Scoot over dating apps, we’ve found a new way to bag the bae of our dreams. We’ve heard plenty of stories of successful DM relationships that left us wondering: What did she say? How did she say it? And how long did she wait to reply? After a girl successfully slid into Michael B. Jordan’s DMs and then proceeded to hang out with him, people were filled with hope to shoot their shots via the web. Social media can be a daunting place though, full of accidentally sending people hearts, screenshotting, and un-sending; we’re here to break down some simple dos and don’ts of sliding in your McDreamie’s DMs.

Dos

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1. Be confident. This is the most important — don’t end your statements with “I guess,” “If you want,” or “Sorry.” These statements make it seem like you’re not sure of yourself. Come on, you only get one first impression, so you gotta make it a good one! Figure out what you’re going to say, and say it like you don’t care if they reply or not (even though you’ll likely be staring at your phone waiting for a notification).

2. Appeal to their interests. We know you’ve been creeping on them for a while, and you may or may not have liked most of their pictures and left cryptic emoji captions on a few. You know where they hang out, what kind of music they like, and their dietary restrictions, so use that to your advantage. Try something like replying to their story of a piece of pizza by asking if they’ve ever been to your favorite pizza place in town. Easy.

3. Ask questions. While there’s a lot we can interpret from somebody’s online presence, there is plenty to this person that’s still a mystery (because they’re basically a stranger). When you’re in the DMs and they reply to your joke, introduction, or story, this is the perfect time to ask them about themselves. Where they’re from, how old they are, and what they do are all good basic places to start.

4. Be yourself. Just because Michael B. Jordan replies to his DMs doesn’t mean he’s responding to every “hey” and “you’re so hot” text. It’s the messages that carry character and personality that catch people’s attention, so when you’re going for that first intro, make sure that you sound like yourself. In other words, don’t say anything you wouldn’t say in person.

5. Reply in a timely manner. There’s an age-old idea that if a someone takes an hour to reply to your message, you should take the same amount of, if not more, time to reply to theirs (resulting in a simple conversation sometimes taking days to complete). This idea is ready to be retired, because not only is it annoying to be on the receiving end of someone replying to your messages an hour late, it also does you no good to stare at the message for 59 extra minutes. So forget about thinking you’re replying too fast, and let them know you’re interested as soon as you see that notification.

Don’ts

1. Send memes. Unless it’s a really really relevant meme, you really shouldn’t start an interaction with a new person using a meme. Memes are the modern-day version of flirting with icebreakers; sending a pic of “Justin Bieber” eating a burrito the wrong way is the same as asking “Do you know how much a polar bear weighs?” during a first convo. So save your killer sense of humor for the second or third in-person get-together.

2. Send “Hello??” messages. We all get antsy when that little “seen” text pops up under your message, but it’s important to resist the urge to double message. If days pass and you still haven’t gotten a response, don’t send a message that says “hello” or includes multiple question marks. Most likely the recipient of your attention will think you’re a little weird and not reply at all. Give them time.

3. Play all your cards. Try to avoid giving them your life story right off the bat. It can be hard if you’ve been looking at their selfies for weeks thinking about all the things you could say to them if you got the chance, but keep it brief. Starting off with your name is probably a good first step.

4. Start with a picture of yourself. Even if it’s your best selfie, leading with a photo of yourself may come off as a little self-centered. It’s like going up to someone at a party and screaming in their face, “Look how hot I am!” Keep it strictly text and GIFs until they fall in love with you IRL.

5. Send a message in the middle of the night. So you ignored “Do” number five and decided to wait a little too long to reply to their message; now it’s the middle of the night, and you’re wishing you’d said something earlier and are considering responding now, at 3:06am. Don’t. Do. It. You don’t want to come off as though you’re doing a DM booty call by reaching out at odd hours of the night, and chances are, your message could get buried beneath other notifications before they wake up. Keep your conversation safely between 10am and 8pm to play it safe.

Share your best DM convos with us on Twitter @BritandCo.

(Photo via Getty)