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HOWTO: Creating a fax shot in Microsoft Word using Mail merge

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ZTN1098

ID: ZTN1098

This Zetafax technical note applies to:

  • Zetafax 5.5 and later.

Summary

This document describes how to perform a fax shot (single document to multiple users) using Microsoft Word 2003 / 2007 and the Zetafax client. This procedure uses the Mail Merge facility in Word, and the embedded addressing feature of the Zetafax printer.

NOTE:  These instructions do not apply to thin client sessions.

More information

Before starting, you need to make sure the list of recipients you are going to use is in a format that Microsoft Word can read. For further information on the file formats that can be used as a Mail Merge datasource, consult the documentation for Microsoft Word or visit http://www.microsoft.com/.

Creating the Word 2003 Mail Merge

This part of the procedure concerns Microsoft Word and is for information only. If you encounter difficulties at this stage, you should contact Microsoft for help with the Mail Merge feature.

  1. In Word, create the document you want to send to all your recipients. This can be a single page letter, for instance, or a longer document.
  2. With this document open, on the “Tools” menu select “Mail Merge”. In step 1 of the “Mail Merge Helper” dialog box, click on “Create”, and then select “Form Letters”. A window will pop up asking you which document to use; click on “Active Document”.
  3. In step 2 of the “Mail Merge Helper” dialog box, click on “Get Data” and then “Open Data Source”. This will open a dialog box that you can use to select your address database. Once Word has loaded the datasource, you will be prompted to add merge fields to your fax. Click on “Edit Main Document” to return to the document.
  4. Use the “Insert Merge Field” button on the Mail Merge toolbar to insert any fields you would like to appear on the fax. For instance, you could personalise the fax by inserting the recipient’s name at the top of the document.
  5. Save the document at this stage, so that you can come back to it later if necessary. From Word’s point of view, this document is your “Main Document”.

Adding the Zetafax embedded addressing commands

Once you have created the Mail Merge in Word, you need to add Zetafax embedded addressing commands to your main document.  Two commands that are mandatory to this process are %%[FAX] and %%[SEND]. The following instructions explain how to use these fields with the document you have created.

  1. At the top of the main document, insert a blank line and type in %%[FAX:
  2. With the cursor still flashing after the colon, go to “Insert Merge Field” and select the database field that contains the fax number.  End the line with a closing square bracket ( ] ). The line will look something like this:
  3. %%[FAX: «fax_number»]

    You can check that you have selected the right merge field by clicking on the “ABC” button on the Mail Merge toolbar.  This will toggle between the field code (with the chevrons) and the actual data. With the “ABC” button depressed, the line will read %%[FAX: 020 7203 4005] for instance.

  4. Once the %%[FAX] field has been inserted, add a blank line at the very end of the document and type in %%[SEND]. This is the command that instructs Zetafax to automatically send all the faxes.
  5. Save the main document again.

Merging and sending the fax shot

Now that the main document has both Word merge fields and Zetafax embedded addressing commands in it, you are ready to create all the faxes and send them off.

  1. With the main document open, go to the “Tools” menu select “Mail Merge”. In step 3 of the “Mail Merge Helper” dialog box, select “Merge”.
  2. On the “Merge” dialog box, select “New Document” in the “Merge To” dropdown list. You can also enter a range of records to process. For instance, if you have 200 addresses in your database, but you only want to send the first ten, you can enter “1” and “10” respectively in the “From” and “To” boxes. When you are ready to continue the fax shot, you can return to step 1 and enter “11” to “20” for the next batch, and so on.
  3. Click on the “Merge” button. Word will create a new document called FormLetters1 containing a copy of your main document for every address in the datasource (or the range of addresses you selected in step 2).
  4. Make sure the Zetafax client is running, and then print this document to the Zetafax printer. The presence of the embedded addressing commands will auto-complete the “Addressing” dialog that normally pops up at this point. Zetafax will start sending the faxes immediately.

If at any time you want to do the same fax shot again, all you need to do is open up the main document you saved. Amend it if required, and then run through the instructions in the “Merging and sending the fax shot” section.

 

 Creating the Word 2007 Mail Merge

  1. In Word, create the document you want to send to all your recipients. This can be a single page letter, for instance, or a longer document.
  2. With this document open, on the " Mailings" menu select " Select Recipients" and then select “Use Existing List”. Browse to the directory where your list is located you may need to ensure that you are able to search for all files “All(*.*)”

  3. Once you have selected your database source file ensure you select the correct sheet where the information is held.

  4. Use the " Zetafax" button on the Insert toolbar to insert any addressing information for the fax you would like to appear on the fax. For instance, you could personalise the fax by inserting the recipient's name at the top of the document.


  5. You now need to attach the corresponding data field, delete anything between the chevrons (including the chevrons). On the Mailings tab click the “Insert Merge Fields” button and select the corresponding field.

  6.  


  7. Save the document at this stage, so that you can come back to it later if necessary. From Word's point of view, this document is your " Main Document" .

Adding the Zetafax embedded addressing commands

Once you have inserted the Merge fields in Word, you need to add Zetafax embedded addressing commands to your main document.  Two commands that are mandatory to this process are %%[FAX] and %%[SEND]. The following instructions explain how to use these fields with the document you have created.

  1. At the top of the main document, insert a blank line and type in %%[FAX:
  2. With the cursor still flashing after the colon, go to " Insert Merge Field" and select the database field that contains the fax number.  End the line with a closing square bracket ( ] ). The line will look something like this:
  3. %%[FAX: «fax_number»]

    You can check that you have selected the correct merge field by clicking on the " Preview Results" button on the Mailings toolbar.  This will toggle between the field code (with the chevrons) and the actual data. The line will now read %%[FAX: 020 7203 4005] for instance. Press the “Preview Results” again to return to the field code.

  4. Once the %%[FAX] field has been inserted, add a blank line at the very end of the document and type in %%[SEND]. This is the command that instructs Zetafax to automatically send all the faxes.
  5. Save the main document again.

Merging and sending the fax shot

Now that the main document has both Word merge fields and Zetafax embedded addressing commands in it, you are ready to create all the faxes and send them off.

  1. With the main document open, go to the " Mailings" menu select " Finish & Merge" . Select “Print Documents”, this will prompt a ‘Merge to Printer’ dialog box in which you can select a range of records you want printed to the Zetafax Printer.

  2.        


  3. Make sure the Zetafax client is running, and then print this document to the Zetafax printer. The presence of the embedded addressing commands will auto-complete the " Addressing" dialog that normally pops up at this point. Zetafax will start sending the faxes immediately.

References

For additional information on Embedded addressing, please see the following Zetafax technical note:

ZTN1011-HOWTO Using Embedded addressing.


Last updated: 16 May 2008 (NM/PS)

First Published:  20 June 2003 (ET/DH)

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