Intro to Mail Merge. Contents: David Diskin for the University of the Pacific Center for Professional and Continuing Education. Word Mail Merge Wizard

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1 Intro to Mail Merge David Diskin for the University of the Pacific Center for Professional and Continuing Education Contents: Word Mail Merge Wizard Mail Merge Possibilities Labels Form Letters Directory Envelopes Name Tags Certificates s List Sources Excel Access Outlook Contacts Word and HTML Tables Create a New List Setting Up the Document Address Block Greeting Line Adding Fields Manually Finishing Touches Changing Formatting Replicating Labels Filtering Your List Sorting Your List Previewing the Merge Mail Merge Toolbar Merging... To a Printer To a Document To Proper Column Names

2 The Word 2003 Mail Merge Wizard Creating a merged document of any kind is easiest through the Merge Wizard. The wizard walks you through each step of creating your document and will save you a great deal of time and frustration. You can launch the wizard from the Tools menu, choosing Letters and Mailings and then Mail Merge. Mail Merge Possibilities Step 1 of the Mail Merge Wizard asks you the type of document you want to create. Described below are seven different possibilities you can create through Word s merge feature. Other ideas are certainly possible, limited only by your creativity. Labels One of the most common merge types is the label usually used for addresses. Step 2 of the Mail Merge Wizard will ask you for the type of label you re going to use on a button called Label Options. This corresponds directly to the product code of the labels you have purchased. Some common labels are: Address Labels... 3 Across, 10 Down...Avery 5160 Return Address Labels... 4 Across, 20 Down...Avery 8167 When viewing the list of labels, you can click Details to view information specific to that label such as its size. You can also create your own if what you are looking for is not displayed. Form Letters ABC Company Attn: John Smith 1234 Fifth Street Lodi, CA A form letter allows you to write a similar letter to all of your recipients, such as an announcement or a past-due notice. The recipient s address can be placed on the letter if you wish, and the greeting can be personalized with their name. Introduction to Mail Merge University of the Pacific CPCE Page 2 of 10

3 Directory A directory allows you to easily turn your list of data into a nicely formatted table or document, perfect for phone lists, catalogs, or other information where you want many results combined on the same page (almost like a sheet pf labels). Envelopes If your printer supports envelope handling, you can merge from your address book directly to envelopes creating a professional result and saving you lots of time. The Envelope Options button in Step 2 allow you to specify the size of your envelope. Normally you will be using a Size 10 envelope. s Creating a personalized from within Word can be done in seconds. Word will automatically use your default application to send individual s to the recipients you ve selected. Messages can include other merge fields too, like a customer s balance, account number, or a custom message. Name Tags With creative use of the Labels feature, you can create name tags by finding (or creating) a label size that suits your needs. Often, pre-purchased name tag sheets will have a matching Label Number that is already programmed into Word. However you may occasionally have to create your own. Certificates of Recognition If you have a lot of certificates to make, doing them in Word can save you time. You can create fields for the recipient s name, the reason for the award, and the date. By creating a Merge Letter with some creative formatting, you can insert the merge fields from your data source and print them out all at once. Introduction to Mail Merge University of the Pacific CPCE Page 3 of 10

4 List Sources In Step 3 of the Mail Merge Wizard you will be asked where the merged data will be coming from. Your merge list (of addresses, fields, and other information) can come from a variety of sources to make it easy for you to concentrate on the content of your message rather than technical workarounds. Because the merge file links to the source data, any changes you make later to the source data will automatically be reflected in Word the next time you merge. So if you create an announcement merge letter and link it to your Outlook Contacts, then add a few more contacts next week and run the merge again, the new contacts will be recipients of your letter without any further action. Excel Spreadsheet Without a doubt, the easiest way to merge into Word is through Excel. Word can easily read any Excel spreadsheet and figure out the columns and rows and bring them right into the Mail Merge Wizard. Upon selecting an Excel source file, Word will prompt you for the worksheet to use. Normally you ll just want Sheet1. If you have difficulties linking in your Excel spreadsheet, make sure that Row 1 is the header information for your data and includes names for each of the columns such as First Name and Address. Empty rows and columns can sometimes cause difficulties, so eliminate them before attempting the merge. Access Table or Query If your data is stored in an Access database, as a table or query, getting to your data is extremely easy. Simply choose Access Database for your file type and point to the file you want. Word will ask you which table or query you want to use. Introduction to Mail Merge University of the Pacific CPCE Page 4 of 10

5 Outlook or Exchange Contacts Many people keep their contacts in their Outlook contacts (or in an Exchange contacts folder). Word can link directly to that folder for your merge. Note that if your contacts are kept in Outlook Express this feature will not work. You must first export your address book to a Comma Separated file. Word and HTML Tables If your list exists in a simple Word or HTML table (from a website) you can use that for your source list. Like Excel, the document must not have extra information or you will likely run into difficulties. And, the first row of data must name each of the columns. Other Data Sources Not surprisingly, Word works best with other Microsoft products like Excel, Outlook, and Access. If you are merging data from a non-microsoft application such as Act or Goldmine, you will likely need to export the data into an Excel format first. If Excel is not an option, try Tab Delimited or Comma Delimited, in that order. Creating a New List If your data is not already typed, you may want to create it using Word s simple Address List feature. Choose Type a New List from step 3 and a simple window will appear allowing you to enter your data. You can even hit Customize to change the fields in your list. When you hit Close, the entries you created will be saved to a simple Access database and automatically linked into your merge. Introduction to Mail Merge University of the Pacific CPCE Page 5 of 10

6 Proper Column Names Word looks at the first (header) row of your data to determine the name of each column. This tells it which column contains the Name, Address, City, Phone, etc of your data. It is important that each of your columns are appropriately named or you will have difficulties figuring out which column is what when merging. Further, if you name columns according to what Microsoft Word is expecting you will save yourself a lot of time matching fields later. Here is a list of what Word prefers you name your columns: (you don t need to have every field) Full Name (or Name) First Name (or First) Middle Name Last Name (or Last) Nickname Courtesy Title (or Title) Company Name (or Company) Address Line 1 (or Address) Address Line 2 (or Address2) City State ZIP Code (or ZIP) Country Address (or ) Spouse First Name Spouse Courtesy Title Spouse Last Name Spouse Nickname Adding an Address Block When you want to insert someone s full mailing address the easiest solution is to insert an Address Block found in Step 4 of the wizard. This allows you to customize exactly how their address will appear in the document. If you want, it will even add the courtesy title to the addressee. Using the Address Block feature is far easier and more accurate than manually building the address with individual merge fields. Adding a Greeting Line Introduction to Mail Merge University of the Pacific CPCE Page 6 of 10

7 Just like an Address Block, the Greeting Line will add a greeting based on several defined styles. The line is pulled from your data based on the style you select. Adding Fields Manually Step 4 of the Mail Merge Wizard allows you to add fields to your document in addition to the Address Block and Greeting Line. A button called More Items will show you every available field from your source data. If you have additional fields in your data such as an account number, balance, due date, or special message, this is how you would insert them into your document. First place your cursor at the spot of the document you want the data to appear. Then hit More Items and choose your field and press Insert. Changing the Formatting The formatting of your merge document whether it be a sheet of labels or a letter can be changed just like anything else in Word. You can easily select the merge fields (usually shown in gray) and change its font, line spacing, margins, alignment, and more. You can change the formatting of your document at any stage during the Mail Merge Wizard. Replicating Labels If you have made any changes to the appearance of your first label and want that change automatically carried out to the remaining labels, simply hit the Update All Labels button on Step 4 of the Mail Merge Wizard. (Note this command is not available if you did not indicate you are working on labels.) Introduction to Mail Merge University of the Pacific CPCE Page 7 of 10

8 Filtering Your List If you want to limit your list to a particular subset you can filter based on any number of criteria from the fields in your list. You can include just customers in Lodi or only those who have a balance greater than $500. In Step 3 there is a button to Edit Recipient List. From this window you can pull down the menu for any header and specify your filter requirements. You can also simply uncheck a recipient using leftmost column. It is common to filter out recipients without a complete address. By using the Advanced option under any column heading you can specify even more filter requirements such as Less Than, Greater Than, or Includes. Sorting Your List If you want the results to be sorted by a particular column, such as ZIP Code or Last Name, just click on that heading from the Edit Recipient List window found in Step 3. For more advanced sorting features, pull down the heading menu and choose Advanced, then hit the Sort tab. Previewing the Merge Step 5 of the Mail Merge Wizard allows you to preview how the letter or labels will look when printed. You can cycle through each record using the << and >> buttons. Be sure to review many records before printing, as you will sometimes catch names that are too long or incorrect. Introduction to Mail Merge University of the Pacific CPCE Page 8 of 10

9 The Mail Merge Toolbar If you want faster access to Word s merge features, you can skip the Mail Merge Wizard and go straight for the Mail Merge Toolbar. If you have used prior versions of Word to make a merge, then you might already be familiar with this. To show (or hide) the toolbar, open the View menu and choose Toolbars and Mail Merge. Hover over any icon on the toolbar do display its meaning. Merging to a Printer Once you are finished setting up your merge, you can print it straight to your printer. Step 6 of the Mail Merge Wizard has the Print button which then prompts you to select which records (or all) you wanted printed. Merging to a Document If you want to personalize your letters or edit the individual results before printing, choose Edit Individual.... Word will create a brand new document similar to what would have been sent to the printer. However, you will be able to edit each individual label or page before printing. This is useful if you wish to add a custom note to your recipients. Merging to If you indicated that you are creating an , Merge to will be available in Step 6. Word will ask you for a Subject Line for your message and which field from your data source contains the address of your recipients. Remember that Word will automatically create an for each recipient and link into your default client to send. Once you start the merge, your s will be sent. The will be sent from your default account and settings. It is highly recommended that you test the feature by sending one to just yourself first. Introduction to Mail Merge University of the Pacific CPCE Page 9 of 10

10 Word s Online Help Word s online help has considerably improved over the past few versions. To access the help, just click the icon on the toolbar or use the Help task pane (Ctrl+F1). Enter a few keywords and see what comes back. If you re connected to the internet when you search, you ll get even more useful feedback including links to Microsoft tutorials, how-to articles, templates, and Knowledge Base articles. Copyright Notice This text is copyrighted by David Diskin. This document may be reproduced for internal or non-commercial use provided that this copyright notice stays with the text. Introduction to Mail Merge University of the Pacific CPCE Page 10 of 10

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