Preparing Mail Data Files

Any database program should have a “save as” or “export” function. Please compress the files using archive utility such as ZIP.

Please include a record layout of your mail data file. Record layouts facilitate the importation of the mail data file into the data processing software. We will need to know the field names we are to import and their lengths.
If a NCOA Proof Processing file is available please send that as well. If a Proof of Processing is not available, please contact Print Strategy. We will send you a NCOALink® Processing Acknowledgement Form.

Preferred file formats include:

ASCII text delimited files such as tab or quote/comma (.txt or .csv). Please note that a comma delimited file MUST be quote/comma as comma’s inside a field can cause problems without quotes.

• Excel files (.xls or .xlsx) Please note: Eastern Zip Codes starting with 00 may have the leading
zeros removed by Excel unless the zip code includes the Plus4 (ie: 00123?6578). Please note that Excel files should only be used for small mail data files of 16,000 records or less. If it is a smaller mailing the file can be split into no more than two separate files.

• Access database files (.mdb)

• Dbase files (.dbf)

We can separate the combined fields (such as turning fullname into 2 fields: first & last or city, state zip into three fields: city & state & zip) and change all text from UPPERCASE to Mixed Case.

Please note that we must have the address and the city/state/zip in separate fields. The contents of the state field must follow the USPS’s two letter abbreviation standard. Also, we use NCOA to meet the USPS Move Update requirement which means we need to have a person’s name in a separate column from the company name.

If you need help exporting your database or have any questions, please contact Print Strategy.