How to Pass Salesforce Marketing Cloud Email Specialist Exam

How to Pass Salesforce Marketing Cloud Email Specialist Exam

Last Updated on August 22, 2022 by Rakesh Gupta

After dreading and delaying a couple of times, I finally mustered the courage to appear for the Marketing Cloud Administrator certification exam a few months ago. And, oh yes, I managed to pass it on my first attempt. So, follow along on the ‘Yellow Brick Road’!

I’ve approximately 1.6 years of experience managing Marketing Cloud for a few Financial Institutions. The experience, without a doubt, helped me to pass this exam easily. But, what if,  you wonder, one does not have an opportunity to gain experience on the Marketing Cloud Platform? So, let us take a minute’s pause and think about how someone – who did not get an opportunity to work on the Marketing Cloud Implementation – can appear and pass the exam. If you fall in this category, welcome to the right blog at the right time! For by reading from the beginning to the end of this article, you will have a clear understanding of – and will be able to devise a plan and a strategy for – how to pass the Marketing Cloud Email Specialist exam.  

So, Who is an Ideal Candidate for the exam?

Salesforce offers various certifications for Marketing Cloud candidates – Marketing Cloud Email Specialist is just one of them. The Salesforce Marketing Cloud Email Specialist credential is designed for individuals who can demonstrate knowledge, skills, and experience in email marketing best practices in the following areas: content creation, subscriber and data management, delivery, and analytics within the Marketing Cloud Email application.

For instance, the Salesforce Marketing Cloud Email Specialist should be able to demonstrate their knowledge, skills, and experience in the following areas:

  • Build email marketing campaigns leveraging the various tools within Email Studio, including Content Builder.
  • Build relational data models.
  • Send emails using email application sending methods.
  • Build email automation using Automation Studio and Journey Builder.
  • Create reports of email tracking data. Invest time in studying the resources listed in this exam guide and the additional study materials provided by Salesforce.

A Marketing Cloud Email Specialist Certification would boost your career by several folds – it will demonstrate your Marketing Cloud knowledge and your Salesforce experience!

Yellow Brick Road – Set a Strict Exam Preparation Timeline!

After deciding to appear for the exam, it is time to gather information about it and consider what steps you will take to ace it. Once you have a concrete timeline, think about how you will integrate a sound study plan around the rest of your responsibilities – work/home balance, etc. Having a concrete date to study towards will help you stay motivated.

Learning styles differ widely – so there is no magic formula that one can follow to clear an exam. The best practice is to study for a few hours daily – rain or shine! Below are some details about the exam and study materials:

  • 60 multiple-choice/multiple-select questions – 90 mins
    • 5 additional randomly-distributed questions that will not be scored
  • 67% is the passing score
  • The exam Fee is $200 plus applicable taxes
  • Exam Sections and Weighting
    • Email Marketing Best Practices: 10%
    • Content Creation and Delivery: 24%
    • Marketing Automation: 26%
    • Subscriber and Data Management: 26%
    • Insights and Analytics: 14%

If you do not have previous experience with Marketing Cloud, then follow the exam guides mentioned below in the order they are listed:

  1. Highly recommended Prepare for Trailhead’s instructor-led training for Build and Analyze Customer Journeys using Marketing Cloud (MKT 101)
  2. . There are two advantages of attending the training mentioned above:
    1. The above training is designed to pass Marketing Cloud training without spending too much time here and there.
    2. Assess your exam readiness by answering practice questions.
    3. An opportunity to ask questions to an instructor is priceless!
  3. Attend Salesforce Live Event to Learn from Experts
  4. Trailmix – Prepare for Your Salesforce Marketing Cloud Email Specialist Credential
  5. Marketing Cloud-related videos on Trailhead
  6. Marketing Cloud Email
  7. Marketing Cloud Content Creation

If you are offered a project or a task that involves – setting up a marketing cloud, Subscriber data management, creating data extension, or setting up FTP user, Journey Builder implementation – then, by all means, accept it! Nothing is better than real-world experience.

What you Need to Know to Smoothen your Journey

On a very high level, you have to understand the following topics to clear the exam:

  1. Email Marketing Best Practices: 10%
    1. Breakdown of Email Structure
      1. We call the From Name, Subject Line, and Preheader the “envelope content.” This is what the subscriber sees in their inbox (or on mobile screen) before opening and is critical to winning the engagement.
      2. Create compelling content
        1. A subject line that captures people’s attention
        2. Give readers what you promised them in the subject line
        3. Tailor your email voice
      3. From Name
        1. Make it recognizable and trustworthy.
        2. Keep it under 25 characters.
        3. The first thing the reader will see is the From Name. This is key to establishing trust (and interest). ”Is this someone I expect to hear from? Based on past messaging, is this likely useful/interesting/valuable?” Many subscribers click “Report Spam” or Delete based only on this field.
      4. Subject Line
        1. Keep the essential words within the first 35 characters.
        2. Measure success by conversions — not necessarily opens.
      5. Preheader
        1. This is the first snippet of text from the email’s code. Don’t leave it up to chance — expand on your subject line.
        2. Use all ~85 characters, frontloading the essential information.
    2. Deliverability Considerations – Deliverability is the ability to get your email delivered to the subscriber’s inbox
      1. ISPs evaluate your sending domain and IP address and assign a “sender reputation” based on their assessment of the value of delivering your email to their customers (your subscribers).
      2. Sender reputation determines whether your email will be filtered as spam, filtered to a bulk folder, or delivered to the primary inbox.
      3. Building and maintaining a healthy sender reputation depends on good permission and sending practices – something completely in your control.
    3. Sender reputation – how receivers view you and your mail
      1. Email reputation controls access to the inbox:
        1. Bad reputation: Spam folder or block
        2. Good reputation: Inbox
      2. Domain or IP-address based (usually IP based)
      3. ISPs plan on more domain-based measures in future
      4. Based on:
        1. Spam complaints
        2. Invalid Addresses
        3. Spamtrap hits
        4. Authentication (SPF, Sender ID, DKIM)
        5. Third-party blacklistings
        6. Engagement
      5. Do people want your mail? Are your recipients engaged?
    4. CAN-SPAM and Transactional Email Defined
      1. Note that different countries have different laws that govern email, marketing, and customer privacy. As a company, we do not, and cannot, provide legal advice. Clients must engage their legal counsel to determine if their content and practices comply with their respective jurisdictions. Information on CANSPAM and GDPR is provided here to provide background as they are highly relevant to email marketing, and we can provide some general best practices.
      2. CAN-SPAM ACT: The U.S. law sets the rules for commercial email, establishes requirements for commercial (marketing or promotional) messages, gives recipients the right to have you stop emailing them, and spells out tough penalties for violations. Per CAN-SPAM, you must have affirmative consent. In addition:
        1. Don’t use false or misleading header information or deceptive subject lines.
        2. Identify the message as an ad.
        3. Tell recipients where you’re located and how to opt out of future mail.
        4. Honor opt-out requests promptly. You must process an unsubscribe request within 10 days, and your unsubscribe mechanism must be operational for at least 30 days after the mailing.
        5. If you share the subscriber’s email address with a third party, you must give them ‘a clear and conspicuous notice when the consent was communicated.
        6. Include your physical mailing address.
    5. Different ways to improve Message Deliverability
      1. 12 Ways to Improve Email Deliverability
      2. Email Deliverability Best Practices for Email Studio
      3. Use email authentication
        1. DKIM
        2. SPF
        3. DMARC
      4. Remove non-responding addresses
      5. Don’t Buy lists or use third-party data
      6. Email Deliverability
      7. List hygiene
      8. ISP compliance
      9. SMTP log filtering to proactively detect blocking
      10. IP address warming
      11. Ensure That All Subscribers on Your Lists Have Given You Permission
      12. Deal With Bounce Rates Greater Than 20%
      13. Purge Old or Inactive Addresses
      14. Manage Frequency and Content
    6. Email Marketing Deliverability
      1. Play by the Rules of ISPs and Filtering Companies
      2. Reduce SPAM Blocking with Permission-Based Email Marketing
      3. Use Double Opt-in to Avoid Getting Blacklisted
      4. Maintain a Consistent From Address and Subject Line Recognition
    7. While it’s essential to look for every opportunity to acquire subscribers, you can find that most companies have a few sources that provide the majority of subscribers. Typically the website and point of sale. Ecommerce/checkout is an excellent source of opt-ins. Make sure that you capture email addresses early in the shopping cart process so that you can follow up if they are abandoned. 
      1. Leave no stone unturned to gather email addresses and mobile numbers.
        1. Website (Optimized Registration Page)
        2. Facebook apps and custom audiences
        3. Twitter posts
        4. Social login
        5. Strategic cross-promotion of brands
        6. SMS/QR Code acquisition
        7. Social cross-promotion
        8. Mobile apps
        9. Search
        10. Loyalty programs
        11. The transactional message, e.g. eReceipts
        12. Event Kiosks
        13. Signage
        14. Packaging and package inserts
        15. Credit Card statements, if applicable
        16. “On hold” message
        17. Direct Mail
        18. Circulars
        19. Retail partnerships
    8. Permission is the cornerstone of building a good sender reputation
    9. Data Collection: Robust customer data is key to segmenting and personalizing communications. The more prosperous it is, the better your understanding of your audience will be.
    10. Segmentation: Once you’ve collected and/or purchased data, you can begin analyzing it, looking for exciting correlations, or targeting based on specific attributes. Think grouping.
    11. Personalization: Once robust data is available, one-to-one personalization is possible and should be tested. Be highly relevant.
    12. Getting Started: Email Studio: Email Personalization Fast Start
    13. Personalization using Dynamic Content
      1. Personalization with Customer Data – First Name, Account Number
      2. Preferences – Use customer zip code to populate the map.
      3. Behavioral – Personalized recommendations based on analytics or past purchases
      4. Einstein Email Recommendations
    14. Design
      1. Landing Page – This is where they land after clicking on the email. Should be a strong connection between the email and the landing page. You can repeat headlines or images from the email on the landing page.
      2. Mobile – use single column layout, large text, images, and buttons, spacing out links and buttons.
      3. Responsive Design – smart and can render correctly on a variety of devices.
      4. A responsive layout uses a CSS3 code called a (@media query) to detect the pixel size of the screen on which that email is opened.
      5. Multiple stylesheets may be triggered based on the screen size detected to alter the layout and best respond to a particular screen size. Efficiently implemented, a responsive message allows a single set of content to be presented in the most usable format for the screen upon which the message is viewed.
      6. In an email, we generalize this to include large screens (desktop) and small screens (mobile).
      7. Defensive tactics – HTML text rather than graphical text, use alt text for images, select a background color for table cells.
    15. Responsive email coding techniques
      1. @media query styles – placed in the head of the HTML
        1. Wrapping content with fluid width
          1. Width:100%
        2. Stacking the left column on top of the right (display: block)
        3. Stacking right column on top of left (
        4. Stacking Navigation (Privacy, legal, etc.)
        5. Creating columns from vertical content (float left and Float right)
        6. Showing/hiding content on mobile
    16. A/B Testing – the A/B testing feature allows you to test the following conditions: 
      1. Subject lines – create two different subject lines and track which subject performs better.
      2. Preheaders – create two different preheaders and track which preheader performs better.
      3. Emails – create two different emails and track which email performs better.
      4. Content areas – create two different content areas and track which content performs better.
      5. Send dates/times – select two different days of the week and/or times to send and track which time performs better.
      6. From names – create two different names and track which name performs better. Acronym = SPECSF
    17. Assets and portfolios – A portfolio is a single entry point to manage the images, documents, and media files you use and refer to in your emails and microsites. You can see all of your stored digital assets together in the portfolio.
      1. Assets are added files you will leverage in building email content
      2. Images: used in the header, footer or body of email templates (formats: .jpg, .tiff. .gif, .bmp)
      3. Do not resize images in the HTML editor. If you need various sizes of an image for different email templates, use image editors outside of IMH tool, import all sizes you will need
      4. Documents: used as attachments (formats: Word, Excel, PowerPoint, text, pdf, flash, quicktime. ics, etc.)
      5. HTML, CSS, JavaScript files: used to support branding
    18. Content Detective is a tool that helps you identify spam triggers in your email content. This feature mirrors the logic used by spam-filtering software to identify words, phrases, and patterns likely to trigger filters and then recommends a resolution to each identified problem. After running Content Detective, edit the triggers identified in the email using the recommended resolutions.
    19. Approvals
      1. Statuses: Draft, Pending, Approved, Declined
      2. Approvals are needed for:
        1. Scheduled Sends
        2. A/B Tests
        3. Automation
        4. Triggered Sends
        5. Programs
    20. Web Safe Fonts are fonts that are pre-installed by many operating systems. While not all systems have the same fonts installed, you can use a web-safe font stack to choose several similar fonts installed on the various systems you want to support. Web Safe Fonts are considered best practices in email marketing.
      1. Email Safe Fonts (Web-Safe)
        1. Most likely to be installed on the subscriber’s computer.
      2. Branded Fonts
        1. Client-hosted CSS file provided. Only seen on supported email clients.
        2. Email-Safe fallback font required.
      3. Webfonts (Web Fonts)
        1. Free fonts are available online.
        2. Only seen on supported email clients.
    21. Conceptual Design
      1. When planning a campaign for Marketing Cloud Email, consider the following:
        1. Is the template supposed to be mobile responsive, and is code required to support multiple mobile devices?
        2. What is the typical text-to-image ratio, are background images used, and is the customer aware this may impact performance?
        3. Are images hosted internally or externally? Is the external host likely to become a bottleneck? What is the maximum file size?
        4. How often is the template likely to change? Is an agency defining the Corporate Identity?
        5. What size is the team creating emails, and how much time are they allowed to spend on a single email campaign?
        6. Is the nature of the emails sent commercial or transactional?
        7. Is a 3rd party system sending additional email campaigns? Where is the subscriber status managed? If it’s Marketing Cloud, how does the 3rd party system connect to sync subscriber status, bounces, complaints, and unsubscribes?
      2. Create engaging email campaigns by following a few guidelines:
        1. Make your call to action distinguishable
        2. Build a hierarchy to make your email easier to read
        3. Use dynamic content to make your messaging more personal
        4. Make sure your templates are mobile responsive
        5. Use automation to create compelling welcome, birthday, cart abandonment, nurturing, and cross/upsell campaigns
        6. Keep your subject line crisp and concise. According to Return Path, 65 characters seems to be a sweet spot for email subject lines.
  2. Content Creation and Delivery: 24%
    1. Email Messages
    2. An email message is a type of message delivered to your subscribers’ email client. You can create user-initiated and triggered email interactions. Email message interactions are also referred to as Send Definitions
    3. You can send the email by using a:
      1. triggered send
      2. data extension
      3. scheduled send
    4. Create an Email in Email Studio or Content Builder
    5. Content Builder: Content Builder is a cross-channel content editor built on CKEditor, an open-source WYSIWYG editor that provides high-quality output.
      1. With the Content Builder, you can:
        1. Save time with the easy-to-use interface.
        2. Create a professional message without knowing HTML.
        3. View changes to content in real-time with an always-present preview.
        4. Utilize more intelligent HTML Paste tools such as color coding and line numbers.
        5. Insert Email code snippets for standard links such as Forward to a Friend, Open Tracking, and more.
    6. Template Based: Choose this option if you already have a template that you’ll be using for this email.
    7. HTML Paste: Choose this option to type or paste HTML code for an email into the editor.
    8. Text Only: (This option may not be enabled in your account. To enable Text Only Email Creation, contact your representative.) Choose this option if you want to create an email that will display as text only in your subscribers’ inbox regardless of their display preferences. Opens data is never reported for text-only emails.
    9. Unprocessed HTML Paste: (This option may not be enabled in your account. To enable this feature, contact your representative.) Choose this option if you want to create an HTML-based email that you do not want to be affected by the application. No validation, personalization strings, or other manipulations are done to the email’s content.
    10. Unprocessed Text Only: (This option may not be enabled in your account. To enable this feature, contact your representative.) Choose this option if you want to create a text-only email that you do not want to be affected by the application. No validation, personalization strings, or other manipulations are done to the email’s content. 
    11. Simple Automated Email: Choose this option if you want to create an email you send based on a date attribute. For example, if you want to send your subscribers an email on their birthday, you can create an automated email.
      1. Note: For Enterprise accounts, once you’ve created an email, you can publish it to your Lock & Publish channel members or send it (immediately or on a schedule).
    12. Content Canvas permits you to create and store content for use across all channels within your Salesforce Marketing Cloud account
      1. Use Content Canvas to accomplish the following tasks:
        1. Create, upload, and store content in your Salesforce Marketing Cloud account
        2. Review and edit existing content to better meet your messaging needs
        3. Determine which marketing channels can use specific content, allowing you to tailor your content for broad or specific usage
        4. Sort and review content to find the best applicable content for your channel needs.
        5. Tag content for simplified grouping and searching
        6. Add pieces of content to campaigns
        7. Determine who can access your content and at what times those persons gain access
    13. Building, Testing, & Sending Emails in Marketing Cloud
    14. Access Guided Send
    15. Subscriber Preview is a rendering of an email as a recipient will view it. After the initial subscriber preview, you can proceed through the rest of the recipients to see previews for each subscriber. 
    16. The preview feature does not display in a particular operating system or email client.
    17. Identify the appropriate send method.
      1. Before you send an email, follow this checklist to ensure that the email meets your standards before it arrives in subscribers’ inboxes:
        1. Run the Spell Check in the content areas in your email.
        2. Run the Content Detective on your email (validates spam filters won’t catch it)
        3. Preview and Modify Text Versions of Emails (Optional).
        4. Run the Validation Tool on your email. Checks for:
          1. the presence of an unsubscribe link
          2. the presence of a physical mailing address
          3. the correct syntax for attributes used as personalization strings
          4. the existence of any content areas defined in the dynamic content rules. 
        5. Perform a test delivery of your email.
    18. Validation Tool
      1. the presence of an unsubscribe link
      2. the presence of a physical mailing address
      3. the correct syntax for attributes used as personalization strings
      4. the existence of any content areas defined in the dynamic content rules. 
    19. Test Send
      1. Previewing the HTML and text versions of the email: Use the View HTML Version and Edit Text Version tabs of your email editor workspace. 
      2. Previewing the dynamic content (if used) for attributes: Use the Preview button in your dynamic content boxes.
      3. Previewing the email for a subscriber: Use the Inbox Preview feature.
      4. Delivering the email to a test email address: 
        1. Test send: See How To Send an Email Using Test Send.
        2. Test list: Set up a list that consists only of test email addresses. If you’re the sole tester of the email, then set up a list consisting only of yourself. When you use Guided Send, select this list only as the recipient so that the email is generated for just the test email address(es).
        3. Suppress this send from Reports: This feature allows you to send the email to all subscribers on the designated list.
        4. Redirect all emails to a single email address:
          1. An email is generated for each subscriber in the lists and groups that you select in the wizard, but each of those emails are delivered to a single test address that you specify.
    20. When you create a send classification, you specify the following information:
      1. Delivery ProfileA delivery profile is a record where you can specify the delivery information for a message in a central location and reuse that information across multiple message sends without selecting the information each time.
        1. IP Address
        2. Header
        3. Footer
      2. Sender ProfileA sender profile is a record where you specify the information for a message sent in a central location and reuse that from information across multiple messages sent without selecting the information each time.
        1. Sender
        2. From Name
        3. From Email
    21. You can override the delivery profile and sender profile on the send classification when you include the send classification in a message interaction
      1. User
      2. on behalf of 
      3. Personalization
      4. AMPscript
    22. Email Studio and Content Builder 
  3. Marketing Automation: 26%
    1. Journey Builder – Journey Builder is a Salesforce Marketing Cloud application for creating responsive, automated multi-channel campaigns.
      1. How to Set Up a Journey in Journey Builder
    2. Automation Studio – Automation Studio is a Salesforce Marketing Cloud application used to execute multi-step marketing and data management activities on an immediate, triggered, or scheduled basis. Use Automation Studio’s workflow canvas to build simple or multi-step automation.
      1. Execute marketing automation on an immediate or scheduled basis
      2. Automations are scheduled or triggered via a file being dropped into the FTP location
      3. Activities are executed based on schedule or trigger
    3. Automation Studio Activities
      1. Data Extract – Use this activity to create a file of information for you to use outside of the application. This activity can also transform an XML file into a comma-delimited, tab-delimited, or pipe-delimited file for import into your account.
      2. Filter – Use this activity to apply the logic of a data filter you select to create a group or data extension containing records that meet the data filter criteria. Provide a name, external key, and description to identify and describe the activity.
      3. Import File – This activity uses the information from an outside file to update a subscriber list or data extension. You provide information that the activity uses each time it runs, which gives the specifics of the file to import and the import activity’s behavior while running.
      4. Refresh Group – Use this activity to re-apply the rules in a group definition to create a subset of subscribers in a list. Before using a group refresh activity, you must create a group definition.
      5. Report Definition – Use this activity to define the parameters for running a report once every time the report is run using the activity. You can create a report activity to run every standard report available in the application and custom reports in your account.
      6. SQL Query –  Use this activity to retrieve data extension or data view information that matches your criteria and include that information in a data extension. You use SQL to create the query you use in the query activity. You provide a name, external key, and description to identify and describe the activity.
      7. Send Email – Use this activity to initiate an email message. You can send the email in automation alone, or put it in sequence with other activities and schedule it for a particular date and time.
      8. File Transfer – Use this activity to upload a file to or download a file from a transfer location that you specify. The file transfer activity transfers files securely and can decrypt or decompress a file.
      9. Send Push
      10. Send SMS
      11. Wait – Use this activity to cause the automation to wait for a specific period before performing the next step.
    4. Starting Sources
      1. Automation in Automation Studio can have one of two starting sources: Schedule & File Drop.
      2. The “File Drop” automation starting source used to be called “Triggered.” They can use the Marketing Cloud Enhanced FTP to store and exchange data.
    5. Import File Activity
      1. Use this activity to update a subscriber list or data extension using an external file. During the process, which establishes import file details and the import activity’s behavior while running. The activity uses this import definition each time it runs.
      2. If the file you are importing is encrypted or compressed, you can use a file transfer activity to prepare the file for import.
      3. If you are a Marketing Cloud Connect user, you can use an import activity to create and populate a data extension with data from a Salesforce object or report.
    6. The data extract activity creates one or more zipped files for your use outside the Marketing Cloud application. It can also convert an XML file into a comma-delimited, tab-delimited, or pipe-delimited file for import into your account.
  4. Subscriber and Data Management: 26%
    1. Email Studio List Versus Email Studio Data Extension
    2. List
      1. A list is a compilation of subscribers that receive your communications. You create as many lists as you need to segment your subscribers so that you can target your email communications. See the Lists Feature Guide for more information and procedures about lists. 
        1. Use Lists when:
          1. your lists contain 500,000 subscribers or fewer long term
          2. you prefer simplicity over performance
          3. you do not require a fast-import speed
          4. you plan to use a limited number of subscriber attributes
          5. you use the XML API
    3. Data Extension
      1. A data extension is a table within the application database that contains your data. You could use a data extension to store sendable subscriber data like Lists or just to house relational data. See the Data Extension Feature Guide for more information and procedures about data extensions.
        1. Use Data Extensions when:
          1. your lists are going to be greater than 500,000 subscribers
          2. you support multiple subscriber data sets with separate definitions
          3. you send global messages
          4. you require fast import speeds
          5. you implement triggered sends
          6. you use the SOAP or REST APIs
          7. you prefer a flexible subscription model
    4. Use a List when:
      1. your lists will contain 500,000 subscribers or less long-term
      2. you prefer simplicity over performance
      3. you do not require fast import speed
      4. you plan to use a limited number of subscriber attributes
      5. you use the XML API
    5. Use a Data Extension when:
      1. your lists are going to be greater than 500,000 subscribers
      2. you support multiple subscriber data sets (with separate definitions)
      3. you send global messages 
      4. you require fast import speeds
      5. you implement triggered sends
      6. you use the SOAP or REST APIs
      7. you prefer a flexible subscription model
    6. A profile attribute contains information to characterize a subscriber profile. For example, subscribers may be asked to provide their gender, birth date, and email address. Every account default has three profile attributes: Full Name, Email, and User Defined (which is intended as a generic attribute that you can use as needed). You cannot modify these attributes.
    7. A preference attribute characterizes how a subscriber prefers to receive email. These are specified as “yes or no” choices to a declarative statement. For example: “The subscriber prefers to receive an email as HTML.”
    8. Use a profile attribute to store information important for segregating your subscribers into lists or groups.
    9. Use preference attributes to specify preferences for your subscribers. Once specified, you may build lists and groups based on these preferences.
    10. Profile Center Marketing Cloud
      1. The profile center is a webpage where subscribers can enter and maintain the personal information that you keep about them.
      2. When you import a list, you can import attribute values for your subscribers that appear when a subscriber visits the profile center. The subscriber can update their information on this page and provide additional information. Your subscribers can view their data and their subscriptions to your communications.
      3. In the Profile Center, subscribers see all of the attributes defined in your account that you don’t mark as hidden. If the attribute is read-only, the subscriber can see its value for that attribute but cannot change it. In compliance with the latest  CAN-SPAM laws, every Profile Center page now includes a global opt-out option.
    11. Generally, there are three types of opt-out or ways to unsubscribe from a Marketing Cloud account:
      1. List Unsubscribe: By unsubscribing from a list or publication list from the out-of-the-box preference center or custom preference center, the user will opt-out from a specific newsletter type
      2. Global Unsubscribe: Occurs when a subscriber chooses to unsubscribe from every email sent from Marketing Cloud.
      3. Master Unsubscribe: By clicking the “Unsubscribe from all” link in the out-of-the-box preference center, the user status is set to Unsubscribed on all your lists and your master list.
    12. Subscriber and Data Management
    13. Web Collect is Email Studio’s sign-up form functionality that allows your subscribers to subscribe, provide attribute information, or unsubscribe from your communications on your website.

      1. Web Collect exclusively works with Lists, for each instance of a Web Collect form on your website, you will have to at least provide the List ID (LID) and Member ID (MID) of your account.
      2. Email Studio Web Collect
    14. Smart Capture is a tool used to create lead capture forms to include in Cloud Pages or Landing Pages. Smart Capture supports subscriber lists, data extensions or outside data sources such as an integrated CRM system. It can be created with WYSIWYG tools available in Cloud Pages.
    15. You can use a Smart Capture form to:
      1. Generate leads from people who sign up to receive a newsletter or attend an event
        1. Leverage the Smart Capture Event to trigger Journeys in Journey Builder
      1. Send automated emails to people who complete the form
        1. Create and maintain a custom preference center
        2. More stuff
    16. For subscribers on lists (rather than data extensions), you can use Smart Capture to create a custom Profile Center by using AMPscript to read the subscriber data and load that data into the form. 
    17. Smart Capture cannot currently be used to create a custom Subscription Center because there is no functionality to retrieve the existing lists in your account.
    18. Data Extensions in Contact Builder
    19. Contact Builder Imports
  5. Insights and Analytics: 14%
    1. Email Marketing Terms Marketers Must Know
    2. Get Started with Reports
    3. Marketing Cloud Analytics Builder Reports Frequently Asked Questions
    4. You run a report from the Tracking tab in your user interface. 
    5. You can run reports asynchronously, meaning that you can continue working while the report runs off-screen. 
    6. Reports that you run asynchronously are delivered to your email inbox or FTP server. For some reports, you can also choose to run the report inline and have the results appear on your screen.
    7. You can use the Report Status and History screen to view a list of reports that have been requested in your account
    8. If you use the interactions feature, you can run a report as an activity
    9. When you run a report, you specify the following information:
      1. Report Parameters
      2. Report Results Delivery
      3. Results File Format
      4. Run the Report
    10. Report file formats:
      1. Data File (.csv)
      2. Excel spreadsheet (.xls)
      3. TIFF Image (.tif)
      4. Adobe (.pdf)
      5. XML (.xml)
      6. Web Archive (.mht)
    11. Reports can be delivered to:
      1. FTP Folder
      2. Email the Report results
      3. Display Report Results On Screen
    12. Relative date ranges are defined as follows:
      1. The last full Week
      2. The last full Month
      3. The last full Quarter
      4. The last full Day
    13. Popular Standard Reports
      1. Account Send Summary
        1. This report shows total send and response data for your account
      2. Campaign Email Tracking
        1. The Campaign Email Tracking report shows send tracking data for a specific campaign
      3. Email Performance by Domain
        1. This report provides data for the top 10 email domains for an email send. Use this report to analyze how domains responded to a particular email send
      4. Single Email Performance by Device
        1. The Single Email Performance by Device report displays email performance on mobile devices versus desktop devices
      5. Subscriber Engagement
        1. This report includes the number of emails that you have sent each subscriber over a specified period, and the number of emails the subscriber has opened or clicked.
    14. Tracking Extracts provide granular tracking data for import from Email Studio into external systems.
      1. Data can be extracted as a CSV or XML file. Tracking Extracts can be scheduled with Automation Studio or triggered via API.
      2. Output types related to an email:
        1. Bounces & Complaints
        2. Unsubscribes
        3. Opens & Clicks
        4. Sent & Job
        5. Surveys & Conversions
        6. Subscribers
        7. Impression Tracking
    15. Data Views
      1. Use SQL Queries to query Data View tables in Marketing Cloud. Data Views can be used to create reports based on subscriber-related data stored in the backend of the Marketing Cloud.
      2. Data Views available in Marketing Cloud:
        1. Bounces & Complaints
        2. Unsubscribes
        3. Opens & Clicks
        4. Sent & Job
        5. FTAF & Surveys
        6. Subscribers
        7. Journeys
        8. Journey Activity
        9. SMS Subscribers & Undeliverable
        10. Coupons
        11. Social Forward
    16. SQL Query Examples


If you have good hands-on experience with all the above topics, passing the exam will be a cinch; you will be able to earn the much-coveted Marketing Cloud Email Specialist certification! However, if you do not have enough experience with the Marketing Cloud, and you plan to become a Marketing Cloud Certified Email Specialist. I suggest you draw a 2-3 months plan (finish the above Trailhead and Instructor-led training) to prepare for it.

I hope that you find these tips and resources useful. If you put the time and effort in, you will succeed. Happy studying and good luck!

Formative Assessment:

I want to hear from you!

Have you taken the Marketing Cloud Email Specialist Certification Exam? Are you preparing for the exam now? Share your tips in the comments!

Have feedback, suggestions for posts, or need more information about Salesforce online training offered by me? Say hello, and leave a message!

2 thoughts on “How to Pass Salesforce Marketing Cloud Email Specialist Exam

  1. Thank you for sharing, Does this marketing cloud specialist exam required or pre-requisite for B2C Solution architecture? was this removed from B2C path as I have seen couple of months ago this SF Marketing Email specialist is required to get B2C architect Cert.

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