Social Media & College Soccer Recruiting: 6 Do’s and Don’ts
The growth and proliferation of technology and social media has had a profound effect on the college recruiting process. Most aspiring student-athletes as well as the coaches they are trying to impress have a presence on a multitude of social media platforms including: Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter. Coaches are becoming more social media savvy and, in addition to large numbers of coaches watching and identifying you at Future 500 ID Camps, will probably check your social profiles to gain a better understanding of your character and personality while they are evaluating you. As a result, it is critical that you make sure your social media accounts are appropriate and reflect positively on you! Here are 6 Do’s and Don’ts to help you out during the college recruiting process:
1. Do follow & subscribe
Follow and subscribe to College Programs that you are interested in on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Youtube. Many college programs have a strong presence on social media, so following their pages can be a great way to get to know them better and keep track of how their seasons are going. Use the information that you get from social media to personalize the emails that you send to college coaches. For example, start your email with “Hey Coach K, great win over UNC the other day!” Short, personalized lines like this make your emails stand out by showing a coach that you care about their program.
2. Do post and engage
Don’t let the fact that college coaches may see your profile discourage you from using social media altogether; go ahead and post about the things that you’re interested in or cool experiences that you’ve had. Coaches aren’t expecting you to post pictures of yourself studying for the SAT or being inducted into the National Honor Society. They want to see a picture of the huge fish you caught when fly fishing or that awkward family photo from your fun family vacation. Overall, coaches will hop on social media to get a better idea of who you are as a person and make sure that you’re staying out of trouble.
3. Don’t be offensive or inappropriate
Not only should you never post distasteful or inappropriate pictures of yourself, but you shouldn’t like, comment on, follow, or be tagged in any offensive posts. Hopefully you know what qualifies as inappropriate, but we’ll spell it out for you just in case: don’t associate yourself with anything related to drugs, alcohol, sex, racism, or foul language. College coaches want mature, coachable players on their teams, and it is a big red flag for them when a prospective student-athlete is inappropriate and immature on social media.
4. Don’t be confrontational
Coaches are looking for mature student-athletes that are respectful and coachable. If you have an issue with friend, relative, or classmate, don’t hash it out with them on social media. Talk to them in person and resolve the problem privately. Conflict is often unavoidable with team sports, and coaches want players that can handle tough situations in a healthy, mature way.
5. Don’t be arrogant
There is a difference between promoting yourself and being arrogant. There is nothing wrong with posting a short video of your recent game-winning goal…that’s awesome. But adding a caption like “Had to put the team on my back again” comes across as conceited. College coaches don’t want to deal with wannabe superstars, they want hard working players that put the team above themselves in all circumstances.
6. Do Clean Up Your Accounts
Before you begin engaging with the college recruiting process it is important to backtrack through your various social media accounts to ensure that there is no offensive or inappropriate content. Coaches are unlikely to dive too deeply into your past, but might scroll through content from the last few months. Delete any content you wouldn’t want the coaches to see before you are on their radar.
Social media can be a great tool to help the coach get to know you, and also for showing your legitimate interest in a program. It is important to be conscious of your social media presence while going through the process. Follow the Do’s and Don’ts above to give yourself a great social media presence to complement your other recruiting efforts.