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Best Method For Corporate Email Signatures.

Posted on 2006-06-23
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Last Modified: 2010-05-18
Hello,

I wanted to hear your opinion on what the best way is to display html signatures in emails:

We use:

1.      Outlook 2003
2.      Active Directory
3.      HTML emails
4.      embeded gif company logo (manually setup for each user)
5.      we have an auto generated disclaimer text that goes at the end of each email when user sends out an email (server side).

Note:

1.      receiver should be able to highlight and copy/paste the signature information. (we are not looking to have the entire signature to be an image).
2.      signature should display correctly in most email clients, including AOL, Yahoo, etc and Webmail
3.      minimum security blocks by the receiver’s email client.


one method is to embed the company logo picture within the signature or point to an URL where the picture is located. what are the pros/cons?

Also would be great if we can mass update signatures for certain office locations (server side) etc. is there a good tool out there that does this?

Thanks.
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Question by:swisscommerce
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David Lee earned 500 total points
ID: 16975295
Hi swisscommerce,

If you want all messages to go out with a signature, then I'd look for a server based product.  That'd allow you to configure eveything centrally, avoiding the need for updates to various offices, and enforce the signatures as desired.  If doing this centrally isn't an option, then I'd look for an Outlook add-in that does this.  The final option would be to build the singature and send it out, or to use scripting on the local computer.  If the signature is constructed using standard HTML, then it should display okay in any mail client that supports HTML emails.  To get the best result at the recipient end you'' want to embed the logo.  That makes the messages larger, but avoids the recipient having to click to download pictures from the internet, and the messages will display the logo consistently whereas a linked image will show as a red X if the recipient is viewing the message while off-line.

Cheers!
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Expert Comment

by:upul007
ID: 16978022
A classic example of what you are trying to achieve is used by www.godaddy.com for their customer support services. I think what you need is a pre-formatted html template inclusive of the logo and disclaimer, set up at a central location and referred when a new message or a reply forwarding is done.Or even two templates. One for new messages and the other for replies and forwards.
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Author Comment

by:swisscommerce
ID: 16979320
thanks.

so far we have 4 methods, ranked in this order;


1. server side product
4. use scripting on the local computer
2. outlook add-in
3. build signature and send it out to each individual


i agree that logo should be embedded logo to assue better results (size difference is small, approx 2KB).

we are currently using the last method (#3), which is temporary.

Q1:
we do also use a bat file that runs everytime the user starts his computer. it does several things, like mapping drives, turns off wireless etc. when you refer to scriptiing on local computer, how would go about this? where would the script take the values from to create the signature?

Q2:
any server side products that you recommend?

Q3:
any outlook add-in products?


if have answer to any of the above is appreciated.
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Expert Comment

by:David Lee
ID: 16979878
Q1:  The bat file could run a VBScript file that takes a base template and fills it in with values from Active Directory and deposits the resulting signature file(s) in the proper folder of the computer.  The HTML and plain-text versions would be easy enough to do, but the RTF version would be a bit more difficult.

Q2:  I don't have any hands-on experience with any.

Q3:  Ditto Q2.

For both Q2 and Q3 Slipstick.com is an excellent resource for finding Exchange/Outlook add-ins and tools.
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Expert Comment

by:upul007
ID: 16981493
I am including a link where another EE member had posted on how they are handling this. The coding may be updated to suit your requirements.

http://www.experts-exchange.com/Applications/MS_Office/Outlook/Q_21878899.html

My answer looks at how the coding can be implemented in Outlook.

I believe that you should look at this method though this means the Disclaimer appended to each email would need to be either removed and included here or left as it is. You should do some testing.

Try not to get add-ins involved. Exchange and Outlook themselves offer quite a few options to tackle this.
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