by Dan Christensen, Tudor Collegiate Strategies
Talking about cost with your recruits can be awkward. Because of that most coaches struggle to do it well.
But, if you want your prospect to commit to you someday, this conversation needs to happen eventually. I would recommend having it as soon as possible.
If you talk about finances sooner, it will reduce the amount of prospects you lose in the end due to cost. This is because you will be able to eliminate a lot of recruits earlier in the process that were never going to be able to afford your cost of attendance.
So, in order to have better conversations around the financial piece of going to your college, use these two strategies:
1) Acknowledge the stress and confusion around paying for college
Not being able to afford the college they want to attend is one of the biggest fears your recruits have. If we start by giving them a bunch of information and throwing numbers around, that is likely to just make them more stressed out and confused.
If you start by acknowledging how stressful this part of their college search can be, you might be able to build some trust. If they feel you are someone that understands them and can truly help them, it will make the rest of the financial conversation go much smoother.
2) Involve the parents in these conversations
In most cases the parents will be heavily involved in paying for their child’s college experience. Yet, many coaches don’t talk to them at all.
If you want to get your recruit to commit to paying a potentially large amount of money to compete for your team and get a degree from your school, the parents need to feel good about signing that check.
Just as your recruit is stressed out and confused about paying for college, the parents are often unsure as well. If you can clarify how things work at your school and what the financial picture looks like, they’ll be more likely to commit to sending their kid to you.
The parents of your recruit also have a better idea of what they can actually afford and if we want to ensure we eliminate those that could never afford our college early on, making mom and dad part of the conversation is critical.
Want help doing a better job talking about money with your recruits? Dan Christensen is part of the team at Tudor Collegiate Strategies helping college coaches more effectively have these conversations. Email him to set up a strategy call at firstname.lastname@example.org.