In this email signature myth-busting article, we discuss that most dreaded of all delusions: that you can effect change company-wide simply be instituting an email signature policy and publishing it on your Intranet or within your corporate handbook. What do you think? Does it work? Let’s find out!
This is about the best thing you can do if you want to actively harm your brand because these email signature policy guidelines are never followed.
Sadly, this is how most marketers enforce their email signature policy – by sending out a document to everyone with instructions on how the email signature should look, or by putting guidelines on the company’s intranet about the email signature policy. Both options are equally bad.
What will happen if you try this method? First of all, most users don’t know where or how to change their email signatures, so they don’t. In our experience, as many as 80% of users won’t do it. Another 10% of your co-workers or employees will simply copy other users’ signatures and try to amend them so that they fit. Finally, the remaining 10% do as I described in Myth #1 – they simply copy and paste information directly into the email signature and believe that now the email signature policy is in effect.
Of course, this means that they likely copied your image as well. This image can have a reference to a local share or even acquire a very odd file name during this process, which no one is aware of. As a result, the image may not embed correctly or your employee’s email signature will contain such a volume of bad code that it doesn’t display properly anywhere.
So what happens when people send out emails with this email signature? It either looks bad, takes up too much space, arrives with the logo attached rather than embedded, or does not arrive at all because it ends up in the recipient’s spam folder. Or all of these combined! This is why email signature management software is vital for branding.
In the end, what started out as a great initiative turns into a disaster with even more scattered email signatures, no brand consistency, and emails ending up in spam folders. In other words, failure.
Sadly, everyone believes that this failure is due to the presence of images in the signature, and hence, conclude that having an image in the email signature is crap and should be avoided. Rather, this failure is down to execution, not concept. There is a way!
These are the facts and not something we’ve made up! Again, those people likely won’t believe us, but this conclusion is based on over 12 years of experience with email signature management. Believe us when we say that email signature policy best practice guidelines do not work. Inevitably, someone within your organization (most people) will make a mistake, and your company’s branding will suffer as a result of your email signature policy.
We’re not done yet! Suffice to say, there’s a lot of disinformation about including images in email signatures, how best to implement signatures organization-wide, and even how you should use your corporate email signature. Work our your email signature place with Xink. We’ll set out to bust all the email signature policy myths over the coming days!
See our previous email signature myth-busting posts: