Voicemail is a way of life for college coaches on the recruiting trail. You leave a bunch of voicemails, and a lot of people leave a bunch of voicemails for you.
But are you making the most of this new 21st century communication mainstay?
Think about it: What are you really saying when you leave a prospect a voicemail? Anything worthwhile? Informative? Interesting? Or, is it the same old, "hey, sorry I missed you, give me a call…"
And what about when they call you? What are they hearing in your message? Anything worthwhile? Informative? Interesting? Or is the same old, "This is Coach So-and-so, and you’ve reached my voicemail…" Wow, that’s original.
It’s time to spice up your voicemail messages, and make them an effective part of your recruiting strategy. You can do it, coach. Here’s how:
- Ask a question, promise the answer later. Make it a question that would mean something to a recruit. Make it compelling, and make it interesting. There are lots of interesting facts and things that would probably be of interest to a recruit. The key here is to ask an interesting question, and then promise the answer when you get the chance to talk later. You want to leave them thinking about the answer to the question you just posed, giving them another thing to talk to you about. Keeping you on their mind after they hang up the phone is the goal here, and the great thing about this strategy is that it works when you’re leaving a message OR when people listen to your voicemail message when they call you.
- Make your message short and sweet. Long, drawn-out voicemail messages cause the listener’s mind to wander. You should keep your incoming and outgoing voicemail messages short – 35 words or less, if possible. To make sure you stay within that guideline, its not a bad idea to write-out your message the same way you would write out notes for a speech. When you do that, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how interesting and creative your voicemail messages can become. Plus, keeping your message short and sweet will ensure that your message is received loud and clear by your prospect and their family (and everyone else that listens to your message).
- Never leave a message on a Monday or a Friday. Messages left on a Friday afternoon are the least likely to be returned. Monday’s are most people’s busiest day, so only high priority calls are going to get returned (maybe you’re high priority, maybe you’re not). The ideal times to call your prospects are Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Weekends are fine if you’re established in your relationship with your prospect. Just remember that when you call your prospect will determine how likely it is you will get your prospect live on the phone, as well as the liklihood that you’ll get a returned call in the event you end up leaving your creative voicemail.
Is there more to master when it comes to the art of leaving great voicemail messages? Yes. These three strategies are a good start, but there’s more – much more – that you can do to become better when it comes to leaving great voicemail messages.
If you’re looking for more tips and strategies, join us this Thursday for a special expanded training webinar, "Creative Voicemail Strategies for College Coaches". It’s one in an ongoing series of free training webinars that we offer to coaches and athletic directors, and this one should be a fun one (not that the other one’s weren’t, its just that this is a really fun topic to talk about!). Click here for your free registration.
Join us this Thursday, and if you’re an SFC Premium Member look for a complete eBook on "Creative Voicemail Strategies" coming to you via e-mail next week. If you’re not a Premium Member yet, but want the free eBook, click here and try a Premium Membership for free.