Mutual exclusivity enables users to restrict contacts from entering certain campaigns if they are already active in others. 


Why should you set campaigns mutually exclusive

There are several reasons you want your campaigns to be mutually exclusive, meaning that if a contact is entering one campaign, they are restricted from entering other selected campaigns.

For example, you would often want to restrict contacts who have entered a cart abandonment campaign from receiving a browse abandonment campaign as well. So if they have received a cart abandonment email you don’t want them to be sent more emails because they also abandoned a browse.

Also, if you have multiple stores, you would also want to restrict contacts from entering into multiple store campaigns and want to keep their email engagement store-specific. 

How it works

When entering a contact into a campaign we verify that the contact is not currently active in any other campaign that was specified as mutually exclusive (checked in the mutually exclusive checklist). Campaigns can be mutually exclusive with as many other campaigns as you want. 

Making campaigns mutually exclusive

Click on the Settings cog in your automation campaign builder, once you have saved the campaign. You will only be able to access this when you have saved a campaign.

In the drop-down menu on top check all campaigns that you want to be mutually exclusive for contacts.

Note: Selecting campaigns in the mutual exclusivity dropdown is symmetric - if you created campaign A and you have selected to restrict campaign B, campaign A will be automatically selected in the campaign settings menu of campaign B.

Prioritisation of mutually exclusive campaigns

Which campaign is triggered first if they are both mutually exclusive?

The wait node in an automation campaign placed right after the trigger is what determines which campaign will be triggered first.

So if there are two mutually exclusive campaigns the contacts will enter the campaign with the shortest wait time after the entry event.

So if you have two published campaigns: abandoned basket and abandoned browse, and the abandoned browse campaign has a 2-hour wait node after its trigger, while the abandoned basket has a 1-hour wait node, the abandoned basket will be triggered first.

Wait Nodes

The wait nodes placed right after the trigger work differently than the wait nodes placed amid flow.

In the example above, wait node 1 is the time considered while checking trigger conditions. It looks back in time.

So, for example, an entry condition is ' visited the website and viewed a product attribute' then contacts are checked for this condition in the time domain shown below.

[Now is the time at which the trigger is checking contacts if they match the trigger conditions. This happens every hour.]


Wait node 1 looks back in time from the time of trigger condition-checking.

Wait node 2 on the other hand, looks forward.

So if it is placed after an email action, it is the time the contact stays in the flow after being sent the email.

When you add a wait node of 7 days after an email action, you usually follow it with an if condition checking if the contact purchased or not, to determine further action. Meaning you want to wait for 7 days after sending an email until you can check if they purchased or not.

Wait node 2 looks forward in time after the previous node.


Note: that waits of specified date/time follow the account's own timezone.

Note: Wait node 2 waits for: "timestamp of going through the wait node" + the specified wait time. So for instance a contact places an order at Monday 08:30 am and the wait is 10 days, the first action or email would send out at Thursday at 08:30 am