EP255 - Instacart Chief Revenue Officer Seth Dallaire
EP255 - Instacart Chief Revenue Officer Seth Dallaire
Seth Dallaire is the Chief Revenue Officer at Instacart. In this interview, we cover his experience at Amazon, the challenges of operating Instacart’s 4-sided marketplace, key trends in the digital grocery space, and Instacarts evolution as a retail media network.
Episode 255 of the Jason & Scot show was recorded live on Wednesday, February 10th, 2021.
Join your hosts Jason "Retailgeek" Goldberg, Chief Commerce Strategy Officer at Publicis, and Scot Wingo, CEO of GetSpiffy and Co-Founder of ChannelAdvisor as they discuss the latest news and trends in the world of e-commerce and digital shopper marketing. Transcript
[0:24] Welcome to the Jason and Scot show
this is episode 254 being recorded on Wednesday February 10th 2021 I’m your host Jason retailgeek Goldberg and as usual I’m here with your co-host Scott Wingo.
[0:40] Hey Jason and welcome back Jason and Scot show listeners.
Two of our topics we have really been Drilling in onto the last year our digital Grocery and the impact of covid on overall digital adoption.
One company sits squarely at the intersection of both of those Trends and we are really excited to have them on today’s show.
That company is instacart and we’re real thrilled to have on the show their Chief Revenue officer Seth Del are welcome to the show Seth.
[1:09] Hey thanks for having me nice to be here.
[1:12] Seth we’re thrilled to have you and as you may know from listening to the show we always like to start by giving the audience just a little bit of background about our guests and and you of course have a,
a very interesting e-commerce background so can you share it with our audience.
[1:30] Sure and again thanks for having me on the show so current title is Chief Revenue officer here at instacart and
really what I’m focused on and have been working on for the past
16 months since I joined the company is creating an advertising business and I come
at this opportunity after having spent just about eight years at Amazon.
Where I was in various leadership positions in the advertising sales and marketing teams over there,
I joined in February 2012 and prior to that I was at Yahoo prior to that.
At Microsoft and prior to that Amazon so the bulk of my business career has been in digital media both in terms of sales and buying,
and really the emphasis for the past.
Ten years at least has been on e-commerce and Retail so it’s really exciting to be here at instacart particularly in this moment when,
a consumer behavior is is tipping into.
Grocery shopping online and I’m able to use a lot of the experiences that I’ve had in my career too.
To help make it making ads business happen over here.
[2:56] That’s awesome and that the timing for having you on this show is terrific Scott obviously mentioned.
Covid in the intersection of digital and Grocery and I know instacart it’s even bigger than grocery so we’ll eventually talk about that,
um but a close second to digital and grocery that we’ve been talking about lately are all these retail media networks and you’re obviously squarely there as well,
so our last episode of the podcast we actually recovering Amazon’s earnings,
and to me one of the the standout features of their to as earnings was this that they’ve now surpassed 20 billion dollars in ad Revenue over the last 12 months.
I know you you were heavily involved in building that business,
I mean a is there any part of you that’s proud or sad to see the success now that you’re not there,
not implying it success because you’re not there,
but the related question I was interested to ask is in my mind it’s entirely possible that at 20 billion dollars in ad Revenue that the ad revenue is more profitable for Amazon and AWS is,
and I feel like that doesn’t get talked about a lot.
[4:15] Yeah so to answer the first part of the question definitely proud the experience that I have there
was a lot of fun it was a great learning experience and I was able to work with some very talented people and there aren’t many opportunities where you get
work on an entrepreneurial project,
within the safety or that has the resourcing of a large successful company and that was really what the experience was like for me.
[4:52] Getting in there in 2012 and really.
Helping build the business from a sales and marketing side for sure but then working shoulder-to-shoulder with some pretty talented people on the product side,
and watching that business move from what I would argue was an experiment,
into something that is a material contributor,
to the business and so those those earnings reports when they come out I actually I get excited about them for that team that’s still over there I think,
I think it’s pretty great what they’re able to do or have been able to do.
Even if I’m not there anymore and the reason why I say that 2 is not.
Because I enjoyed my time at at Amazon but the success that Amazon has in terms of creating.
[5:50] Any Commerce advertising capability or marketing discipline if you will is important for the industry in that it allows other,
businesses to to do something similar and you mentioned there’s a whole bunch of different retailgeek.
Ad networks that are starting up or or media networks whatever the term was that you over you referred to them but the reason why they’re popping up is because,
they’re durable pieces of business and the if I reflect back to.
[6:26] Early 2012 when I had arrived at Amazon to help set up the North American.
Ad sales team there was a lot of waiting around in the lobby at the agency a lot of explanations as to why Amazon even a dad’s like
why don’t you know why does why do they need to have advertising like where are the ads on Amazon you know just give us your data that’s what we want and.
That that was a difficult mentality to change and really we were successful in creating a.
And understanding that e-commerce as a marketing discipline is similar to the same sort of trajectory or life cycle if you will of paid search or social media that both of those.
[7:24] Practices if you will started because and they were new they started from scratch they required a lot of Education to the industry,
a lot of risk taking on both the publisher side and on the advertiser side the marketer side to to invest in those areas and.
Ultimately they became things that were overtime well understood and really performing,
pieces of advertising and marketing and.
I see a lot of those similar traits over here and instacart and,
while instacart is e-commerce
singularly focused on Grocery and.
[8:19] The opportunity in the grocery space is super compelling just because you have a couple things one
on The Advertiser side of the business you have not a lot of insight there’s a lot a lot of capacity in terms of what’s happening in the online grocery space,
and there are many in the grocery industry is still Regional in many cases it’s a one trillion dollar a year business in the United States alone that maybe has somewhere between 5 and 10%.
[8:52] Of an absolute dollars of that that business is being conducted online and
that looks different from Mass merchandiser general merchandise environments like an Amazon a Best Buy Walmart where they’re selling
you know all sorts of things hard Goods as well as as food,
but what’s exciting to me is that we’re able to work with brands that maybe haven’t been able to participate in e-commerce as much as they would like to because the transactional component just didn’t exist
our measurement of the transactional component was difficult to do and instacart sits in a unique place where we’re working with,
almost 600 different grocery banners now and have significant reach where we can help marketers understand how consume…