wants you to ask, and if she doesn’t - well, better to know that early on, right?

And unless your texts are all worthy of Pulitzers, she’ll lose interest after a week of texting with someone who is basically still a stranger.

So after two or three exchanges, go for it.

We have tons of great tips about asking a girl out online that apply just as well here, but here’s an example to get you thinking in the right direction:

how to ask for a date over text

This is another example of how to ask a girl for a date over text, which requires that you send three messages in rapid succession:

Text sequence to ask for a date

Once you’ve set the date, don’t go silent for any extended period of time.

You want the text conversation to continue up to the meeting. Of course, it’s not high school and you don’t need to fall asleep texting sweet nothings to your crush.

But if you’ve set a date for a week from now, a message every two or max three days keeps things relaxed and open.

And to make sure you knock it out of the park on your first date, check out this related article for some epic conversation starters!

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