Creating an email sig or signature is a simple marketing idea that you can complete in 10 minutes or less and use forever.
A marketing goal
One of the goals of marketing of your freelance writing and yourself as a writer is to make it as easy as possible for potential clients to contact you. An email signature does exactly that.
I can hear some of you asking, “why do I need more than an email for them to contact me with?”
Suppose, for example, someone handed your email message to the person who needed a writer. Yes email gets printed and handed around. In order to contact you the person reading it has to figure out what your email address is. They then have to enter it in an email to you. We all know how often that can get communication scrambled.
In this example the person probably would have rather called you on the phone to discuss a potential project. If your email signature listed your phone number you’d be making it much easier for her to get in touch.
Or suppose this person was interested but wanted more information. Unless your email address contains your domain name, there’s no way they can find your website reliably and many people still don’t make the connection between email addresses and domain names. If you’ve got your professional site on your email you’re making it easy for them to get the information they want.
A simple marketing idea
Of course, I don’t know what email program you’re using. These days Outlook makes it pretty easy to set up a signature. In fact you can set up multiple signatures in many email programs. I prefer to keep it simple and the illustration above shows you exactly what’s on my email sig. I set it up to be automatically added to every email so I don’t have to think about it.
The quickest way to find out how to set up a signature in your email is probably to either click on the help menu and look for signature or sig. failing that you can Google something like email sig (email program). The same thing is true for most web-based email programs.
You’ll find instructions that are pretty easy to follow
Elements of an email sig
A good email signature contains necessary information – and nothing much else. In fact, in some circles, sigs longer than five lines are frowned on – a good reason to be succinct.
- You need a separator at the top. I use the tilde, but +’s, plain lines etc. all work. You need a separator so it’s clear where the email stops and the signature begins.
- Next comes your name – the name people know you by.
- Your name can be followed by your email address. Yes, in theory they have it in the email itself, but were making things super easy for them.
- Then add the www.address for your professional site.In my case I also add the address of AboutFreelanceWriting.com. If you don’t have a site yet skip this step and simply add your phone number. If you’re worried about making your phone number public you might want to consider getting a business line that has its own number.
- I put the phone number last so it’s easy to spot
There are all sorts of other ways to do this. You could spend an hour or so googling up sample email signatures; that’s as good a time waster is any – and it might even be interesting.
Occasionally you’ll see email sigs with graphics. In my experience the sometimes get garbled and begin to look ugly – you never know how they’re going to look on someone else’s computer skip them is my suggestion.
This simple marketing idea means that every time you send an email your marketing yourself and your writing business. What could be easier?
What’s your email signature like? If you don’t have one, why not?
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Write well and often,