by Dan Christensen, Tudor Collegiate Strategies
As people, we make assumptions all the time. They can often get us in trouble.
But, in recruiting there are times when it is helpful to assume something about your recruit. If you do, it will put you in the right focus to better your chances of getting a commitment from that prospect.
Here are two assumptions I want you to make sure that you have with each of your prospects:
1) They aren’t interested right away
The reality is most of your recruits will not be interested in you right away.
Why should they be? They probably don’t know much about you, your school, or your program in the beginning of the process.
A lot of coaches unfortunately make the incorrect assumption that if a recruit doesn’t respond right away or show a ton of interest right away, then they probably aren’t coming.
That might be the case for some. But, there are a lot of recruits that might actually be super interested in you, if you actually tell them your story.
What story is that? The story that consistently explains to your recruits exactly why they should choose you and how you are better than their other options.
If you’re not already telling that story, it is probably safe to keep your assumption that their lack of interest won’t change.
But, if you embrace the idea of being very intentional and strategic with your messaging, you can absolutely turn some of those prospects around that don’t show initial interest.
2) They don’t know what to do next
So often, recruits seem to get stuck.
Stuck being able to commit to a campus visit. Stuck not knowing what kinds of questions to ask. Stuck on getting their application in. Or stuck making their final decision.
And when recruits get stuck, coaches often get frustrated.
“Why can’t they just ____!”
What coaches fail to recognize is that recruits need guidance. Desperately.
Guidance includes explaining the steps. Fill out the questionnaire, then the application, then the FAFSA, then visit campus, and finally make a decision.
While that is helpful, guidance goes beyond that. It includes asking questions that help the recruit move forward.
“Johnny, one of the things our athletes love about going to school here is that we are a quick 15-minute drive from the city where there are all kinds of places to eat and fun events to go to. Is that kind of opportunity to be near the city something that you’re considering? Is that important to you? If you visited campus here, our players would love to show you some of their go-to activities in the city when they aren’t studying or practicing.”
If Johnny was stuck on figuring out which schools to visit, the coach in this scenario may have just enticed him to see what that location is like by visiting campus.
Johnny may not have known that visiting was the next step in the process. But, even if he did, he may not have known why it would have been important to visit that particular school. Asking the right questions helped guide him through to that step.
If you make the assumptions that your prospects are not interested right away and that they don’t know what they should do next, it will better establish your focus to be an exceptional recruiter.
Want more insights into how you can better recruit this generation of athlete? You can email Dan Christensen at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a strategy call.