Mail Merge - the basics

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Create customized letters, envelopes, labels and more for mass mailings.

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Mail Merge - the basics

  1. 1. Mail Merge - The Basics Form Letters, Data Sources, Envelopes
  2. 2. Objectives <ul><li>Define a mail merge </li></ul><ul><li>Discuss the parts of a mail merge </li></ul><ul><li>Discuss common mail merge terminology </li></ul><ul><li>Describe the three steps used to complete a mail merge </li></ul><ul><li>Discuss some common mail merge issues </li></ul>
  3. 3. Mail Merge
  4. 4. Parts of a Mail Merge <ul><li>Main document </li></ul><ul><li>Data source </li></ul><ul><li>Header source (optional) </li></ul><ul><li>Results </li></ul>
  5. 5. Common Terminology <ul><li>Field </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A specific piece of information about a record </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Record </li></ul><ul><ul><li>An associated collection of fields </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Delimiter </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A character used to separate fields and records </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Header row </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The row that contains the field names </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Example Record Header Row Field Delimiter FirstName LastName Address City State Zip Susan Smith 1 West Ave Anycity NY 12345 David Jones 2 Main St. Anothercity NY 12345
  7. 7. The Main Document Contains <ul><li>Boilerplate text </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Form letter </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Invoice </li></ul></ul><ul><li>A standard format for printing </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Envelope </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Label </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Fields </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Placeholders for the data from your data source </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Types of Main Documents <ul><li>Form letters </li></ul><ul><li>Mailing labels </li></ul><ul><li>Envelopes </li></ul><ul><li>Catalog </li></ul>
  9. 9. The Data Source <ul><li>Contains the text and graphics that vary for each merged document </li></ul><ul><li>Contains records and fields </li></ul><ul><li>Requirements: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Records in the data source must contain the same number of fields as the header row </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The header row must be the first row or paragraph (if a separate header source is not used) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Field data must be entered exactly as you want it to be printed </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Types of Data Sources <ul><li>Word document </li></ul><ul><li>Excel spreadsheet </li></ul><ul><li>Databases </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Microsoft Access </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>dBASE </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Microsoft ® FoxPro ® </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Others </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Address books </li></ul><ul><li>Text files </li></ul>
  11. 11. Header Source (optional) <ul><li>Consists of a row of field names </li></ul><ul><li>Used in addition to a data source </li></ul><ul><li>Identifies the fields of data in the data source </li></ul><ul><li>For example, if you can't add or edit a header record in the data source (because the data source is read-only), you can use a separate header source that contains the field names you want to use. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Results of Mail Merge <ul><li>Word 2000 can merge to: </li></ul><ul><li>New document </li></ul><ul><li>Printer </li></ul><ul><li>Fax (if faxing software is installed) </li></ul><ul><li>E-mail (if e-mail software is installed) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>* Mac (Apple) is not included in this tutorial </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Getting Started <ul><li>To activate the Mail Merge Helper, click Mail Merge on the Tools menu. </li></ul>
  14. 14. Using the Mail Merge Helper <ul><li>Step 1: Create the main document </li></ul><ul><li>Step 2: Attach the data source </li></ul><ul><li>Step 3: Perform the mail merge </li></ul>
  15. 15. Step 1: Create the Main Document <ul><li>Click the Create button next to the number 1 in the Mail Merge Helper dialog box </li></ul><ul><li>Select the type of Main Document that you’ll be using for this Mail Merge </li></ul><ul><li>Choose whether to use the active document window or create a new document </li></ul>
  16. 16. Step 2: Attach the Data Document <ul><li>If the data source already exists: </li></ul><ul><li>Click the Get Data button next to the number 2 in the Mail Merge Helper dialog box </li></ul><ul><li>Choose Open Data Source </li></ul><ul><li>Select the Data Source (document, spreadsheet, database, or other file) </li></ul><ul><li>Click Open </li></ul>
  17. 17. Step 2: Attach the Data Document (cont.) <ul><li>If the Data Source needs to be created: </li></ul><ul><li>Click the Get Data button </li></ul><ul><li>Choose Create Data Source </li></ul>
  18. 18. Create a Data Source <ul><li>The Create Data Source dialog box lets you: </li></ul><ul><li>Remove unwanted field names </li></ul><ul><li>Add new field names </li></ul><ul><li>Change the order of field names </li></ul>
  19. 19. Create a Data Source (cont.) <ul><li>Finalize all of the field names to be used </li></ul><ul><li>Click the OK button </li></ul><ul><li>Name and save your data source </li></ul><ul><li>You will then receive the following message: </li></ul>
  20. 20. Entering Data <ul><li>The next step is to enter data using a data form. </li></ul><ul><li>Move through the form using the Enter key or the Tab key on the keyboard </li></ul><ul><li>When finished, click OK </li></ul>
  21. 21. Preparing the Main Document <ul><li>Insert merge fields where you want the changing data to be placed </li></ul><ul><li>Apply the formatting you want </li></ul><ul><li>Format the document as a blueprint of what the final result will look like </li></ul>
  22. 22. Step 3: Perform the Mail Merge <ul><li>Click the Merge button in the Mail Merge Helper </li></ul>
  23. 23. Mail Merge Output <ul><li>Select the output for the mail merge </li></ul><ul><li>Specify the records to be merged </li></ul><ul><li>You can also: </li></ul><ul><li>Check for errors </li></ul><ul><li>Set query options </li></ul>
  24. 24. Checking for Errors <ul><li>Compares field names used in the main document to the field names used in the data source </li></ul><ul><li>Verifies that the same number of fields are contained in each record </li></ul><ul><li>Reports any errors found </li></ul>
  25. 25. Setting Query Options <ul><li>Filter Records </li></ul><ul><li>Sort Records </li></ul>
  26. 26. Review <ul><li>Step 1: Create the main document </li></ul><ul><li>Step 2: Attach a data source </li></ul><ul><li>Step 3: Complete the merge </li></ul>
  27. 27. Merging to Labels <ul><li>Step 1: Choose Labels as the Main Document </li></ul><ul><li>Step 2: Attach a Data Source </li></ul>
  28. 28. Select the Label Options <ul><li>Select the type of printer </li></ul><ul><li>Select the type of label product </li></ul><ul><li>Create new label if needed </li></ul>
  29. 29. Set Up a Sample Label <ul><li>Insert the merge fields </li></ul><ul><li>Add punctuation and formatting </li></ul><ul><li>Click OK when finished </li></ul>
  30. 30. Merge the Labels <ul><li>Step 3: Merge </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Tip: Merge enough records for one sheet of </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>labels and print them on blank paper before </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>printing on actual labels. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Can be saved and used again </li></ul>
  31. 31. Merging to Envelopes <ul><li>Step 1: Choose Envelopes as the main document </li></ul><ul><li>Step 2: Attach a data source </li></ul>
  32. 32. Select the Envelope Options <ul><li>Select the envelope size </li></ul><ul><li>Set the address fonts and positions </li></ul><ul><li>Select the printing options for your printer </li></ul>
  33. 33. Set Up a Sample Envelope <ul><li>Insert the merge fields </li></ul><ul><li>Add punctuation and formatting </li></ul><ul><li>Add a postal bar code (optional) </li></ul><ul><li>Click OK </li></ul>
  34. 34. Merge the Envelopes <ul><li>Step 3: Merge </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Tip: Merge one or two envelopes to verify the </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>address positioning, envelope and address </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>orientation, and so on, before merging all of the </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>records. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Can be saved and used again </li></ul>
  35. 35. Mail Merge Toolbar View Merged Data Find Record Merge to New Document Merge to Printer Go To Record Mail Merge Helper Check for Errors Edit Data File
  36. 36. Data Source Toolbar Data Form Manage Fields Add New Record Delete Record Insert Database Sort Records Update Fields Mail Merge Main Document Find Record
  37. 37. Help Resources <ul><li>Microsoft Word Help </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ask the Office Assistant! </li></ul></ul>
  38. 38. Common Mail Merge Problems <ul><li>I’m prompted for a data source when I open a main document: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The original data source may have been moved or deleted. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Locate the file and attach it again. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>I receive a message that my data source is a mail merge main document: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The data source may have been the active window when the mail merge was started. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>On the Tools menu, click Mail Merge, click the Create button, and select “Restore to Normal Word Document.” </li></ul></ul>
  39. 39. Mail Merge Problems (cont.) <ul><li>Why do the merge fields print instead of my data? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The option to print field codes is turned on </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>On the Tools menu, click Options, click the Print tab, and clear the Field codes check box </li></ul></ul><ul><li>How do I print specific pages after I've merged all of the records to a new document? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A new document section is created for each merged record. On the File menu, click Print, type the appropriate section and page number in the following format: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Page#Section# Example: P1S2-P2S5 </li></ul></ul></ul>
  40. 40. Congratulations! You have completed the tutorial. Try the self-assessment to see what you have learned.
  41. 41. In a mail merge, what is the main document? (click the correct answer) Question 1 The document you start with that contains both information that is identical for each Merged copy and placeholders for unique information. The first document in the set that gets created. A document that contains only the information that is identical in each merged copy.
  42. 42. Why does the unique information you use in a mail merge have to be stored in data files? (click the correct answer) Question 2 Data files are a special type of file you use only to work with mail merge . Data files organize information in a way that lets you match specific pieces of that information with specific placeholders in the main document. Data files are designed to hold a lot of information.
  43. 43. What is the relationship between your data file and the fields you insert into the main document? (click the correct answer) Question 3 There is no relationship. Fields are equivalent to categories (column headings) in the data file. Each field represent one cell in the data file.
  44. 44. Why is it important to match fields ? (click the correct answer) Question 4 If you don’t match fields, you won’t be able to preview the merged documents. You match fields after you preview the merged documents in order to complete the merge. If Word can’t match fields in an Address block with column headings in your data file, you’ll see errors in your merged documents.
  45. 45. Once you choose to preview your documents, the merge is complete and you can’t make changes. (click the correct answer) Question 5 True False
  46. 46. Question 1 <ul><li>Correct! </li></ul><ul><li>The document you start with that contains both information that is identical for each merged copy and placeholders for unique information. </li></ul><ul><li>The main document is your starting document, where you add all the information that will be the same in every copy as well as placeholders that indicate what the unique information will be and where it will appear. </li></ul>Click to Continue
  47. 47. Question 2 <ul><li>Correct! </li></ul><ul><li>Data files organize information in a way that lets you match specific pieces of that information with specific placeholders in the main document. </li></ul><ul><li>It’s the structured way that information is organized in data files that makes it possible for you to put information from one cell in that file into one unique document. </li></ul>Click to Continue
  48. 48. Question 3 <ul><li>Correct! </li></ul><ul><li>Fields are equivalent to categories (column headings) in the data file. </li></ul><ul><li>Adding a file to the main document means that information stored in the corresponding column in your data file will appear in the merged documents. </li></ul>Click to Continue
  49. 49. Question 4 <ul><li>Correct! </li></ul><ul><li>If Word can’t match fields in an Address block with column headings in your data file, you’ll see errors in your merged documents. </li></ul><ul><li>Sometimes the name you give a column in your data file might be difficult for Word to interpret. For example, if you call the column where you list street addresses Number, Word might not automatically match that column with the Address part of the Address Block field. </li></ul>Click to Continue
  50. 50. Question 5 <ul><li>Correct! </li></ul><ul><li>False </li></ul><ul><li>Preview gives you a chance to look at your merged documents before the merge is complete. You can go back to the previous step in the process and correct anything that needs fixing. At the preview step in the Mail Merge task pane, you can use the previous and next record buttons to review each merged document. </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>Click to Continue
  51. 51. <ul><li>You have successfully completed the Mail Merge tutorial. </li></ul><ul><li>©Kirsten Prentice 2007 </li></ul>
  52. 52. Question 1 Incorrect Try again-
  53. 53. Question 2 Incorrect Try again-
  54. 54. Question 3 Incorrect Try again-
  55. 55. Question 4 Incorrect Try again-
  56. 56. Question 5 Incorrect Try again-

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