Creating and selecting recipient lists in Word
Creating and selecting recipient lists in Word
When you create an envelope or a label file in Word 2007, the purpose is usually for adding names and addresses to print them out and actually put them through the mail. If you want to add a number of names and addresses, creating multiple labels and envelopes, you'll likely want to create what's called a Recipient List, which is a list of your names and addresses kept separate from your label or envelope file so you can merge them later on. This way you can concentrate on the list itself, updating information when needed, and merge it with new envelope files, existing envelope files or label files at any time.
So, we're going to start by creating a brand new Recipient List, assuming you have no contacts. You don't have a list of names and addresses anywhere. You can create it right here in Microsoft Word. So we're going to work with this TTEnvelope file and we're going to go up to the Mailings tab and under Select Recipients, when you click that button, the first option is to actually type a new list. So, we'll do that, and you see the New Address List dialog box appear with a whole bunch of columns and a flashing cursor waiting for you to start typing information.
I'm just going to move this over to the left side and move my mouse pointer to the right border when I see the double arrow, click-and-drag that out. You can see there's quite a few columns of information that can be filled in. They don't all have to be filled in, just information you know you're going to need on an envelope or a label. So let's just type in our first actual name and address. You can type anything you like in here. I'm going to make one up. Use your Tab key to move from field to field. If there's no company name, just skip over it. If there is one, you can type it in and tab to the next column, which is our first address line, typically, the street address.
So, I'm going to type in a make- believe address here, 123 Main St. If there's a second line, you can add it, like a suite or a floor. If not, just tab past it and leave it blank. Word is very good at not creating blank lines where no information exists. I'm going to type in '1st Floor' here. City, again, tabbing across, filling that in. The Country or Region, if you're going to be mailing out to international customers, you may want to keep track of this information.
When you tab over to the next column, it becomes visible and we can scroll over there. There is a Home Phone number, Work Phone and Email Address column that can be filled in, but typically, that information doesn't really appear on a label or envelope. So, if you want to leave it blank, you can just continue tabbing across or click the New Entry button. Either way, you'll eventually create a brand new entry and you would continue now, typing in additional names and addresses. These are your recipients. Now, before we save this up, you'll notice, down below, you've also got a button for customizing those columns.
So if you don't like the way they're named, you don't like the order or maybe there's columns you don't need, and missing columns you do need, click the Customize Columns button where you'll see a list of your field names. Let's say we don't need our email address. We'll select it and over here on the right click Delete. We'll have to confirm that by clicking Yes, and it's gone. Let's do the same for our Work Phone as well as the Home Phone. So, with those gone, we just narrowed the list of fields. Let's rename one. Let's go to Address Line 1, and just to be clear, we'll click the Rename button and type right over what's there.
We'll type in Street Address and click OK. Down below, Address Line 2 is a little more self-explanatory. It's the second line after the Street Address. If you want to change the order, you can. For example, if you want First Name to come after Last Name, just use your Move Up and Move Down buttons. I'm going to leave them as is. The order that you fill in the information is all you're changing. You can place these fields anywhere you want on the label or envelope after the fact. So, we'll click OK.
That updates our columns. Now to update your actual recipient list and save it, click OK. And this opens up the Save Address List dialog box. You'll notice, by default, it's going to a folder called My Data Sources. That's what you're going to see at the top. It's under your Documents folder. This will make it easily accessible by other Office applications, and it's also the default location that you'll go to whenever you want to open up an existing list. So all we have to do is give it a name. In this case, let's type in something like 'BusinessContacts' and click Save.
When you do this, you've actually created the list and you've linked it to your existing document, so in this case, our Envelope file. You'll notice now the Edit Recipient List button is available to us. If we click this, you'll see that one recipient that's been added, the blank one that got started, and if you want to continue editing, you just select the data source and click the Edit button, and you're back into adding additional recipients or changing existing ones if you wanted to. Click OK, update by clicking Yes and then just click OK to close that up.
So, you'll always have access to that recipient list, whether it's this existing file or another file, like a sheet of labels, for example. And you can always update that recipient list either from within Word, using the Edit Recipient List button, which you may have noticed too. It was saved as a Microsoft database. So, you use Access if wanted to go in there and update the list as well. So, that's this document. You can also access a Word table. I don't highly recommend creating your recipient list in a Word table, but if you've already got your list of contacts in a Word table, you might want to use it as your recipient list.
Let's check it out. We'll click the Office button and open. In the Exercise Files, you'll find the Addresses document. When you click Open, it's all just a list of names and addresses in a table. You can see the very first row is actually our column headings, sometimes known as the header row. With the Table tools> Design tab selected, you want to ensure your cursor is anywhere in the top row and select header row, so that these will be used as column headings and not actually merged onto a label or an envelope.
So, these are your Table tools. Let's go back to our Office button and let's start a new blank document. Before we even create labels or envelopes, we want to hook into that recipient list. Well, if we try to, while it's open, let's see what happens. Click Mailings, Select Recipients, this time Use Existing List, and we're going to go to our table. So we're going to go back to our Exercise Files and in the Chap02 folder, we'll find our Addresses. Click Open.
It's now connected, so if we go to Edit Recipient List, you're going to see that whole list of names and addresses we just saw in the table itself in that Word document. So, we're using it now as our recipient list. If we wanted to, we could click Data Source, click Edit to edit the contents of that table right from here within our document in Word that we are connected to. This time, it looks a little bit different though. It is a data form. So, we can use our Navigation buttons to move across through the various names and addresses.
Go right to the last one. If it's blank like this, you might want to delete it, so you can click the Delete button. You can add new right from here, and when you're done, click the Close button and you're back to your Mail Merge Recipients. Click OK and you're back to your document. So you're connected to a recipient list, which is simply a Word table, a document containing a table, and you could continue now at this point creating your envelope or label file knowing that you're connected to a Word document, which has a table full of names and addresses.
So, if you're going to be creating a brand-new recipient list, I highly recommend using it right here from the Select Recipients button on the Ribbon. Type new list. If you've already got your list of names and addresses in a Word table, use the Use Existing List. You'll always have access to it from any envelope or label file you create, and by keeping the recipient list separate from the document, you can update either separately and use that recipient list with multiple label files and multiple envelope files.
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