Spongecoach is an industry leader when it comes to providing effective advice for coaches, students, and parents of elite athletes. When it comes to the college recruiting process, there are many aspiring student-athletes that make unnecessary mistakes when sending an introduction email to coaches. This article aims to help you send an effective introduction email that will actually be opened by coaches and increase your odds of being recruited.
What exactly is the “college recruiting process”?
Well, depending on who you ask about the lengthy college recruiting process, you’re going to get a variety of answers. But, you can’t get the entire process started unless you do one simple thing: Introduce yourself.
Regardless of how a player finds their way to suiting up for a college or university, there’s one common thing that starts the entire college recruiting process, and that’s an introduction. Once you have introduced yourself as a prospect to college coaches, you have taken the first step in a multi-step process to potentially play for them down to road. It may come to fruition, it may not. However, you won’t know unless you start the process by sending an introduction email, letter, or phone call to build that relationship.
And, just so you know, it takes A LOT of time to build that relationship.
Just like any high quality relationship that you have built throughout your life, it takes time and trust for you and prospective college coaches to get to know each other. After you spend that time getting to know them, and vice versa, there comes a point where you’re looking to take the next step in your relationship by committing to each other.
Sounds a lot like dating, right?
Well, it can be. It’s a long process to make a serious commitment to play for a coach because when you’re making that decision, you’re committing the next four years of your life to that coach and their program. So, as you can imagine, when you commit to play for a school, its a big commitment from both sides to honor.
And like we said before, that first step is making your initial introduction.
In order to make that initial introduction so that you can build your relationship, unknown recruits that are flying under the radar need to understand the power of two things: Email and video. However, it takes much more than just sending an introduction email to get a reply, especially when it comes to coaches of big time programs.
So, below is a list of three important things that you have to do when sending an introduction email to college coaches that will increase your chances of getting a response.
1. It’s an Introduction Email – Keep It Short and Be Specific
Time is money. Keep that in mind when you’re sending an introduction email, especially to a college coach. College coaches have 32 hours of work in a 24 hour day, and they need to find a way to squeeze 6 hours of sleep in there as well.
Get the point?
It’s important to understand that the college recruiting world is uber competitive. You need to get in the mindset that there are hundreds of players sending an introduction email, just like you, to coaches every day. Coaches don’t have the time to read a 30 page document on why you want to attend their school or why you’re “the next (insert famous player’s name here)”. So, your primary goal needs to be having your video seen – And, if you want to get a coach to check out your video, you need to get to the chase.
What makes you stand out?
Send them a brief summary of why you want to be considered for their program and ask for their feedback on what they think about you. Your entire introduction email should not be longer than two paragraphs and should communicate clearly all of the basics that college coaches need to know. Give the coach the opportunity to make an early assessment through their reply so that you can start the conversation.
What won’t make you stand out is a spammy introduction email where you enter the coach’s and school’s name. You need to be specific about what you like about that coach, their program, and the school when you reach out to them via email. If you don’t, then you can expect your email to end up deleted from their Inbox.
Remember, all you’re trying to do is start the conversation. You’re not going to earn a scholarship off of a blind recruiting introduction email – It’s a process.
2. Include a Highlight Video
Although you may think that this is obvious, there are so many aspiring college recruits out there today that are failing to communicate their skills when it comes to their highlight video. In order to make a highlight video that will get a coach’s attention, you need to prepare by following our steps in making an effective recruiting video. Don’t forget to follow the golden rule of cutting clips that coaches would want to see. They only have a limited amount of time to watch your video, so don’t cloud it with trick shots or useless information.
The reason why your video needs to be compelling is because you need to grab that coach’s attention in the first 30 seconds. You have to assume that the coach is not going to watch the entire video, so you have to show them whether you can play the game or not in the first minute with some clips that catch their attention. Stick to game clips and maybe a workout clip or two to showcase your strength and work ethic in the weight room. Just keep it simple, show them what they would want to see, and please… stay away from the cheesy music.
3. Thank Them For Their Time
At the end of your introduction email, you need to do two things: thank them for taking the time to assess your talent level and express how you look forward to hearing back from them.
Why is this important?
Well, to put it plain simple: Kids are cocky nowadays. They don’t know how to write a professional, humble introduction email and the majority of them come off as they’re doing a favor for the coaches their contacting by sending them their clips. If you want to stand out, especially in today’s world, you have to be humble and thankful.
Don’t put that you’re the “next Christian McCaffrey” in the subject title either. Coaches will laugh at it and send it directly to their Inbox, especially when you insult a player that played for them. You have no idea what that player gave to their program and you may hit a nerve with a coach when you dub yourself as the next great hope. Be humble, be professional, be courteous, and most of all – thank them for their consideration.
Follow these steps and keep these three things in mind when emailing coaches that you want to play for. And remember, the goal is to MAKE AN INTRODUCTION. You’re not going to be earning a full-ride athletic scholarship from a blind introduction email. The recruiting process is a long, tedious journey that only rewards the patient. Be brief, highlight your skills in an effective recruiting video, and thank them for their time in a humble manner.
Follow these tips and you will start to hear responses from coaches whom you send an introduction email.