5 Replies Latest reply on Aug 15, 2012 7:21 PM by philmodjunk

    Sending Mass Emails



      Sending Mass Emails



      I am currently running a database that contains just around 400 contacts in it. Each contact could have up to 5 email addresses linked to it, (each one obviously has its own unique field/field name).
      Since I am new to FileMaker and do not want to waste time doing something to find out I did it the wrong way, I was wondering if someone can tell me how to send out a mass email.

      The ideal for me would be to have a button above my "Contact List" that would automatically open Mail and start a new message to all the email address I have entered. Is this possible? I really hope it is due to the fact that it is one of the main reasons I purchased FileMaker, and have spent over 100 hours creating my database and entering all my contact's info.

      My guess is that it probably involves some scripting, which I am close to horrible at, so some help would be greatly appreciated!
      If you have any questions, feel free to ask! 



        • 1. Re: Sending Mass Emails

          How are the "up to 5 email addresses" stored in your database? Are these 5 separate fields in your contacts table or records in a table related to contacts?

          And when you choose to send an email to "all the email addresses I have entered", would this be the up to 5 email addresses that are part of the current contact record or do you want to send this email to every email recorded in your database? Both can be done. The details differ.

          Note that many ISPs set limits on how many emails can be sent out so you may need to research that part of the issue with your ISP to find out what you can and can't do.

          • 2. Re: Sending Mass Emails

            My database is used for a school daycare to store all the contact information for each child/student and their parents, part of each contact record has a tab pannel (see screeshots) that hold the contact information for the parents (one tab for mom, one for dad), each can hold 3 email addresses. (sorry, meant to say 6 earlier)

            My goal is to have an email sent to every email recorded in my entire database with the click of one button.
            I did some research on the ISP, I estimated that only half would send, so my idea would be to have one button for contacts A-M, and another for N-Z.

            Sorry if I missed any of your questions, and if you have any others, ask away!

            I must say that I am feeling better already knowing that it can be done!


            • 3. Re: Sending Mass Emails

              The problem is complicated by the fact that you have what appears to be 6 separate fields for email addresses. If you used portals to a related table of email addresses, it will be much easier to send out your emails.

              With that related table, you can (either by hand or in a script)

              go to a layout based on that table

              Show all records

              Omit exactly half the records

              Send your email using the "multiple emails, one for each record in found set" option.

              Do a show omitted only to swap the omitted records for those in your found set.

              Send the email again with the same 'multiple emails' option.

              • 4. Re: Sending Mass Emails

                I see..
                So is it impossible to set up something with what I have now or can I still figure something out?

                Also, if i was to go that way and changed it, would I lose all the data I already entered in to those email fields? 

                • 5. Re: Sending Mass Emails

                  Adding a related table would add flexibility to your database. Adding a related table will not destroy data existing in your current email fields and you can use import records to import the data into records of your new table.

                  Using the current structure, I think this will work. First determine what delimitter your email program uses when you send the same email to multiple people. Usually, it's either ; or ,. I will assume the semi-colon in this example:

                  Add a calculation field written like this to combine your emails into a list in one field on each record:

                  Substitute ( List ( FatherHomeEmail ; FatherWorkEmail ; FatherOtherEmail ; MotherHomeEmail ; MotherWorkEmail ; MotherOtherEmail ) ; ¶ ; "; " )

                  When you send your email using the "multiple emails" option, specify this calculation field as the email field.