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Built-in Word Processor with Merge Functions

The built-in word processor can merge nearly any information you have stored about a person into The more information you store in FundRaiser, the more personal the message can become a letter. Salutations and information on past giving are two important areas of information that you might want to use in personalized letters.


The Salutation allows you to put a suitable greeting at the beginning of a letter (avoiding the "Dear Friend," situations).

To make certain you can take advantage of the personalized salutation, you’ll want to do a bit of looking in your data.

Use the “Browse” window to identify those records that do not have an entry in the “Salutation” column. Once located, rectify the situation by putting a salutation in the field on the donor record.

[In Professional or Select, there are several more sophisticated options for dealing with salutations, and making sure that you don't have any letters with a blank salutation.]

Gift List

The GiftList function allows you to have FundRaiser insert a list of gifts for the time period you specify. This can be used to advantage in year-end statement letters, for instance, to show someone exactly what they gave over the previous year. It assures the donor that you are aware of their value to you, and recognizes their efforts, all at the same time.

It also serves as a double-check so that the donors have a chance to ask about any perceived discrepancies. You may also have FundRaiser print a total amount given at the bottom of that list, if you like.

Gift Total

The GiftTotal function allows FundRaiser to insert the total of the gifts (a single amount, in other words) for a time period you specify. In a year-end letter, for instance, you may want a statement in the body of the letter that says “We really appreciate the $xxx.xx that you provided this past year for {use in our cause…}.” The GiftTotal function can be placed anywhere in the letter that it’s needed.


You can also categorize people, for instance as to whether or not they are donors; and separate them into those categories as well as into different levels of giving for donors. Use "Queries" to create these lists of names of people who have things in common. Then write a letter for each separate list with a message especially for them… a "targeted" mailing, that pushes the right buttons.

The more information you store in FundRaiser, the more personal the message can become.

Queries are also used to isolate major donors and potential major donors, so that, instead of sending them direct mail, you can make a direct face-to-face solicitation.

Personalized Envelopes

The print routines for envelopes allow you to print both return and mailing addresses in separate fonts, using whatever fonts you have installed in your computer. Some fonts even give the impression of having been hand-written.

All in all, FundRaiser makes it easy to come up with targeted mailings, separate mailing lists, and personalized envelopes, just as Mr. Paley suggests for having successful direct mail campaigns.

Larry Weaver is an A+ certified computer technician, a Microsoft Certified Professional, as well as the training manager here at FundRaiser Software. He has worked with FundRaiser Basic software off and on since the mid-'90's.  When not operating computers, he enjoys operating motorcycles and musical instruments, and watching his grandchildren grow and prosper.


Direct mail Personalization: worth the expense?