How to Send a Message to a Distribution List in Outlook

Close-up of an address book
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Setting up a distribution (mailing) list in Outlook is easy and fun, but it is only half the fun. The bigger half of the group mailing fun is sending messages to such a list in Outlook and have them magically go out to all members immediately.​​​

Send a Message to a Distribution List in Outlook

To mail an entire distribution list in Outlook:

  • Create a new email message in Outlook by selecting File | New | Mail Message from the menu.
  • Click the To... button.
  • Highlight the desired distribution list.
  • Click the Bcc -> button.
  • Type your email address in the field next to the To -> button.
    • You can also use a descriptive name in the To: field. Make sure you put the name in front of your email address, and surround your address with '<' and '>'. For example, the To: field of a message to my phytocodex list could look like so:
      Phytocodex <>
  • Click OK.
  • Continue editing your message.
  • Finally, click Send.

Since your email address is in the To: field of the message to the list, note that you will get a copy. This does not indicate an error.

More Flexible List Messages

For more advanced list emails — including email marketing with personalized messages —, turn to a bulk email add-on for Outlook. Outlook's own merge to email function is another, albeit a tad cumbersome, option.