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There are a huge number of recruiting services that screw up the process for themselves all the time.

Many recruiting services focus on how great they are as recruiters and all of the student athletes they help get into college.

In my opinion, that’s a recipe for disaster. When you’re having a discussion about your recruiting service with a parent of a student athlete they only care about one thing: what can you do for them?

In your opening presentation to parents of high school student athletes, recruiting services need to thoroughly explain how your recruiting service works and more importantly, how it can benefit that student athlete.

College recruiters are so focused on the aspect of money that they want to build themselves up believing that parents of student athletes will be impressed with all of the unimpressionable highlights of their recruiting service.

When I was a college recruiter I thought that parents would be impressed with the fact that I played high school basketball, college basketball and professionally overseas. I also thought that because I look like a basketball player that somehow they would quickly open their checkbooks to me. I was totally wrong; they did not care where I went to college or the fact that I looked like a basketball player.

I realized that parents only care about the details of your recruiting service, basically the nuts and bolts of the inner workings of how your recruiting service is going to get their son or daughter in college and why they should pay your fee.

Being a college recruiter has nothing to do with the kind of car you drive or the kind of notebook computer or tablet PC you have. Parents are not impressed with gadgets and technology. Even though you need these things to do your job as a recruiter, parents do not care about that.

Did you know there are thousands of recruiting services all across the country and most of them struggle mightily with getting new business?

A huge number of these recruiting services may only manage to get 10 to 20 new sales per year. That’s a horrible number of sales for any business especially a recruiting service.

I would assume that part of the problem recruiting services have with parents is not being able to accurately deliver a presentation that focuses on the student athlete and not the recruiting service.

It’s important to understand the psychology of parents. Many of them have no clue what a recruiting service is and exactly how a recruiting service works.

For those college recruiting services out there, if you cannot put your ego to the side about your accomplishments as a college recruiter and focus on the people in front of you, you probably have no chance at all of getting the sale.

Recruiting services can change if you are open to change

Here are some strategies that all college recruiters can use to consistently gain the attention of parents:

1. Explain thoroughly how your recruiting service is going to help get their son or daughter into college. You may want to talk about the various methods you are going to use to get their son’s or daughter’s name into the hands of as many college programs as possible.

2. Explain greatly how your follow-up process will be with college coaches. Keep in mind that parents do not understand the inner workings of the recruiting process and your job as a college recruiter is to explain to them in basic English so they can understand your strategy for following-up with college coaches.

3. Parents do not like to be left in the dark after paying your fee. Explain to them your strategy on how you’re going to follow-up with the parents and stay in contact with them by giving them updates. Also ask for new information they may have on their son or daughter. By letting the parents know you’re going to be in constant communication with them, it eases their fears that their money is not being wasted.

Recruiting services can use tools to keep parents informed

Sending a regular old e-mail to parents of student athletes is okay but why not do it better?

Keep in mind, your college recruiting service wants more business. The thing that I know is if you do a spectacular job with the parents you currently work with, they will tell every parent they know how great your service is. This will lead to referral business which is easier to close that sale, because those parents will have heard all of the great things you have done for the other parents.

Various tools you can use to get your message across to parents more professionally:

I like to use this free audio software called Audacity. With Audacity, you can create an audio recording, turn it into an mp-3, and then you can turn that into a clickable link. This is powerful because you can record a brief message to parents of student athletes so parents can listen to it over and over again.

They can listen to the message on their computer, cell phone, and at work. In this time-consuming and extremely busy world, parents do not have a whole lot of time to read long e-mail messages from you.

The power of an audio message is incredible because there could be information that parents did not hear or understand when they spoke to you face to face.

I always believe that parents only hear half of what you say anyway, the problem is that you don’t know which half of your presentation was heard.

Providing audio can help guide parents in making buying decisions about your recruiting service.

Recruiting services should have a newsletter

Information is what parents of high school student athletes want to read about.

The parents of student athletes and student athletes themselves are constantly searching for valuable information and resources about the recruiting process, but as a recruiting service you’re not giving them that information and that’s a big mistake!

I started a newsletter four years ago and it’s a great way to share information to my readers directly.

I use Aweber to deliver e-mails to my readers. Recruiting services should build an e-mail list of parents and student athletes because some of those parents could turn into potential customers.

Aweber is not free: for the first 30 days it costs one dollar after that it’s $19.00 per month for the first 500 e-mail addresses.

If you were giving a speech in front of 500 people that would be a very large crowd, wouldn’t you agree?

The power of e-mail is great and all those parents and student athletes would be hearing your message about recruiting.

Final thoughts

To ease parents’ fears about the college recruiting process, recruiting services should spend more time focusing on the parent’s and student athlete’s needs and not how great you are.

Parents will be very short in asking you about your experience with the number of student athletes you helped get into college.

They want to see your reaction to any questions they ask about you, but in reality they do not care.

The bottom line when dealing with parents, and it will always be this way, is what you can do for them.


Audacity: you can create audio recordings that can be shared with parents of student athletes.

 Aweber is a tool I use to send e-mails to a large number of readers. Every college recruiting service should have a system in place where they are delivering information.

Resource links

1. RecruitLook

2. Vantage Athletes

3. Krossover

4. TeamSnap


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