Emails, emails and emails! We do talk about emails a lot, right? Well if any chance, you are following this blog, you too might be well aware of the importance of emails. So when you say email, what strikes in your mind? Let me guess, email etiquettes, rules, guidelines, laws and what not! After all, there are various articles out there on how you can craft the perfect emails, what you should include, what should be the subject and what not!
Now let’s say, you are lucky and you made the cut! Your emails are being opened and read as well! But do you think your work is done here? Well, it is not! You are still overlooking one important element that can make a big impact. Yes, I am talking about your email signature.
First impression is important! Agreed! But what about the last impression?
Leaving last impression is difficult especially at the end of an email! But at the end it is all worth it. An email signature is not just to tell about who you are, but is also an opportunity to brand yourself. Email signatures are another way to shine brighter. But the concept of email signature is like a two-way sword - if done right, can bring extra-ordinary results, but if made any mistake, might cause damage to your image.
For most of the people, email signature is just the way of telling the recipient who they are but what they don’t know is with some smart tips, this email signature can prove for them a big branding or marketing opportunity as well. Email signatures are a part of personal branding and must encourage the recipient to respond, connect and do further contact with the sender.
Not convincing enough? Let’s discuss it a bit more!
There are many people out there who in the process of creating a professional email signature end up creating a heavily cluttered email signature! I mean, yes, email signatures are a great way to promote your business but instead of pulling your hairs and chasing your readers with a creepy email signature design, you have to find out the right way!
Now at this stage, many of you might be thinking why can’t we just drop the use of email signature. But then my friend, you will lose an excellent opportunity as well. What most of us still don’t know is that a right email signature can make a huge difference to your emails. So guys, please wear your marketing hats and dig into the art of creating a perfect signature.
The email signature rides along with all the emails you send, whether personal or professional but contrast to the importance of right email signature, here are some facts that will blow up your mind
- Around 48% professionals do not use email signatures.
- 30% of professionals don’t feel the need to include names in email signature
- 60% of professionals prefer providing their landline number over mobile number in email signature
- Around half of the people overlook adding information about business and social media profiles. [Source]
This data is enough to prove the unawareness lying around signature and that’s where we need this article.
How to create the best email signatures?
1. Keep it short!
While there are many who don’t have any email signature at all, there are some others as well who treat their email signature like the mini autobiographies, jamming all possible links, quotes, and tons of information. But what they don’t realize is that by adding excessive information, the signature loses its original charm and will seem bulky for readers to even look at it let alone clicking on the same.
In general, the basic information needed in email signature is as below : Therefore experts recommend to use only the information that best indicates your professional brand, generally the email signature of four lines is standard format. Once you are done with the basic format, the next step is to personalize it.
PS.. To condense email signature in fewer lines, make use of pipeline (|) or colons (::) to separate links.
2. Avoid including your email address :
Adding email address to your email signature is nothing but the wastage of space, the reasons are:
- The reader can easily get email address by hovering the mouse over sender’s name even if it is not already visible.
- One can always hit the reply button.
You must save this place for something more valuable like your social icons, CTA, your business blog, etc.
3. Strict “NO” to multiple phone numbers :
Ever seen an overstuffed email signature? Here is what it looks like :
Imagine how difficult and irritating it will be for the reader especially if he or she uses a mobile device.
So choose your contact preferences wisely! Listing every contact number, every social profile link and every mail id is an overkill. And the popular phenomenon of “Paradox of choice” says that the more pages you will link to, the less likely it is for the recipient to click on any of them. So add only the most preferred points of contact.
PS. if you are working with people from around the world, always make sure to add your country code while listing down your phone number.
4. Add social profiles :
Your social media presence is a crucial part of your personal branding. The way you portray yourself on social media networks, the kind of posts you like and share, can tell people a lot about you which is why making social media profiles a part of your email signature will not only reinforce your personal brand but also provide the reader multiple ways to contact you. Additionally, it can also help you drive more traffic if you share your content on social media profiles.
But again, nobody is implying you to add links of all of your social media profiles. Include only those social profiles where you are active. And instead of including social media links, prefer using social icons as they will be more easily recognizable amongst all the text. Did you know the human mind takes just 150ms to process a symbol and 100 ms to process its meaning, quite fast, isn’t it?
Check out this email signature example of our head marketing analyst, Prince Kapoor who is active on multiple profiles, so it makes sense that he has made social icons a part of his email signature as the points of contact.
5. Add Image :
It is a widely known fact that people remember visuals more than the plain text. But with that, I don’t mean you can put any kind of image in your email signature. There is always a certain kind of image that can make a difference to your email signature. You are more likely to remember a signature like this, won’t you?
Reason being as per research says, most memorable photos are those that contain people, also color images are often more memorable than the black and white ones. Here are some tips you need to follow :
- Use a professional image, not a selfie or the one cropped from other picture
- The size of image shouldn’t be too big as it will take more time to load
- Make sure you are dressed and groomed professionally
- Prefer using a headshot rather than the complete body picture.
6. Add Call to action :
One of the smartest way of leveraging the power of email signature is by adding a call-to-action in the same. The best CTA for an email signature should be simple, up-to-date, not too pushy and aligned with the theme of email and above all, doesn’t look like a sales pitch.You must put a CTA that is in sync with your business goal and must keep updating it regularly. The CTA can be anything from “click here for a free demo” to “download an ebook”.
For more clear idea, check out this email signature that encourages the reader to visit his blog.
7. Make sure the links are trackable :
So you have created a great email signature that highlights all your important links and contains CTA too but ever wondered if anyone has really clicked on them? If you want to figure out if people are really clicking on them or not, make your links trackable. Adding UTM parameters to the links is a great way to do that. Check out this step by step guide to use UTM parameter by Neil Patel. Also test out multiple CTA formats to find out which ones are driving maximum clicks.
8. Optimize for mobile :
As per the recent research, 68% of emails are getting opened on mobile devices and this figure keeps on rising every year. The stats clearly indicate the need to keep mobile users in top of mind while writing emails which includes email signature too.
The best way to make your email signature mobile optimized is to choose the design that is easy to read and easy to click for mobile audience. Use font size, keeping mobile screens in mind and make sure the links have enough space in between.
9. Go modern!
Most of the brands these days are opting for the modern email signature approach. An email signature which is clean font, sleek and fresh never goes off air. Here are some things you need to look for if you are one of those creative professionals and want your email signature to indicate the same :
- Crisp font
- Uncluttered design
- Large text with flat design (3-D looks are strict no)
- Use small splash of the bold color.
10. Test your email signature with more than one email clients to make sure it works fine :
Finally, now that you have created the best email signature that goes with your personality, don’t forget to test it across various email clients. For eg, when you talk about Microsoft outlook, it doesn’t recognize the background images so don’t use them. Testing across various email clients will provide you surety that your email signature looks as good as you thought.
PS, below are some additional tips, if kept in mind, will help you to craft a perfect email signature :
- If you are using a quote, make sure it doesn’t seem offensive to anyone.
- There is no need to add a legal disclaimer unless it is must.
- Don’t add that virus-checked message below every email.
How to create email signature :
If you want to create your email signature manually, here are the steps you need to follow :
- Setting up email signature in Gmail
- Setting up email signature in Outlook 2013 and 2016
- Setting up email signature in Outlook 2010
Tools to create email signature :
Now if you don’t want to make email signature on your own, there are various tools too available for the same. Here are three of the most popular tools you might want to look at:
1. Wisestamp :
It is an awesome free email signature creator that integrates easily with your email client and benefits you with some beautiful and customized email signatures. Using WiseStamp, it is quite simple to add the picture or your blog RSS feed and much more.
If a neat email signature with required information without unnecessary clutter is what defines you, htmlsig is the place you need to land. A free and simple way to create email signature for your email clients that can make a long-lasting impression. It also contains the paid option, if you want more creativity.
3. Newoldstamp :
World’s simplest email signatures creation tool- as they define it. If creativity and uniqueness are your traits, newoldstamp is the perfect place for you. The tool provides you the chance to choose among the 11 professional email signature templates that come in several design, color and formats.
Other tools that you can opt for :
Final words - find your balance!
In the final words of advice, all that I suggest is be sure to maintain the balance, not only in the visual elements you have used but also in the other elements. Now that you have understood how to bring different pieces of information together to craft an email signature, go ahead and impress your email clients. Have you seen any extra-ordinary email signature or you have any other tip I have missed upon, let me know in the comments below.