Scout Session #2: Communication

In my last email I discussed how to be seen by the colleges you are interested in possibly attending.  This week, I want to focus on what good communication with college coaches may look like.

Effective communication is vital in the recruiting process.  As the Director of Recruiting for Franklin & Marshall Men’s Soccer, I receive a large amount of emails from prospective players on a weekly basis. Some of these emails serve as introductions, as players are introducing themselves to the coaching staffs.  Other emails serve as follow-ups, building on previous email conversations.  Whatever the purpose of the email, there are details you should always consider before hitting SEND.

  1. Proofread, Proofread, Proofread!  One of the first things college coaches notice is mistakes in emails.  Of course you were taught at a young age to check for misspellings and grammatical mistakes, but there are bigger mistakes that spell check won’t catch.  If you are using a template to send to multiple college programs, make sure you are using the correct college and coach’s name in the email.  Sending an email intended for a different college program is a red flag for college coaches.
  2. Short and Precise:  The best emails are short and to the point, while also including all necessary information.  Due to the immense amount of emails that coaches receive, longer emails sometimes can feel drawn out.  Necessary information would include your high school, your club team, your position, your graduating year, your soccer accolades, and your academic information.
  3. Video is Great:  One of the greatest tools for me as a director of recruiting is the use of small video clips attached to emails.  Not only do they serve as evidence of your play, but they also are a great way to cement yourself into the coach’s memory.  I often times refer back to these clips to remind myself of the type of player with whom I am communicating.  If you are sending video of entire games, be sure to give certain “time frames” you would like the coach to watch so they aren’t spending hours trying to find the clips themselves.
  4. Do Your Research:  Don’t be too elaborate, but show that you know something about the college to whom you are writing.  Examples would include mentioning an academic program of interest which that college offers and mentioning details about the soccer program that you have noticed.  Program statistics are readily available at each college’s website.  This shows the coaches that you are following them and have a serious interest in possibly attending.

Finally, be sure to follow-up your emails with more communication.  That may mean sending email updates on tournaments you are attending, or successes you just experienced on the pitch.  From my own personal experience, I can tell which players are very interested in F&M by the amount of regular contact and updates I receive.  As the recruiting process progresses, that may also include phone conversations as you get to know the coaching staff and program in more depth.

I hope you found this helpful.  I’ll be emailing in two weeks on the importance of “Getting To Campus”.  We also have an upcoming clinic on February 26th as well as our 3-day residential camp June 30 – July 2 .   Feel free to find out more by clicking here, and we can talk more about these recruiting tips in person.  Good luck on the pitch!

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