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Free Email TutorialsOutlook ExpressCreate a contact group in Outlook Express (distribution list)

Create a contact group in Outlook Express (distribution list)

As you may know from previous tutorials, you can manually add contacts in Outlook Express, which is a great time saver that spares you from having to type full email addresses when you send emails, for example. But Outlook Express goes one step further by allowing you to create your own distribution lists, or "contact groups". A contact group is a virtual construct, or artificial entity, that lets you combine several existing contacts into a single address book entry: you can have, for example, a "Sales Team" contact group that includes everyone in your organization who is likely to be interested in receiving emails that relate to the sales department - and you can add and remove new "members", or email addresses, to that distribution list. This tutorial explains how to create a contact group, with just a few clicks in the address book window, and how to send an email to a distribution list.

Make a contact group in your address book

Follow these steps to add a new contact group:

This is all it took to add and create a new contact group in your Outlook Express address book: you will now see it listed inside the left hand pane; and when you click on it to select it, Outlook Express will show the current members of that group on the right hand side.

How to email a contact group / distribution list in Outlook Express

For all intents and purposes, Outlook Express handles contact groups just like it does regular contacts: when you compose a new email message, start typing the name of the contact group you just created, and it will AutoComplete as email recipient suggestion! The advantage of this approach is of course that it saves you from adding the email addresses of everyone in the sales team whenever you want to share some information with them. In the screenshot below, we just typed the first letter, and Outlook Express autocompletes by offering our contact group as email recipient:

Send an email message to a contact group in Outlook Express

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Tutorial last updated on October 28, 2011
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