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How to send personalized e-mail using mail merge tool in PostCast

You will learn how to send private and confidential messages to each of your clients. This is an efficient communication method, both with the existing and the potential clients respectively. The PostCast E-mail Merge tool can also be used for sending various reports, as well as any other kind of e-mail communication. The program supports all database types. When you choose table or view from a drop down list, it will display a list of fields that you can insert into an e-mail message.

Take a look at this message:
 

Example 1

---------------------------------------
Subject: George, a quick note from Jim

Dear George,
 

I am constantly trying to improve the quality of my services to my friends and clients. Please help me by checking out whether I have your correct data in my database. This is very important because I would like to ensure up-to-date contact data of all my clients.

If some of the mentioned data is wrong, please send me the correct ones to jim@mycr.org.


Name: George Smith
Company: HLS Designs
Street: 28935 Baker St
City: Sacramento 95820
Country: USA

Thank you very much in advance.

Jim Hudson
jim@mycr.org
---------------------------------------
 

As you have certainly noticed, this is a personal message to George. This is one of many ways to employ the E-mail Merge tool. Every record in your Customers table is processed and a special e-mail message is created for each and every client type to be found in the table. Thus, the recipient receives the message which had been personally sent to him/her, with his/her personal data. Now I will present how you can simply set up the program to use the records from a database to generate messages. You will also learn to create a new column and extract the duplicate records from the table.

You will be using the database that had been defined in the previous Exercises. The Customers table involves three records:

1. Click the 'Database' button from the toolbar. You have opened the database window.

2. In order to successfully send the messages you need to have column which would contain e-mail addresses. We shall create it easily: click the 'Column' button from the toolbar. A menu will open up, wherefrom you will select the 'New Column' option.

Then, enter 'E-mail' in the input box which will be opened. This will be the name of your e-mail address column. You will notice that the last column in your table is now titled 'E-mail'. If this is the case, you have just created a new column successfully.

3. Your table contains two (almost identical) records. These are the second and the third record that correspond to the client called Rick Johnson. Should your table contain a double record, the chances are that a client may receive the same message several times at once. It would not look very professional on your behalf. Therefore, I will show you how to extract duplicate records from the table:

- click the 'Tools' button from the toolbar and select the Remove duplicate records tool.

- unselect the following columns in the window which will pop up: Street, City, Country,

Phone, Fax, Registration fee, Number of licenses.

- click the 'Start' button and reply affirmatively to the question 'Are you sure you want to delete the selected records?'.

We have just derived unique records for each and every client respectively. There will be only two records left in the table which contain data about your two clients. Which is just what we wanted to achieve - each record in the table should be dedicated to a different client.

4. In order to make your message reach its destination we should enter certain e-mail addresses in the 'E-mail' column of your table. You will write the addresses by clicking the mouse on the 'E-mail' cell in the first row and in the second row, and then enter your active e-mail address i.e. the one whereby you would like the message text we are going to send. Therefore, write your own e-mail address. This time we shall not send messages to anyone but yourself, so that you would be able to receive them and read them using your favorite E-mail Client. Type your own e-mail address in the 'E-mail column' for both clients in the table respectively. Click the 'Refresh' button from the toolbar to save the changes.

5. Now we have the table ready. Click the Merge button from the toolbar to start the E-mail Merge tool.

6. We shall load the ready message in the E-mail Merge tool. Click the 'Open' button from the toolbar which belongs to the E-mail Merge tool. Locate the 'Exercise 4.dmg' file located in the PostCast basic directory (in most cases C:\Program Files\PostCast). Click the 'Open' button and you will notice that you have just opened the message ready to be sent.

7. Now we shall send the message. Click the 'Send' button from the toolbar located within the E-mail Merge screen. First verify whether you had correctly entered the SMTP server data, which is used for sending e-mail messages. If you are not sure what to enter, check out the settings in the E-mail program that you are using. Click the 'Online' tab to do it. See the figure below to find the details.

Now everything is ready. Press the 'Send' button from the 'Send Messages' screen and the program will process the messages first, move them to the Outbox folder, and then activate sending. The following figure shows the screen used to follow the active status of message sending:

Once the program terminates message sending, wait for a minute for the messages to reach your mailbox. Then use your e-mail program to receive them. Provided that everything had run smoothly, you should receive two private and confidential messages.

You may use the same principle to actually send messages to your customers. Please note that we have used your e-mail address instead of your clients', so that you could test the program. During the sending process, the e-mail address spaces should contain the actual addresses of your recipients.

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