For many businesses and organizations, the major benefit of sig files is that they can attract visitors to your Web site. Sigvertising is when you use your signature file as a mini-advertisement for your company and its products and services.
With sigvertising you can go beyond offering the basic contact information— you can use your sig file as a tool to bring traffic to your Web site. Do this by using your sig file to give the reader some insight into your business and a reason to visit your site—not just to provide your company’s phone number and URL.
One of the most important elements of your signature file from a marketing perspective is the tag line. A tag line is a small sentence that is used in branding and is often recognizable without even the mention of the company name.
Do you recognize any of these tag lines?
- “We try harder.”
- “It’s the real thing.”
- “Like a rock.”
- “Just do it.”
- “Kills bugs dead.”
Your signature file should always include a one-line tag line or catch phrase. A catch phrase is simply something that catches the reader’s attention and intrigues him or her to find out more. It’s a good idea to include a call to action in the catch phrase, wherever possible, to get your reader to take action. I often include the catch phrase “Check out our Internet Marketing Bootcamp” in my signature file, with a hypertext link to my Web site. I get positive results with this, as recipients often do check out our Internet Marketing Bootcamp, ask for additional information on the Bootcamp, and often attend. It works!
Your catch phrase has to be relevant to your objectives and your target market. For example, if your objective is to get more people to your Web site and your target market is people who want to take business courses online, your catch phrase could be something like this: “We’ve got the largest selection of online business courses on the Web—check us out!” with a hypertext link to your Web site. Or perhaps your objective is to get more people to sign up to your e-club and your target audience is gardening enthusiasts. Your catch phrase could be something like this: “Join my e-club and receive great tips and coupons for the biggest and brightest flowers,” with a hypertext link to your e-club sign up.
Consider some of the following tag line or catch phrase possibilities to help increase the traffic to your Web site:
- Tell people about your e-club. Provide a call to action to get people to join.
- Let people know about your e-specials and invite them to your site for more information.
- Let people know about the great content on your site—for instance, your podcasts, videocasts, or articles.
- Announce a contest. If your site is holding a contest, tell readers that they can enter by visiting your site.
- Announce an award or honor. If your company or your Web site has received special recognition, tell people about it through your sig file.
Generally, sig files are accepted everywhere online in email, newsgroups, mail lists, discussion groups, and many consumer-generated media sites. Be cautious when developing your sig files to ensure that they will be well received. Sig files that are billboards, or sig files that are longer than most of your text messages, are to be avoided. Sig files that are blatant advertisements definitely are not appreciated. The online community reacts unfavorably to hard-sell advertising
unless it is done in the proper forum.