by Ingrid Rockovich, College Coach Marketing Manager
A few weeks ago, this article surfaced showing a recruiting letter from 1919 – it was drafted on a typewriter and then customized by hand, mailed to Dr. Harrison aka “Chicken” by Coach Bible.
Coach Bible talked about updates to the program, support of alumni, and also one very powerful sentence about how Texas A&M really needed Dr. Harrison to report in September. Coach Bible was able to really put it all out there via typewriter. But we sure have come a long way from those days, haven’t we?
In the last ten years, the college recruiting game has developed tremendously, bringing many new opportunities and challenges to having athletes commit to play at the college level. Between finding prospects at an earlier age, learning new rules and regulations each season, and the emergence of social media, there are now so many ways coaches can communicate with a recruit. How are they supposed to keep it all straight?
In turn, technology has really stepped up in order to help coaches keep pace. There are multiple systems that track athletes through the recruiting process, others that help monitor social media and those that help identify athletes and their skill levels. But how are coaches currently using technology to communicate with recruits and create the emotional connection like Coach Bible did back in 1919?
In the world of Facebook and Twitter, it is one thing to create initial interest and spark a conversation with a prospect that would help fill a roster. But it is another thing to get that conversation go deeper and help build a connection. One way to do this is through finding out more information about what a particular recruit is looking for out of a college experience and what kind of person they are now.
If you can find out their personal goals, what size college they’re looking for, or if they want an urban or rural environment and you match that with what kind of athlete they are, it will only help identify those that are the right fit for your program. This information can then be used to build up a solid level of trust with the prospect. By using technology, this search and discovery process becomes easy and won’t cost you or your staff valuable time in the fast-paced recruiting process.
Tools like NCSA’s Coach Recruit Match System enable college coaches to easily locate recruits with the right preferences and skill sets and allow them to find better matches for their programs. Coaches can identify athletes by their preferences and then use that information to forge deeper connections. This online tool provides the real details about recruits and NCSA has verified all information up-front. It is this invaluable information that can help coaches create conversations that are authentic to that student and their family. By creating this type of personalized and genuine recruiting experience for a prospect and their family, coaches are ensuring that the right recruits are making it to their school and helping grow the success of their program.
For the record, the 1919 Texas A&M football team went undefeated and is famous for not allowing any of its opponents to score. What are you currently doing with your recruits to start building your next championship season?