Your email address is an opportunity to keep your brand in front of your users with every message.

Scenario: John Fakename has founded a company called United Widget Cleaners, for which he got the domain unitedwidgets.com. Yet for his email, he uses john.fakename@gmail.com. What’s wrong with this picture? John is detracting from his brand and wasting an excellent opportunity to remind his prospects about his company.

Creating your email address

Once you get your domain, use an email address from that domain, NOT gmail, yahoo, or from your ISP. Using an email from anywhere other than your domain sends conflicting messages to your prospects. It tells them that you are not quite as established in your business as you should be. Or it may tell them that you don’t pay as much attention to details as you should. It may even tell them that you don’t have the technical know-how to set up email addresses, even if that’s not the case.

If you have multiple email accounts in your email client, be careful to choose the correct outgoing account. This is especially important for those entrepreneurs with multiple companies.

Creating email addresses for your domain is something that is usually free and easy to do with most domain hosts. Log in to your host’s page and look for a FAQ or support section to see how. Here are instructions for some popular hosts: 1&1, GoDaddy, and Blue Host.

The Email Sig

Now take it a step further: make sure that your brand is included in all your emails by setting up a “sig”, or email signature. List your name, company name, email address, and web URL. If you have Twitter, LinkedIn, a blog, or other social media sites, you should link to those as well. You can even embed graphics such as your logo. Just remember to keep the amount of this content low. A caveat: if a large number ofyour prospects are likely to use email clients that do not support rich text or HTML, then skip the graphics and keep things simple.

Every email client has a different process for doing this — here are a few of the popular ones: Outlook 2007, Outlook 2010, and Thunderbird.

Here is what my sig looks like:

The moral of the story

When you develop a brand, commit to it! Don’t detract from your brand by using en email address from anywhere other than your own domain.

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