Jan 082015

When you say “public” — it depends a lot with context. It’s usually low percentage, but great for practice. Most people have somewhere to go and are on their way there. And in general, strangers have a bad rap. It is entirely possible though because I’ve scored a few dates by approaching girls on the street. Just be prepared for mass rejection.

Having said that, I have ideas about how to improve your odds with public cold approaches.

  • Better to approach someone who is just standing around, rather than walking somewhere. Maybe they are waiting for a friend to arrive? Either way, they are just standing there, meaning they likely have at least a few minutes to kill. Right there, I’d say your odds are better than to approach someone who is walking.
  • Always approach someone from the front so they see you coming. Never approach someone from behind as it could easily spook them. Remember, this person is not expecting you to talk to them.
  • Have some premise, a reason to talk to them that has nothing to do with scoring a date. It can be totally bullshit and made up, but at least have something. Some guy who is just walking around hitting on girls on the street is a little up there on the creep factor. However, if you just ask someone for directions, that is not creepy at all. That’s what I used to do — I would just ask someone for directions and after that, I’d make some innocuous comment or whatever and then a conversation would strike up. You just need some reason to talk to her other than “Hey how’s it going…”
  • False time constraint. This less important in a general sense, but for public cold approaches, it is big. “As you’re talking, as early as possible say, “…yeah I’m meeting a friend in a few minutes.” — this makes them feel comfortable that you’re not just going to stick around and never leave. If they know you are going to leave, they feel better.
  • Try not to drag it on. Keep the whole interaction under 10 minutes. Build rapport, shake hands (some body contact is great), get her laughing. Then say something to the affect, “Hey I gotta run — great meeting you though. Would you like to keep in contact?” They’ll say yes, get her number and tell her you’ll text her later.
  • Don’t compliment their appearance.

Most important thing of all is that you should do this a lot — the more you do it, the better you’ll get. If there’s anything you should learn from this post is that the whole objective is to make them feel comfortable and not creep them out. If you succeed at that, the worst you did was brighten the day of a stranger.

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