Wednesday, 26 January 2011
The social arts is really a collection of different social skills rolled up and bundled together in one big hodgepodge of stuff useful for getting success with women. And one of these many skills you’ll find you’ll need to work on that proves absolutely vital to your success is text messaging and how to text a girl.
Texting is a thorn in many a man’s side. Sometimes it might seem when you’re trying to figure this medium out that there are more questions when it comes to text messaging than there are answers. What’s the right thing to say in your texts? How do you know if your messages are having the right effect on a girl – or not? What should your ultimate objective with texting be – what are you trying to accomplish?
I used to be highly vehemently anti-text myself and pro-phone; “You can’t build a real connection with a girl over text, and you should never ask her out over text,” was my old mantra. But times change, people change, and so have I; these days, I almost never make phone calls anymore. Phone calls are so 20th century.
Your Objective in Texting Girls
Let’s start with the underlying basics and strategy of text messaging girls, because that’s what’s going to drive how you structure your messages and everything else about them.
First off, we covered some of the very basics of text messaging back in April of last year in “Text Message Flirting ,” so if you haven’t read that one yet or you need a quick refresher, start there. That out of the way, let’s dive in.
I feel like most of the men whose text conversations I see have a very slipshod approach toward texting: they text girls without really knowing what their objectives are, oftentimes without any discernable objectives at all. I’m not sure how they expect directionless, objective-free texting to lead to anything productive, but well, I remember the days when I was a lot less effective with texting and it felt like this big black question mark of an area, so I commiserate.
We’ll shine a little light on texting then, and get you pointed in the right direction. You will only ever have two (2) objectives for texting, and they should never overlap. Here are your objectives in texting girls:
- Build rapport and comfort, or
- Set up a meet.
That’s it. I think when most men are texting women they rather have this pseudo-objective instead, which is:
- Keep texting her and fishing around hoping to somehow set up a date.
And that’s probably the most abominable lack of direction in texting known to man. That horrible, atrocious non-objective leads to men sending all kinds of random, half-baked, lame text messages that leave a woman staring at them thinking, “Why is he texting me this?” and only accomplish sinking the guy’s efforts to win this new girl over.
Thumbs down for the pseudo-objective. If you do that, stop immediately.
Back to our real objectives. When you are sending text messages, a woman should know immediately what your objective is – to build rapport or to ask her out. There should be no question in her mind; this is how to text a girl properly. The reason I say not to have any overlap is because the instant you start trying to overlap setting up meets with building rapport, it gets messy. That’s when you have a guy fishing around as he builds rapport, hoping for / looking for / trying to find some way to ask the girl out. Don’t fall into this trap; keep your objectives separate. Either you’re building rapport, or you’re setting up a meet.
Some dos and do nots:
- Beat around the bush.
- Text without having an objective.
- Send lots and lots of texts.
- Get wordy or longwinded.
- Be direct and straightforward.
- Text with your objective in mind.
- Send a handful of well-planned texts.
- Be precise and concise.
You will always be trying either to build rapport and comfort, or set up a meet. That’s all; those are your text messaging objectives when it comes to contacting women.
Warm Texting and Cold Texting
One stop into the land of definitions before we continue. I want to make sure we differentiate between warm and cold texting, because it’s an important distinction. So let’s define these terms henceforth for the remainder of this article.
Warm texting is when you text message a girl who was expecting to hear from you at the time you texted her, or was thinking about you.
Cold texting is when you text message a girl who was not expecting to hear from you at the time you texted her, and was not thinking about you.
Why the distinction? Because you’re going to strike a different tone in different types of messages, depending on how prepared a girl was to be talking to you.
I’ll give you a pair of examples: first, imagine you’re on your way to meet a coworker you’re friendly with but not super close with for lunch. You get a text from him: “Just parked. Grab a table yet?” It may be the first text message he’s sent you all day, but it feels normal because you were expecting to hear from him. Now let’s say you’re sitting there at 10 AM in the morning the next day, slogging through some work you don’t want to do when you’d really rather be in bed. You get a text from the same coworker whom you’re friendly with but not very close with; this one reads: “Just had my second cup of Joe. How’s your morning?” To a very social person, it might be cool to get this text, but most people will find this one strange and intrusive; it comes out of the middle of nowhere. They wonder, “Why is he texting me?”
That’s the difference between warm and cold texts. The first one – where you were planning to meet your coworker – came as no surprise, because of course you would need to handle some logistical issues with meeting each other for lunch.
The second one though – where’d that one come from? This isn’t a guy you’re super close with – is he trying to be friends with you? Does he want something from you? Does he have some kind of man-crush on you? Those are the kind of confused questions that pop into your head when a cold text isn’t properly structured to account for the surprise and confusion it may elicit.
Texting girls is a little more nuanced than you thought, ain’t it?
How to Structure Your Texts
When you send your first text in a new text message conversation with a girl (e.g. the first text you’ve sent her after not having spoken with her via text for two or more hours; no exceptions, even if you just talked to her over the phone), there are a few elements you will always want to include in every cold text. These are:
- A greeting.
- Her name.
- A piece of new information.
- Something that shows you’re considering her.
Each of these plays a big part in the “feel” of the text. Here’s what a complete one with all of the elements looks like:
Gabby, hey. Running a bit behind, sorry; will be there closer to 2:30. Still cool?
So there, we have:
- Greeting: “hey”
- Name: “Gabby”
- Information: “Running a bit behind” “will be there closer to 2:30”
- Consideration: “sorry” “Still cool?” Also, the fact that you texted to let her know you’d be late in the first place – that also counts as consideration
In certain cases, we can drop the greeting and it still feels okay, especially if the text is a warm text. So in the example above, we could drop the greeting (“hey” in this case) and it’s still okay, because she’s expecting you to handle logistical issues in the run up to the date. You could drop the name too, but that makes it a bit impersonal, so I recommend keeping it.
You should always use a girl’s name in your first text of a new text conversation. This trips a mental trigger that reassures her that you’re talking to her. Text, phone, and email correspondences simply don’t feel that personal when you don’t use the other person’s name; I highly, highly recommend that you do. My text message conversations always start with:
Hey Lily, hope your weekend was good =)
Always a greeting, and always a name.
Note that I shied away from exclamation points (“!”) and emoticons (smileys) for a while, as being too “cutesy” and adding too much fun into texts, but ultimately decided periods (“.”) were too morose. For a while, I operated off the assumption that a girl would just get used to me using periods and eventually realize that hey, Chase is always in a good mood so I shouldn’t take it to mean he’s sad or complaining when he uses periods, but these days I’m moving so quickly with girls that they don’t have time to properly get to know me anymore.
When you’re moving fast with new girls, exclamation points and emoticons have more upside than downside for engendering the right emotions and allowing you to progress things rapidly.
Hi Chase. Hope your week has been good. Feel like mine’s never going to end.
makes me recoil in fear that this girl’s a total downer; she sounds dour and whiney. I’m scared if I meet up with her she’ll suck me into negativity or get clingy and dependent on me if we get together. On the other hand,
Hi Chase! Hope your week has been good :) Feel like mine’s never going to end.
feels so much more fresh and vivid and engaging! I can’t wait to see this girl. Same exact message, just different punctuation at the end of the sentences. She’s a breath of fresh air. Our texting won’t be quite that bouncy, since we won’t be texting exactly as girls text, but it’ll be pretty close.
Texting is one of those mediums where you’re forced to choose, unfortunately. In this case, the choice is between masculine and negative, or feminine and positive. I’ll choose feminine and positive and trust that my masculinity in person will plow under any thoughts of my texting being cutesy.
On the matter of information and consideration: the information you share is the “point” of the text; it’s the reason why you texted. The consideration is the “bond” in the text; it’s your way of bonding with and showing care and consideration for this girl you’re texting.
You want to make sure you know how to text a girl and create the right emotions, because without that you’re sunk. If she’s left confused as to why you sent the text (information is missing or irrelevant) or feels like it’s cold and you aren’t really focused so much on her (lack of consideration), she’ll have confused or bad feelings tied to the text correspondence and be less likely to respond positively, and less likely to respond at all.
Information might be:
Sitting here in gridlock… this city has the worst traffic ever!
Had the most amazing shrimp of my life last night… I can
still taste it.
Thinking we need to get together some time soon.
Consideration might be:
How’s your week looking?
How was your test?
What’s your schedule looking like this week?
You’ll notice I use a lot of, “What’s your week look like?” That’s because I find it a great, open-ended question for both A) getting a girl to talk about anything fun, different, or interesting she’s got going on or coming up, and B) setting up logistics for us to meet up. And, as you’ll see in just a moment, I’m very direct these days and don’t like wasting much time on niceties.
You’ll also notice we’re directly violating one of the capital rules of text message flirting I posted about a year ago. Well, for ordinary texting, that still holds true: texting in the initial message is a no-no.
But when you structure things very properly as we do here, you can circumvent that rule and cut to the chase. It’s the whole “get good enough and the rules don’t apply to you anymore” rule. Well, certain rules do still apply – if you drop names and greetings and consideration, you probably won’t get very far. But you can drop the question rule when you’re doing everything else right and then you can use questions to your advantage.
Here’s what our text messages to these gals look like fully assembled:
Hey Lily, hope your weekend was good =) Sitting here in gridlock… this city has the worst traffic ever! How’s your week looking?
Katie, morning! Had the most amazing shrimp of my life last night… I can still taste it. How was your test?
Hi Melanie! Thinking we need to get together some time soon. What’s your schedule looking like this week?
These are cool, fun, personal, and upbeat, and will almost always get responses. This is influenced partly by the initial impression you made on the girls you’re sending them to, of course, and partly by precedent (e.g. if your initial impression was not good for whatever reason, or you’ve already set bad precedent in your correspondence, a good text now may be too little too late), but generally, structured this way, you’ll almost always hear back from women, and they’ll almost always be at least reasonably warm and expansive in their replies.
How to Text a Girl to Build Rapport
I recommend you send an initial text message to a girl three to five hours after first meeting her. If you met her toward the end of the night in a bar or nightclub or on the street or at a party, one or two hours later is okay if you’re just about to head to bed.
Your first text message, several hours after first meeting a girl, is to break the communication barrier and establish a degree of comfort for her with communicating with you. The longer you wait, the more awkward it gets when that first communication of yours arrives (whether a text message or a phone call), so text within three to five hours to prevent any awkwardness or expectation settling in and establish rapport via text message right away. All you need to do that is a simple text like:
Glad to meet a fellow traveler :) -Chase
Happy to run into you tonight :) -Chase
Basically, you’re giving her:
- A goodwill statement letting her know you’re glad to meet her
- A smiley face conveying warmth and good feelings
- Your name
This serves the following purposes:
- Establishing rapport. You’ve quickly moved to establish rapport via text message, removing any awkwardness or expectation. When you text or call later, it will be natural, now that you’ve already exchanged communication.
- Confirmation that you like her and remember her. Sometimes guys take girls’ phone numbers and get all weird or never text or call at all. Girls can get stuck wondering if you really liked her, if you ever intend to get in touch with her again, or if you’ll be the same over text as you were in person or if you’re one of those Jekyll / Hide guys who’s cool in person but creepy over text. Giving her a (short, single sentence) goodwill statement with accompanying smiley will set her mind at ease and prevent her from starting to imagine any weird scenarios of you texting or calling and it being odd.
- Giving her your name. When you’ve been at this for a while, you develop a talent for remembering everyone’s name, because you get so used to meeting lots and lots of new people that it just becomes routine. I rather enjoy meeting a new group of eight or ten people, having them all cycle through their names, and then I go back and tell them all what their names are after and everyone’s amazed. As it were though, most women are not so talented, and may very well forget your name, no matter how much they like you and how deeply you connect. This can be downright embarrassing for them – so much so sometimes that they can’t bear to talk to you for the shame of it. Signing your name at the end of that first text allows them to save face and gives them your name just in case they forgot it.
For building rapport, typically I’ll fire off that initial text, then not get in contact with the girl at all the following day, only reestablishing rapport the day after (unless she reaches out to me first). At that time I’ll generally fire off a few rapport building texts to get her comfortable chatting with me. These follow the structure we covered earlier, at least in the first text or two.
Some general outlines on rapport-building texts:
- Be concise. Shorter texts get far more replies than longwinded ones.
- Stay positive. No one likes a downer; bring good, positive energy to your texts. Girls should look forward to receiving texts from you. Let them dread texts from those other boring, depressing life-draining guys, while you come along and light up their days.
- Keep it to a few texts. Unless you get in a really good texting conversation with a girl, you’ll want to keep it to three to ten texts sent, generally.
- Watch the time. It’s okay to vary your response times, but don’t reply too much more quickly to a girl’s text than she replies to yours until you get pretty advanced, lest you risk looking like you’re waiting by the phone for her reply with nothing better to do. Once you’re advanced, you can play around with varying response times; sometimes I’ll reply within minutes to a girl’s text; other times it might take me hours. Usually that’s more because I’m busy than anything else, but building variance into your response time is a good thing to do.
How to Text a Girl to Arrange a Meet
This is the real meat of this post and probably the most important part of it. Honestly, I hardly spend much time building rapport with girls over text these days; I usually go straight for setting up the date. If you prefer to build some comfort and rapport first, I’d recommend a rough schedule like this:
- Initial text several hours after first meeting girl
- Rapport-building texts two days after first meet
- Arrange the date four to five days after first meet
That’s all you need. Less, even. Like I said, I often skip the rapport-building these days unless I really think a girl needs it, and I go for setting up the meet the day after I’ve first met a girl or the next day after that. You don’t need to talk to a girl for weeks before she’s ready to meet up with you; you don’t need to gradually win her over. You just need to get her out.
Back in my days selling tires, my old boss asked me a question while I was still in training. He asked me, “Do you know what the telephone is for?”
I said, “To sell the customer on a tire?”
He said, “No. A really good, seasoned salesguy, like Jim, can sell a customer on a tire over the phone, but even he knows not to push too hard to try to sell over the phone unless he can tell that’s what the customer wants. All I want you to do with the telephone is to use it to get the customer in the store. Selling over the phone is an uphill battle; but, get them in the store, and by that point they’ve come all the way here, they’ve made the decision this is where they want to buy their tires, and they’re committed, and more likely than not they’ll buy the tire. You stand a much better chance of selling the customer a tire when they’re here in front of you than when you have them on the phone. Get them in the store.”
I took that to heart and made it my priority with every phone call I answered from a customer. Whenever I found myself on the phone, my priority was get them in the store .
I forgot this lesson for a while when I was first learning how to do well with women, and I’d have these long, drawn out phone and text message interactions spanning weeks and months, and sometimes I’d eventually meet the girl, and sometimes nothing would come of it. It was colossally ineffective. I hated the phone; I had better luck taking a girl home the same night I met her in the nightclub than I did ever seeing her again once I had a phone number.
But eventually I remembered “get them in the store.” Translated to seduction, it’s “get them out with you.”
So, I stopped trying to sell myself over the phone, and just started using it as a logistical tool to set up dates; my success soared. I’ve hardly even used phone calls at all the past two years. Heck, in the first fifteen days of this year, I slept with four new girls, every one on first dates, every one of those dates coordinated via text message. My secret? “Get them out with you.”
I recently helped a good friend of mine structure his text messages to get a girl out who hadn’t responded to an earlier effort of his. I wrote him up a new text, and suddenly this girl who hadn’t responded before responded right away this time and ended up coming out late that night to meet him when she had to be up for work at 7 am the next day.
Why? Three elements to a meet-up text:
- Be warm.
- Offer value.
- Keep your eye on the ball.
The ball being the meet, of course. The value can be offering to do something cool or fun with her, or it may simply be leading her to something she wants to do (meet you). Sometimes girls will ask side questions, like, “How was your day?” but you must answer that and continue to push toward the meet. Don’t get sidetracked. Here’s what an example conversation might look like as you forge ahead toward setting up a meet:
Lisa, hey! Let’s figure out a time to grab a bite. How’s this weekend looking for you?