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Ralph Paglia

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iMagicLab Creates Automotive CRM Development Think Tank

Keith Latman and His iMagicLab Team Create Customer Relationship Management (CRM) "Think Tank" By Assembling Auto Industry Thought Leaders, Innovative Dealers, Experienced Development Team Catalysts and Extensive Resources to Craft the Future of Automotive CRM...

 

On Thursday June 13, 2013 in the early afternoon Sean V. Bradley and I left the DealerSynergy offices in Audubon, NJ and drove down to Baltimore to participate in an iMagicLab hosted event and meeting.  Sean and I had both received invitations without knowing about the other. I had been at DealerSynergy to record video clips for training sessions within the soon to be launched Automotive Digital Training Channel. Before anyone accuses Keith Latman of grandiose concepts, I will unashamedly describe what emerged at iMagicLab on Friday as a "CRM Think Tank" session...

 

The attendees were an impressive mix of advanced CRM "Success Story" car dealers, consultants, thought leaders and experienced CRM developers that had previously worked for iMagicLab competitors. Sean V. Bradley and i rarely get excited about the same things when it comes to dealer management software and applications, but in today's case we both saw Keith open the doors to a barn with an "I'll be damned if that ain't an actual Unicorn in there" look on our faces as what iMagicLab has created with their upcoming launch of CRMsuite revealed itself to our harshly critical inspection...

The founder of iMagicLab, Keith Latman and I have some colorful.. ahem, "history" going back a few years. When I spoke to him about it, he told me that knowing i would be closely looking for "flies in the ointment" is one of the reasons why he invited me... Wanted to get some seriously non-ass-kissing feedback from someone who knows CRM app development who would poke and jab at what he is getting ready to launch...

The reality of what happened during the iMagicLab CRM Think Tank discussions was that Joe Webb took enough carefully aimed shots at Keith Latman's assumptions and dealership work flows that I was able to focus my questions on identifying many of the incredible number of data sources, algorithms, and (for real) artificial intelligence capabilities feeding a series of dynamic real time action items to be executed by dealership employees. All of which is being served up in a modular GUI that will most certainly replace the overwhelming frustration created by typical (and dreaded) "Daily Work Plans", which define each user's core list of daily action items, and is generated by most of today's current crop of CRM systems...
 
I almost HATE to admit it, but Keith Latman and Chris Vitale got me more excited and eager to test drive the soon to be in limited release iMagicLab "CRMsuite" than I have been about any other CRM application in over ten years... At this point, getting me excited about the technical architecture of a CRM solution is nearly impossible, because our industry has been stuck in a CRM application rut for at least ten years!

What i saw on Friday was the iMagicLab team build out of a "CRMsuite" branded solution that delivers on Keith Latman's radical new big data driven approach and system design. Every aspect of CRMsuite has the potential (if it actually works as shown) to provide digitally competent dealership teams with customer engagement capabilities far beyond what any other auto industry CRM development team has ever attempted to do... I believe that the iMagicLab CRMsuite may be capable of enabling dealers to deploy a radical new approach to customer engagement and communication.

The core activity generating engine appears to be designed to predict a series of communications and customer contact most likely to result in a sale based on empirical analysis of the customer's information, activities and social signals. few observers may be willing to agree with me at this point, but i believe CRMsuite may trigger the equivalent of an arms race among automotive CRM developers and dealership suppliers.

The biggest caveat I sense are the questions around "can the iMagicLab team, led by Keith and his top managers sell, deliver, install and ramp dealers up on the CRMsuite at any significant levels of scale and dealer network penetration?"

I may be biased after 20 years of working on several CRM development, sales and implementation teams, but I see a lot of potential for dealer demand for CRMsuite to far exceed what the existing iMagicLab team has the ability to deliver and install... The limited sneak preview and deep architectural designs we saw at iMagicLab on Friday were THAT impressive!

 

 

Meet 3 Automotive Technology Professionals Leading the iMagicLab CRM Think Tank

 

Keith Latman | Chief Executive Officer

 

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Tom Harsha | President of Auto Division

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Chris Vitale | Vice President of Sales

Justin DiPietro
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