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Best practices when creating a mail merge
Best practices when creating a mail merge

Our best tips for an effective mail merge

Timothy Hudson avatar
Written by Timothy Hudson
Updated over a week ago

Mail merge is a powerful tool to communicate with your leads or accounts at scale. We've made it easy to use and adaptable to every workflow, but there are ways to utilize it more effectively to send and deliver mail to your contacts.

Use a <variable> in your subject line

If you've used a marketing tool like Mailchimp before, you know that they're big proponents of using a dynamic subject line to capture attention: keep them personal and keep them short. Keeping it simple has some other benefits, too:

  • Adding a variable to your subject will help you avoid running into issues with Conversation View (which we recommend you keep on)

  • Your messages will be more deliverable. Messages that aren't personalized can wind up in the dreaded Promotions tab of Gmail

Using variables from a pipeline (or a CSV) in the subject line only benefits the effectiveness of your mail merge.

Use a pipeline for sending them

Creating an effective mail merge doesn't mean much unless you can track it's effectiveness. We recommend starting your mail merge from a pipeline to insure that you have the best data possible in a format that you can filter on.

Starting from a pipeline gives you benefits like:

  • Messages will be automatically added to the boxes

  • Boxes have useful data points for threads within them: date of last email sent, email received, etc. 

You can then filter, analyze, and use that information to craft follow-ups with individual segments. If you're reporting information out of Streak, you can also use this data to measure reply-rate, and – if you're testing and tracking the messaging you use for each mail merges – even check the effectiveness of that messaging.

If you already have a CSV set-up, you don't have to start from square one: you can start a pipeline and import that CSV into it.

Contacts are more powerful than email addresses

Mail merge will still work if you're just using a column of email addresses, but that's an easy way to miss context and potentially send emails out to the wrong recipients.

Pairing mail merge up with our contacts feature allows you to bring data into your mail merge quicker and with less work.

If all you have is an email address from a contact list or a CSV, a third-party integration will add the rest of the details for you – given name, family name, and position/title.

If you've created custom contacts columns, you can also segment your mail merge based on them:

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