This topic will walk you through the process of creating a year end summary letter for your supporters. If you are a US organization and are interested in a Video presentation of this process, please click here to go to Salsa Scholars.
Note: If you are a Canadian organization and you want to use the Summary Letters/Receipt Wizard, you must apply summary receipts to gifts as you enter them into CRM.
The process has three phases:
- Create and upload a form letter (if you have already uploaded form letters, you can skip this step).
- (U.S. organizations only) Find and group donors using the Advanced Query Wizard.
- Apply year end summary letter to the donors and donations and print. Salsa CRM will perform best if your groups contain no more than 800 constituents each. Processing for this number of constituents might take several hours (especially if your letter has extensive or large graphics); do not re-start the process if a previous process is still running.
Create and Upload a Form Letter
While you can make your own form letter from scratch, using one of Salsa's templates will be easier and help to ensure success.
- Click https://help.salsalabs.com/hc/en-us/articles/115003577154. This page contains templates that you can modify and then upload into Salsa CRM.
- Read the best practices section.
- Select and download the template that you want to use. Note that there are different letters for organizations in the United States and Canada.
- Open the downloaded template in Microsoft Word.
- Edit the template by modifying the text and adding your corporate artwork as needed. Note: You'll find a table at the bottom of each template. When you generate form letters, Salsa CRM will auto-populate the table with donor information. You may modify the table column headers, but do not modify the number of columns or the number of rows. Leave it as a single-row table.
- Save the template using a new filename that you will remember and which will be easy to find.
- Open Salsa CRM.
- Click Manage > Documents > Word Processor. The Word Processing Options window will open.
- Using the options pull-down menu, click Store a document of any file type.
- Click Select File to open the file browser, and then open your edited template. You'll be returned to the Word Processing Options window.
- Click Save to Database. The Select Description dialog box will appear.
- Ensure that the description is as you want it to be, and then click OK to upload the file into Salsa CRM.
- Save your modified template file as a form letter: Navigate to Manage > Configuration. (Click here if you are interested in comprehensive albeit generic directions.)
- The Configuration window will be displayed. Click Form Letters & Receipts from the Explorer to the left of the screen. The right panel will change to display the Form Letters List Configuration.
- Select the Add Form Letter to Screen button.
The Add Form Letter to Screen window will open.
- Enter a Name for the Form Letter, and then press the Tab key. This Name is the name that displays on the dropdown list on the selected screen.
- Select the Type of Form Letter. Choose Donation for your summary letter if you are in the United States. Canadians will want to choose Receipt. NOTE: Receipt Form Letters appear in the Receipt drop-down field on the Donation screen. Canadians will want to choose the appropriate tax deductible designation.
Ensure that Summary Letters is selected. You will need to repeat steps 4-6 if you wish a letter to be available in multiple screens.
- Select Mail as the deliver method. (Alternately, you can choose Email. If you choose email, you will have to have a TXT file, with your email content, that can be uploaded to provide the body of the email. You will also be given options for necessary email fields.)
- Click the Select Document button to open the file browser.
- Find the edited template that you want to use (which you uploaded earlier in the process). and click it. You'll be returned to the Add form Letter to Screen window, and the filename will be listed beneath the Delivery Method.
- Click Save.
Find and Group Donors (U.S. organizations only)
In this phase you'll want to organize your constituents into easily manageable groups. In this phase, you'll be using the Advanced Query Wizard. You can find additional help in the application itself. Click Help > Tutorials to access Advanced Query Wizard walkthroughs.
Before you complete the steps below, you'll want to ensure that you have a group ready into which you will put constituents. Click here for information about adding groups.
- Click Reports > Queries > Advanced Query Wizard.
- For Query Type, click Constituent.
- For Purpose of Query, click Assign Constituent to Group/SmartGroup.
- Click Next. The Wizard will advance to Step 2.
- With the Output radio button selected, double-click First Name and Last or Org Name. These will be added to the Output Fields frame. You can add any additional fields (for example, Postal Code) that you want to use the help you to create smaller sets of constituents.
- The Salsa Scholars training video linked above uses postal code to filter constituents into manageable groups. For these directions, we'll filter using first two initials of Last or Org Name. Click Last or Org Name so it is highlighted in the Output Fields frame.
- Click the cog icon at the top of the Output Field frame, and then click Filter from the drop-down list that appears. The Add Filter Criteria dialog box appears. This is where you will define the criteria according to which your constituents will be divided. For these directions would create two groups, aa - kz and la - zz. You may create as many groups as you like and/or sort on different values (such as Postal Code).
- For the sake of brevity, we will create only one of two groups. In real life, you will create as many as you need. For the Operator, select in between. Enter the following:
- Value1 - aa
- Value2 - kz
- Click OK to add the filter and close the dialog box.
- Click Next. The Advanced Query Wizard will advance to Step 3, where you will see a list of all of the constituents that meet the filter criteria (in this case, everyone with a Last or Org Name beginning with letters between aa and kz).
- Review the list to ensure that you've captured the constituents that you want, and then click Next. The Advanced Query Wizard will advance to Step 4.
- Click Global Update, and then click Assign to Group. The Assign to Group dialog box will appear.
- Select that group that you want to use, and then click OK. Salsa Recommends that the group name is the same as the name you gave the edited template.
Apply Year-End Summary Letter to Donors and Donations and Print Using the Summary Letters/Receipts Wizard
In this phase, you'll bring everything together to create your summary letters (or receipts).
- Click Manage > Documents > Summary Letters/Receipts.
- This step is different for U.S. and Canadian organizations:
- U.S. organizations - Select may not have been.
- Canadian organizations - Select was a summary form letter.
- Ensure that the Donation Received date range is correct.
- (U.S. organizations only) Include Donations even if a Letter or Receipt was already printed should remain checked if you want constituents to receive a comprehensive summary letter even though they received individual letters for each donation.
- Click Search. Search results frame will appear.
- Click Process Letters. Process letters will appear in a new window.
- At this point, you can click Print to print individual letters or click Print All to print all letters. Do not attempt to edit generated letters in CRM.