Can I personalize my email message?

You can personalize your email message or subject line through the use of a merge field. When you place a merge field into an email, your recipients will see the data associated with their email address in your list. For example, you might personalize your greeting to say 'Dear Bob' using the merge field {FIRST_NAME}.

On your end, the email greeting will look like this:


When Bob receives the email, it will look like this:

Dear Bob,
Merge fields in VerticalResponse all follow the same format. They all start and end with curly brackets - {}, the letters are in all caps - {STATE}, and spaces in the field name are replaced with underscores - {LAST_NAME}.

As long as your list has some data in the first name (or other chosen) field, that data will appear to the recipient in the email they receive. Our system will also allow you to specify a default value just in case you don't have data for a contact. The default value will follow a | character in the merge field, and should be formatted how you would want it to appear to your readers.
For example, if we weren't sure if we have Bob's first name in the list, we would use a merge field that looks like this: 

Dear {FIRST_NAME|Reader},

Make sure to apply any style changes changes to the entire merge field! The HTML tags that control fonts, colors, and styles can cause the merge field to break if they are used inside the curly brackets. It's a good practice to use the default value, even if you think your list is complete. If a default value isn't specified and data for the selected field is missing,  nothing will be inserted for that recipient, and the email will look like this:

Dear ,
Not so good! However, if you use the Canvas or Wizard email toolbar to insert your merge field, we automatically ask you for a default value.

To insert a merge field when creating your email, follow these steps:
  1. Place your mouse cursor where you want the merge field to appear
  2. Click the Insert drop-down menu, located on the left side of the toolbar
  3. Select the Merge Field that you want to use in your email
  4. Specify a Default Value to appear if the field is blank
The merge field tag will appear where you've placed your mouse in your email.

To see a list of merge fields for your account, or to create a new field, go to Lists | List Fields.
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