Tag Archives: Email Marketing

Email Merge with personalised To and (related) CC/BCC fields in Outlook

By standss - Comments ( 3 ) Thursday, October 29th, 2015

Is it possible to do an email merge with a personalized email address in the To field and one or more RELATED email addresses in the CC or BCC fields. In this post we look at why and how you can achieve this with Microsoft Outlook?


This is very useful when you need to send a copy of the same email to two or more people in the same company.

For example:

  •  You may want to send reminders for a particular event to attendees but all CC their  assistants.
  •  You may send copies of statements to your clients and CC a copy to their accounts  manager.
  • If you are running a newsletter for a school, you want to send an email to one parent and CC the other parent on it too.

In all these examples the To and CC field are related to each other i.e. there could be a different CC email address for each person you are emailing.

Before I show you how to do this in Outlook, you may be wondering…

Why not just send each person a separate copy of the same email?

The main reasons for this is that you want all recipients to be aware that the others have also received the email. They can now also do Reply-to-All on the email your sent to start a conversation if they need to.

Setup Your List

The first thing you need to do is to setup a list which contains the email address you want to use in the To field and also the email address(es) for the CC field.

For this example, I am assuming that your list is in Microsoft Excel similar to the one that I have shown below:

blog 2


  • The To field (in this case the Customer Name) can only contain ONE email address.
  • The CC field can contain multiple email addresses separated by comas or semi-colons as shown for Jane Doe above.

Merge and Send the Emails

Now it’s time to send out the emails. While there is no built-in way in Outlook to do this, you can easily do this if you are using the Outlook add-in Email Merge Pro for Outlook.

Start Outlook

Click the Email Merge Wizard button. The Wizard will guide you to creating your email and to choosing the Excel file as your data source.

When you come to the following screen, click the Select field’s hyperlink.

blog 1

Click CC/BCC and then select the field that your CC email address is in.

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Click OK to return to the Wizard.

Follow the rests of the steps of the Wizard to send out the email.

Email Merge will create a separate email for each person, with the correct file attached to each one.

Our customers have used Email Merge to increase sales and to provide better support to their customers. Please share your own ideas in the comments below.

Related articles:

You can use this with our earlier article on setup your spreadsheet to email merge a different attachment to each person in Outlook.


Email Merge a different file to each person in Outlook.

By standss - Comments ( 0 ) Monday, October 12th, 2015

A reader asked… How can I do an email merge in Outlook and send each person a customized attachment (PDF)?

In this post I discuss why you may want to do this and the easiest way to get it done.


Existing Outlook users are using this feature to provide their customers a more personalized service in several ways.

An accounting firm generates PDFs of customized tax reminders for their clients and then uses Email Merge to distribute the correct report to each customer

  1. Another professional services firm creates personalized invoices in PDF format and then uses Email Merge to send them out.
  2. An investment company sends out recommendations to their clients using this technique.

I am sure that you can come up with your own ways to use this to better serve your own customers.

Setup your list

The first thing you need to do is setup a list which contains the email addresses of the people you wish to contact, and the names of the file that will be sent to them. In this example I am assuming that you will do this using Excel.

Simply add a field (column) to the excel sheet which has the full name (with path) of the file that you wish to send as shown below.

test 3

(You can use Excel formulas to make up the file name if they follow some kind of rule)

Merge and Send the Emails

Now it’s time to send out the emails. While there is no built-in way in Outlook to do this, you can easily do this if you are using the Outlook add-in Email Merge Pro for Outlook.

Start Outlook

Click the Email Merge Wizard button. The Wizard will guide you to creating your email and to choosing the Excel file as your data source.

When you come to the following screen, click the Select field’s hyperlink.

test 2

Click Attachments and tick the name of the field that contains the file name.

test 1

Click OK to return to the Wizard.

Follow the rests of the steps of the Wizard to send out the email.

Email Merge will create a separate email for each person, with the correct file attached to each one.

Our customers have used Email Merge to increase sales and to provide better support to their customers. Please share your own ideas in the comments below.

Not a user of Email Merge PRO for Outlook yet?

Download a fully-functional version today

Are your prospects DELETING your sales emails during the morning purge!

By standss - Comments ( 0 ) Wednesday, August 19th, 2015

You greatly increase the chances that your sales email will be deleted (without being read) if you send it in time for the morning purge. In this post we explain what the morning purge is… and what you can do to avoid it.

What is the morning purge?

Recent statistics show that the first thing that people do when they wake up is check their smart phones (after the alarm on the same smart phone wakes them up). Some jump straight to Facebook but many people that you are writing to take the first few minutes to prioritize their emails.

Does this sound familiar?

You wake up. You look at the big list of emails that has landed in your Inbox while you were sleeping.

You’re not awake enough to start working on the big stuff yet but you can get organized for when you get into the office.

So you skim through your emails and delete out the stuff that is not too important. You want a more manageable workload when you get into the office.

You DELETE! You PURGE! … and you’re not alone.

Millions of people do the exact same thing every morning.

Is your email really important enough to survive the morning purge?

If you’re responding to something that someone specifically asked for then your email is probably going to survive but…

If you’re sending out more cold-calling like sales and marketing emails while people are sleeping (or after they have left work) then chances are they’re being deleted without being read.

What you need to do to get your sales and marketing emails past the morning purge?

If sales and marketing is part of your job description then you NEED to get those cold-call-like emails opened and read.

The secret to surviving the morning purge is simple.

Make sure that your email gets delivered to your customers and prospects AFTER the morning purge.

This means that the best time to send your emails are after they have left home and some time while they are in the office.

But be careful… because there is another purge session that emails go through immediately after lunch… so don’t send your emails during lunch time either.

Want to know more tips like this?

Creating an Effective Email Signature

By standss - Comments ( 5 ) Tuesday, May 12th, 2015

A great email signature can help your business by building your image and credibility as well as making it easier for people to contact you. In this short post I look at what things a good signature block can do for you, what you want to put in, and what you should leave out.

The most important thing to remember… Your signature block needs to be as small as possible particularly since so many emails are only a few lines long… but it still has to achieve several objectives.

The objectives of a good signature block


A good signature block should do most if not all of the following for you:

  1. Let people know who you are
  2. Let people know how they can contact you
  3. Show people who may not know you what you or your company does
  4. If possible, convince people who don’t know you that you are a credible person that they can safely work with
  5. If you use social media a lot, let them connect you via your preferred social media website.

What you should include:

  1. Your Name
  2. Your Title (Optional but very useful, particularly if you have an important or at least important sounding title)
  3. Your company name
  4. (Optional) Your company logo
  5. (Optional) Logo or text details of any awards or memberships that build your credibility. Keep this as short as possible. Don’t list too many things or it loses it’s impact.
  6. A tag line that makes it easy to understand what you and your company do (Optional only if your company name is immediately recognizable)
  7. Your Phone Number
  8. Your web site address

What you do not need to include

Personally I feel that it is a waste of space to include the following:

  1. Your email address (they already know that sine they received the email from you)
  2. You fax number (unless you are in an industry/country that still makes use of fax)
  3. Your postal or physical address (they can always ask for this if they need it)


What do you think?

I hope that you find this article useful.

Do you have your own tips for better email signatures? Please share your ideas with other readers by leaving a comment on this post.



Categories : General, Office Tip, Outlook as a Business Tool Comments ( 5 )

Contact Segmentation: Increasing response rates to your sales and marketing emails in Outlook

By standss - Comments ( 2 ) Tuesday, April 28th, 2015

Many email marketers who use Microsoft Outlook rarely focus on the one thing that that almost always results in increased responses: contact list segmentation. In this post I am going to show you how you can use Outlook categories to segment your contacts.

What is segmentation and why does it work?

Segmentation basically means dividing your email list into smaller groups (or segments). Each contact can be part of one or more segments.

So why does segmentation work? It allows you to give your contacts more personalized attention.

You are now able to send out more specific emails targeted to people who are interested in that particular topic. This always results in higher open rates, click rates and response rates.

It also means less annoyed customers received emails on topics that they are not interested in.

How to you segment your list?

We will use Categories (a feature built into Outlook) to segment our contacts.

1.       Make a list of the Segments (Categories) that you will use

What are the key elements to distinguish your customers? It could be product, company size, region… whatever makes sense to your business.

Make a list of these segments. For example, we have a range of products at Standss that are reasonably different. We could therefore segment our list based on products.

  • Email Merge PRO for Outlook
  • Quick File for Outlook
  • Send Guard for Outlook
  • Email Tags for Outlook
  • eeminders for Outlook
  • Email Notes for Outlook

I also like to keep a separate segment of our Volume License Customers since they have further requirements for deployment, control and support.

Volume License Customers

2.       Add the Categories to Outlook’s Master List (of Categories)

Go to your Contacts folder in Outlook.

Right-click over a contact and click Categorize and then click All Categories.

Click New and enter the Name of your category. You can also choose a color if you want but I generally select None. Click OK.


Hint: You will see that I have named my category ml_EmailMerge instead of just EmailMerge. I use the ml_ in front of all my segment names to indicate that they are my mailing list categories. The master category list appears in all parts of Outlook (emails, appointments, tasks etc). By putting the ml_ in front of my mailing list categories, I can get them to appear together in the list when they are displayed alphabetically.

3.       Assign your contacts to the relevant segments.

Go to your Contacts folder in Outlook.

Right-click over a contact and click Categorize.

You can click the category from the list or you can click All Categories and then select multiple categories for a contact if you want.

Repeat for all relevant contacts.

Viewing Your Various Segments

Once you have your contacts segmented, you will need Outlook to show you the contacts by segment so that you can use them easily.

Go to your Contacts Folders.

Click on the View Tab and Click on Categories (which will be in the Arrangement group)


Your contacts will now be displayed grouped by Categories. Contacts will be displayed more than once if they are in more than one category.


You can simply type the name of the Category in the Outlook Search box and only matching contacts will be shown

How to use your Categories/Segments in Sales and Marketing Emails

The next time you need to send out an email that is relevant only to a particular segment, display the list of contacts in the segment as explain above.

Then create your email and send it out only to the people in that segment.

I guarantee that you will get much better responses rates… and you will also get less emails from annoyed contacts asking to be removed from your list (since you will only be contacting people who are genuinely interested in your email).

Fine-Tuning Outlook emails to segments (Better Responses in Less Time)

If you want to get even better response rates, you should send out personally addressed emails to your contacts.

This means that each email should only have one contact’s name in the To field. You may even want to personalise the email with the contact’s name and other details.

This can be time-consuming to do if you try and do it by hand.

We recommend Email Merge Pro for Outlook. Email Merge Pro installs inside Outlook and uses a step-by-step Wizard to quickly create and send out personalized emails to selected contacts.

Best of all, the emails will still be sent out from Outlook instead of looking like emails from a mailing service. This is extremely important, particularly if you are dealing with larger customers.

Email Merge Pro has full support for Categories so that you can easily send out emails to segments when you need to.

Learn more and download a trial version of Email Merge Pro for Outlook addon.

Personalized Email helps improve Open Rates and Conversion

By standss - Comments ( 0 ) Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

I read an interesting case study today about how a company called CloudEndure achieved 58% open rate and high quality leads by sending personalized emails to prospective leads. I would recommend that you read this article as it is a perfect example of How to generate quality leads and why personalized email marketing works.

The way that we gather insight about our leads may vary from business too business but in today’s post, we will look at a simple solution that will allow you to send out personalized emails to improve your open rates and conversions.

But first let’s understand why sending personalized emails is better?

Emails sent the wrong way are MUCH more likely to be blocked by the many levels of junk email filters that we all have (even if we don’t always know they’re there).

Junk/SPAM Mail Filters have different levels of sophistication but they all follow a few basic rules including:

  • An email with a lot of recipients is more likely to be spam than an email addressed to only my valid email address and…
  • An email that is NOT addressed to me directly is more likely to be SPAM than one that is addressed to my email address.

Many Outlook users don’t realize the multiple levels of junk email filters stopping both junk and often real emails from getting to our Inboxes.

  • Level 1 – Internet Service Provider: Most ISPs now have Junk Mail Filters setup on their servers. These filters do their work even before the email gets to our computers i.e. they remove the email to a Junk Folder that can only be accessed via the Internet.
  • Level 2 – Anti Spam Software: Many users have additional anti-spam software on their computers that automatically remove and quarantine suspected spam emails.
  • Level 3 – Outlook’s built-in Junk Email Filter: Finally Outlook has its own Junk Mail filter which moves suspected junk emails to Outlook’s own Junk E-mail folder.

If you’re still sending out your Sales and Marketing Emails from Outlook by putting them all in the To, CC and BCC fields of one email then guess what… your email is most likely lost in a Junk Email Folder somewhere… it is NOT reaching the Reader.

Very few users bother checking the various Junk Mail folders… if your email is getting blocked then chances are it’s going to stay blocked.


Email Merge! You can use Outlook to create and send out personalized copies of the same email to many people.

Outlook has some basic mail merge functionality built into it (it uses Word to do the merge) but this does have some limitations including:

  • being harder to use
  • not being able to customize the Subject line and
  • not being able to send out your emails in smaller lots (which again impacts deliverability).

The easiest way to do this is using our own EmailMerge for Outlook addin. Our addin installs inside Microsoft Outlook and then provides a step-by-step Wizard that will guide you through your first email merge.

Watch a short demo video to see Email Merge in action or download a trial version to test it yourself.

Hope you find this tip useful with your own email marketing campaigns.

Do you know of other ways to improve open rates and conversion?

Share it with our readers our leaving a comment below.


Add Unsubscribe Links to Emails Sent Using Email Merge

By standss - Comments ( 0 ) Sunday, September 7th, 2014

A few weeks back we received an inquiry from a customer which read:

“do you have a simple , inexpensive bulk mailer program which I can use to send schedules , newsletters etc to targeted customers including an opt out option. I want a once off purchase – not a subscription service and I definitely don’t want to SPAM my customers as this will lose me business?”

A lot of you may already know what solution we would have offered the customer… Any Guesses?

Yes… our very own Email Merge for Outlook which basically meets all the requirements.

If you are new to Email MergeDownload our 30 day trial version to try it yourself and see just how simple and cost effective it can be for your email marketing needs.

One of the most commonly asked question we have had recently is…

How to add unsubscribe links to the mass emails sent using Email Merge?

In this post I will be showing you just how to add unsubscribe links and also managing your unsubscribe list using Email Merge.

Adding Unsubscribe links to emails

With the method of unsubscribe that I will be showing you, there will be a link in each email that you sent out, when the link is clicked, a new email will be created with pre-filled content and the subscriber can send that back to you. Here is how:

  • Open Outlook
  • Start the Email Merge wizard, move through the steps in the wizard till you reach the step to edit/compose your email
  • Start typing your email
  • Once done, please your cursor where you would like to add your unsubscribe link (I personally recommend right at the moment of your email)
  • Enter a text of your choice for the subscribe link for example “To cancel your subscription please click Unsubscribe”
  • Highlight all the text that you would like to create as a hyperlink. In this example I will only highlight the word “Unsubscribe”
  • Now click the Insert tab > click Hyperlinks. This will open the following screen:


  • On the right side under “Link to:”, select E-mail Address
  • In E-mail Address:, enter the address on which you could like to receive the unsubscribe notification.
  • In Subject:, enter “Unsubscribe from Newsletter” or something similar with the word Unsubscribe in it
  • Click OK

This will now create a hyperlink in your emails. Your newsletter subscribers can request to opt out by simply clicking on the link and sending the notification email to you.

How to Manage unsubscribe using Email Merge

You will now be required to use the Do Not Send To list feature to manage your unsubscribe requests.

To Open the Do not Send List:

In Outlook go to your Inbox, click on the little arrow beside(below) the EmailMerge button on the Toolbar/Ribbon.

Click Do not Send List. The application will open the following screen:


1. Add an email-address to Do not Send List:

Click Add, the application will display the following screen:


You can add email address(s) to the Do not Sent list using 1 of the 3 options below:

  • Manually add the new items to the list – Select this option if you would like to type-in the email addresses manually. (Enter 1 email address per line)
  • Email address (sender) of currently selected email(s) – Select this option if you want Email Merge to automatically add email addresses for the emails you have already selected in the current folder. The email address of the sender will be added to the Do not Sent List.
  • Emails in current folder with unsubscribe/bounce back words in subject

For the purpose of this example, I will select the last option as the unsubscribe email will have the keyword “Unsubscribe” in it.

You may also find that certain emails addresses on your list are no longer valid as emails you send are bounced back. EmailMerge can automatically add addresses of the above to the Do not Send List by comparing words in the Subject fields.

You can edit the list of words by clicking on Maintain Word List to add, delete or reset the Word list to default.

Now click Next and Email Merge will automatically add all email address with the keyword Unsubscribe in the subject to the Do Not Send To list.

You can repeat the above steps after each newsletter or email campaign to ensure that people who have unsubscribed are added to the list and not contacted further as this could really annoy them.

Here are a few reasons why you maybe want to try Email Merge:

  • It’s a simple tool that works directly inside Outlook
  • It’s one of the most inexpensive bulk mailer program
  • It allows you to send newsletters and even schedule the time for sending emails
  • There are no monthly subscription fee’s… just a once off purchase
  • It lets you send out personalized emails therefore reduces the chances of SPAM
  • Lastly the new “Do Not Send To List” feature even allows you to manage unsubscribes.

Hope you find this tip useful

Let us know what you think of this tip or Email Merge by leaving a comment below.


Mail Merge from Outlook to Microsoft Access

By standss - Comments ( 0 ) Monday, July 14th, 2014

Do you have lists in Microsoft Access that you need to send sales or marketing emails to? You can now email merge directly from Outlook using data stored in Microsoft Access.

Mail Merge is the process of taking one letter (or email) and then personalizing and sending it out to many people. Each person gets a separate copy of the email with only their own name on the To field. The email subject and body can also be personalized with their details.

Thousands of users have been using our best selling addin Email Merge PRO for Outlook to send out sales and marketing emails from Outlook using Outlook data or lists saved in Excel spreadsheets.

We have now updated Email Merge PRO so that you can also use data from Microsoft Access databases.

Email Merge gives you an easy step-by-step Wizard that results in individual personalized emails.


If you’re an existing user of Email Merge PRO, you can download the update for free.

If you haven’t tried it yet, download a functional trial of Email Merge PRO from our website.

Creating Email List by Exporting Email Addresses from Emails to CSV

By standss - Comments ( 1 ) Wednesday, June 18th, 2014

In one of our older posts, we showed Outlook users how to export outlook contacts to a CSV file so that the contact list can be used with email marketing tools to send mail merges.

We had several readers write back to us asking a common question:

“Is there a way to extract email addresses from emails directly to external files like CSV…”

If you have this question in mind as well… The answer is YES!!!

What’s even better is that you don’t need to purchase a new software to do this… you can use Outlook’s in-built Export feature to get this done.

Here’s how…

  • The first thing you need to do is move/copy all the emails you wish to extract into a separate folder. For example you can create a folder called “Export” or “Email List”.
  • In Outlook 2013/2010, click File > Options > click on Advanced from the left pane > Scroll down and click on the Export button
  • For Outlook 2007/2003, On the main menu Click File > Import and Export…
  • Click Export to a file > click Next > Select Comma Separated Values (Windows) > click Next >
  • On the next screen, select the folder which contains the emails from which you wish to extract the email addresses
  • Click the Browse… button to specify a location and file name for the new file.
  • Click Next > Click Finish.

This should now extract the email address (and other information) from the emails to the new CSV file.

Wondering how this tip is handy?

If you do not want to invest in expensive, subscription-based, online email marketing systems, you can use Outlook and Email Merge for the same.

You can use the steps provided in this post to extract email addresses of your potential clients following a conference, seminar or any other event (who have contacted you) to a CSV file. You could also add them to your Contacts folder but this will be time-consuming as you will have to create each contact individually.

Once all email addresses are in the CSV file, you can use Email Merge for Outlook to create and send personalized emails to your mailing list. With Email Merge, you can send out unlimited number of emails, there is no monthly or yearly fee’s and you can load unlimited contacts from Outlook contacts and external files like CSV, Excel or even Access.

Hope you find this tip useful.

Do you know of other ways the Export feature can be handy?

Let us know by leaving a comment below.

Retention Policies: Your Deleted Items folder will be cleared every 30 days!

By standss - Comments ( 0 ) Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

We have told you before why you should not use the Outlook Deleted Items folder as your filing cabinet i.e. do not use the Deleted Items folder as the folder where you keep emails for later reference.

Here’s another good reason…. If you are using Office 365 (I recently moved my email account to it), your Deleted Items folder is automatically cleared (every day) of emails that are 30 days or older.

The reason for this is that folders in Outlook that are linked to Office 365 have Retention Policies applied to them.

A retention policy defined how long Office 365 will keep items in users’ mailboxes and defines what actions to take on items that have reached a certain age.

The default action for the Deleted Items is to clear items that are 30 days or older.

While it is possible to change this default action, I don’t think you should. Automatically clearing emails provides two benefits:

  1. It discourages you from “filing” emails in the Deleted Items folder.
  2. It provides insurance in case you need to recover an email that you deleted recently.

You can find more information on Setting Email Retention Policies in Office 365 here.


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