Email Merge in Word 2007

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Have you ever seen those spreadsheets or charts where the text isn’t normal?  You know the ones where the text is diagonal, neurosurgeon rheumatologist or vertical, resuscitator or on its side?  It is a pretty nifty trick you can use to display more information in less space.  And in Excel 2007 it is really easy to do.

How to change text orientation in Excel 2007

  1. Type the text into a cell
  2. Select the cell
  3. On the home tab of the ribbon, rx look for the alignment group.  There you will find a button with an ‘a’ and a ‘b’ and an arrow all on an angle.  That’s the Orientation menu.  Click on the little drop down arrow beside it.
  4. Select one of the quick options to angle your text

If you want to be more specific about the angle of your text, you can select “Format Cell Alignment” and set down to the degree how “slanty” you want your text.

The results are pretty impressive – well your boss will think so and that is all that matters right?

’till next time!

Want to know lots of in depth techincal stuff about Microsoft Office?  Well if I can’t answer it, order there are plenty of people at Microsoft who know their stuff!

One of them is Alistair Speirs, generic a Office Technology Specialst at Microsoft Australia.  If you want to dive deep into everything office (beyond the tutorials from yours truely!) then you should check out his blog…

Check out some of his posts on Business Desktop Deployment, clinic Enterprise Search, Office Busines Applications, OpenXML, and one he stole from me… Random text in Word 🙂

TNP and Alistair go way back… he knows his stuff!

’till next time!

Ever wanted to put some colour behind your text in a word document?  Not just highlight something, treat but add color to the entire paragraph?  It’s pretty easy in Word 2007.

1) Type your text into your document.  Generally it is easier to work with all your text, erectile rather than formatting it as you go

2) Look on the home tab in the ribbon, pills in the paragraph group.  You will find a button that looks like a bucket of paint.  That is the “Shading” button.  If you click on the dropdown menu you will see a palette of colours that you can use to shade your paragraph.

3) Select your favourite colour – notice that you get a live preview, so just roll your mouse over all the colours that you are thinking about, and click on the one that suits best!


It is as simple as that!

’till next time!
TNP 😉 

Do you have a message that you want to send to multiple contacts, one health but you don’t want to do the old BCC trick?  Better yet… do you want to actually personalise the message for each recipient? 

Instead of “Hi all”, what about “Hi Bill”, “Hi Jane” etc?

You can, with email merge in Word 2007.

Email merge works exactly the same as a standard mail merge… except for one big difference.  Instead of printing individual letters or envelopes or labels… Word 2007 will generate individual emails, send them to your Outlook 2007 outbox, and then when you are next online in Outlook, Outlook will send each your personalised emails to each addressee.

Kicking off a email merge in Word 2007 is easy.

  1. Open up Word 2007
  2. Type your email in Word 2007
  3. Click on the “Mailings” tab in the ribbon
  4. In the “Start Mail Merge” grouping, click on the “Start Mail Merge” button.  It will show a list of mail merge options available.  You can choose Letters, E-Mail Messages, Envelopes, Labels or Directory.  In this case as we want to send an email… click on “E-Mail Messages”
  5. Next you need to select the recipients of your email merge.  These names could come from any number or sources… maybe an Excel 2007 spreadsheet?  maybe your Outlook 2007 Contacts… or you could just type them yourself.  

    To do that, click on the “Select Recipients” box in the “Start Mail Merge” group.  Either find your data source, your outlook contacts, or create a new list.

  6. If you want to edit any of the recipients in the list, now is the time to click on “Edit Recipient List” in the “Start Mail Merge” group.
  7. The next step is to add the appropriate fields to personalise the greeting, the recipients name, or to add any other piece of data you might have on the contact anywhere throughout your recipient list.  

    You can find the appropriate fields in the “Write & Insert Fields” group (still on the “Mailings” tab).

    More than likely you will want to add at least a greeting line (Dear Bill… or something like that).  To do that click on the “Greeting Line” button in the “Write & Insert Fields” group.  The following dialog box appears

  8. Once you are happy with your greeting line format, click “OK”.  Word 2007 will now drop the field into your document.
  9. Now you can preview your results to ensure that everyone’s name is coming up correctly.  Click the “Preview Results” button in the “Preview Results” group… then use the forward and back arrows beside it to run through your recipient list.
  10. If you are happy with the preview, not is the time to finish things off and compete the merge.  In the “Finish” group on the “Mailings tab” you will see a button called “Finish & Merge”.  Click on it, and then click “Send E-mail Messages…” 


  11. Now Word 2007 automatically generates all the individual emails, and sends them to your Outlook 2007 outbox (or your default email client).
  12. Open up Outlook or your email client, and watch all your emails be sent!


So there you have it… your 12 step guide to Email Merge in Word 2007!

’till next time,

54 thoughts on “Email Merge in Word 2007

  1. What do you do if word does not seem to be linking to Outlook when you create this merge document and send it? I do not get any errors and when I check my out box or my sent box there is nothing there!

    It appears there is something wrong and I don’t know where to start to fix the problem.

    Please help if you can,


  2. Great. Everything works fine – as per your 12 step suggestion. Now, how do I attach another file to the e-mail. My data source is in Excel, not Outlook.

  3. It works but not very good.
    I and others on the web report formatting errors for workstations with out Office 2007 installed. I have been using Word for years to send our news letter via email merge and have never had trouble before.
    Now when anyone without office 2007 or on Google and Yahoo mail accounts see a very messed up formatting challenged version of what was orig designed.

    Also it appears that I am not the only one that has trouble with the whole process freezing. During the send routine it goes through between 200 to 350 emails and then freezes. I had a customer have the same trouble and called me to se if I knew why!
    Now I have Microsoft Virtual PC installed on Vista In VPC I created a XP virtual session and on the Virtual XP installed my old copy of office 2003. Now I have to go to the Virtual Desktop in XP and launch an old copy of Office 2003 just to send my email newsletter every month. I am looking for alternatives.

  4. While I can go through all the initial steps. Step 10 onwards doesn’t work as the option is grayed out.

    I am using Windows Vista

  5. I have the same issue as Mark, on a smaller scale. I use the same (Excel) list of less than 100 names every month to send a meeting reminder which is created in Word 2007. Outlooks 2007 is my mail client and I’m running Vista Business with SP1 and all patches for both OS and Office. Sometimes the merge and send works so slick that I am just thrilled with it. Other times (same list exactly) the process hangs up multiple times – sending anywhere from a few to twenty email then putting Word in a “Not Responding” mode. I have to kill Word; Restart and recover the file; Edit the list to uncheck those that were successfully sent; Save the file; and then try the merge again. Sometimes I even reboot the computer between recovery and resending, just to clean out the gremlins. Totally random, not reproduceable except that when it fails the first time i know that i am in for multiple failures before all of them are sent.

  6. I having the same problem as Ajay. When I get to the step to send email, the “send email message…” is grayed out.

    I am also working with Windows Vista, Word 2007 & Windows Mail (not Outlook).

    Please Help!!! I have been working on this for a week now. I know it has to be a way to email merge for Vista’s Windows Mail.


  7. I am having the same problem as several other people here, but with different results. We just got Vista at work and are using Word & Outlook 2007. WHen I do an email mail merge from Word, I can sometimes get about 10-20 to go thru and then it freezes up. At times I can only get 3 to go thru. I usually have over 2000 emails to send.

    Has anyone figured out how to fix this or get around it? Please I don’t want to spend all day doing an email.

  8. We also just got Office 2007 at work, I tried sending an email merge yesterday and I had the same problem as the first poster, Cathy. Word went through like it was sending them out – but NOTHING was in my sentbox, outbox and I had no bounces (very unusual).

  9. I too am having the same problems as Ajay and Tonya, when i come to select send email message, it is grayed out.

    As is Tonya, i am working with Windows Vista, Word 2007 and Windows Mail, not Outlook.

    Can somebody please, please, help?

    Kind regards, Lee 🙂

  10. I’m looking for your response to Ajay, Tonya and Lee re: using mail merge with Windows vista, Word 2007 and Windows Mail as I’m having the same problem.

    I have followed a couple of suggestions from other boards (to no avail) such as:
    changing text to plain (from HTML)
    ensuring that my default program is Windows Mail

    Another suggestion linked me to a Microsoft instruction to update my registry, but I am not that computer literate and do not want to take the chance of corrupting the registry.

    I also read somewhere that I had to use Microsoft Outlook, but the Vista I bought did not include it and I also read that installing it as ‘add-on’ program now would not work with mail merge either.

    I’m getting to the end of my rope. Can you help?


  11. Hi Everyone,

    I have an answer (although probably not what you are looking for) for Barb, Lee Ajay and Tonya… with regard to doing a Mail Merge with Windows Mail (NOT Outlook) on Windows Vista.

    From what I gather, you can only do a Mail Merge IF you send your message as plain text.

    What does that mean – your email will look pretty plain – no images, graphics, colours etc – just text.

    It might meet your needs, but my gut feel says that it wont.

    Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but if you need to rely on a good looking Mail Merege, you might have to upgrade to Outlook 2007.

    ’till next time!
    TNP 😉

  12. After installing recent MS Office 2007 updates, email merge useng a 200 record Access 2007 database aborts after merging 6 records. The same thing occurs with an Excel spreadsheet or Outlook contact list as the source for email addresses. Prior to installation of MS Office updates (I just bit the bullet and installed Office 2007 Enterprise Edition last week) Word 2007 / Outlook 2007 email merge worked fine, with formatted text including illustrations.

    Short of reinstalling MS Office, is there any way to remove Office updates?

    I would like to avoid buying a stand alone email merge program, but knowing Microsoft this is in my future. Any suggestions.

    By the way I am emailing event announcements to members of a local not for profit organization – not commercial spam.

    Thanks for your assistance.

  13. Did a fresh install of Office2007 and turned off the automatic updates. I am now able to email merge documents containing hyperlinks, formatting, and images. Word 2007 intermittently hangs and needs to be restarted. Occurs most often with Access table as email address list source; works best with Excel table.


  14. Words is limited. What if I want to send Cc to my boss? What if I want the emails to be sent to Draft instead of sending them all at once?

  15. Hi!
    I am using a Vista (not an upgrade) and Office 2007. My mailmerge gets 2 emails out and then word freezes.

    I have a very simple message, no fields. I do have a website and email address and was trying to send in html format. I have not tried text yet – but would hope since I am on Office 2007 and Vista Ultimate I wouldn’t have to do that.

    Any ideas?
    Thank you,

  16. I have been sending mail merge e-mails with around 200 e-mails in my distribution list using Word 2007 and Outlook 2007 for a long time. I always import distribution list data from Excel in CSV format. Lately I have been having this problem – after I click on Send E-Mail messages in Word and the messages are sent to the Outbox folder, Outlook only sends 3 e-mails at a time. The progress info (bottom right of Outlook) always shows sending messages 1 of 3, 2 of and 3 3 of 3 before it loops back and does the same over and over again until it sends all the e-mails in that merge. Earlier, it used to send them all in one shot. This is taking much longer. How could this have happened and how do I reverse it? Any help will be greatly appreciated.


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  18. Boy, Microsoft sure makes it difficult to get any help on this. $49.00 to either email, chat, or talk to tech support when the problem is clearly theirs. I have the problem where Word 2007 acts like it is sending all of the messages, but then when you click on Sent items in Outlook, they are clearly not there. One blog suggested opening Outlook first, but this does not work either. I have to figure out a way to send out 4,000 emails, and fast.

  19. Hi Heather…

    Short answer to your question is that you might be using the wrong tool for what you are trying to acheive. Whilit I have done email merge’s in the vicinity of 2000 recipients successfully, I have moved away from Word and Outlook to hosted email providers instead – you will get a much better delivery rate, and you can gather some statistics on how many of your emails were opened, if people clicked on things, what things they clicked on etc.

    Probably not the answer you were looking for but food for thought.


  20. Thanks TNP. Actually, it doesn’t work with two recipients either–at least not in HTML. it works with plain text. A Microsoft tech support person took over my computer for 3 hours today, editing my registry, changing the profile in outlook (getting rid of all of my unread messages and my contacts without asking), and reinstalled Word, finally declaring it fixed. It’s not fixed. Microsoft definitely has a problem here that is not being addressed.

  21. I have spent the last three days on the phone with Microsoft until they simply declared that it could not be fixed. I am using Publisher 2007 with Windows Mail which their documentation says will work and they keep saying should work. I have the problem that it looks as though it works counting all the emails it is supposedly sending but then comes back with the message that 0 were sent and they have disappeared. The same thing happens with a 5 person test list in plain text. First they said I have to type in all the names everytime or send individually which I said was not an email merge, how does that help? More than one tech has declared it fixed and hung up without testing and of course it isn’t fixed.
    Now they are saying I have to have Outlook 2007 but I don’t want to just spend more money for it not to work anyway. Big problem, I need to communicate with my customer lists and this is not supposed to be the only job I have.
    Any experience with Outlook 2003? I don’t like the 2007 interface.

  22. Hmm..there are more questions than answers, but I’ll try anyway.

    Merging for me (Windows Vista and Office 2007) works great; however, here is my problem. I oftne send out mass emails using a database of information to personalize each letter. The individual letters; however, need to have additional information added before mailing. However, if I click to edit the individual letters, it becomes a single document without the email option. How do you edit individual letters before they are sent to email? Thanks in advance for any help.

  23. Tim, congrats on your Mail Merge working great for you. Unfortunately, as with most everyone else here, it does not work great for me.

    However, to answer your question, if you want to edit some of the emails you’re mail merging before they’re actually sent, you can set Outlook to Work Offline (file > Work Offline), the emails you are sending should sit in your Outbox until you turn off Work Offline. You can click on the emails in your Outbox you need to edit and edit them before they’re sent. Click Send when you’re done editting the email to re-queue the email. To send your emails, turn off Work Offline and click on Send/Receive.

  24. So the last message was posted in March. Has everyone given up or has the problem been fixed?

    My XP/Outlook/Word2003 email merge worked great. Hard drive crash. New Vista/Live Mail/Word2007 email merge follows pattern described above. Appears to work, but nothing in outbox!

    Any new ideas?

  25. I had difficulty with graphics and text reformatting when the message was sent via Outlook 2007 and Word 2007 email merge. My solution was to create a text box to paste in the graphics and the text, for some reason you need to insert some blank spaces, tabs, and enter or it looks goofy. This works great for messages received by Outlook and Gmail, but Yahoo was still reformating the text and one graphic did not show. I believe that Microsoft just doesn’t want you to send email blasts despite it being a feature of mail merge. I also deal with having to vertify my email every 50 names or so of my list when it is sent out on Outlook. Not great software for a simple newsletter blast to 200 people.

  26. I have sent a few test messages to myself, and everything works except that I cannot find a way to enter text in the subject field. Result- I am sending emails with no subject. Any hints, please?

  27. A few of you are reporting that the merge is working but nothing is sent by Outlook. A possible fix for this (assuming it’s not a MAPI issue) is to make sure you set your default Mail browser to Microsoft Outlook and not Outlook Express.
    Go to START, click RUN and type OUTLOOK. This will open the most compatible version of Microsoft Outlook. MO should automatically find and set up your account settings. Go to ToolsOptionsMail SetupEmail AccountsViewChange Email Account. select your one click CHANGE. Make sure it is correct, and type in your email password and set it to default. Now try your Word or Access email merge – it might work this time.

    If not, it means your office version is incompatible with your Windows version…….which is another story!

  28. I find I now need to do an e-mail merge and have been reading all your comments and queries – it all looks and sounds so complicated!

    My daughter has mailed me the following link which gives a tutorial from Queen’s University Belfast and I think I’m going to try and follow this one, as it looks quie straightforward. Interestingly enough on page 7 it says ‘There is no visible sign of success’!!!,132207,en.pdf

    Anyway, good luck

  29. I use Outlook and Word 2007 in XP. In email merge HTML the merge goes thru the motions very fast and no emails arrive in the outbox. If I check text only, the merge seeks authority for every single merge item. I have looked at Outlook options to see if I can prevent the permission requirement for every single email and cannot. As so much that is Microsoft, the software is badly thought-through and does not consider the things that real users want to do. Should therhe not, for eexample, be a one key-stroke button to export/import all data to a new computer – instead the process takes an age and is complicated. I wish I had gone to Mac. Anyone have an alternate fix for my issue?

  30. I am using WORD 2007 and Outlook 2007 so mail merge should work. I am merging from a word document sing an address book created in address book of Outllok and output to an rtf file. This is found by Word merge and I can edit the list. When I merge, the merge appears to roll out normally but there is nothing in the outbox of Outlook at all. If I select ‘text’ instead of ‘html’ in the merge preferences, the emails are created but only one at a time, each one having to be allowed individually. The Microsoft box starts, ‘a programme is trying to access email address infomration stored in Outlook. If this is unexpacted…’ etc. So a large merge would take an age and be very annoying. It works but the emails are aweful. How can I make html emails merge as they did before using a another computer (also XP SP3). Thank you!

  31. I’m looking for a response using mail merge with Windows XP , Word 2007 and Windows Mail as I’m having the same problem.
    I have followed a couple of suggestions from other boards (to no avail) such as:
    changing text to plain (from HTML)
    ensuring that my default program is Windows Mail
    Can you help?

  32. I had the same issue with Word freezing while attempting a mail merge.

    The fix that worked for me was to turn off the automatic send/receive in Outlook. (Tools > Send/Receive > Send/Receive Settings > Disable Scheduled Send/Receive)

    As soon as I told Outlook to stop getting/sending mail automatically, the mail merge worked perfectly.

    My guess is that the automated send/receive disrupts the mail merge sending. The reason the error isn’t always reproducable is that we don’t have the “clock” in our heads of when Outlook is trying to send/receive automatically.

  33. Great guide, but do you know if it is at all posible to select which Outlook account to send from other than changing the default account in outlook. I have a number of email accounts setup in my outlook and I would like to select the sending account from Word.

    Many thanks in advance


  34. My experience is that this works flawlessly on 2010. Sadly, I had to downgrade to 2007 and am now facing the same issues shared above (Outlook & Word w/ Excel list- merge completes but does not reach the outbox).
    I have tried the few solutions here but to no avail. Wish you all the best… I’m probably switching back to 2010.

  35. I did an email merge with the source document in word and the data document in excel. What do you do if you do everything there is to do but the document does not go. I did the Review Document and it looked fine. Then I hit finished to send and nothing happened. The document did not go anywhere.
    It appears there is something wrong and I don’t know where to start to fix the problem.
    Please help if you can,

  36. I’m using Word 2007, and trying to do an email merge. It used to work but no longer does. I can run through the whole process successfully, but Word does not send the merge to Outlook. Outlook is set as my default email client yet I continue to get the following error when I process through the mail merge:

    “Cannot Link to Record. Before you can link this item to a Business Contact Manager record: 1) Set outlook as your default email program 2) Create your Outlook profile, and complete the Startup Wizard for Outlook 2007 with Business Contact manager”

    My source list is from an excel spreadsheet (excel 2007) and I do not want to tie it to the Business Contact Manager.

    It worked last week but is no longer working..

    Any suggestions?

  37. Fortunately the solution Kathrine found has nothing to do with my word-freeze while email-merging. I have no automatic send.
    I am so fed up with this that I will buy a working word-processor. I wish Bill Gates would have used half his fortune to debug his software instead of giving it away.


  38. Has these problms been solved? I try to mail merge using Windows and Office 2007, but when I click Finish & Merge in Word, nothing happens. The emails preview ok. Anybody able to help? I have re-installed all Office 2007 programs, but to no avail.

  39. Great guide, but do you know if it is at all possible to select which Outlook account to send from other than changing the default account in outlook. I have a number of email accounts setup in my outlook and I would like to select the sending account from Word.

    And my problem is in can’t mention the subject

  40. Do you have a solution for using WLM 2011 for sending out bulk e-mails rather that Outlook, which I don’t have? Is there a way to link Word 2007 to WLM as the default mail server to use?

  41. Just for reference since I didn’t see any solutions on here to the problem where Word 2007 just doesn’t ‘send’ the emails to Outlook..

    ..I found that if I ‘run as administrator’ (Windows 7) then it works. Obviously this annoying lack of privaliges means you can’t use the merge function despite the user account being administrator already….. sort it out Microsoft!!!!

  42. Well…what a pitiful example of what should be a functioning product! my email merge in 2007 and my NEW computer with 2010 DOES NOT WORK…Have tried soooo many different things but my emails go from ‘finish and merge’ to the outbox in outlook and don’t go any further!!!
    i have looked on so many websites and blog/forums and even have spoken to microsoft…i too have 100’s of emails to send and am spending way tooo much time TRYING to get a feature to work! why have a feature in a program that DOES NOT WORK!

  43. I have 30 rows in an excell spread sheet.I want the first 5 rows to get emailed to john, the next five to Jane ect… mail merging to a word document is easy (next record…). How can I mimic this to email the data instead of printing a hard copy for each person.

  44. I get to the final step and “Send e-Mail Messages” is grayed out. I do not have Outlook on the computer as my company uses Lotus Notes. That step does say “…sends them to your Outlook 2007 outbox (or your default email client). Is there a way to set Lotus as my default e-mail client in Word 2007?

  45. I’ve tried to use mail merge in words 2007 and windows mail, but also to no avail. I’ve been able to “export” the contacts to CSV format, reach the last stage in the mail merge, but when I select “electronic mail” to merge the two, I get 2 answers:

    1. If I select Plain Text or Attachment, it says “Program is trying to access email address information stored in outlook. If this is unexpected, click deny and verify your antivirus software is up to date.” – It seems like it’s using microsoft outlook to send the email out and isn’t working!

    2. If I select “Html” – it just says “unspecified error”

    Any ideas how to move forward with this? I have to send out 1000 emails by tomorrow!!

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