Creating multiple letters at once, but with a personal touch. That’s possible thanks to mail merge, a popular technology widely used in business. What is the appeal of this technology, and what options are available in the document creation software of SmartDocuments?
Automated communication—you can’t do without it in today’s world. We regularly receive letters that we know were generated fully automatically. Yet these letters often include personal details. This is thanks to what is known as the mail merge function, a feature used by many organizations. What exactly is mail merge?
Mail merge: what is it?
If taken literally, the term ‘mail merge’ sounds like we’re combining letters. And that’s exactly what it means. Mail merge lets you combine large post volumes so that you can send them all at once. But we’re not talking about stuffing a big stack of letters into a letterbox simultaneously. Mail merge is the technology that allows you to generate multiple personalized documents based on a standard template. It will enable you to combine a form letter with a set of variable data for massive volumes of documents simultaneously.
Variable data with mail merge
What are the variables we mentioned above? They could be anything. Some examples of these variables could be a name, an address, and a date of birth. It could also be your energy consumption over the past month (in a letter from your power company) or the number of points accrued with the local housing association.
Why work with mail merge?
Why should you work with a mail merge function? What does it bring to the table? Maybe it goes without saying (but we’ll say it anyway)—time! Generating multiple personalized documents at once saves time. It's a bit cliché but also true: time is money. Another added bonus: mail merge makes it quick and easy to personalize your outgoing correspondence. This can work miracles, especially for large organizations like housing associations, municipalities, and healthcare institutions. These organizations have large numbers of customers, which means high volumes of correspondence, and these organizations cannot generate each letter manually. Mail merge allows you to personalize mass communication.
Multi-document output function of SmartDocuments
we believe that a mail merge function is essential. That’s why we've integrated it into our document creation tool. Even under a new name, the nature of the beast hasn't changed, and it certainly isn't less efficient. With our multi-document output (or MDO) module, you go through a single Q&A screen to generate multiple personalized documents. The software from SmartDocuments links seamlessly with your database, allowing you to retrieve the necessary (personal) data automatically. Want to try an even smarter approach? You could also use a single link with an XML file to simultaneously generate hundreds of personalized documents.