If you open up Grindr and are consistently disappointed and underwhelmed by the sheer absence of notifications and reply messages, consider this; you may be in a digital dating rut.
And while there are always plenty of other fish in the sea, if your bait hasn’t had a bite in a while, it may be time to consider starting afresh with some profile touch ups. Albert Einstein once defined insanity as “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” So if your inbox is starting to feel like an online no man’s land, it may be time to re-market your digital presence to cast a more fruitful line in the Grindr sea.
Here are five ways to update your online presence and in turn, lower your Grindr bounce rate.
1. Update your profile pic
You may have noticed when you go on holiday that when you switch on Grindr in a new place, you tend be inundated with messages more so than when at home. This is because fresh meat is always the flavour of the month on Grindr. People easily become photo fatigued by the familiar profiles that are always near the top of their feed when at home, so be sure to update your profile pic more often than not to prevent this from happening.
2. Choose a strong shot
Your profile pic is more likely to elicit interest if it’s a decent shot clearly displaying your face and/or body. Avoid hats and sunglasses and go for a snap with an uncluttered background and with favourable or natural lighting. A picture of anyone in a dirty bathroom mirror surrounded by a hideous hodgepodge of decaying tooth brushes and endless almost-empty bathroom supplies is a sure fire way to turn anyone off instantly. At the very least, ensure that you have an image and that you are in it. When was the last time anyone responded to a photo-free profile or one with a picture of a random dog without its human?
3. Balance your description
Avoid one word profile descriptions, or worse, the dreaded dissertation length “about you” that makes War and Peace look like a light read. Keep your description short and sweet with a few interesting details that will leave your fellow Grindr aficionados wanting to know more. A witty and positive tone will work more favourably than an overly negative one echoed in a shopping list of dislikes.
Be mindful of how your words may affect others too. If you’re HIV negative, don’t describe yourself as “clean” or “disease free” – “clean” insinuates that people living with HIV are dirty and is stigmatising, and HIV is a virus, not a disease. Learn the abbreviations for HIV statuses and post yours in your profile description if you like, which can be any of the following:
- [+U] = HIV positive and undetectable
- [=] = Happy to meet up with HIV positive and HIV negative men
- [-] = HIV negative
- [+] = HIV positive
- [PrEP] = HIV negative and on PrEP
Grindr also now gives you the option to select your HIV status and display it as an attribute on your profile. Five options are available: do not show; negative; negative, on PrEP; positive; and positive, undetectable.
Find something a little more interesting to open with than just “Hi” or “Looking?” And don’t start a conversation with “Wanna fuck?” Sending a few face and body pics with your first message is a great way to expedite a meet up. Ask open questions that invite a broad response, and answer questions accordingly with detail and depth. If somebody asks you what you’re into, give an in-depth list of hobbies and/or kinks – there’s nothing more boring or uninspiring than replying with “the usual stuff – U?”
Typing lengthy blocks of text on a mobile touch screen can be a pain though, so if your lists of hobbies or kinks are six to seven lines long, keep a master list in your notes app on your phone, ready to be easily copy and pasted when required into your dating app convo of choice.
Discussing sexual health practices up front is a great way to ensure you’re both on the same page before meeting too. So whether it be condoms and lube, PrEP, managing an undetectable viral load with HIV treatment medication, or a combination thereof, be clear about how you’re going to look after each other’s sexual health upfront.
5. Get out of your pool
Find some fresh faces on your Grindr feed by logging in when in a suburb you don’t usually frequent and let the notifications begin to flow. You can also mix up what shows on your feed by applying specific filter search settings that will cast a wider net further afield by virtue of less common demographic attributes being targeted in your search. So feel free to filter for anything as specific as: daddies; with photos; open relationship or single; open to random play/NSA; aged 42-56; 1.70-1.88 metres tall; weighs 70-110kg.