Updated: Jul 20, 2020
I personally hate the little red dots that appear in the corner of each app. I basically do whatever I need to do to get rid of them. I don't know how some can have a number like "1,499" above their email app, that would drive me insane. Actually, when I came back to ACU as the head coach I had the same email address. I had a years worth of emails that I went through, filed away, watched film and responded to if needed; all so I wouldn't have that ridiculously large "unread"number at the top of my inbox. Text messages are a whole other issue.
I don't always respond to texts right away. Sometimes it's something that I need to think about, or in the instance I get a text at 9:30pm, it can usually wait until the morning. But I am definitely the "left on read" guy. I want to know what's going on and if it's important enough for me to respond to right that moment. The only problem with that is I can easily get 20-25 texts from different people in the morning (usually college coaches) and that means that the text I got the night before is now down on text-feed too far to remember to respond.
I was asked this week "Why doesn't a college coach respond to my texts right away?" and I think they don't always respond really quickly because things get knocked down their feed so far so fast, it just takes them some time to go back through all of their texts. Coaches don't always respond to texts because you can't file them, or really sort them...we get 100+ texts a day from over 50 people, so a text at 8am can get pushed down pretty far if we don't respond right away...which we always don't. Email is a little bit different and it's certainly my preferred way to message people because I can sort and organize them the way I want!
Texting is a really easy way to get in touch with coaches. Since June 15th, it's probably the main way most athletes try and communicate with college coaches. But as some athletes will find out, they can get lost in the shuffle fairly easily. It doesn't lower the level of interest the coach has in the athlete, it is usually just the total volume that of communication that coaches have to deal with on a regular basis. Things get missed sometimes.
You definitely want to try and figure out the best way to communicate with different coaches because each one is going to handle it all a little different. You might have some coaches that are great at texting and others that are better at responding to emails. Make sure you are reaching out in a couple of different ways to try and figure this part out early on in the communication process. I spend about an hour a day texting and get somewhere between 200 and 400 text-notifications (not text messages) according to my screen Time history. With email thought I can spend 2-3 hours a day just typing and responding to emails. Sometimes that is a better way to get a hold of me. Most days a phone call is the easiest way to get a hold of me!
My suggestion with texting coaches would be to stay consistent in reaching out and give them a reason to respond. Ask them a specific question they can answer or give them a timeframe for a phone call. Texting almost never shows your personality, so do what you can to add something to the basic question of "How's it going?" and if you don't get a response you can always email them something quick or just give them a call. I don't always encourage cold calling coaches, but you might be catching them at the right time! Especially right now with everything going on, coaches are going to appreciate you reaching out to them and trying to stay in touch. Until we get into the fall season and playing again, coaches have a lot on their minds.
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