Businesses send an estimated 112 billion emails every day, according to The Radicati Group’s latest Email Statistics Report. And business email volume is expected to grow at at least three percent a year through 2019. Are you making the most of all of these touch points with your customers, partners, investors and other stakeholders?
Indianapolis-based startup Sigstr offers a simplified email signature marketing platform that helps you turn everyday interactions into powerful sales opportunities.
Even small companies send a surprising number of emails when you look at the annual aggregate; a five-person operation sends about 50,000 emails yearly. But if you’ve ever tried coordinating an email signature campaign company-wide, there are a number of pain points and obstacles, such as:
- Messaging and branding across employee email signatures is usually very inconsistent
- Employees often use outdated logos, inconsistent fonts, colors, and formats
- They may also include their own personal quotes and animated GIF images
- Signatures are hard to manage and hard to update, especially for larger enterprises
- Typically, marketers email employees a document with 10+ steps to update a signature or to copy/paste/edit a sample signature
- Tracking email signature effectiveness is nearly impossible the old way
Sigstr, which currently offers integrations with both Gmail and Microsoft Outlook, enables marketers to manage employee email signatures and marketing campaigns across the entire enterprise, while providing real-time analytics, and all of this can be done without IT or developer involvement.
Until recently, Sigstr was largely bootstrapped, or self-financed by its founder, Dan Hanrahan. This week, however, the the now post-Beta startup announced an undisclosed amount of investment from newly formed venture studio High Alpha.
“High Alpha is not only providing investment to allow for Sigstr new all-star hires like VP of Customer Success Dave Duke (former client success leader at ExactTarget), but also providing an array of services around finance, strategy, and marketing, so that Sigstr can focus solely on building an incredible product, taking care of existing customers, and finding new business,” Hanrahan said.
Beyond the tracking analytics — obviously game changing as an untapped marketing channel with a built-in campaign effectiveness dashboard — these are the three most important things to know about Sigstr:
- Email signature campaigns are automatically pushed out to employees’ email signatures
- Employees only have to implement Sigstr settings once and all future signature campaigns update automatically through the marketer admin controls
- Signatures are easily segmented by groups or departments and managed in one central location
Sigstr has a reasonable roster of 50 customers so far, including many familiar Indiana companies like hc1, Angie’s List, ReturnPath, Roche Diagnostics and Indiana University.
TechPoint is also a Sigstr customer and I can confirm that the user experience so far has been as easy-to-use as promised. While we have not been using the platform long enough to report effectiveness data, the sheer volume of emails and marketing interactions that were previously squandered has been eye-opening.
Founder Dan Hanrahan responded to a number of questions we posed about Sigstr via email earlier this week.
Can you outline the experience of developing Sigstr? What was the genesis?
“Marketers are investing in white papers, case studies, hosting events and webinars. Sigstr gives marketers access to every employees’ email signature to push the most timely content into the thousands of emails employees are already sending. Savvy marketers have long realized the potential of employee email, but we constantly saw them struggling to efficiently update signatures and track results. Sigstr makes that simple.”
Tell us about the team who built Sigstr.
“Sigstr has so many ties to Indiana! The original minimal viable product (MVP) was built by Sproutbox, which is an awesome group of people in Bloomington, Ind. Very quickly, we had a dozen customers providing amazing feedback. Most of our early customers were Indy-based companies and their feedback helped to shape the road map. Next, we hired a lead engineer Sam Smith, who built software product at iGoDigital and ExactTarget, to take the Sigstr product to the next level.”
How would you describe your growth trajectory in the short-term and long-term?
“The MVP/Beta phase was about finding the right customers, listening to their feedback, and rapidly iterating to roll out the most requested enhancements. We’ll continue this process, but we have aggressive growth plans and believe the market opportunity and the timing to be ideal.
“With a tremendous addressable market, a problem most organizations have, and a solution that does not require big customer commitments in terms of time and money, we couldn’t be more excited about the prospects for growth.”
What are the biggest lessons you have learned through creating and launching your company?
“In any rapidly growing business, and especially in software, the daily ups and downs are incredible. One minute you’re changing the world, the next it’s crumbling around you! Keeping a level head throughout is paramount. But the real difference between winning and losing is the same as on a grade school playground. If you pick the right team and trust them, you have a great chance to succeed.”
Check out two Sigstr free downloads:
- eBook: 3 Creative Ways to Unlock the Power of Email Signatures
- Case Study: Brackets For Good, Email Signature Marketing Works for Nonprofits
Here are a few examples of campaigns Sigstr users have deployed to company email signatures: