Web Tips & Articles
Signature Text Files
Do you have a signature text file (also known as email signature) set up in your email software so that your name, company and website address automatically appear at the bottom of every outgoing e-mail you send? If you don't have one already, setting up a signature text file is an easy (and totally free) way to "brand" your emails, provide your full contact information to correspondents, identify your company, and most importantly … promote your website.
When you send out letters on company letterhead, those receiving your correspondence can see the complete contact information for your company, as well as the logo and corporate colors. Emails, however, are devoid of any identifying features, unless you have built them into your preferences. In your message settings you can define the name, organization and the email address you want to have people reply to, but not much else. The signature text file gives you a place to provide more information on your company at the bottom of every email, and becomes your "email letterhead".
Your signature file could contain the following information: name, title, company, complete contact information (phone, fax, email, or preferred means of contacting you), marketing slogan, teasers about product or service specials, links to social media platforms you're active on, and the URL for your website and social media platforms you are active on.
A signature text file is FREE promotion for your website, building traffic to the site without any cost to you. So, don't forget to include your website address! Don't just put www.mycompany.com, include the http:// … to hyperlink your website address, making it "click-able". Some email software have limitations which necessitate copying the URL and pasting it into a web browser if the http:// is missing. If you include the full web address, then all a recipient of your email has to do is click on the link and it takes them direct to your website.
The basic email signature should be standard throughout your company, and be included on all outgoing company emails. The way your employees sign their emails reflects on your company image. Ensure that email correspondence is "signed and branded" in a manner which reflects how you want to portray your company to those who receive email correspondence from your staff.
Setting up the Signature
The steps for setting up the file differ, depending on which email software you use:
- Open your email software and locate your email preferences:
For example, in Gmail, Click on the "gear" at the far left and select "Settings". Under the "General" tab, scroll down to look for the "Signature" heading. Select the radio button under "No Signature" and fill in the information you want to include.
- Test the signature by sending an email to yourself. Make changes in it until you are happy with how it looks.
- Send instructions out to all your staff giving them the steps to set up their signature and the format that you want them to use.
- Ask all staff members to send you a test email with their signature file, to make sure they are all in compliance with the desired format.
Remember, the point of using a signature file is: 1) to identify the sender, 2) provide contact information, and 3) to build traffic to your website and social media platforms!
Two of my work-related signature text files:
Danielle Surkatty (Ms.)
Building websites that reach the world
I also have a different signature text files for organizations I volunteer for, so that I can promote their websites too:
Danielle Surkatty, Advocacy Chair
Washington's most scenic Byway ... Where natural beauty and adventure await
If you'd like help setting up signature text files with your email software, Contact Us!