Your email signature is a valuable marketing tool

In this depressed economy, the corporate marketing budget is usually one of the first things that is cut back. Proving tangible return on investment (ROI) on marketing efforts can sometimes be a challenge. Marketing initiatives with no tangible ROI often end up on the chopping block during a recession.

With email marketing open rates and ROI steadily diminishing, savvy companies are now turning to a readily available, virtually free resource for email marketing exposure. Many are finding that by using their email signatures in a creative way, they can market upcoming events, product news, and build social media followers, often achieving tangible and measurable marketing results.

Some Quick Math

Think about it. The average employee sends out about 30 emails per day. For a company of 50 employees this equates to 1,500 emails a day. By adding a corporate email signature with your company logo, you can get 7,500 views a week of your logo, branding and any marketing message you include in your email. In a year, this amounts to 390,000 views. Depending on your outgoing message volume, this number can be significantly higher.

What Can Email Signatures Do For Your Company?

Want to increase customer loyalty and build social media followers? What better place to start than the customers and suppliers your company already communicates with every day? By adding email signatures that not only include contact information, but also company branding (such as a corporate logo), social media links, QR codes and a marketing message, you can subtly remind customers, suppliers, and other stakeholders about what your company stands for and invite them to actively participate in your community. Quality, consistent email signatures cannot only be leveraged for customer loyalty and company branding, but can also offer measurable ROI by including clear calls to action that can be tracked.

How Can You Add Company-Wide Email Signatures?

There are a number of email signature products available that allow companies to centrally configure an email signature for all their employees, avoiding the need to configure each individual email client. This means that updating an email signature with the latest marketing promotion or company event is a simple matter of updating a single template.

By pulling sender information from your company directory, such as Microsoft Active Directory, the email signature is automatically personalized for each sender. Whether you are using Google Apps, Office 365 or an on-premise mail server such as Microsoft Exchange Server, several solutions exist that either work at the client level (for example, Microsoft Outlook) or at server level, stamping each outgoing email with a signature before it gets sent out.

Why leave this free marketing opportunity untapped? Like handing out a business card at a lunch or meeting, an email signature reiterates your contact information and leaves the recipient with a memorable sense of your company, but with one important difference: an email signature can be frequently updated, include clear calls to action and as such can generate measurable and tangible ROI.

Deborah Galea is the co-founder and chief operating officer of email management developer Red Earth Software. Galea is an expert in the growing field of corporate email management solutions involving eDiscovery as well as the compliance issues impacting almost every vertical industry, including financial services, legal, healthcare, retail and government. She has extensive knowledge of the legal issues relating to corporate email usage and has worked in the Netherlands, the U.K., the United States and Cyprus.

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