When I was a kid, I had a friend who took me fishing. He taught me how to bait my hook and how to cast a line.
I waited patiently by the water until I felt a little tug on the line, and then I reeled in a fat trout. I was thrilled – but little did I know, the hard part was just beginning. Now it was time for the dirty work: bleeding it out, descaling, and gutting.
See, if you’re going to go fishing you need to think about the end goal. Eating that fish.
Okay, is this a horrible metaphor for online dating? Let’s throw out any talk of gutting, but what you do need to remember is that building your online dating profile, with your snappy bio and sharp set of pics, is just the first step.
That’s casting your bait and reeling in a catch.
But once you’ve got an inbox full of matches, the hard work starts. You have to keep these women interested in you throughout the conversation and seal the deal with a first date.
I’ve seen too many guys playing catch and release on Tinder. They get matches, but the conversation always fizzles out. That’s why I built the Online Dating Masterclass to help guys tailor every part of the online dating journey and take every single one of their matches offline.
Whether you’re looking for a hookup or a long-term relationship, that’s always your end goal. So let’s find out how to have a successful conversation on Tinder.
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What Is A Typical Successful Conversation On Tinder Like
If you’re not having much luck on Tinder, you might not even know what a good conversation looks like. It feels like your matches aren’t putting any effort in, so why should you? What is a good conversation on Tinder? Does it even exist?
So what is a typical successful conversation on Tinder like? The quick answer? It’s fun. Balance humor and sincerity to get to know your match and don’t be afraid to be a bit ridiculous to stand out. Meanwhile, continuously signpost that you’re physically interested in her and that you want to meet offline eventually.
If you’ve been struggling to have good Tinder conversations it can seem like a hard balance to strike, but there are a few essential ingredients that I’ve identified over the years. I call these the 6 pillars of a good conversation.
These pillars form the foundation of the conversations chapter in my Online Dating Masterclass. And they can give you the platform for successful conversations that get instant replies and lead you offline for a date.
Here’s a sneak peek from my Online Dating Masterclass at the ingredients of a successful Tinder conversation.
The 6 Pillars Of A Good Conversation on Tinder
Now, I could feed you lines that’ll get a laugh out of your Tinder match. I could give you a vulnerable anecdote to share to soften the hearts of your matches.
You could read articles on good Tinder conversation examples, but guess what? You’d still be no closer to having a good conversation on Tinder.
That’s because you need to understand the ingredients of a good conversation on Tinder yourself.
With the 6 pillars of a good conversation, you’ll have the tools to understand why a conversation was successful or not for you. You’ll learn what works for you, and find your own path through the twists and turns of a Tinder conversation.
And even better, you’ll learn how to have a lot of fun. When you try to make your Tinder conversations formulaic, it’s boring and repetitive.
These are practical tips that you can mix and match so that every convo feels creative, energetic, and enjoyable – and you always get a date at the end of it.
Because if you’re not on Tinder to have fun, what are you doing here?
The 6 Pillars Of A Good Conversation on Tinder
- Guide The Way
You don’t go on Tinder to find a pen pal, you go to get a date. That means your Tinder conversations need to be leading toward that end goal, at all times. Guide the way to that moment throughout your conversations.
You’ll dramatically increase your chances of sealing the deal if you know what works for your match. What’s her schedule like? Does she work a 9 to 5 or odd hours, do weeknights work or are weekends better? Find out.
Likewise, what kind of date will interest her? Is she a night owl looking for a bar crawl, or would a daytime date suit her better?
And when you pop the question she needs to be ready for it. Signpost throughout your conversation that you intend to meet up, offline, at some point. Talk about real-life events, locations, and happenings, like a new coffee shop that opened or a show at an art gallery that just so happens to be closing soon.
Dropping hints like “we should check that out sometime” signals that you want to meet in real life and the way she replies gives you valuable feedback about when the opportunity to schedule a date will arise.
- Be Ridiculous
After a lot of unsuccessful conversations on Tinder, guys fall back on low-effort lines and can come across as bitter and tired. That’s no way to get her interested in you.
My cure for the Tinder killjoy? Being ridiculous. That means throw in some sarcasm, be a bit cocky or over the top, and don’t be afraid to get downright silly.
The key here is that it’s going to make your conversation a lot more fun, for you and your potential date. A little bit of ridiculousness helps you stand out from every other boring conversation she’s having about how her day was, what her favorite food is, yadda yadda, snore.
Of course, don’t make this your whole identity. Combine it with the later pillars to build a well-rounded conversation. But next time you’re talking to a Tinder match, try typing the first random thing that comes to mind into the text box and think “fuck it. Send.” Stop censoring yourself: it’s empowering and leads to great conversations.
Banter is an important concept in Australian and British culture and way too many Americans are missing out on this ingredient of a good conversation.
Simply put? It’s making fun of someone. But in an appropriately lighthearted and teasing way that spices up your conversation and builds an instant rapport with your match.
Too many guys play it safe with their Tinder matches. Banter lets you push the boat out a little bit. And you can build intimacy with running jokes and callbacks where you gently mock things about your match.
Good things to take the piss (as they say in merry old England) about are gaps in cultural knowledge, like a classic movie they haven’t seen or a weird favorite food. Things that they can’t take too seriously.
And if you’re not sure if you’re crossing the line, I recommend testing it out, people aren’t all that easily offended. Chuck a cheeky emoji or a heart on the end to soften the blow.
- Have Empathy
We’ve covered the main ways to make your Tinder conversations fun, lively, and heading straight for a date. Now it’s time to identify the qualities that will balance your ridiculous side.
Developing empathy is like building a sixth sense of what to say at the perfect time. To empathize is to understand what life’s like from another perspective.
Remember, online dating looks very different from the other side of the app. Sure, women get a lot more attention, but they also suffer more harassment and can even be in downright danger.
Demonstrating empathy establishes that you’re different from the other guys who don’t understand women. You’ll be patient if she needs reassurance that you are who you say you are, or wants to meet somewhere public before taking it private.
And empathy helps you figure out what your match wants on every level. If she says she’s new to the city, does that mean she’s just looking for friends? Wants to explore new places? You’ll learn to read the subtext of conversations so that you get what you want, faster.
Empathy takes practice. In the Masterclass, I run through examples of how to develop empathy, and how to deploy it in your conversations to great success. But if you want to practice on your own, ask yourself: “what’s it like for her? What’s she feeling right now?”
I don’t think I’m being presumptive when I say you want to be getting physical with your matches.
Flirty banter and caring empathy help her see you as a sexual partner because it ticks boxes women are interested in.
But the most important tool for keeping your Tinder conversations out of the dreaded platonic territory is to sensualize your Tinder chats. Get her thinking about sex, without pushing it into a sleazy space.
This overlaps nicely with being ridiculous. Humor lets you plant the seed of intimacy with a flirty compliment, without coming across as creepy. Take something innocent and turn it dirty with a little twist of innuendo: let’s say there’s a big thunderstorm in your city – tell her it’s because the sparks are flying between the two of you.
While guys generally like visual stimulation, women like their imagination to be engaged. Sensualize your conversations by introducing sex and sexuality in nonconfrontational, oblique ways that just get her picturing that side of you.
And this is where your newfound empathy can work wonders: perform a quick “cheeky or creepy” check before hitting send.
Finally, you can build trust and add depth to your Tinder conversations by confiding in your matches. This shows your sensitive side, offsetting your ridiculous moments and teasing banter. Show her you can get serious.
Now, not all conversations will provide the opportunity to confide. Often, you’ll get a date just fine with the first 5 pillars.
But if there’s an opportunity to be vulnerable with your match, don’t be afraid to take it. You’ll demonstrate your complexity and make her curious to meet this multidimensional human.
Now, don’t go making up stories about struggles or hardships, or busting out the same sob story with every match. Do a little soul-searching and be authentic when you confide in your matches. It’ll have a much more meaningful impact.
In the Masterclass, we’ll see tons of good examples that demonstrate how you can integrate some vulnerability into your online dating app conversations, and the results that it can have.
Remember, not every successful Tinder conversation includes all of these pillars, but some of them are present in every conversation. Banter and being a little bit ridiculous are going to help your matches warm to you, and they’re going to help you have fun in the dating game too.
Quickly, empathy, sensualizing, and confiding in your matches will come naturally and you’ll find ways to weave them together to have great conversations. Less pen pals, more Papermate.
How Do You Start A Conversation On Tinder?
Before you can get into the nitty gritty of a good conversation, you have to get it started. And on Tinder, unlike Bumble, there’s an expectation that guys will make the first move.
So how do you start a conversation on Tinder? By putting in some effort. Find something about her profile that other people won’t have spotted and comment on it. If you can be humorous and surprising, you’re more likely to get responses.
More importantly, don’t use the same conversation starters over and over, throwing out lines she’s most likely heard before. A right swipe doesn’t mean she’s head over heels in love with you, she’s just giving you a chance to show what you’ve got so don’t be low-effort.
The best tinder conversation starters are all tailored to the match in question. To get instant responses, try to surprise or even shock her a little bit with something weird or cheeky.
What Gets The Most Responses On Tinder?
It gets frustrating when your openers are falling flat. You might as well be talking to a houseplant – but even they respond! You need to up your game with openers that get instant responses.
So what gets the most responses on Tinder? Personalized openers that include an offbeat comment about her profile or her interests. Scan the background of her pictures for a detail that other guys might have missed, and find a way to crack a joke about it.
Formulating your opener as an open-ended question that encourages her to write a substantive response is great, but once you perfect the personalized opener you’ll find that statements can get even more responses than questions.
A confidently incorrect or outrageous comment about her profile is a great way to get her to engage.
Dos And Don’ts For Starting A Conversation On Tinder
Personalizing your openers and putting a bit of effort into coming up with something original is the way to go, but sometimes you’re feeling lazy. You want the Tinder opener hacks, don’t you.
You can stand out from 90% of guys on Tinder by following some simple Dos and Don’ts for your first Tinder message.
- Read her Tinder profile carefully first.
- Compliment a picture.
- Get a little flirty.
- Ask about their interests.
- Ask their favorite thing about a pictured hobby.
- Ask an open-ended question.
- Check your spelling.
- Send a GIF.
- Identify your similarities and common interests.
- Crack a joke.
- Be yourself.
- Don’t wait for them to message you first.
- Don’t be critical or condescending.
- Don’t share a cliched or cheesy pick-up line.
- Don’t talk about her appearance.
- Don’t ask a yes/no question.
- Don’t be creepy or demanding.
- Don’t ask why they’re on Tinder.
- Don’t expect a response right away.
With online dating, you get out what you put in. Put in the effort and approach every conversation with an open and upbeat attitude. You’ll quickly find that attitude reflected back in your conversations with your matches. You can even personalize openers to blank profiles if you try hard enough.
How To Keep The Tinder Conversation Going
Your finely crafted opener pointing out that her beloved Afghan greyhound looks like a member of Mötley Crüe has hit home. But once you’re done discussing your favorite glam rock ballads, where is the conversation going?
So how do you keep the Tinder conversation going? By asking open-ended questions that give her something to talk about, and by providing enough detail in your responses to give her something to build on. Use sarcasm, humor, and teasing banter to build running jokes or callbacks that build a sense of intimacy between your match and you.
Avoid asking questions with factual answers and use your questions to make her feel something. And of course, throughout any Tinder conversation, you should be applying the 6 pillars of a good conversation wherever you get the chance.
That means you’ll guide the conversation towards its final goal: an offline date, and sensualize the conversation to get her thinking about you as a realistic sexual partner.
Don’t let your conversations fizzle out after the promise of a great opener. The Online Dating Masterclass goes into detail about how these principles build on each other to give success in your Tinder conversations.
How Long Should A Tinder Conversation Go On?
So you managed to keep the Tinder conversation going – great job. But it’s going, and going and… going. My dude, you’re not here for journaling. You need to go on an actual date.
So how long should a Tinder conversation go on? It depends – some people will be ready to arrange a date after a couple of days while others need more time. You’ll need to gauge when your match might be ready to be asked. Guide the conversation to potential date ideas without explicitly asking to meet up, and see how she responds.
If you’ve been paying attention, you’ve been guiding the way in all your Tinder conversations so you should have an idea of her schedule, and what she might like to do.
Maybe you dropped a few hints about how a band you like is playing Friday night, or you heard that an incredible new brunch place just opened up.
If you’ve been leading the conversation towards a date from the outset, then the question of how long should a Tinder conversation last will answer itself. The opportunity to pop the question will arise organically.
Right from your opening messages, you can use the 6 pillars of a good conversation to keep it going until she’s ready for a date.
By skipping the boring small talk and taking a chance with some ridiculous overconfidence or teasing banter you’ll find that you have more success on Tinder and more fun doing it.
And remember, the Online Dating Masterclass is packed with more tips and real-life examples of Tinder exchanges that will make your conversations spark.