Marketing cloud list detective

Marketing cloud list detective DEFAULT

A little while ago I encountered an interesting issue; a prospect was unable to complete a form on a cloud page, and after some isolation testing I found that their email address was the problem &#; they we&#;re using a &#;Role-Based&#; email address which apparently Salesforce Marketing Cloud didn&#;t like.

Salesforce Support was able to confirm that &#;[email protected]<domain>&#; is in fact a &#;Role-Based&#; email that is blocked in Marketing Cloud, however they weren&#;t willing to provide a list of other email usernames that are blocked by the &#;List Detective&#; function. This was a problem for me as I wanted to ensure that other known/safe email usernames could also be pre-emptively added to the List Detective exemptions.

After some quick research into Role Based emails, I came across this repository of email usernames, which was far more extensive than the Pardot Role-Based and Reserved Email Addresses.

Working with Abikarsa Kristanto from Datarati, we we&#;re able to append a safe domain to all ~ usernames and load them into the All Subscribers list in Salesforce Marketing Cloud. Since the List Detective triggers during subscriber imports, the emails that failed to import would be blocked, giving us a list of all (at the time & from this list) email usernames that are in List Detective.

From ~ emails, only 28 were blocked &#; as below:

  • abuse
  • admin
  • email
  • feedback
  • hostmaster
  • info
  • junk
  • mail
  • mailerdaemon
  • marketing
  • news
  • newsletter
  • nobody
  • none
  • noreply
  • nospam
  • null
  • ops
  • orders
  • postmaster
  • press
  • remove
  • root
  • security
  • spam
  • subscribe
  • unsubscribe
  • www

I hope this list saves you time and helps any fellow trailblazers who find themselves in a similar situation. Again a huge thanks to Abikarsa Kristanto for his efforts on this discovery!


list detective report

List detective runs automatically anytime you import into a list or send to a data extension.

If you'd like to push the alerts/results over to your team, you can create an import activity that runs this import from your FTP and choose the option to "Send Notification Email to" an email address of your choosing. This will let you know once the import is complete and also what email addresses didn't pass the list detective.

You may also want to give it a different file naming pattern to differentiate your campaigns.

Info on List Detective and Import Activities are below as well if needed:

answered Oct 8 '14 at


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When sending emails from ExactTarget (aka: SalesForce Marketing Cloud) &#; you know, we&#;ll just call it &#;ET&#; for short &#; we occasionally receive error logs which contain ET subscriber keys where a small subset of targeted customers match profiles of other customers who have unsubscribed or been flagged as undeliverable.  Our goal is to process these log files and mark these customers as &#;undeliverable&#; in our parent system.  Since the log files are not formatted for data import, we need to use a parsing tool to extract the subscriber keys. I chose Python.

In the code below, I enter the path of the log file which was emailed to me from ET, and then I use re (regular expressions) to find all instances that match the subscriber key format, which is &#;[varchars-varchars-varchars-varchars-varchars]&#;.

Your version of subscriber keys will undoubtedly look different than mine, but you should be able to modify the regular expression in the re.compile() function to search for the right format. More info about Python&#;s regular expression class.

Let me know what you think!

I have included sample files with fake data for reference:
Input File (FFA6-BDDBA-BC6E8ED32F0X9 Results txt)
Output File (cleanFile.txt)


[su_heading]Python Code[/su_heading]



Marketing cloud connect


List Detective is a proprietary Marketing Cloud database of bad email addresses that your Lists are &#;scrubbed&#; against whenever they&#;re imported. Removes common typos and known bad domains from imported subscriber list data (or at time of send for Data Extensions)

The database includes known email spam traps, blacklist addresses, wireless domains, global unsubscribes, and mistypes

List Detective is a product exclusive to the Marketing Cloud that works to improve email deliverability by rejecting certain types of email addresses that it flags as not belonging to a real person or being typed incorrectly. Examples of common addresses that could be excluded by List Detective (using as the example domain) might be [email protected], [email protected], or in the case of one that is mis-typed, [email protected]

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