Enjoy sessions from past events like Code/Media and the renowned Code Conference, along with other interviews hosted by Re/code journalists. Featured episodes include candid conversations with comedian Chelsea Handler, entrepreneur and "Shark Tank" star Mark Cuban, Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel, former Twitter CEO Dick Costolo and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
Uber Chief Brand Officer Bozoma Saint John talks with Recode’s Kara Swisher and Johana Bhuiyan about what her newly created job entails. Hired by now-ousted CEO Travis Kalanick, Saint John said the company’s culture is strong and healthy, even as it continues to wrestle with a parade of public mistakes and scandals. Uber's brand today, she says, is that of a utility, but it’s missing “love” — an emotional connection between the user and the product. She also talks about the importance of hiring more women and people of color, and why Uber’s diversity problems are not unique.
Sweetgreen co-CEO Jonathan Neman and Glossier CEO Emily Weiss talk with Recode’s Dan Frommer and Racked’s Cheryl Wischhover about how they use digital channels to market food and beauty products, respectively. Weiss says Glossier’s No. 1 outlet is the blog Into the Gloss, and argues that it’s a two-way conversation, rather than a one-way publishing outlet. Neman says Sweetgreen is a “product company, not a restaurant company,” because tech enables a completely different way of thinking about who its customers are and how its stores should be designed. They agree that creating a sense of community and experience for customers is not a choice — to survive, it’s a requirement.
Lumi CEO Jesse Genet talks about how an ordinary cardboard box gets made — and how those boxes are taking on a new life in e-commerce. For companies that no longer operate physical stores, packaging has become the “modern storefront,” Genet says, and what a box looks like and what is printed on it has a huge impact on the customer’s experience.
Theory founder Andrew Rosen and Reformation CEO Yael Aflalo talk with Recode’s Jason Del Rey about the future of direct-to-consumer fashion. Rosen says one of his roles at Theory is actively working to make sure that consumers’ needs come before its brand’s vision, even if that means outsourcing some roles to partners like Amazon and Stitch Fix. They also discuss the value of opening physical stores for digital-first retailers like Reformation; Aflalo says that new customers who come through retail seem to be more valuable than those the company finds online.
Snarkitecture partner Benjamin Porto and Allbirds co-founder Joey Zwillinger talk with Recode’s Edmund Lee about designing architecture and shoes for Silicon Valley, respectively. Brick-and-mortar spaces continue to be important as storytelling vehicles for brands, they say, even as the numbers point to e-commerce growing and retail shrinking. Physical stores are actually thriving, Zwillinger says, because Amazon’s speediness has forced them to up their standards and unique offerings.
Williams-Sonoma CEO Laura Alber talks with Recode's Jason Del Rey and Kara Swisher about how the retailer is going beyond the retail store. Alber says most purchases are made on an emotional basis, so it's still vital for retailers to connect with their customers, whether that means making better predictions about what people want to buy or flipping the script and sending an adviser to visit customers' homes. Alber also talks about how WIlliams-Sonoma-owned Pottery Barn is working with Google on an augmented reality experience for decorating one's house.
Boxed CEO Chieh Huang talks about competing with warehouse clubs like Costco and Sam's Club, offering customers the ability to buy in bulk without needing to drive to a physical location. He touches on changes in what consumers value, how Boxed treats its warehouse employees and how certain products are taxed.
Blue Apron CEO Matt Salzberg talks with Recode's Jason Del Rey about how the meal-delivery company is changing now that it's publicly traded and how it is reacting to Amazon's purchase of Whole Foods. Over the past five years, Blue Apron has sought to grow as fast as possible and is now moving to think about broadening its offerings to customers with new types of products. It plans to do more a la carte sales of kitchen and pantry items, but Salzberg says he has no plans to compete head to head with mass-market grocers like Whole Foods. Plus: After a rocky IPO, why should Blue Apron remain independent?
Rachel Roy's eponymous founder and Dia&Co CEO Nadia Boujarwah talk with Recode's Edmund Lee and Racked's Tiffany Yannetta about designing and selling clothes for plus-sized women, an addressable market of 100 million. To reach modern consumers, they match their companies' clothes with social media tastemakers who have big followings and a unique point of view. Plus-size consumers were among the first to make the jump to the internet, Roy and Boujarwah say, because they weren't served well by most brick-and-mortar stores.
Nike Direct President Heidi O'Neill talks with Recode's Jason Del Rey about how the sports apparel company is working to connect with consumers digitally. Nike products can be found both in stores and across the web, but the company has created a membership program for people who go to its website and apps directly, rewarding them with personalized shopping recommendations and first dibs on new products. In return, Nike gets clearer data about what its customers will want in the future.
Clarifai CEO Matt Zeiler talks about how artificial intelligence and neural networks are getting smarter, learning how to automatically recognize images more quickly and accurately. AI companies should build their own neural networks in-house, but everyone else should borrow the expertise of outside firms like Clarifai, Zeiler says. He explains the potential of "visual search" for shopping, helping customers find and buy things that they can't quite describe in words.
Pinterest President Tim Kendall talks with Recode's Kurt Wagner about how the company is partnering with brands and advertisers, including a new mobile product that helps people search for items by taking pictures of something similar. The goal is to help Pinners discover things they may want to buy — even though almost all searches on the platform are for generic terms like "red couch" rather than specific brands. While Google and Amazon are good for targeted searches, Kendall says, Pinterest can capture a lot of value among people who don't know yet what they want.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and Fanatics Executive Chairman Michael Rubin talk with Recode's Kurt Wagner and Jason Del Rey about the fast-moving world of official sports merchandise. Rubin says Amazon and the Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba are good businesses, but not good for brands like NBA teams that want to profit from their own names. Silver also talks about how sports themselves will change as technology gets more sophisticated and how the NBA is working with digital platforms on streaming sports games around the world.
Venmo COO Mike Vaughan talks with Recode’s Dan Frommer about how his company is turning a popular payments app into a real business. Venmo, which is owned by PayPal, processed more than $25 billion in the past four quarters, and Vaughan said it captures the essence of real-world interactions: Friends pooling their money for a gift, roommates paying each other back or parents collecting dues for their kids' soccer teams. The next step for the company is integrating the app with the services that people commonly use it for, as well as turning users' Venmo balance into a debit account they can access via a physical card. Plus: With peer-to-peer payments launching natively in iOS 11, is Venmo under threat from Apple?
Peloton CEO John Foley talks about building a boutique fitness class program that can be accessed from the home. Peloton's exercise bike has tripled in sales in the past year, but the more important thing for its business is its monthly subscription to online spinning classes. Foley examines the social, economic and even religious forces that are driving people to other fitness programs like SoulCycle, CrossFit and Orange Theory.
Celebrity chef Mario Batali talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about the future of restaurants, including how technology helps him do his job and whether he can envision a future where a restaurant's food is prepared without human hands. Batali evaluates food/tech companies such as Blue Apron, Juicero and Soylent, as well as food for people who think they are too busy to eat. He also talks about how he uses several social media platforms: Twitter (good for picking fights), Instagram (good for "what I'm doing") and YouTube (good for entertaining Batali's teenage son).
David Perpich, the president of the New York Times-owned site The Wirecutter, and Ben Kaufman, the head of BuzzFeed Product Labs, talk with Recode's Peter Kafka about running and building media businesses on top of affiliate links. Perpich says Amazon, Google, Facebook and their peers are "setting the rules" in the digital commerce world, so the NYT has to navigate relationships with all of them. Kaufman says BuzzFeed is moving beyond links to other ways of making money, such as selling a cookbook and hot plate bearing its food brand, Tasty, and partnering with brick-and-mortar retailers.
Bonobos CEO Andy Dunn talks with Recode's Jason Del Rey about starting a digital-first clothing brand, selling it to Walmart and continuing to run it along with another company Walmart acquired, ModCloth. Dunn says the deal makes sense even though Bonobos won't be selling in Walmart stores; as an institution for "the vast majority of Americans," the company will help Bonobos access a much larger customer base online. Dunn talks about the calculus that led him to make a deal with Walmart, as opposed to an IPO, another acquirer or a private equity firm.
Forerunner Ventures founder Kirsten Green talks about the blurring line between brands and retailers. She traces the history of shopping stores, malls and online, arguing that consumers today want to know more about brands, inviting them to enter their lives like a human relationship. Green also notes that the era of "you are what you own" is over and we've now entered the era of "you are what you experience."
Revolution CEO and America Online co-founder Steve Case talks with The Verge's Walt Mossberg about the "chasm" between startups in tech hubs and the rest of the country. The author of a 2016 book called "The Third Wave," Case says 75 percent of all venture capital goes to three states, 90 percent went to men and less than 1 percent went to African-Americans. Entrepreneurship is now global, and he argues that America can't lead in that field if its investments are constrained by geography, gender and race. Case believes his "rise of the rest" campaign will be supported by President Trump and his allies once they understand the opportunity it provides for American jobs.