Business owners in Reading, Pennsylvania read and send e-mail every day. It’s a staple of modern day communication and it’s used to connect not only with the people we do business with, but also family. But did you know that you can use your everyday e-mail as a vehicle to promote your company or organization?

Smart marketers in Berks County are using e-mail signatures. It’s a simple and low cost way to market your business. An e-mail signature is a small paragraph of text placed at the end of outgoing e-mails. Most e-mail signatures include contact information. E-mail programs such as Microsoft Outlook and Apple Mail allow you to attach a signature to outgoing e-mails so that you don’t have to manually insert the information every time.

E-mail signatures can be a simple line of text or can include HTML code that displays images and links. A properly constructed e-mail signature can be a powerful tool in your marketing arsenal. Let’s take a look at the math. If your company has 20 employees and each employee sends 20 e-mails a day, that equates to 400 e-mails being sent in one day. Multiply that by the number of business days annually (typically 250) and you have over 100,000 impressions a year. And that doesn’t include the number of times others forward your message to someone else.

E-mail signatures take your everyday e-mails and turn them into an important element in your marketing mix. Every time you send an e-mail, you have the opportunity for someone to view your contact information and marketing message. As such, it’s wise to use e-mail signatures and include information that can help people connect with your business.

What should your e-mail signature include? I’d suggest including the following information when creating a basic e-mail signature:

  • Name
  • Company Name
  • Address
  • Web URL
  • Phone Number

If your business has employees, it’s also wise to consider a “standard” e-mail signature that all employees use when sending e-mails. Having your staff use a consistent e-mail signature will help brand consistency and provide recipients with a quick way to distinguish your e-mail from other messages.

Some business owners are taking e-mail signatures to the next level by adding marketing messages, graphics, and links to company web sites – including social media outlets. Most internet marketers suggest keeping your signature to six to eight lines in length. However, you can go longer if you feel the need. My current e-mail signature has 14 lines of text and no one has complained that it is too long.

Another tip I have for Reading, PA web site designers and internet marketers is to use your e-mail signature when writing blog posts, articles, or when posting in discussion forums or LinkedIn. If you write something that is interesting, people will want to learn more about you and what you do and in turn, visit your web site.

Advice for using email signatures? Here are a few tips.

Be sure to verify that your e-mail program (Outlook, Gmail, etc.) includes your signature when replying to e-mail. This will ensure that your signature appears when both sending and replying to mail.

Keep a copy of your e-mail signature in a text or MS Word file for use in discussion forums and blog posting. You may want to consider shortening the length of your signature depending on the style of the forum or blog.

Include a marketing message or free offer in your e-mail signature.

Avoid embedding images into your signature. If using images, upload the image to your web server and link to the image. Be sure to include alt tags for users that have images turned off. I personally avoid embedding images (such as logos) into my e-mail signatures because of spam filtering reasons. I would love to hear how others feel about this (lets hear it IT guys)!

Lastly, if you include links in your signature, I’d suggest implementing a way of tracking how many people click on them. This will provide a quantifiable way of monitoring the success of adding links to your e-mail signature.