In recent years, the DM ‘slide’ has become the new online dating message. To “slide into the DMs” is slang for sending someone a direct message on Instagram or twitter, often with romantic intentions in mind. The idea is to come off as cool and slick, in hopes that the other person will write back. But as someone who is often the recipient of these kinds of messages, I can say that they often have the opposite effect.
Well, that’s not completely true. One of the people I was romantically involved in near the end of 2017, was a relationship that started when he slid into my DMs on twitter. We had followed each other on social media for several years, and share a handful of mutual friends. One day he sent me a private message. “How was your trip to Mexico?” he said. The conversation popped off from there.
Before I knew it, we were having long, rambling, sexy conversations and making plans to meet up next time we were both in the same city. What started as a DM slide, turned into a really fun weekend fling.
However, not all direct messages result in friendship and/or a steamy 24 hours-between-consenting- adults. While I can’t speak for the male population, as a woman with a robust social media presence, the majority of the messages I receive are strange, creepy or confusing at best – for example, the message I received from a man who explained he was “looking to interface with cross-dressers of all races and other sexual beings,” (something tells me he didn’t read my profile). This is all to say that when DMs go wrong, they go very, very wrong.
After amassing almost 700K Instagram followers in less than a year, Playboy model Becky Hudson is no stranger to receiving DMs from men. Since the DM slide shows no sign of slowing down, I spoke with Hudson to get a few tips on how to put your best foot forward when interacting with potential love interests on social media.
1. Use humour.
It’s a scientifically proven fact that people find humour sexy. “The best IG pickup lines are ones that are funny. I love a guy with a good sense of humour. But keep it clean please… until you get to know me!” says Hudson.
While you’re at it, avoid bad puns like Hudson’s least favourite pick up line: “Do you live in a corn field? Cause I’m stalking you!” While you may think you’re being clever, this so-called harmless joke about committing a felony is going to set off our creep radar.
2. DON’T ask for or send unsolicited nudes.
You know what I don’t want to see when I open my direct messages? A note from a stranger asking if I’d be interested in showing him my body or looking at photos of his. Sir, if I wanted to see your junk, I’d ask (and trust me – no one is asking). As Hudson says, “please no xxx pic DM’s guys!” This kind of behaviour is a surefire way to get blocked on social media.
3. Be genuine.
“If you want to slide into my heart on Instagram, your best bet is to be sweet and genuine, and compliment me on something besides the obvious,” says Hudson.
When I first started talking to the man I mentioned above, he did all of these things. He grabbed my attention by commenting on something he’d seen online (my vacation photos from Mexico) and complimented me on my writing. By showing genuine interest in who I am as a person, it signalled to me that he was interested in more than just my looks.
Whether you’re sliding into their DMs, crafting the perfect online dating message or approaching someone in person, you’ll have way more success if you keep things classy and approach every every situation from a place of respect.