(With regards to SFMC) - I've been trying to find ways around associating a publication list to a triggered email send, but haven't had any success. Is anyone aware of a workaround to this issue? I was thinking that it was possible to associate one within the API call, but haven't have any success.


  • Email is triggered following a subscriber's signup
  • Email isn't transactional therefore needs to have unsubscribe link
  • Subscriber's unsubscribe from this email, and in turn are unsubscribed from the entire account because of the lack of a publication list

The ExactTarget guides are useful, but focus on having the initial triggered email as transactional, which would likely be breaking CAN-SPAM in this case.

Any help is appreciated, thanks everyone.

1 Answer 1


Associating the trigger with any List will accomplish the "opt-down, not out". It doesn't have to be a Publication List.

As long as you are logging an Unsub Event properly (or using the stock Preference Center unsubscribe), then they should just be unsubscribed from the List, not everything.

  • Wow - thank you! Would the same logic apply to associating a Triggered send with only a Data Extension (no lists involved) ? Commented Jan 15, 2016 at 23:48
  • My understanding is that if you don't specify a list (regular or publication) in a Triggered Send Definition, unsubscribes are global -- that is if it's set to Commercial and not Transactional. Subscriber status is ignored for Transactional emails. Commented Jan 16, 2016 at 2:36
  • As a followup after lots of testing, apparently when no List is associated to that Send, the Triggered Send Data Extension itself still acts as Publication List and subscribers will only be unsubscribed from that Data Extension. I'm not sure how that's working on the back-end, but it is very useful functionality. Commented Feb 15, 2016 at 19:28

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