This article is a recap of “Automate That!” a segment of “Growth Decoded” — a show that investigates the relationship between the customer experience and business growth, one topic at a time. Register here and never miss an episode!

Here’s the deal — you’ll retain about 56% of your email list year over year, on average. Top companies retain about 84%, and those at the bottom retain about 26% of contacts. That’s just about 1 out of 4.

What’s more? On average, 32% of Americans change their email addresses each year. Which means that almost a third of your email list is going to decay naturally.

This isn’t great news for your email deliverability. Why? Because sending to unengaged email addresses, or unused email addresses creates a whole bunch of data in the form of unengaged emails that Inbox Service Providers (ISPs) use to de-prioritize you as a sender to all of your contacts (not just the ones that don’t open).

More on email engagement and deliverability here

Your inbox placement can suffer, more of your emails might land in the spam and promotions tabs — and worse? Some of those unengaged email addresses could be classified as Spam Traps, and land you on an email blocklist.

That’s…. not what you want.

The issue is that too many businesses are sending too many emails to too many contacts who just aren’t opening them.

Too many businesses simply don’t know who their most interested contacts are. And, instead of finding out, they create a vicious cycle of sending emails to a largely unengaged contact list, causing further damage to their deliverability in the process.

So what can you do?

First, you want to know who is engaged, and who isn’t. You want to know how their interest and engagement changes over time. Contacts who just signed up are highly engaged, but where are they in a month? In a year?

You want to know who’s excited to hear from you, who’s hit or miss, and who hasn’t opened an email lately.

You want to know the last time a particular contact engaged with your content.

Tracking engagement is a key metric to accurately predicting and understanding key areas of your business such as:

  • Total sales
  • Marketing campaign success
  • Seasonality
  • Expected churn
  • Brand awareness
  • And more!

So, the task becomes finding a way to gather and store contact engagement data.

The best part? You can automate that.

Watch the recording above to learn:

  • How to use the Contact Last Engaged Date automation recipe to track engagement, and store the date in which a contact last interacted with your business
  • How you can track different types of engagement data
  • The tasks this automation recipe helps you accomplish
  • The different “ingredients” that make the automation work
  • Steps to take before importing the recipe for optimized success
  • Additional automation recipes to use alongside the featured automation!

Psst: you can download the slides from the episode here!