Success with Signature Lines: Your Virtual Business Card!

By Rusty Fischer

The Author of 101 Ways to Promote Your eBook-For FREE! Reveals How to Sell Your eBook-One Email at a Time!

Before I wrote my first eBook, Freedom to Freelance, I never even knew what a “signature line” was. (But I figured I better start practice signing my name, just in case!) Then my ePublisher sent me a marketing manual that contained a tiny blurb about signature lines, which included, thank goodness, a definition. For newbies, a signature line is the sentence or two beneath your Email message, usually set off by a dashed line or series of asterisks or other cute gobbledygook.


“Oh,” you cringe. “THOSE things!” Yes, THOSE things. Those things are what’s known in ePromotion as your virtual business cards, and they just could mean the difference between a business day with no sales of your eBook, and the sale of one or even two of your eBooks. Add that up over a week, and then a month, and then a year, and it could just mean the difference between whether or not you ever decide to publish an eBook again!

Just think about it: You’re at your desk, Emailing away, back and forth, all day long. If you ever had the time, or the inclination, to count all of those Email messages, not to mention your responses to them, it would probably number well into the hundreds, if not more! Think of all the opportunities you have for telling people about your eBook.


We’ve all seen them, those mainly annoying messages in our inboxes preceded by a subject line bearing those three telltale letters: FWD! But try to see those little forwards as a promoter, not a reader. Every Email of yours that gets forwarded to someone else is a new pair of eyes for your sig line. That funny story about your drunken weekend becomes a sales pitch nonetheless. That tearjerker about your secretary’s ailing grandmother could just mean a sale for your eBook on How to Choose a Nursing Home. You never know who could be reading your original Email, and when your sig line is attached, the more the merrier!


To compose a signature line, you’ll have to get a little more familiar with your Email program. Depending on which one you have, this can be hard or easy. I use Outlook Express, and it pretty much walks you through the system. Play with your signature line tools for a while, until you figure out how to use them. If all else fails and you can’t figure it out, simply write yourself a signature line on a document and keep it on your desktop. (I admit, I had to do this for a week or two until I figured mine out!) Whenever you write an Email to a potential eBook customer, simply cut and paste your signature line to the bottom. See how easy that was?


Here is my signature line:

Rusty Fischer is the author of FREEDOM TO FREELANCE: The Editor of The Buzz On Series Reveals How To Find, Get and Keep Your Next Freelance Job, available at


It’s short, it’s sweet, it’s simple, and it’s to the point. Don’t clutter your sig line with quotes form other authors, or annoying philosophies like “Your attitude determines your altitude!” Number one, people hate that. Number two, what are you selling? The best sig lines contain your name, the title of your eBook, and where an interested person can buy it.

Depending on your Email software, you will probably have to type, or better yet, cut and paste the entire URL for your eBook purchasing page into your sig line. If you just type in, it might not show up as a hyperlink in some programs.


Remember, the whole point of a great signature line is that someone can look at it, see a glowing blue hyperlink, and, out of curiosity, click on it to see where it leads. If they have to cut and paste it into their Web browser, that might just be a little too much work for some people. Who am I kidding, nowadays that’s too much work for most people!

When deciding on a URL, pick your eBook’s main page. Don’t give people the option of checking out your ePublisher’s main page, or let the hyperlink take them to a review of your book that may be great, but doesn’t include purchasing information. Remember, the key to Internet commerce is this: the less clicks, the better.


The hyperlink in my sig line takes readers straight to my eBook’s main page. There, thanks to my awesome ePublisher, folks can read all about my book, including the Table of Contents, a few reviews, some author interviews, blurbs, samples, etc. Then, they are just one click away from actually buying the book. All in all, that’s two clicks! On the World Wide Web, that’s known as the “two click maximum!”


Of course, not every Email recipient is worthy of a sig line. Yes, I know you’re trying your hardest to sell that eBook and share your words with as many people as possible, but let’s face it, some of them just aren’t going to buy it. Your mother, for instance. No matter how many of my printed books she’s bought, my Mom will NOT buy any of my eBooks. “I don’t understand how to read them,” she says, a woman who can cook a Thanksgiving dinner for 200 without spilling a drop of dressing. So when I’m writing back and forth to Mom, no sig lines.

Your boss is another. If you’re moonlighting as a freelance eAuthor, you might not want your boss to know just how much time you have on your hands. Your wife, possibly, if your eBook happens to bear the title How to Score With Women! As for the rest, I’ll leave that up to you. In general, however, unless it’s a family member or relative who’s already bought the book, use your sig line with EVERY Email. Once it’s a habit, it’s hard to go back!

So, whether you’re cutting and pasting your sig line onto every Email you send, or just using your Email’s signature line feature, make sure that you do! A hundred or more Emails a day, a hundred or more sig lines, could just mean the difference in celebrating when you get that first royalty check, or crying!


Rusty Fischer is the author of the eBook, 101 WAYS TO PROMOTE YOUR eBook–FOR FREE! available at

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