The world of modern dating can be bewildering. Trying to find the best dating app for a relationship can leave you with an overwhelming choice. And, to add to the confusion, there’s a growing trend of using apps that are not designed for dating, including Instagram.
Yep, you read that right: Instagram dating is a thing now. The place where you post sunny holiday photos and snap some selfies could wind up being where you meet your next great love. But, what is Instagram dating, how does it work, and why are people going crazy for it? We’ve tackled all this, and more, below to give you a complete overview of this new dating trend!
Social Media and Dating: An Introduction
Social media has long played a role in online dating. It frequently serves as the next place that people connect after matching on a dating app. For many, it’s a handy way to double-check that their match is in fact who they say they are.
“If someone is unwilling to connect on any other platform, it’s a little fishy,” writes Solomiya G in this Date Mix article. “Sure, maybe they just want to keep their social media accounts private. But if you ask to connect on Instagram or Facebook and they continually refuse, then maybe they’re hiding something.” Wise words indeed. Social media apps can be ideal for a little pre-date sleuthing, so is it really a surprise that people also use them to connect directly?
Why Instagram Dating Is Becoming a Thing Now
There are a few reasons why some people might find dating on Instagram more user-friendly than an app that’s built specifically for finding dates. Many dating apps only serve up profiles of people who’re local right now, whereas Instagram allows communication with a broader range of people. And whilst some dating apps only allow messaging to start when two people have matched, on Instagram you’re welcome to send a message to anyone.
Plus, for millennial daters, Instagram can provide great insights into someone’s personality. Instead of looking at a run-of-the-mill dating profile with a cliched bio and some predictable headshots, you can use Instagram to see where someone went on vacation, what their dog looks like, and what kind of food they like to cook. Simply put, the platform can give you a good sense of someone’s personality and what kind of things they’re into.
How to Use Instagram for Dating: 6 Tips and Strategies
Ready to give it a go but unsure about how to date on Instagram? Below, we’ve put together a few of the main dos and don’ts to get you started and to give you the best chance of having a good experience.
1. DO spend some time working on your profile first
If you’re wondering how to meet people on Instagram, remember that — just like with any dating app — your profile is your shop window. So, if you want to try meeting potential partners via Instagram, it needs to be looking its best.
Make sure you have a stellar profile picture, a memorable username, and a succinct bio so that the people you’re looking to connect with can get a good sense of your personality.
2. DON’T expect instant results
As with other forms of online dating, the “Instagram dating app” isn’t guaranteed to provide you with an instant success story. You’ll need to be patient and play the long game, whilst checking on the app regularly enough to ensure you don’t miss out on a great connection.
3. DO send a friendly DM
The classic DM slide is a great way to make connections in a way that’s low stakes. And, as with all communication via an app, it’s important to be respectable and avoid seeming pushy. And whatever you do, don’t get too sleazy right away. It’s a turn-off for many. Instead, focus on getting to know people for who they are beyond their cute photos.
4. DON’T get salty if you don’t receive a fast reply
If someone doesn’t respond, it might mean they’re not interested. Or, it could be that they just don’t have time. In either case, getting frustrated by that is definitely not going to help, and being patient whilst waiting for a response is important.
“Chances are good that if your crush has more than 10,000 followers, you’re not the only one hoping to get a reply,” writes Dana Givens for Thrillist. “So while you don’t want to come on too strong, you also need to ensure your message (singular on “message”) stands out from the crowd.”
5. DO start a conversation about an unusual photo
Once you’re ready to send a DM to someone that you’re interested in getting to know better, try to keep it original! Instead of just giving a simple compliment, ask them an interesting question about a picture they’ve posted or a recent reel they uploaded.
Showing a genuine interest in the person you’re trying to match with can help when it comes to your chances of getting a response and sparking a connection.
6. DON’T make the mistake of thinking you know people based on photos alone
It can be easy to feel like you know someone well simply from following their social media posts. But, it’s important to remember that photos are just a small snapshot of the person. Talking with your crush directly is the only way to truly get to know them, so don’t get your hopes up about chemistry until you connect.
More Ways to Use Instagram as a Dating App
Instagram dating might not be for everyone. But, if you’re interested in giving it a shot, then it’s time to get your best photos ready and sharpen up your profile! Give it a go and keep these do’s and don’ts — as well as the best tips for online dating — in mind for the best chance at an awesome experience.
Whether you’re experiencing some dating app fatigue and want to try something different or you’re looking to use Instagram alongside your other dating app, the platform can be a great place for making meaningful connections online!