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Experience Mail Merge Nirvana With Gmail And Google Docs

Mail merge, the term either makes you cringe or sends rippling waves of pleasure throughout your body. The fact is that a mail merge program can facilitate the sending of personalized email messages to multiple contacts in a single stroke.

How can this benefit you? Well, if you’re organizing a party, you can send personalized invitations to your guests, or, if you run a small business that is getting ready to launch a new product, you can easily invite potential customers to the launch of your ingenious invention.

Today, we’re going to learn how you can use a handy tool from Digital Inspiration to create a mail merge by harnessing two of the Web’s most useful, online apps.

Creating A Mail Merge With Gmail

The current version of the Gmail Mail Merge program supports rich-text email templates, the addition of file attachments, and an option to BCC emails to yourself, as well as better overall performance. To get started, follow these directions, step-by-step:

  1. Open this Google spreadsheet and create a copy in your own Google Docs account (File | Make a Copy).
  2. Under the Mail Merge menu, select Reset to clear the sheet. Make sure to authorize Google Docs to access your Gmail and Google Contacts.
  3. Open Google Contacts and create a new Group that contains all the contacts you wish to send personalized messages. Alternatively, you can manually add a recipient’s name and email address into the Google spreadsheet.
  4. Select Mail Merge | Import Google Contacts, and enter the name of the Google Contacts group you created in the previous step. Now, Google Docs will automatically import all the germane contacts into your spreadsheet.
  5. Complete the various fields of the email template.
  6. Now, you can compose an email template in rich-text using the HTML Mail tool, and then copy and paste the generated HTML code in the message body field of the Google spreadsheet.
  7. If you desire to add an attachment to your message, simply upload the file to Google Docs and copy/paste the ID of the file into the Attachment ID field (the ID of a Google Doc is in its URL).
  1. Once again, navigate to the Mail Merge menu and select Start Mail Merge. The status of the names of your Gmail contacts will change to OK for all email messages that were successfully delivered through Google Docs.

Caveat: Gmail has a daily sending limit. You can send a maximum of 500 messages a day. If you exceed that number, Google can temporarily lock your Gmail account.

Source Digital Inspiration

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