Anyone who’s ever engaged in a heated argument knows the satisfaction of getting in a good last word. The same philosophy should apply to your email signature. No longer just an afterthought, these brief messages present a valuable marketing opportunity, said Blaire Briody in a recent article for Entrepreneur magazine.
“That’s because they typically come from a trusted source (or at least a professional acquaintance), and because getting a work email is a fundamentally different experience than, say, watching TV or scrolling through Twitter,” Brody explained.
Richard Hanna, a marketing professor at Babson College and the lead author of Email Marketing in a Digital World, described reading emails as “entering work mode.”
“We’re actively engaged in reading material related to what we’re doing, and we pay more attention to the signature,” he said.
Email marketing firms offer services to help companies manage their employees’ email signatures and weave marketing messages into them. “Brands are realizing there’s this untapped marketing channel,” said Bryan Wade, CEO at Sigstr, one such email marketing firm. “An organization with 100 employees is sending millions of emails a day. That’s a lot of interactions.”
Here are a few ways to make your email signature more powerful:
- Highlight one item. Consider your signature a virtual 30-second elevator pitch. Most people have trouble remembering multiple points, so highlight a design special, a recent award, a charitable initiative (as Flowers & Fancies does with its Blooms-4-A-Better-Bmore Program), an upcoming event, or your company’s mission. “The info should make you stand out,” said Hanna. “Everything else is a distraction.”
- Add some color. A study by Sigstr and EyeQuant, a neuromarketing and artificial intelligence company, tracked where people’s eyes go in the first six seconds of looking at an email. Their finding? If a signature had a colorful name, phone number or image, people looked there first.
- Include a photo. A photo of your shop, your flowers or your smiling face drives more engagement than mere links. According to the aforementioned Sigstr eye-tracking study, head shots draw the most attention. “The human eye will look at a face longer than anything else,” said Wade.
For more details on email signatures, click here.
For best practices on email marketing — complete with real-world examples from your peer — read “Stay Out of the Trash!” from the Floral Management archives.