In the recruiting process, the best way to initiate contact with a college coach and get on his or her recruiting radar is through an introductory email. The problem with that, however, is that coaches will receive hundreds of introductory emails just like yours. So how do you make yours stand out and get a reply? Following these three steps can help.

1. Get To The Point

As noted above, college coaches get plenty of emails, so it’s important to make yours stand out and make sure it gets read. To do that, avoid epically long emails that encompass your entire career and instead, simply get to the point. Provide a brief overview of what you have to offer that program and explain why you’re interested in that school and that program. Ask a coach about how you can improve and ask thoughtful questions about their program (whose answers can’t be found through simple research on your end). Doing that will allow a coach to make a quick assessment of you and, if you pique their interest, will also spur a coach to reply to start developing a relationship.

2. Hit The Highs In Your Highlight Video

Much like your introductory email, your highlight video doesn’t have to be a career-spanning epic. In addition, remember that, if you’re writing an introductory email to a coach, that video may be their first impression of your skills. And, since a coach receives plenty of highlight videos every day, it’s important that yours stands out.

If you want your highlight video to catch a coach’s interest, think about the skills you have that a coach is looking for. Then, ensure that’s what makes up the first minute of your highlight reel. It may be game highlights or skills-oriented workout video, but the key is to include the video that will spotlight your athleticism and show a coach you’ve got what they’re looking for. Finally, remember that a coach likely won’t watch the entire video, so put your best clips at the beginning and don’t worry about a big finish. If your highlight video has what a coach is looking for, when he or she presses “PLAY,” hopefully they’ll then press “REPLY.”

3. Show Your Initiative

If you haven’t noticed already, college coaches get tons of emails from recruits just like you. If you want your email to get a reply, it needs to stand out. That doesn’t mean including an animated GIF or a whole bunch of fancy adornments. Instead, compose an original, thoughtful email that expresses why you want to attend that school, why you think you’d be a good fit with that program, and what you want to accomplish while you’re there.

A college coach’s time is valuable. An impersonal, form email will tell a coach you don’t care enough to make an extra effort to earn their time, and they will quickly hit “Delete.” On the other hand, thinking about your desires and taking the initiative to honestly express why you want to be part of that coach’s program is what will get you a reply.

Now, even if you utilize all of the steps above, your email to a coach may not generate an immediate reply. That’s because it may take several introductory emails to make an impression on a coach. Don’t get discouraged, instead, be persistent, persuasive, and passionate. Make your point, assemble a hit highlight video, and make an effort in your introductory email so that you get more replies.

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