Did you know that the average office worker sends out 121 emails per day?
How many emails do you think you send out each week?
If you’re a blogger, business owner, or telecommuter, chances are you’re probably sending out hundreds of emails every week. I know I send out a ton. In any given workweek, I might send out 500 – 1,000 emails each week!
That’s a lot of potential blog readers, contacts, and connections to build on.
Not everyone will follow you or click the link of course, but with the right email signature, you can use every single email as an opportunity to market your business, expand your network, and increase your sales. It’s basically free advertising and another way to get your name, your brand, and your business out there.
The key is to carefully craft an email signature that does the work for you. That little spot at the end of every email is valuable real estate. It’s important that it’s visually appealing, packs in a lot of information (like a call to action, your latest and greatest endeavor, and social media/contact details), and takes up very little space.
This might sound like a tall order, but by using the following smart email signature strategies, you can create a simple email signature that works very hard to further your brand.
Guidelines for Your Email Signature
We’ve all searched for someone’s contact information (whether a website or phone number) by pouring through their emails, only to realize they haven’t included the pertinent information in their email signature. Or worse, they don’t even have an email signature at all. It can be really frustrating and that contact might even lose your business.
Be sure your customers can find you and get the information they need. Think carefully about the ways your customers find and contact you, and include that information right in your signature. You may also want to personalize it and add some flair, like eye-catching branding.
You can include all kinds of things in your email signature, from your contact information to your zodiac sign (not necessarily recommended, unless you’re an astrologer).
Here are a few important email signature guidelines:
1. Keep it to five lines or less.
2. Add hyperlinks to both minimize space and simplify.
3. Include your name and relevant contact information.
4. Skip street addresses and irrelevant electronic information.
5. Email addresses are optional. Some people like to add them, but they can appear redundant and aren’t necessary.
6. Use it to market products or include a CTA
What to Include in a Great Email Signature
Name & Title: Include your full name and your title.
Business Name/Logo: Add your business name and/or a horizontally-oriented logo, as well as a hyperlink to your website (which will also appear when they hover over your logo). You can also include a tagline, but keep it to one line or a few words.
Business Phone Number & Cell: Add only if you hope and expect customers and readers to access you via phone. If you don’t want your personal number going out to everyone you email, it’s okay to leave this off. But if you need prospective clients and customers to reach you via phone, then definitely include it.
Social Networking Accounts: Add your social network accounts to really boost your followers on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Instagram. Rather than writing out the entire URL, you can simply create graphics and add hyperlinks. Not only does this look professional, but it will also save on space. For a step-by-step tutorial, visit Love the Here and Now.
Photo: Customers and clients are drawn to real, live photos of actual people. Not only will a small headshot make people feel more connected to you, but it will ensure your email signature stands out, breaks up the text, and draws the reader’s eye down to your signature line. This is why “profile pictures” work on social media. People like to know whom they are talking to.
Promotion/CTA: If you’re offering an eBook or a sale, or if you have a class coming up, include a call-to-action (CTA) it in your email signature! Add a link to your product or call-to-action encouraging customers and clients to donate, sign up, read, explore, purchase, or visit. Make your CTA visually appealing—a banner or a photo that links to the sign-up, download, or product you’re discussing.
A Few Examples of Super Signatures
Marketing company HubSpot provides several examples of great email marketing signatures that can be seen here.
As you can see, simplicity is important, especially for those reading from their smartphones who don’t want to scroll through layers of text. Each includes a call to action, eye-catching visuals, and contact information.
Your email signature should be clear, easy to read, and professional-looking. Several different fonts, all text, or too much information can actually make the reader look away. If you want to include a motto, a positive thought, or a quote, make it short, simple, and visually appealing. Also, be sure it matches your brand and message.
Resources and Help
Adding a basic email signature shouldn’t be too challenging, but if you run into a problem or if you’re still looking for help creating an email signature that’s professional and eye-catching, there are several resources out there to help you make your signature great and take it to the next level.
Be aware that many of the free services listed might also include ads within your emails, so be sure that’s something that aligns with your business before you begin.
Offers free (with built-in ads) and pro levels for email signature customization. You simply plug in your relevant contact information and logo, and a signature is generated that can be copied and pasted into your email client. companySIG works with a variety of email clients including Gmail, Outlook, and Yahoo. Plus, you can even include some fun features like a map to your business (great for brick-and-mortar operations) and downloadable v-card information to export your contact information right into your client’s contacts.
Email Signature Rescue
Has plans starting at $4/month (paid annually). They offer a huge spectrum of email clients they work with from Gmail and Apple to Outlook and Webmail, and they offer professional-level signature design. They’re used by Century 21, Remax, GE, and many other professional clients and across a wide variety of platforms. They also offer a money-back satisfaction guarantee on their services.
Offers a single line of HTML code to be inserted in any email client. htmlsig helps you craft an email signature that’s customized and professional. You can try them for free for 30 days and then upgrade to a $5.99/month plan or a $35/month professional-level plan. You also have access to signature stats in your dashboard, telling you if your email signature is really generating the clicks and connections you’re looking for.
WiseStamp is a highly visually appealing signature service and it’s very user-friendly. They encourage users to include a headshot or profile picture in their signature. WiseStamp works well with social media platforms and across the bar on various email clients and browsers (including Outlook, Gmail, and Apple). WiseStamp signatures include a line of text about their business if you opt for the free service. But for $6 a month, you can upgrade to the pro plan which offers more customization and no advertising. This is the service that I’m personally using and I love it! I actually scored a lifetime membership deal through AppSumo for just $25.
Think of your email signature as one piece of advertising you can use to touch every person you email. You can pack a lot of information in your email signature and still make it very easy for people to find you, contact you, and keep coming back to your business over and over. Including an email signature ensures you stay visible to your audience.
Need help managing email overload? This post will guide you to greater email productivity.
Are you using your email signature to market your business? What information do you include in your email signature? Drop us a note below — we’d love to hear from you!
Whether it’s unused or misused, your email signature is a big and easy way to market yourself. I’m surprised by many how businesses let this opportunity pass them by.
As I wrote a few months ago, “An e-signature won’t generate new clients or win awards. Yet it’s through such tweaks that good brands distinguish themselves from great brands. Which brand are you?”
Holly - The Work at Home Woman
It really surprises me too! Thanks for the link, I’ll make sure to check it out.
Donna L. Johnson
You know, I think the more creative/out-of-the-box the signature is, the better…and if you don’t like it or get bored you can always change it. :)
Great info for a newbie! Thank you for the article. I was thinking of adding “specials” I have going on on my signature and updating it as needed.
Holly - The Work at Home Woman
Adding specials is a great idea! I have used mine to promote giveaways that I’ve featured before. You’ll just want to be careful with what words you use so that your email doesn’t get caught in recipient’s SPAM folder.
Here is a good post on words to avoid: http://blog.mannixmarketing.com/2009/08/spam-trigger-words/
Good luck, Holly
Maria Marsala Business Maven
I leave my office phone number in (it’s to a phone that only takes messages, and it only used on the web) and take my email account out (because of spammers and (most) social networking sites that harvest email addresses when they go through your email account)
I haven’t added my Linkedin, facebook or twitter account, but I’ll go add those now!
How long do you think is too long for an email address? Some e-lists I’m on think 10 lines is the limit. I look forward to hearing your thoughts.
Holly - The Work at Home Woman
I think five is a good rule of thumb. If it’s too long people won’t scroll all the way to the end, so just include your most important info. I’ve also seen individuals who add their logo or headshot — which is perfect for branding.
Thanks for the comment,
Here is mine:
I had over 662 visits to my facebook page last week! :)
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