In a world where texting is so accessible and comfortable for your recruits, are phone calls even important still?
A really good first phone call can help set a good tone for the recruiting relationship. Additional calls throughout the process can also have a lot of value. If they are done well!
This is where a disconnect occurs. The way a coach typically sees a good phone call going is not the same way recruits typically define a good phone call.
As much as a phone call can set a good tone for the recruiting relationship, it can also kill the relationship if mistakes are made. Here are two common mistakes you need to avoid in order to have a good phone call:
1) Forcing a long phone call
If your call has been going on for more than five or ten minutes and you are dominating the conversation, wrap it up! The longer you extend the call, the further you decrease the likelihood that recruit will want to get on the phone again down the road.
There is certainly an exception. If the recruit is engaging, asking a lot of questions, and doing most of the talking, sure have a 30 to 60 minute call! But how often do you come across those recruits, Coach? Rarely.
Have a plan for a few things to talk about. Come up with a few good questions to ask. Lay out what happens next. End the call.
This will accomplish the purpose of the call which is to give that recruit proof you are interested. They get to hear your passion and personality through your voice. And they will get an idea of what to expect next in the process. Hopefully, you get to know them a little better too through how they answer your questions.
This can all happen in five to ten minutes!
2) Sell your program
Recruits don’t get on the phone hoping a coach is going to give them a sales pitch. They get on the phone to see if the coach is really interested in them. Or later in the process, to see if the coach is still interested!
Sure, the recruit is probably intrigued by something about the coach, the program, or the school. And so, they want to know a little more. But what coaches often do is give the recruit a lot more than they were hoping for. And not in a good way!
If the coach tells the recruit about every awesome thing about the school in that first call, then what else is there to know? How is the recruit going to be curious and want to learn more if they think the coach told them everything they need to know on the first call?
Instead, use the first call to set up the relationship. Tell the recruit what you like about them, get some necessary info, and lay out the next step in the process.
Then use each follow up call to build the relationship and continue to express your interest. If they ask you a question, that is your chance to sell. Otherwise, make sure each phone call is brief and moves the process along!
Dan Christensen is part of Tudor Collegiate Strategies’ team of regional recruiting advisors who work with Dan Tudor and the TCS team to bring increased response rates and engagement from prospects for the clients we work work with. To find out how your program can use these proprietary tools that have been helping coaches win recruiting battles since 2005, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.