One of the best ways to grab the attention of a college coach is by sending them an introductory email. Your child can send an email to any coach your child could reasonably hope to play for. Don’t wait for coaches to contact you. Have your child reach out first, and begin with an email. Here’s what you and your child need to know about sending out that first email.
Why the first email matters so much
The email is a critical piece of marketing an athlete to college coaches. Everything that follows hinges on the first email. Each coach should receive a personal email. The email should address the coach by name and include a couple of specific details about the program.
You would be surprised how many prospective college athletes are sending mass emails to coaches or are having a recruiting service send out mass emails for them.
If the email isn’t personal, don’t expect the coach to recruit your child. That’s why this email matters so much; a roster spot is riding on it.
This is why coaches delete your email
Let me be honest, coaches immediately delete any mass email they receive from you or your recruiting service. Coaches receive hundreds of emails. They do not have the time or desire to deal with an email from an athlete that was sent to a hundred other coaches as well. Instead, college coaches focus their time on athletes who they believe are interested in their school and program.
For example, at my last college position, we had a few pretty rough seasons where we only won a couple of games. I received many emails in which potential recruits would say they wanted to be part of our “Amazing” or “Successful” program. I deleted those emails straight away. However, the ones I kept said, “I saw you only won 3 games last year. I want to come in and help you turn that around.”
A few quick tips
- Use full sentences and punctuation.
- The email should be short. Not a life history.
- Keep it formal. Your child doesn’t know this coach.
- Your child needs to write as if addressing an adult. Not a friend.
- Your child should write the email. Not you.
- You, the parent, should proof-read it before it’s sent.
What to include in the email
Now, let’s talk about what to include in this email. An introductory email only needs three basic paragraphs:
Begin the email by addressing the coach by name. (I know I already said this, but it’s so important!)
The first paragraph should introduce the athlete, where they are from, academic GPA, test scores, club, and high school team. Keep it brief.
Next, add one sentence in between the first and second paragraphs. It should reference that you have filled out the questionnaire on the website and have tried to call them (include the date). And it goes without saying if your child hasn’t done those things yet – stop. Have your child fill out online questionnaires and summon up the courage for a quick phone call. You can read more about how to make that first call over here. Now, get back to the first email, and your child can honestly write this sentence.
The second paragraph is very important. It should include information that makes it very clear to the coach this was not a spam email (one to every coach in the country). You would not believe how many emails coaches receive from players that are more like spam than one written by an interested athlete. Make a comment about the school or program that is very specific (call the school by name). Also, your child could include one good reason they want to compete for that program.
Finally, the third paragraph should detail what events your child will be at and where to find a video (the link), if you have one, on YouTube.
Here’s what coaches say
I’ve done over one hundred interviews with college coaches asking them about the recruiting process. For instance, what they like to see in a recruit. Or, what works or what pitfalls to avoid. Above all else, those interviews make The Recruiting Code unique.
So, here’s what coaches have to say about this first email:
“For the first contact, I recommend sending an email directly to the coach and doing some research before so you can mention specific things you like about the school. Then I know that this player truly has some interest and it’s worth my time to find out more about her.” NCAA Division 2 Women’s Soccer Coach of the University of Wisconsin Parkside, Brittany Nikolic.
“Personal emails with a video link are the best. An email that starts ‘Dear Coach’ and then proceeds gets thrown out pretty quick. Start an email ‘Dear Coach Babinski’ and then in the 1st paragraph make it personal and comment on our season or most recent wins. Then…you can copy and paste. It’s a little trick that will show coaches that you took an extra few minutes to connect in a personal way. It will set you apart and make the coach want to read the rest of the email. Email the coach. Tell the coach why you fit our university. Send your resume with academic and athletic accomplishments. Send a highlight video or game film that is well marked so we can identify you.” NAIA Softball Coach of Indiana Wesleyan University, Steve Babinski.
“The best way to get our attention is to either email or send a short note of interest. They can always fill in a questionnaire on our track page. We normally look for essential information like events, results (not places), grades and area of interest to major in college.” NCAA Division 1 Track and Field Coach of Manhattan College, Dan Mecca.
The How to Get Recruited guide
This post is an excerpt from the How to Get Recruited guide.
If you need help knowing what your child should do to be recruited, I recommend getting How to Get Recruited today. I created it for families just like yours. The guide walks you through the whole process, step-by-step, to create opportunities for roster spots and scholarships.
The recruiting process shouldn’t involve guesswork. Instead, approach the challenge with the confidence that you’re doing it right. You can use the steps to create “arbitrary” deadlines that will help your athlete achieve their goals. In addition, I lay out all the steps so your kids can call and email coaches with confidence. You want to give your kids every opportunity for success. I can’t motivate them for you, but How to Get Recruited can help make the process clear.
Most importantly, whether you need How to Get Recruited or not, sit down and talk with your child today and help them begin moving forward.
Do you want to face the recruiting process with confidence? You can with…
How to Get Recruited: Got Talent. Get a Plan. Get Recruited.
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