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How to Ask Someone for Their Phone Number

March 30, 2008
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When it comes to asking for a person’s phone number we all seem to clam up a little. No one likes rejection afterall, what if they think you’re a psycho or a loser? Or worse, what if they give you a number but when you call it you find out it’s the number for your favorite pizza place?

Well, have no fear. Here are 10 ways to get someone’s phone number without creeping him or her out and avoid complete rejection.

1. Borrow something. I met my husband because he borrowed my Sharpie Marker and asked for a number he could reach me at to give it back to me. This can work for you. Either let the person borrow something you have or see if you can borrow something they have. This can be tricky in different places, but as you think of things someone can borrow you’ll be able to keep more of them in your purse or wallet.

2. Do you have a business card? If you’re a professional and do sales or marketing or networking, you can easily and casually tell the person you’re interested in what kind of work they do and after talking for awhile ask them for a business card in case you know someone who might need their services. Nobody will ever turn down free leads. If you can, call them a week later and send them some business. You can also call and ask if they’d like to join you in a networking group or meet sometime to learn more about their business.

3. Think online social networking offline. Talk about a website you use – MySpace, MyLot, Facebook, maybe you like playing Yahoo games or AOL Instant Messenger. While talking about it ask if the person uses it or if they would want to try it out and their id or page link. Alternatively, you could talk about your blog or website and see if they have one, too.

4. Offer information or help. Everyone loves learning new things or meeting someone who can solve their problems. If in conversation they seem interested in a particular project or express a need, tell them you know something they could do but you don’t have it with you. Then ask for a phone number or email address.

5. Give them a choice. You’ll notice in the last tip I said ask for a phone number or email address. Always ask for both, you’ll usually get one or the other and in many cases maybe even both. Make sure you phrase it as an open ended question: “What is your email address or phone number?” Never say “Do you have a phone number?” or “Can I have your phone number?” This will give off the vibe that you expect rejection.

6. Practice the “Yes” Technique. This is a technique used in sales that works in the dating world also. Ask the person a series of questions where their answer is “Yes.” For example, “So you like eating huh?” Yes… “So you would rather eat pancakes over eggs?” Yes… “Do you like eating pancakes with your friends?” Yes… “Would you like to get pancakes with me sometime?” (Hopefully the answer will be yes!)

7. The pancake example reminds of another technique: forgo asking for a number at all. Go straight for the kill…er…we mean date. There’s nothing stopping you from saying, “Hey, do you want some coffee?” or ‘There’s this movie I want to see but none of my friends can see it with me until next week…you want to check it out with me?” Then after the date is set up, ask for the number in case something comes up. Don’t call them until either the day of the date to confirm or until after a day or two after the date.

8. Send them a text message. If you have a cute picture or a funny joke or something like that, offer to send it to them so they can send it to their friends. Then keep texting them like once a week or less until finally they call you or work up enough nerve to call them.

9. Move to another town. If you’re young and single, what’s holding you back from going somewhere completely new filled with strangers? Then you can tell people you meet randomly you are new to the area – where are some places you can hang out at? What can you do? Are they going out with some friends and would they mind if you tagged along to get an idea of what there is to do? Most people will be more than willing to show you around. Just don’t try pretending you’re new to an area if you’ve lived there all your life. You’ll get caught.

10. Give them your number. This has risks. They may lose the piece of paper, they may never call you. But if you give someone your number and say “If you’re ever bored or want someone to hang out with, give me a call.” You have a 50-50 chance on this one, and it’s non-confrontational at all. Who knows? They might even give you their number instead.

If all else fails, or if you think this might be a little too intimidating for you, why not try online dating? That way you can get a phone number before you even see the person face to face. We’ve got a wide selection of free dating services to ones that are free to try on our Online Dating Resources page. Good luck!

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