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Notice I said that this is what my .sig looks like at moment. Your signature is a dynamic thing, and you are free to change it at any time. In fact, you donít even have to have a standard one. Though most email programs have a place for you to put in automatic signatures, you can also simply type two hyphens, hit return, and type whatever you wish to be your signature on that particular email or posting. Think of possibilities, be creative! Play with formatting and layout, donít be afraid to create simple shapes & boxes as I did above. Beware however that formatting doesnít always survive in emails, especially in html format, so you will want to experiment with sending yourself emails a few times while you get it ďjust right.Ē
As long as you follow protocol of two hyphens followed by your content, and place this at bottom of your email, this is a universally acceptable method of self-promotion. The absolutely most critical component is, that your actual communication whether it be email or a forum posting must be on-topic!
This means you canít just post a message saying ďI agree!Ē followed by your signature, on a dozen forums and not expect to be criticized for it. So make sure whatever you have to say is relevant to topic at hand, and then be sure to include your .sig at conclusion of your writing.
I believe that too many investors, business people, artists, and more do not take advantage of this amazingly powerful method of nearly-viral marketing. The major players in web-based email have known about power of this for years! HotMail for example was a success primarily because of this technique! Back when they first started, their only form of advertising was by putting a small message about themselves at bottom of every email each HotMail user sent. This meant that, whether they wanted to or not, every recipient of a HotMail userís email was exposed to a HotMail ad with a link to sign up. Because of this, HotMail was my first web-based email account back around 1998. Today, I donít know of any major web-mail provider that does not include a link to themselves in each userís email messages. This technique works; people do click those links!
In closing, Iíd like to make a confession. I myself only created my .sig very recently. Though intellectually I knew all these facts and benefits to be true, I just didnít take necessary action! Now that I have done so, I have received many more website visitors, and participants in some of my business ventures, because they saw my signature and decided to click. Creating this signature was such a little thing, why on earth did I wait so long to do it?!
Donít wait Ė take action now. Needless to say, this advice extends far beyond just creating a good .sig!
Jonathan van Clute is a full time investor, educator, speaker, and online options and sports arbitrage trader. In addition to his business activities, he is also a musician, video editor/animator, and one of the world's greatest Segway Polo athletes. He can be reached via email at jonathan@PMLinvestments.com and is speaking at an upcoming teleseminar, visit http://snipurl.com/dotsig for details.