Jeff Jagoe, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing
Can you give me a bit of your company history? How did you become involved in the Key Replacement category?
Founded in 1984, IAS was created to provide practical aftermarket programs and high quality administration and claims. IAS introduced key replacement in the fall of 2007 after a productive trial period with select IAS agents.
What makes your product different from others on the market? How do you differentiate it?
The IAS ROAD Key Replacement program will replace lost, stolen or destroyed keys as well as include 24-hour emergency road service.
In 2011, IAS introduced the Key Valet program which protects customers against the expense of destroyed, stolen or lost keys. In addition to the standard benefits of our traditional key replacement program, IAS Key Valet provides consumers:
• 24-hour home lock-out assistance – Provides services to unlock your home and provide up to three key replacements.
• Emergency message relay – Provides assistance relaying an emergency message to up to three family members, friends or business associates.
• Driver valet – Get connected with a preferred rental car service and take delivery of your temporary vehicle.
Plus, the IAS key replacement is backed by the world-class IAS customer service and claims.
What is your primary sales channel? How do you market to that channel?
IAS works with several large dealer groups to customize and private label several of the most popular programs, including key replacement, but the primary sales channel is through a top-notch, nationwide team of general agents. The company markets programs like key replacement to general agents through one-on-one communication with sales staff, at industry conferences, in training events and IAS sponsored workshops.
How has technology impacted Key Replacement in the last year, if at all? Do you see it having an impact in the future? Why or why not?
Just like cassettes and VHS players before them, simple metal car keys are a thing of the past. Today’s automotive keys can do everything from locking and unlocking the car to remote-start the vehicles, causing them to create a category of their own known as the “smart key.” And just like smart phones, they are great to have and very costly to replace. And similar to smart phones that are protected by consumer-bought insurance, consumers are seeing the need for warranties to protect them should their keys be lost, stolen or destroyed. The impact of the very nature of the smart key has caused the program to gain great ground over the last year and we expect it to continue to grow as technology continues to play a part in key production.
In your opinion, where is the greatest growth potential for the Key Replacement category?
IAS has found great success with key replacement when it’s bundled in a multi-product package. It is often combined with door ding protection, windshield repair and replacement, and even tire and wheel. In addition to bundled packages, we are seeing movement in the service drive. A simple question of “where are your spare keys” can close the sale. Overall, the product is a win-win for dealerships and consumers.