Cold approaching is as challenging as it is rewarding.
It's a battle of mental strength to overcome what is uncomfortable and awkward.
It's incredible how there's something where just a few hours (at most) per month provides a virtually endless supply of attractive women who genuinely want to meet you.
After making hundreds of approaches in my 20s, I ended up meeting someone I've dated now for over 10 years.
Check out my results making my first 50 cold approaches to gauge a realistic success rate. It's crucial to have the right frame of mind for knowing what to expect.
Whether you want to meet someone special or just hook up, you must have all your bases covered, and my best 15 tips for cold approaching will help you do that.
Here are the Top 15 Cold Approach Tips:
Derek (from MPMD) and I use to hit up malls and colleges making dozens of approaches, often trying to one-up each other.
It makes it a lot more enjoyable and it would honestly psych me up having a friend there.
It was genuinely fun too, even when one girl found out Derek was recording me talking to her at underwear section of American Eagle and got visibly upset.
Like with online dating/Tinder, playing the numbers game is a necessity.
While you don't need to hit them as hard as online dating, you do need to do as many as you can. Ideally, you should eventually reach a point where you immediately approach any girl you see without hesitation.
Depending on where you are making the approaches, you'll want to do 1-3 every 10 minutes. This may seem like a lot, but getting into the rhythm of things is essential.
If you can't hit that cadence with your approaches at first, it's okay; just try to work up to that point.
If you're just starting, making that many approaches can seem rather daunting.
A great way to practice is just making the approach but asking for the time or directions instead. You're just to get used to going up to women and having a brief chat.
You can also customize it. This is similar to "situational openers" where you open and say something relating to what the person is doing (looking at a book, browsing a hobby store you happen to know a lot about, etc.).
The difference here is that you don't move toward getting her number if it's too difficult. Still, don't hesitate to ask if you feel she seem to enjoy talking to you.
These practice approaches can be your entire day (if you're new) or act as a warm-up. Do 5-10 of them on just about anyone (regardless of appearance or age).
The best places to approach are those with a lot of people and with those around your age group. Here is a list of different places you can check out. For a more expanded list, check out best places to cold approach.
You can always head to a neighboring city if you're afraid of seeing someone you know. It's only happened to my once, and it was an old coworker that I ended up asking for her number (ha), though unfortunately didn't go anywhere.
I've done at least 80% of all approaches at a mall. One happened to be beside where I lived but has otherwise been a staple for me. Speaking of Staples, I even did one there.
Having the right expectations and goals in mind for what you'll accomplish is crucial.
If you're new, focus more on making the approach and less on the outcome. Understand you will get rejected a lot, but it doesn't mean you did anything wrong.
This is about developing a skill. Whether you get a number or not is just a byproduct of it. Success is the effort put in and the resulting reduction of approach anxiety.
Looking good is a necessity. Fortunately, there are a lot of quick changes any guy can make to make him instantly more attractive.
The right hairstyle, growing a beard, getting a tan, choosing the right clothes, choosing clothes that fit, heeled sneakers if you're short, etc. Make sure you look your best each time you go out.
While situational openers (more info in the next tip) are ideal being they're easier and help you come off more natural, it's not something you can rely on when hitting the numbers.
Having something always in mind that you can say to fall back on helps make sure you're always prepared.
"This is kind of random but I thought you seemed cool and wanted to say hi"
It's best being friendly but direct. Try not to get hung up on finding some perfect opener, as it doesn't really matter. What matters is having something repeatable that helps you break the ice in any situation.
For more examples, check out my best cold approach openers.
Custom/Situational openers allow you to make an approach easier as it gives you an "excuse" to talk to them. It also comes off much more natural, which helps take off the pressure.
You essentially just make a comment relating to what she's doing:
Bookstore: "I noticed you're looking at the mystery section. Do you have any favorite authors or recommendations?"
Coffee Shop: "that drink looks good, what is it?
Sporting Event: "Wow, the Canucks are sucking again, eh?"
College: "I'm new to this campus. Can you recommend any good study spots or places to grab a bite?"
It's crucial to not lean too heavily on this, or you'll end up stalling, trying to scramble to find the best words. It's best to immediately move towards making the approach as soon as you see one available.
At most, give yourself a dozen seconds to think of something before falling back on your regular opener.
* By the way, if you attend the college, don't approach there. You'll gain a reputation for it that's not worth having. Otherwise, just check out How to Get Laid in College.
Using online dating and Tinder alongside your cold approaches can significantly help your overall experience with women. This is possibly the best tip and certainly the most underrated. There are two main reasons why:
When you're going full force at improving this part of your life, you'll gain more experience and confidence overall. When texting new girls and going on dates to meet them, you're becoming more comfortable around women you don't know.
If all you're doing is cold approaching, you'll depend on it for every new girl you'll meet. This increases expectations which can make rejections more impactful. If you're already using online dating and have success with it, then it's easy not to care when you're already getting some action.
Have fun with your approaches, and keep it light and casual. Once you've done it enough and can tell when things are going well, you can be flirty too.
Joke around a bit too. It's even better if your situational opener has some humor to it.
Funny bone her.
Most approaches won't be successful, so there's no point in dragging each out longer than needed.
I usually keep it to a handful of exchanges of words, lasting a minute or two, then go for the close. If you're interested in more of the layout- tip 14 provides a better idea of how this goes down.
Sometimes the conversation can naturally flow in a direction that can linger on for a bit (especially with some situational openers). It's okay overall, but still try to keep it to under a few minutes in most cases.
First- it's not always easy to tell receptiveness purely based on body language, as some girls are just polite or even enjoy the chat without romantic interest.
It is, however, a reliable enough sign to give you an extra hint of whether things are going well (or not).
As just mentioned, it's optimal to not spend much time on the approach either way- but there are some things you can watch for:
Not Interested: closed off, crossed arms, short answers, etc.
Interested: directly facing and locked on to you, attentive, smiling, shy, etc.
It can be obvious. I don't recommend specifically looking for signs, as it's a distraction, but it's something you should notice quickly. If it is going well, you can chat longer, but ideally still keep it short.
A lot of guys shouldn't be approaching at a certain point in heir lives. Specifically, those who:
Cold approaches may be too much for you if you lack any experience with dating. Online dating or focusing on someone in your social circle will likely be a better first step.
If you're well over or underweight, you should prioritize this. Build up the habits of putting on some muscle and focus on getting fit. Some may need a complete overhaul to their looks, so you may want to combine this with tip #5.
This can also help your odds with online dating since it's all about the pics.
Follow these 5 reasons to cold approach or not (to gauge if you're ready).
Don't try to punch well above your weight class.
If you're a 7, then go for 7s and 8s. Try to be honest about it. Going <7 can still be great as the odds of success increase too.
It's completely fine to approach some 9s and 10s, as you never know, but don't expect things to happen that aren't realistic.
More reason to continually improve your looks at all times.
While your opener may change a bit if you customize it based on the situation, the "closer" is more or less likely to stay the same.
It's best to be simple and direct, like:
"would you want to hang out sometime?"
"nice talking to you- let me give you my number if you ever want to chill"
Regarding what to include 'in the middle,' that depends on where you're at. Personally, in the past, I always winged it and somehow managed to not stumble over my words and still think of something.
If you would like to have something in mind (which is probably best), bring up something situational. It should be easier than custom openers, as there are many more options once you're already talking. You can ask them what they're drinking, what they're shopping for, comment about the store you're in, etc.
Being genuine about your approaches legitimately helps. You're putting yourself out in the open trying to meet someone special, which is pretty vulnerable to do.
If you're sincere about it, it'll come across that way. If you treat it like a game pushing to hit an approach quota, they can likely tell as well.