To start an email message to a Volunteer or Supervisor, open the appropriate record in the Reporter in either Volunteers, Stations or Jobs.
Click on Edit | Start Email Message from the top menu or click on the Email button on the toolbar. Your email program will start with a new message addressed to the email address that is showing on the screen.
You can send an email to a group of volunteers [or stations, or jobs] all at one time by going through the Reports menu | Volunteer Reports | Email Messages.
You could select a filter to limit which records to include, but if you want to send to all records which have email addresses, leave the filter at All Records and then click on Count. After getting a count of the records with email addresses, click on Prepare.
The Reporter will automatically copy all of the email addresses into the Windows clipboard. This is the same clipboard shared by all programs to copy and paste anything. The Reporter will then start your email program and wait for you to Paste the addresses into the TO field. But don’t paste them there—most people put their own address there. You must put a valid address into the TO: field.
You should paste the addresses into the BCC field (blind carbon copy) instead of the TO field. By doing so, you protect each recipient’s privacy by not displaying all of the other addresses at the top of their email.
Not all email programs normally show the BCC field. Clicking the CC field is one way to get to the BCC field. Then click in BCC to put the focus there and press Ctrl-v to paste.
In Outlook Express, click on View | All Headers in order to use the BCC field.
Outlook Express method to unhide BCC field – Click on All Headers so that it’s checked
In Outlook 2003, you may be able to find the BCC field from an icon or Options… button.
Outlook 2003 method to unhide BCC field
In Outlook 2007, which is commonly used for Windows7 and Vista, you may have to find the BCC field from the Options menu, which looks like a tab when you click on it.
Vista Outlook method to unhide BCC field
Email Messages with Webmail
Another tutorial on using Email Messages with Webmail e.g., AOL, Gmail, Hotmail, etc., shows that it is just about as easy to paste the email addresses on the clipboard from the Reporter into the webmail BCC field.
Potential Problems with Bulk Email
- A potential problem is that some people set up email spam filters to automatically delete any email messages not specifically addressed to them, especially BCC messages. So some recipients may unknowingly miss your email.
- Two kinds of faulty email addresses may cause problems:
- Some invalid or obsolete email addresses may bounce back, but the rest of the addresses will go through.
- Email addresses with faulty syntax will stop the sending process. The proper email address format is: email@example.com [or .net, .org, etc.] with no spaces. Capitalization does not matter. If the sender who is in the TO: field receives the email, at least you know that the ones with good addresses went out.
- In Volunteers or Stations you can use the Find button – see below to locate obsolete addresses. Search on a full email address there.
- Alternatively, you can check email addresses by running a Volunteers [or Stations] spreadsheet.
- Sort on the email address column by using Microsoft’s Data Sort feature in Excel.
- Scan through the addresses to find the problem one.
- Or use Ctrl-F to locate only a partially known address.
- Your Internet Service Provider, organization mail server, or your email client [program] might not allow you to send an email addressed to hundreds of people. If there is a limit the number of addresses per email you’ll have to break apart the addresses into several email messages.
- We’ve heard that Groupwise does not automatically launch from the Email Messages feature, so open it first when you are doing emails from within the Reporter.
- When using webmail like Gmail you need to open that manually and paste into the BCC field of a new message.
Use Notepad to Break Apart Email Address Blocks
An easy way to work with those broken email addresses is to open Notepad and paste them there and then split the addresses into smaller groups. [Do not use Word because of hidden codes.]
- Start button | All Programs | Accessories | Notepad
- Paste into a blank page
- Depending upon how many addresses the Reporter counted, click after the semicolon to choose the first block size
- Press ENTER on your keyboard twice.
- If you need to break it further, repeat the process
- Now you can copy and paste a block of addresses into each new email message.
- You can paste your message into Notepad temporarily to facilitate multiple identical messages.
Using the Find Button to Locate Wrong Email Addresses
- In Volunteers or Stations screen click on the Find button
- Sort on the email address column by scrolling to the right and clicking on the Email column. The underlined column title indicates the focus and the items are now sorted alphabetically.
- In the Find field type the first few letters of the bad email address.
- Click on Select.
- The Reporter opens the record of the selected volunteer or station.
Locate Bad Email Address Syntax
If sending the email is thwarted by an email address with the wrong syntax, you can search on it within the Notepad block of emails. Press Ctrl-F on the keyboard and type the known part of the email address into the find field. You may have to click Next if it’s a common domain until you find the broken address.