POW 1: How to Create an Email Signature Line with Links and Images

Welcome to the first installment of POW (Partners of Writers).  Today I want to share one of the easiest and cheapest ways to promote yourself by using your email’s signature line.

Think about it.  How many emails do you send out a day?  How many emails, pictures, or jokes do you forward? Why not use this to your advantage?

In the business world a signature line is common place, a lot of us often even skip the signature line at the end of the email since it is usually just boring lines of text with contact information.  However, by simply adding links and images, the end of each of your emails becomes one of your most powerful self promotion tools.  Here is how to do it with a Gmail email account:

How to create a Gmail signature with links and images:

Before we begin we need to prepare a few things:

  • Decide what you want to say in your signature line.
    • The first part is easy, your name, however you can also save yourself some time when you write emails if you insert a traditional salutation preceding your name. Such as:
      • Sincerely,
      • Truly,
      • Thanks, etc
    • After your name it should be your website address.  This should automatically turn into blue underlined text so the email receipt will know this is clickable.
    • Next add your tagline or thing you would like to promote. Since Romily’s book is not out yet, we decide to promote her publisher, the name of the book, and the expected publishing date. See her finished signature line below:
  • The next line is where the magic happens.  Almost all writers participate in one or more social media sites, but people do not want to memorize a long web address.  Adding icons with links to your social media accounts is a great way to add more followers as all they have to do is click on the icon in your email.
    • You can download these social media icons from free sources online such as iconarchive.com.
    • Stick to one icon set, do not mix and match.  It will end up looking messy.
      • If possible, pick an icon set that matches your category of writing. (Contemporary writers – should use clean, shiny, modern looking icons,  Historical writers – should use retro or simple looking icons)
      • You will need to hyperlink each of the icons to your profile page.  I will discuss that later in this how-to.
  • Make sure the images you want to add to your signature line are hosted on a public server.
    • So you will need to upload the images to your website, blog, or your favorite free online photo sharing site (such as Photobucket, Picasa, or Flickr). You’ll need to copy and paste the URL address for the picture into a Word file for later use. I’ve uploaded the images to Romily’s WordPress blog site, see the URL address highlighted below:


  • Make sure your images are size appropriately for the bottom of an email.  Large images should be resized before you upload it.  You can do this in your photo sharing software or from your desktop (Windows Powertoy Resizer, Mac Drag-N-Scale, and others). I chose to have the icons at 48 x 48 pixels.

In your Gmail account:

  • Click the Settings gear on the right hand side of the screen.
  • Select Settings from the menu that appears.
  • Go to the General tab.
  • Scroll down to the Signature: entry area.
  • Compose the signature’s text and formatting as you wish.
  • Position the text cursor where you want the image to appear in your signature.
  • Click Insert Image icon in the signature’s formatting toolbar.
  • If you cannot see the Insert Image button in the toolbar, make sure Inserting Images is enabled.
  • Enter the picture’s URL address that you copied and pasted into the Word file earlier (the URL address is from the web page, blog or image hosting service) into the Image URL box.
  • Click OK.

Add links to your text:

  • Click and drag to highlight the text you want to link to a website.  In this example, it is the website address we want to link to the actual website.
  • Click Insert Link icon in the signature’s formatting toolbar.
  • Enter the URL address of the website you want to link to into the Web Address box.
    • The text should turn blue and be underlined (on my screen it showed up purple and underlined).
  • Click OK.

Add links to your pictures:

  • Click the picture you want to link.  In this example, we are linking the Facebook icon to Romily’s Facebook profile page URL address.
  • Click Insert Link icon in the signature’s formatting toolbar.
  • Enter the URL address of the website you want to link to into the Web Address box.
  • Click OK.  Repeat for the other icons.

Once back to the Signature area, review to make sure you are satisfied, then scroll to the bottom of the page and click Save Changes.  That’s it you are done!

Follow up information:

  • You do not have to keep the same signature forever. You can change your signature line as you need to in order to keep it fresh and alert others to anything new and exciting you may be doing. If you open a new social media account make sure to feature that link in your signature line so others can click and find out what you are up to.
  • I just outlined how to do this in Gmail, but other email clients (Outlook, Yahoo, AOL, Thunderbird, etc) are very similar once you find the setting for the signature line.
  • If the above is too difficult, there is software that will do it for you.  WiseStamp is an app that does the same thing as above but makes it more user friendly.  They have free and monthly subscription packages.

Does anyone have a subject for the next POW?  Please let me know in the comments below.