Creating and applying reply signatures

Requirement:

When you start a new email conversation, you want your signature to be as complete as possible with all your branding imagery, contact details, social media links, legal disclaimer and perhaps even an advertising banner too.

Once your recipient has replied to you, any subsequent replies from you will start to appear cumbersome if you keep adding the full signature each time, so you want to add an abbreviated version of your signature on these replies.

Solution:

When Exclaimer Cloud - Signatures for Office 365 receives an email for processing it adds the first signature that is applicable. However, you can configure the system to scan the body of the message and avoid re-adding the same signature if it is already present. You can then force it to skip to the next applicable signature.

You will need to create two versions of your signature, the full one and the abbreviated (reply) one. You will then configure the full signature to only ever be applied once per message, while the abbreviated one will appear on each subsequent reply.

Implementation:

For the purposes of this example we will assume you already have a single signature for all your users, such as the one below:

Main Office 365 signature example.

Step 1: 

Create the abbreviated "reply version" of your full signature, for example:

Reply email signature example.

Ensure that this signature is evaluated after the full signature. Signatures are displayed on screen in the order that they are evaluated (left to right), and you can change the evaluation order using the Re-order button. 

Step 2:

Is there a short, unique string of characters in your full signature that would not normally appear anywhere else in the email? Typically this might be your Company Registration number, a piece of your office address, or even a short phrase from your legal disclaimer. Ideally, try to keep the string to no more than around 20 characters. 

If you have identified a suitable string in your full signature, then you can skip straight to Step 3, otherwise you must now modify the signature to include a unique string. Here are a couple of tips on how to do this in an unobtrusive way. 

Use signature versioning

Your Marketing department is likely to require periodic changes to your email signature designs. By incorporating a small, subtle version number into the design, you can use this as your unique string. When the design changes, you will increment the version number. As the new version number will not be present on any previous replies, this has the advantage that the new full signature with the changed design will be added on the next reply.

In the example below, a date-based signature version number has been added into the Legal Disclaimer block:

reply_1.png

Use text embellishment

A decorative horizontal line at the foot of the signature can be made up of a sequence of characters that provides visual appeal as well as giving you the unique string that you require.

In the example below a repeating pair of characters has been added a text field at the end of the signature design:

reply_2.png

Step 3:

The final step is to configure the full signature to only ever be added to a message, if it is not already there:

  1. Access signature rules for the full signature.
  2. Enable the Do not add this signature if the message body contains this text option.
  3. In the field directly below, enter the unique string that you identified in Step 2.
  4. Enable the Add the next applicable signature (if any) instead checkbox.
  5. Click OK to store your changes. 

In the example below we have used the unique signature versioning string described in Step 2 above:

exclude_example.png 

Haven't found a solution to your problem?

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