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  1. #1
    Bronze Lounger
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    Finer Points of Mail Merge (Word/Excel 2002)

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    OK I know the basics of Word Mail Merge functions, but what I am looking for here is a step above the basics.

    I have a list of names/addresses in a MS-Excel workbook. I want to use these names/addresses for a form letter, but the letter has a couple of things different for each receipent.

    For example, if I am to order something from the company's web site, I would like to say "I saw your product on your web site " and add the URL, but when I order something from the company's catalog, I want to say "I saw your product in your Spring catalog " and add the page number.

    I guess I can have a field in Excel that would be the source, but how do I make it change the text based on what it is, URL or a number.

    OK second point, is there a way to have Word tell Excel to change a cell value based on the names merged.

    OK so I have 1000 vendors, and I need to send these letters in batches, due to costs and schedules, but I need to do that only once until all letters are sent, is there a way I can limit or exclude a name based on a cell value in Excel?

    Thanks a lot for your help.

    Wassim
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  2. #2
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    Re: Finer Points of Mail Merge (Word/Excel 2002)

    Hi Wassim: (answers interspersed)
    >>if I am to order something from the company's web site, I would like to say "I saw your product on your web site " and add the URL, but when I order something from the company's catalog, I want to say "I saw your product in your Spring catalog " and add the page number.<<

    First, you must have some field or value in Excel that will trigger one phrase rather than the other. Word can put this in for you automatically. Since you've said you know the basics, you know that after you've created your main document type (form letter), there's a toolbar with a button that says "Word commands". One of the options is an IF-THEN-ELSE field.

    For example, if you had a field (column) in Excel called "Order", where the value = W if ordered from the web site, and all other orders were from the catalog, your IF field would look like this:

    {IF {MERGEFIELD ORDER} = W "I saw your product on your web site" "I saw your product in your Spring catalog"}

    You can also have Word prompt you to enter variable text as you do a merge. You will find this also on the same drop down toolbar button. The fields are ASK & FILLIN.


    >>I guess I can have a field in Excel that would be the source, but how do I make it change the text based on what it is, URL or a number.

    You would have to code your datasource. You could have a field that indicated whether you are ordering from a web site or a catalog. You can also filter your records and send them in separate batches. That is, you set up one main document to send out all form letters where a web site is involved & another main document to send out all the form letters where a catalog is involved.


    >>OK second point, is there a way to have Word tell Excel to change a cell value based on the names merged.

    I'm not sure what you mean. A mail merge will only merge the results of a field in a given record. You can choose whether a field is inserted or not and you can choose which field in a record is inserted, based on certain criteria, if that's what your asking.


    >>OK so I have 1000 vendors, and I need to send these letters in batches, due to costs and schedules, but I need to do that only once until all letters are sent, is there a way I can limit or exclude a name based on a cell value in Excel?>>

    Absolutely. In the mail merge helper, you'll see Query Options in the lower right side of the dialog box. You'll see that you can filter or sort on fields using AND & OR operators.

    Hope this helps.

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