Before you import a spreadsheet, you'll want to make sure that contacts' first names and last names appear in separate columns. When first and last names appear in separate columns, you have more accuracy and flexibility in adding a personalized greeting to a campaign. If both first names and last names don't appear in separate columns, you can split them before importing.
Here's how to separate first and last names in Excel 2003, 2007 and 2010:
- Make sure there is an empty column directly to the right of the information you wish to split.
Note: This can be done by highlighting the column to the right of the column you wish to split, then right-clicking and choosing Insert.
- Select the column of full names that you'd like to separate.
- Head to the Data tab > Data Tools group and click Text to Columns.
- On the first step, select the Delimited option and click Next.
- On the next step, select one or more delimiters and click Next.
In our case, different parts of names are separated with spaces, so we choose this delimiter. The Data preview section shows that all of our names are parsed just fine.Tip. If you are dealing with names separated with a comma and space like Anderson, Ronnie, then check the Comma and Space boxes under Delimiters, and select the Treat consecutive delimiters as one checkbox (usually selected by default).
- On the last step, you select the data format and destination, and click Finish.
The default General format works nice in most cases. As the Destination, specify the topmost cell in the column where you want to output the results (please keep in mind that this will overwrite any existing data, so be sure to choose an empty column).
Done! The first, middle, and last name are divided into separate columns: