Look at the bottom of the emails you receive in your inbox. Most of them probably have a neat, personalized signature, sometimes called a footer.
These typically include the sender’s name, title or occupation, company affiliation, phone, email and maybe a social media handle. At a time when artificial intelligence (AI) is becoming the norm, personalized email signatures can assure recipients that you are a real person rather than an AI bot.
Some people like to personalize their signatures with photos, company logos or even animated gifs. You’ll see some folks spelling out their preferred pronouns — she/her, they/them — or including an honorific such as Ms., the Honorable or Esquire.
You can even use the space to indicate the correct pronunciation of your name, such as “MEG-ann” for Meaghan. And if you’re so inclined, you can add a motivational quote, for example: “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” —Mahatma Ghandi. This can say a lot about you and your interests.
Email signatures are a breeze to set up on a computer or mobile app regardless of which email provider you use.
Apple’s iCloud signatures are plain text only
1. Sign in to iCloud.com with your Apple ID and password.
2. Open Mail and click the Settings icon ⚙︎ | Preferences.
3. Click Composing | Add a signature and name it.
4. Type your signature text in the field provided.
5. Click Done.
The Apple Mail app on your Mac or Windows computer provides more formatting possibilities, but you’ll have to be adept at using keyboard commands to take advantage of them.
1. At the upper left on your desktop or laptop, choose Mail | Preferences | Signatures. Click the plus sign + at the bottom of the middle column, and give your new signature a name.
2. In the right column, you’ll notice no formatting features, but you can depress the command, shift and plus + keys simultaneously to increase the size of your type. If you want a link in your signature to go to a web page or social media account, you can hit the command and k keys at the same time so a window will pop up and you can insert the correct URL. If you want an image, you can click on the file in one of your folders, drag it into the pane you’re working on, and drag it around to place it as you desire.
You also can format it as you desire in a word processing program, then copy and paste it into that right column in Apple Mail. The formatting and images should appear correctly in the window.
3. Uncheck the box that says Place signature above quoted text if you want your formatted signature to be at the end of your message. Uncheck the Always match my default message font box if you’ve embellished on the standard 12-point Helvetica formatting.
4. If you find that All Signatures is highlighted after you’ve finished your work, drag the title of your new signature in the middle column to the email account name in the left column. You’ll see the number below your email account change from 0 signatures to 1 signature.
5. Make sure that account is highlighted, and using the pull-down arrows to the right of the Choose Signature box, select the name of your signature. Your work saves automatically. When you create new mail in the account, you’ll see your handiwork.
Gmail offers flexibility with images, icons
1. Sign in to your Gmail account with your email address and password. At the top right, click Settings ⚙︎ | See all settings.
2. Scroll down to the Signature section, click the + Create new button and give a name to your signature.