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Working smarter with email signatures

Email signatures are very important for a number of reasons. Why, then, do so many people still do these crazy things with theirs?

Most of us who are economically engaged and use computers as a necessary tool of trade are assaulted by a daily tsunami of emails which we have to triage and execute with high efficiency and total effectiveness. Especially if we aspire to a zero inbox (which, by the way, is very achievable with our training!). Email signatures can be a hindrance or a help in this endeavour. Let’s all work to make signatures more helpful. Here’s a few ideas. Do you have any others?

  1. Never, never, never place all your contact details inside a graphic file where the text cannot be copied into a Contacts form or other CRM system – no matter how pretty or professional the signature picture looks. It does not work for people who want to use your contact info in their CRM or Contacts systems – and you do want to be there, don’t you! See how you can create Contact forms from emails here.
  2. Your marketing people may get all excited by large, graphic-rich email signatures promoting your goods, services or special promotion. Your readers are not, especially when reading on their mobile devices.
  3. With most email platforms you can create a number of signatures for different types of messaging. Use them. You can also easily change your signature within each email. In Microsoft Outlook all you have to do is right-click on your signature text to select a signature more appropriate for the mail you are sending.
  4. Long, multi-line signatures with different fonts and random graphics are the domain of the enthusiastic amateur and it shows. A wonderful person who corresponds with me regularly insists on using an 11 line signature with 2 graphics plus a 4 line disclaimer – 13 lines in total!
  5. Always use a Signature, even if it is a two-liner for internal mail and for use with established clients, prospects and suppliers. This need only contain your name, direct office number and mobile number. It just helps the receiver get back to you from the mail itself.
  6. Remember it is perfectly possible to create a purposeful, professional email signature with appropriate graphics and contact text that your reader can slip into their Contact form or CRM system. You do want to be there, don’t you? Here is an example of an email signature that reinforces the brand (they all drive those funny cars!) and is fully readable by CRM /Contacts forms.


Over to you now – What are your thoughts on email signature usage? Do you have any great examples you wish to share? What have you found that works really well for you?

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