Yesterday we discussed an innovative way in which to streamline your mailings by using Quickbooks. Today we will focus more on the how-to portion of performing the mail merge, and some of the benefits.
First, open Quickbooks and either choose one of your files you work in or a sample file that Quickbooks provides. From here lets select Customer Center, as we will send our customers a meeting notice for a Homeowners Association. Along the top of the screen select the tab that says "word" and you will see multiple options. We will focus first on the customize letter template option.
Once opened your options state the following;
• Create a new letter template from scratch
•Convert an existing word document to template
•View or edit existing letters
•Organize existing templates
Since this is our first time setting this up, we will select "Create a new letter template from scratch" On the next screen it asks for the letter type "customer" since we are sending this to our customers, and then we will enter a name for this letter so we can tell it from the others. I used Hoa Meeeting Notice as the name. When you hit next Quickbooks will open Microsoft Word and confirm that you have created the new letter template.
Your word document will be completely blank but at this point you will want to do a file and save as to save this to you quickbooks letter template folder. With your letter still open in Microsoft Word, look for the tab at the top of Microsoft Word that is name "Add Ins". This will contain all of the functionality you will want to use to create your template for this letter.
Essentially you will add the generic information such as; "Dear" and from here you will go to the add ins function and select the Insert Customer Fields. Since the homeowners name typically comes after "Dear", you will want to find the option for Customer name and select that function. Word will insert a tag that looks like , and if it is not in the location directly after Dear, simply cut and paste it as you desire. Continue writing your letter template and inserting the data as you wish from the "Insert Customer" function inside word. You also have the ability to enter data about your company that will populate into the letter as well b selecting "insert company fields" under add in.
Once the template is complete, save the file once again overriding the existing letter template in you Quickbooks Letters folders. Once this is complete, go back to the menu under Customers in Quickbooks, select the word tab, and choose "prepare customer letters". From here you will be able to select the recipients you would like to include. Once selected, hit next. Find the letter template name that you just created, and hit next. Enter you name and title so that it will appear at the bottom of the letter for your sign off, then hit next. You are done, your letters have been completed, and your template is saved so that the next time, it will take hardly no time to complete.