We might see them all the time, but we don’t often appreciate the power of the humble email signature. In the digital age, the email signature has taken the place of the business card of old. It gives you the opportunity to create a lasting impression, and even snag a new customer.

So let’s take a look at the importance of the email signature how it can be used as a valuable marketing tool, what the essential components are, and the common mistakes to avoid.     

What is an email signature, and why’s it so important to have one? 

Technically, an email signature is simply the way you sign off your emails. But there’s more to it than, signing off with your best regards. By including your contact information, and other details like your website or social media channels, you’re inviting the person you’ve emailed to engage with you and your small business.

A well thought out email signature can help you achieve your business and personal objectives

By including visual components like attractive fonts, colours, your logo, and other design elements, your email signature becomes a whole lot more. It’s also a chance to share the latest news, give potential customers an insight into your brand, or market a new product or service.   

What should you include in a great email signature?

There’s one crucial question to ask yourself when deciding what to include in your email signature. What do I want my emails to achieve?

Every small business will have different goals for their signature, so there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. For example:

  • A new company using email outreach as a form of small business marketing might want their emails to boost brand recognition and drive traffic to their website.
  • An established corporate in the financial sector might want their email signatures to convey a sense of professionalism, pedigree, and cohesion.
  •  A young, vibey new tech disruptor may want their email signatures to grab the reader’s attention or even shock them.
  • A medical practice may want to use their email signatures as a place to educate their patients about useful health resources.
  • A start-up could use their signatures to promote their business on YouTube.    

Understanding what you want to accomplish is the first step in crafting a great email signature!

Sometimes less is more

You also need to find that balance between including as much useful information as possible, without ending up with a signature that’s overly complex and messy looking. Everything that’s there should align with, rather than distract from, your call to action.

Let’s say you’re trying to get the word out about an awesome new eBook you’ve published. Your email signature is the perfect place to let your existing customers know about it without being ‘in their face’ about it. But you don’t want that message to get lost among a whole bunch of other links to all your social media channels, and your latest blog post, and your website’s contact page, etc.

Here are the bare bones you should include:

  • Your name and position within the company
  • Your preferred contact routes 
  • Some kind of branding or an up to date logo.
  • A call to action – what do you want the reader to do next?

Designing your email signature

There are heaps of great free resources, templates, and design programs you can use to create a unique, eye-catching email signature that suits your brand. Even MS Word will do the trick! Do a little Googling and experimenting, or if you’re really out to impress, we can create a professional design for you!   

Remember though that not everyone receives their emails in HTML, especially if they’re on the move or trying to save data, so having only images is a pretty bad idea. The easiest way to check this? Simply send yourself an email in plain text and see how it comes out.

To do this in Outlook:

  • Create a new email, insert your signature
  • Select the ‘Format Text’ tab, and change HTML to Plain Text in the Format box.

To do this in Gmail:

  • Create a new message, insert your signature
  • Look for the ‘More options’ hamburger menu on the bottom right next to the bin
  • Select ‘Plain text mode’

It’s important that even in plain text, your email signature still conveys who you are, what you do, and what the best way to contact you is. Done well, your email signature is a powerful tool to add to your marketing strategy!

Need help? Remember that Hunter & Scribe are experts at helping small businesses in Australia and around the globe grow their brands through content marketing. Get in touch today if you’d like your small business to be one of them!