Free advertising and building credibility with email signatures
I often get emails from people who have poor email presentation. I’ve been asked for advice in this area many time so I thought it was about time I put together a check list for business email response and signature setup, so here we go:
1) Your email signature offers free advertising for your business. I recommend you ALWAYS have the following in your signature:
- Your name
- Position (optional)
- Main contact number, ideally direct or alternatively switchboard. I use my mobile number.
- Your email address. If the recipient wants to add you to their contacts this makes it easy.
- Your company’s web site address like www.alpha-tango.co.uk Use hyperlinks but when viewing in plain text or through company firewalls they often get stripped out.
- If you have social media profiles and/or pages add a link to these here. Perhaps add small icons so it breaks up the text a little.
- Company legal information, see point 3.
2) Make sure your reply name is properly formatted and accurate. For example when you see an email from me it will be from: Alan Tomkins. I regularly get emails that have from: “alan” or something similar because when the account was setup this was added as the reply information. Although no harm is done how people think of you is influenced by everything you do so getting this right is important. If your correspondence looks sloppy, you look sloppy.
3) If you’re a limited company in the UK it’s a legal requirement to include your company registered address and registration number in the email, the same way it’s required on your letterhead. There is a fine of £1000 for noncompliance. There is a useful resource on this here https://www.out-law.com/page-5536 Required are:
- Registered name
- Company number
- Address of registration
- Country of registration
4) Don’t use a legal disclaimer as it just suggests that you’re trying to preempt any incompetence or failure on your part. You don’t have one on your letterhead so why on your email? No one reads it and it’s unenforceable, it also makes your emails look a mess as part of an email exchange.
5) Create a shorter version of your signature for email replies with perhaps just your name and number.
6) Make sure you have a good signature on your mobile devices if you use them for email, such as your smartphone or tablet.
7) Lastly test your email signature in as many email clients as possible, Outlook, Outlook Express, Windows Mail, Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo mail, should be the minimum.
Do you think I’ve missed anything or disagree with my thoughts? If so I’d value your comments.