Many of us send hundreds of emails a day, and don’t take the time to sign each email with our name, title, corporation and contact info. If we’re already contacting them over email, they know how to get a hold of us, right?
Consider your email signature to be like a digital business card: every business contact you meet should get one, but you don’t have to hassle with having extras on hand or fishing them out of your wallet at every business lunch. In a survey conducted last year by WriteThat.Name, it was discovered that out of more than 700 million emails, only 52 percent of senders included signatures. Even more appalling are the details, with only 58 percent of those with signatures containing an organization name, 43 percent with a role or title, and less than 15 percent including links to social media profiles.
Our email systems are built to automatically attach a signature to an email. So, you might think all you have to do is plug in your information and then never worry about it again, right?
As simple as setting up an email signature is, it should also be considered an opportunity to utilize prime marketing space. That means you should be acutely aware of the information you and your employees are putting in email signatures to make sure it stays consistent with your brand and your current promotions.
The email signature is something that can be streamlined throughout a company, so if more than one person from your organization is in contact with a client, it’s obvious to that client that they’re communicating with someone on the inside. The YGS Group has specific guidelines for employees to follow when setting up email signatures. There is a color palette that coordinates with those found on the company website and logo, and every sender at The YGS Group includes the same basic information within their signatures.
• Organization name
• Phone numbers: both the general line with an extension, a direct line, and in some cases a cell phone
• Links to the website, social media, and the blog
• Basic explanation of services
• Confidentiality notice
This basic outline for what to include in an email signature will vary depending on what products and services your company offers and how social media fits into your business model. If you haven’t developed a solid social media strategy, then it’s probably best to not send your email contacts to those sites. Additionally, there can be a spot at the end of your email signatures to alert your contacts to promotions or news. If your company is sponsoring an event or has recently made a substantial business acquisition, put in a notice, and link to it. The Internet is for making connections, and empty email signatures account for some of the biggest missed connections in business and marketing. It’s important to stay aware of these promotions and notices in signatures, however. Once the promotion is over, make it a priority to replace it with an updated announcement.
A complete email signature adds to the opportunity for well-rounded customer service. If you’ve ever needed a client’s input at the drop of a hat and need to find their phone number, an email signature is a great place to start. What happens when the tables are turned and your client needs you, but your email signature is full of white space?
In the example above, you’ll see in my email to Ashley that I gave her a directive: let me know if you have any questions. This is a simple directive so many of us put in our emails everyday, but if we don’t offer the recipient multiple access points, do we really mean it?
The email signature is free marketing space for anyone who communicates electronically, which is most of us. Filling this space is a must for any business that wants to use innovative marketing techniques and offer robust customer service.