Jan. 3, 2022

How AI is Changing Shopping with Wizard CEO Melissa Bridgeford

Is texting with a bot the future of retail?

Melissa Bridgeford, co-founder & CEO of Wizard Commerce, talks with Scott and Nora about her AI-driven conversational commerce startup and the future of retail. Plus: A look at the emergence of text-based and voice-based shopping, and the AI technology behind it.

Hosts: Nora Ali & Scott Rogowsky
Producer: Bella Hutchins
Production, Mixing & Sound Design: Daniel Markus
Music: Daniel Markus & Breakmaster Cylinder
Senior Producer: Katherine Milsop
Director of Audio: Alan Haburchak
VP, Head of Multimedia: Sarah Singer

Full transcript for this episode below. 


Scott Rogowsky: Nora do you like to shop?

Nora Ali: I love to shop.

Scott Rogowsky: Do you like to shop online?

Nora Ali: I only shop online.

Scott Rogowsky: You only shop online?

Nora Ali: I only shop online. I very much dislike in-person retail. I find it very taxing and tiring.

Scott Rogowsky: Really? You don't appreciate the human interaction, the shop assistant, the salespersons walking you through asking you, can I help you with anything?

Nora Ali: None of that. I only like it when I've summoned a person. Hello, I need some help, please. Can you please help me? Which is not really that possible right now when you're doing your online shopping experience, where, when you need it, there's a person. I don't know. What about you, Scott? What's your take?

Scott Rogowsky: I've sold. I had a popup vintage thing going. So I was a retailer for a brief period. And it's so fun. It's the best from my perspective.

Nora Ali: What? Really?

Scott Rogowsky: Yes, I love that interaction. I mean, I think people get into retail because you want that human interaction. You want to meet people and you want to help them find something that they're going to love. And it's like, they're excited for it. And I got happy about it. So I love that element of retail and shopping.

Nora Ali: So, okay. So you're a little bit more old school.

Scott Rogowsky: When I do online shopping I'm on eBay. I'm doing that kind of thing and that's fine too, but yeah, I mean, we're talking about shopping assistance in the AI world today with our guest. We're talking about conversational commerce with our guest, and these are all new concepts, Nora. Are you familiar with these terms?

Nora Ali: I am, because as you know, I used to work in e-commerce and this notion of combining artificial intelligence and data with human interaction is something that retailers have been trying to solve for a long time. Where, how can we be most efficient that leads a customer to a transaction, but also make them feel like they're interacting with the human? And they are having a little bit of that old-school, traditional experience that you talked about, but it's really hard. And to get customers to adopt to that kind of behavior, where you're texting to buy something versus poking around on Amazon, which we're so used to, is a challenge. But I have purchased, or repurchased items on text message before where I've ordered this particular kind of beverage. I get a text. They asked, do you want to reorder this? All I do is click yes, that's it. So I have confidence that this technology is going to be really helpful for consumables, and replenishables, and that sort of thing. There's still a long way to go until you can text someone, Hey, I need a gift for a two-year-old's birthday party. Now go do that. AI, go do that for me. And that's been attempted, and that's being worked on. I think it's going to be a bit before we can see that really work.

Scott Rogowsky: I think there's definitely something there. And I think it comes down to curation, too, because when I think about online shopping, there's just a volume of products out there.

Nora Ali: Yes.

Scott Rogowsky: And within even a category. I recently bought a humidifier and I went to Amazon, typed in humidifier, and now there are 400 humidifiers to choose from. And I'm reading the reviews, and I'm a maximizer, as we learned with our conversation about dating.

Nora Ali: Yes, yes. It is like dating. Yes.

Scott Rogowsky: So I'm doing the maximizing approach and I'm finding the best one, but if there was an AI, or someone I said, "Hey, I want to buy a humidifier." And the AI just said, "Here's the one. Here's the best one."

Nora Ali: Exactly. Yep.

Scott Rogowsky: Boom. Okay. Thank you. That would be a service I would love to have. And so that is maybe not available right now, but in the future, as our guest Melissa is building towards, she wants to get to that point-

Nora Ali: Right.

Scott Rogowsky:...where we can have that.

Nora Ali: Yeah. And I've been on teams, worked with teams that tried to solve that and it is a very big challenge, but it takes a lot of collection of data that is driven by humans doing it for you at first, where you text the service. I need a humidifier. You have humans sorting through it and making recommendations to you, but ultimately that'll become more automated. But Amazon is trying to do its own version of this, where they have the bestseller flags, or recommended for you flags to try to help you sort through all of that data. But I think it's going to be a much more seamless experience hopefully in our lifetimes. And Melissa is working on just that. So let's get to it. Founder and CEO Melissa Bridgeford set out to tackle what we're talking about right now, conversational commerce, with her company Wizard, which is an AI powered platform that's looking to revolutionize mobile shop and transform retail as we know it. And Wizard just recently raised 50 million in Series A funding. So let's get to our conversation with Melissa where she told us how Wizard is shaking up our shopping experience and shaping the future of retail. From Morning Brew, this is Business Casual, the podcast that gives you a front row seat to candid conversations with some of the biggest names in business, asking them the questions you wish you could ask. I'm your host, Nora Ali.

Scott Rogowsky: And I'm your other host, Scott Rogowsky. Nora and I are here for your ears, bringing you stories of how business shapes our lives today and into the future. Now let's get down to business.

Nora Ali: Melissa, thank you so much for being here. I have to say to start, we have Marc Lore in common. I was a very early employee at Jet, and Mark is obviously the co-founder, chairman of the board, and investor in Wizard. And I think, for as long as I've known Marc, he's been talking about conversational commerce as the future of retail. So let's start with the definition, because I don't think a lot of people fully contemplate or understand what conversational commerce actually is. So, Melissa, what is it?

Melissa Bridgeford: So yeah, so conversational commerce. It's a great question. And I think, taking you back perhaps to what inspired me originally to get into conversational commerce was when I was living and working in New York. Like you, also, my background was in finance. So I was living and working in New York, working 12 hours a day in finance, crazy hours. And I basically realized on my way to work that I'm already texting my Uber driver, I'm already texting my Instacart person, I'm already texting my Postmates delivery person. I'm like, why isn't there a way to text, to buy what I need. And really, web-based e-commerce then and now, to me, feels so antiquated. It's literally a '90s technology, 20 years old, and we're trying to make it fit on our phones and fit with our mobile lifestyles. And it really doesn't. And so what I really wanted was just a quick and easy way to buy on mobile. And one thing that I, at that time, remembered most from business school was that if you solve a pain point for yourself you're probably solving it for other people. And it's really the best way to start a business. And so fast forward to today, what Wizard is, is a conversational commerce platform that's goal is to revolutionize mobile commerce and mobile shopping by enabling people to purchase on text and really bypass the web entirely. Apple is a great example. If Apple were using Wizard's B2B product, I could go to Apple's website, click on a button that says, buy via text, my iMessages would open, and say, "Welcome to Apple. How can we help you today?" I would say, "Hey, I need a new MacBook Pro 14 inch." They would text back and say, "Would you like this memory or this memory?" I'd say, "I want that memory." They would text and say, "Great. That's $1,500. Reply yes to order." I would reply, "Yes." And then go into my next meeting and get it the next day. And so really, conversational commerce is all about being able to purchase over text and bypass the web entirely in part, because web-based e-commerce is really just built for desktop, but we're all really living and working on mobile.

Scott Rogowsky: Can you go further with that example of Apple? I know you're not working with that company specifically, but it helps us understand the concept. So let's say you go to Apple's website, you still have to engage with the website, correct, or is there a situation where you just send a text? Maybe you text Apple, again, using this example of Apple, you text them and say, "I want to buy the Air Pods." Is that a future iteration or is that happening now? Must you still go to websites? What's the deal here?

Melissa Bridgeford: That's a very, very good question. And that's speaking to our B2B products, so exactly, enabling businesses to transact with their users via text. And what you're talking to, and your question is about is, how does customers onboard? So the example I used was a very easy way to onboard. You go to their website, click on a button, and now you're on their text commerce channel talking to Apple, or the brand of your choice. But there's many, many, any other ways to onboard. You can capture people straight from social, and where, right now on Instagram, you swipe up and most people get sent to basically websites, but you can swipe up and enter your mobile number, and now you go to the same channel, it says, Welcome to Apple. How can we help you today? Or just like you said, you can actually just onboard directly and just text, basically, a trigger word or a number. You could text the certain number that Apple would have, or text Apple to X, Y, Z number, and it goes into the same dialogue flow. So to your point, you can actually onboard and start texting with brands directly without ever going to the web at all.

Scott Rogowsky: Because what's revolutionary about Wizard, as I understand it, is that you're not using the apps for these individual companies or mobile sites. Yours is taking it off the apps, off the platforms, and just really using this SMS technology and going direct from your phone. How are you storing addresses and credit card information, payment information? How does that play into if you're just texting something, or someone?

Nora Ali: Scott's worried about his data is what he's trying to say.

Scott Rogowsky: I'm not. I'm just trying to wrap my head around how this fully works and because this is such a new and cutting-edge technology, I think our listeners would like to know, also, how it works.

Melissa Bridgeford: Yeah, exactly. I think that data is uber important in today's world for everyone. So data security is one of the most important things that we take very seriously, and everyone's data is very well protected. But one reason conversational commerce comes in many, many forms, and messaging, right now, is being layered onto so many different apps. So for example, you can obviously message within the Uber app, or within the Postmates app, or Instacart, but now people are taking things off of those apps and going directly into the SMS channels. So conversational commerce, in part, is brilliant because you're catching people where they're already spending their time. And in terms of things you mentioned about addresses. So that's within the brand, you're creating a customer profile once. And then once that profile is created, then in order to accept the purchase of a product all you have to do is text yes. So payments are never shared over text. That's something that is not allowed. So you basically capture a user's payment information once, and then from then on all they have to do is simply reply yes to purchase.

Scott Rogowsky: I see. So you're still inputting information to the merchant's website, or app, at some point along this process, and then from there, then you can text all the live long day.

Melissa Bridgeford: Exactly. So after your first purchase with Apple, then the next time you're like, "Hey, now I need a pair of new Air Pods." They say, "Great. Those cost 25 bucks." I reply, "Yes." And the purchase is confirmed. And so what it really does, and one of the key values of conversational commerce is really about eliminating the friction of payments. And that is just a tremendous value. After that first purchase you're really driving the repeat purchase rate much higher because you've eliminated that friction point. And one of the major issues right now within retail, in particular, e-commerce, is around conversion rates. So typical conversion rates on web-based e-commerce are 4%, and on mobile to 2%. So more often than not, when people go on their mobile phone to a website they're not actually closing the transaction and making the purchase. And it's really, which is what I felt, the pain point is, it's a lose lose for both sides. The retailer's not selling it, but I wanted the item, and ultimately was frustrated with the search and just the process on mobile, and so I would also drop the transaction, even though I wanted that item. And so I think conversational commerce is actually a win-win for both sides. The retailer's able to sell that item and then the user's able to get it super fast and super easy, and then go on to the next thing in their day.

Scott Rogowsky: I'm trying to walk through the customer experience because this is a B2B product you're selling. So really, the consumer, myself, Nora, people listening, they're not going to be dealing with Wizard. They're dealing with the retailers. So let's say, I want a stapler. I'm in the market for a stapler. I can just text, "Hey, I need a new stapler." Is there almost like a personal concierge shopping element to this where there will be some kind of consumer-facing Wizard, shopping Wizard?

Melissa Bridgeford: You know, definitely. Obviously Marc, as we mentioned, Nora, in the beginning, conversational commerce has been a passion of his for many years. Myself, very similarly. We both previously had a dabbled in conversational commerce. I had a startup before this called Stylust, which I ran for several years, and he obviously had worked with Jetblack. Both of those, I had a B2C facing product, as was Jetblack. I then pivoted to B2B, and for Wizard we're now launching in the B2B space. I think that we definitely foresee a time in the future where a B2C product would be something that would make sense to launch. It's one singular backend that really can enable both of those products. A B2C product, what would that look like? It would look like you have one number in your phone and you could basically text Wizard to buy anything from any retailer, any brand, and any product.

Scott Rogowsky: That sounds good. I like that.

Melissa Bridgeford: I like that, too.

Scott Rogowsky: But interestingly, because you and Marc both tried that B2C product. Marc closed it after 18 months, I read, and you've sort of pivoted to the B2B. So was it just not catching on? What are some of the learnings you took from the B2C experiment that you're taking to B2B? And it's sounds like the long vision is to circle back to the B2C.

Melissa Bridgeford: Yeah, I think that we both, so Jetblack was different in that the front-end user experience was similar in that you could text to get something you want, but the back end of Jetblack was actually much more like a Postmates where there were humans involved, that were actually physically going to stores to get your items, and then physically dropping off at your building in New York, and then physically picking up returns and taking it back to the store. The hard part about that is they were trying to simultaneously tackle conversational commerce on the front end, but then also logistics and same day delivery on the back end. I mean, tackling logistics is super, super hard. It's something that, as you know, there's a million competitors in that space who are all trying to do same day, within the hour, within 15 minutes. And so doing both of those at the same time, I think is super challenging. And I know that they absorbed Jetblack's technology into Walmart, and definitely had a tremendous amount of learnings from that. Our learnings on our backend was technology based. So basically a combination of automation and humans that were executing the purchases via e-commerce, so there were no logistics involved. The retailer was obviously handling those logistics. So if you order something from Apple, it came from Apple, etcetera. But our challenge was actually around funding. So we had raised seed capital from VCs, but B2C, whether you're in technology, software, CPG, B2C actually just takes a tremendous amount of funding because the customer acquisition cost is so much higher. And we had a thousand retailer partners at the time, everyone from Neiman, Nordstrom, etcetera, they were affiliate retail partners. And as we started to have conversations with them, what I kept on hearing was really this hunger and desire for a white-labeled version of conversational commerce, where they could be transacting with their consumers directly. And so it was through our B2C product that we established, really, the demand from consumers for this type of use case, and for this type of service. But then it was through those relationships that I really recognized this opportunity in B2B, to pivot and to really meet that demand for those businesses, which would allow us to grow much faster with the funding that we had. In addition, the opportunity to really build your technology at a much quicker rate, because with each business you have essentially, the faster you can build your technology is based on how many messages you're seeing, and transactions you're seeing, and customers you're seeing. And so with B2B, you can actually build a much more powerful AI platform in a much, much quicker manner.

Nora Ali: All right, we are going to take a quick break and we will be right back. Melissa. I want to understand a little bit more the incentive and the value-add for the businesses, the retailers, to which you're offering this technology. As you mentioned before, conversion rates are increased, the customers are less likely, perhaps, to leak out of the funnel if they're using this kind of tech, but what does that interaction post transaction? Is there opportunity for upselling from the retailer now that they have you on text message, they can recommend other products that are related to what you bought and increase that customer relationship?

Melissa Bridgeford: Absolutely. So that's one of, really, I think, the most powerful aspects of text commerce is not just that first purchase, but really the opportunity for very high repeat purchase rates. And to your point, that it really is a two-way street. So the consumer obviously can do repeat orders thereafter after that first time order, but now the retailer can actually text that user directly in a very intelligent way and really offer products. So let's say you purchased the case of sparkling water today. A month later you get a text, or even a week later, that says, "Hey, would you like to reorder?" You say, "Yes." They say, "Hey, we saw you tried the lime flavor. Would you like to try the lemon flavor?" "Yes I would." So they can recommend repeat purchases, they can recommend cross-selling, they can recommend upselling. The friction to you actually purchasing is so incredibly low, because all you have to do is text yes to order.

Nora Ali: And a skeptic might argue that, Hey, I can get this lack of friction with Amazon, which already has all my data. They have my purchase history. I can buy with one click and say, I don't actually need this technology to do it over text message. What is your response for a skeptic who might say, we don't need this as a society. It's already really easy to buy things online with just a couple of clicks on the mobile experience. How do you handle those kinds of skeptics?

Melissa Bridgeford: Yeah. I think that Amazon is a certain subset of categories and products. And I think that Amazon has certainly reduced the friction of payments, but I think one area where they struggle is actually in search. So Scott, when you were asking before about the stapler, that example, right now, if I went to Amazon and put in stapler, you're basically overwhelmed with options on what to buy. And so I think the search part of Amazon is still a struggle. And not only do you now have so many options, but I think you also have to virtually diligence the seller to figure out who is this coming from?

Melissa Bridgeford: And there's a lot of other aspects that actually have created more friction with Amazon than before. And I think one way to think about conversational commerce is, not that it's here to wipe away e-commerce, or wipe away stores. It's really an additional channel for retailers to transact with users on mobile. So what you'll see is, retailers are going to have all three pillars, then it's really meant to capture an additional 20% of sales that aren't otherwise taking place on e-comm or in stores, and really capturing those users who want to be transacting in that manner.

Nora Ali: It's about meeting the customer where they are, as they say.

Melissa Bridgeford: Exactly.

Nora Ali: An oft used phrase.

Scott Rogowsky: But this is your sales team, I guess, going out to these brands, and getting them to buy the Wizard software?

Melissa Bridgeford: Exactly. So we would be onboarding retailers, and be working with them directly, and launching their conversational commerce platform for them.

Scott Rogowsky: So I guess the question is, do you say, well, let's go to the Bed Bath & Beyond's, the Williams-Sonoma's, let's get them onboard. Obviously they are much larger companies that have thousands of items in inventory. Get them on board and then let them take the cut, because they're a distributor. So, I mean, is that the plan to go for those bigger companies, or do you want to stick with the individual brands?

Melissa Bridgeford: Right now we're focused on SMBs just given our early stage. And we're really excited to really grow the company through those brands and through those retailers. And there is a lot more for us to be chewing off than we can take. So we're really excited.

Nora Ali: Feels like a good time to take another quick break. But when we come back, I would love to learn more about the technology that is driving Wizard. So we will be right back. So there's a lot of very sophisticated technology that's driving Wizard. You use natural-language processing, image recognition, artificial intelligence. Without getting too heady, what are the 10-fold technologies that Wizard requires, and how have they accelerated? How has the sophistication of those accelerated recently?

Melissa Bridgeford: Yeah, I mean, I think that's a really important point to bring up, because I think that the technology is accelerating at a pretty rapid pace, which has really enabled the opportunity to exist. And so I think we were talking earlier about how, a few years ago I think the consumer demand at the technology was in a different place. And what we're really seeing is, now is really the right time in terms of where technology is today, and where we can take that over next three years. And so as you mentioned, really, our back end is focused on optimizing both the automation and the AI with humans in the loop to really create the best end user experience. So, we are not in the business of creating an end user experience that feels like you're talking to a bot, because I think, I personally, if I call, let's say Citibank, I often will just say operator until I can speak to someone. I'm kind of that person, which is terrible. But I think that we want to create a really optimal end user experience because I think that's ultimately going to create the best experience for that brand or that retailer. And so I think right now we're really focused on hiring in both the AI space, and NLP, and data analytics. I mean, there's a tremendous amount of opportunity in terms of utilizing technologies today to really create a more powerful back-end, which ultimately creates the most simple front end experience.

Nora Ali: And while we are all looking for more efficiency, being able to order and reorder things quickly, I think we are sort of returning to this need for human interaction and feeling like you are interfacing with a human. I remember that was one of Marc's big things at Jet was being able to get to a real human for customer service right away, whether you email or you call. So how do you incorporate that human experience? On the one hand you're creating these efficiencies and using AI, but you also want to make it feel like you're actually talking to a real person at the end of the day.

Melissa Bridgeford: Exactly. I think that's a really important point, and what one that we care a lot about. And so we have humans on the back-end, and what our technology does is essentially enable the passing off of conversations to humans when that is needed, and at certain points in time. And so obviously what we want to do is really create the strongest tech-enabled human experience. So where you're really creating efficiencies around 80% plus of the messaging and then really utilizing humans to create that optimal experience for the end user. And I think that's going to change over time. I think over the next two years, we really like where we are with respect to that trade-off between the humans and the tech. And I think over time, as technologies advance, we can continue to create that. But we definitely don't want to create an experience where there is that thought aspect, because I agree. I think people really want to, even more so today, talk with humans. And I think that also creates a really great user experience, and ultimately a great brand experience.

Scott Rogowsky: The Pareto principle, there it is. 80, 20. We got to it-

Melissa Bridgeford: Oh yeah.

Scott Rogowsky:...in our AI conversation.

Nora Ali: Of course. Always.

Scott Rogowsky: You said in the TechCrunch interview you gave recently, around the 50 million Series A funding, which we haven't quite touched on with you yet. Congratulations, by the way. That's pretty impressive to-

Melissa Bridgeford: Thank you.

Scott Rogowsky:...raise all that money. This is sort of pre-product, right? You're still working on developing all this. But you mentioned in the article how your AI, your goal with this platform, is to have that hyper-personalized touch and make these interactions with the customer feel more authentic. Are you going to be tapping into other apps in the phones? Maybe, I don't know, I'm thinking of an example where Wizard can sense through your heartbeat app, through your health app, your Fitbit, or whatever, that you're a little thirsty, your blood pressure is up and you need some hydration. And then it says, "Hey, Queen." Because it knows that you like to be called Queen.

Nora Ali: Obviously. Clearly.

Scott Rogowsky: And it says, "You seem thirsty AF, not for Brad down the hall, wink, wink, but for a nice strawberry banana smoothie, there's a Jamba Juice down the street. How about I get you one?" Is that kind of what you're building towards? Having that sort of that friend texting you and saying, "Hey, let's get a Jamba."

Melissa Bridgeford: Well, A, we definitely want to hire you for copy. Ultimately the end goal is for Wizard really to know you better than you know yourself. So to be anticipating the things you want based on, essentially, your past purchases, based on other activity, potentially on your phone, based on so many other similar purchases, et cetera. And so ultimately conversational commerce is a pretty tremendous wealth of data that really is eons above the data that you get from the web. And that's because conversationally, consumers are expressing their intent, and they're expressing so much more than are just when all you can track is their page views or things like that. And so in a really cool way, I think the technology is essentially, and the goal is really to make your life better, more productive, more efficient. I think about that, about so many of the apps that I use, just going back to, again, an Uber, or an Instacart. I can be on a plane from Austin to New York and order my groceries so they're there when I get home. And I think Wizard is all about essentially making your life more efficient and more productive. And ultimately, if we can anticipate what you want next, that's really the ultimate holy grail with respect to commerce and ease of use.

Nora Ali: I think we are getting increasingly used to our technology knowing us better than we know ourselves. We've all been there where we can Instagram ad about a thing we were thinking about, and we didn't even say it out loud, or type it out loud that we wanted the thing. But at the same time, there is a little bit of a creepy factor when our technology anticipates our needs. So how do you continue to build that trust with customers, and build the technology without people being turned away from it because it is able to anticipate your needs and your wants, if not right now, but down the line?

Melissa Bridgeford: Absolutely. I think trust is, again, something that we definitely hope to instill in the brand. It's something, again, that we take very seriously. And going back to the data and privacy policies, etcetera. But I think over time that there's people that want that level of anticipation, and they want that level of convenience. And there may be a creepy aspect with respect to Instagram, but to be honest, I'd rather see ads that I potentially want to buy than just random ads that have no relevance to me. And I think over time, people really appreciate that knowledge. And maybe there's going back to 80, 20. Maybe it's the other way. Maybe there's 20% of people who ultimately never want that. But I think the growing majority does want that. And actually, I think they expect it, and I think they're going to start demanding it. Imagine if you started seeing ads that just literally had no relevance for you? We've kind of slowly been accustomed to seeing things that you might not want to, bam, buy it on the spot, but you're like, that's something kind of relevant for me. So I think over time it's something that will be really valuable. And I do think one of the keys, however, is that you only want to be doing that if you're doing it right. And I think that comes back to that. You only want to be serving up those anticipated suggestions when they're on the mark, and they're super smart. And so that goes back to our focus with the Series A is really building the most powerful AI so that you can make those, not just kind of on the mark suggestions, but really smart suggestions where people are like, that's exactly what I wanted and I want to buy it right now.

Scott Rogowsky: We've had several conversations about the future of retail on this show, and everyone has a different take on it. You seem to be making the bet on this conversational commerce being a major component. Others are looking at live shopping as an example of the future. As we've seen in Asia and China, I mean, live shopping is $150 billion industry and they have these festivals and events, and that's almost conversational commerce taken to the nth degree with a real person talking to you saying, buy this thing, versus an AI character.

Melissa Bridgeford: It's just, this is all a new paradigm of retail, and a new paradigm of shopping, and a new paradigm of interaction. The old way seems so incredibly clunky already, and all of these aspects that you're talking about are just really different ways to slice conversational commerce, and to utilize it. To your point, potentially live shopping is still utilizing an element of text in a different way. I think there's going to be a tremendous amount of ways to slice conversational commerce, and I think there's going to be a tremendous amount of really cool ways of interactive shopping. And I think you'll see retailers and brands doing a lot of them. And I think it's a really exciting time to be in retail because I really do think we're entering this new paradigm where the interactivity is at a whole new level. But I think that the ultimate result is really powerful for the consumer because you're able to discover brands and products in a really cool way, and you're able to buy them in a really seamless and mobile friendly way. So I think we're really at, in my opinion, the infancy of this new paradigm. And I think Wizard is really well positioned to be able to dominate within the space that we're excited about.

Nora Ali: We're going to be buying things until we die, for all of time. So it might as well innovate.

Scott Rogowsky: Shop til you drop.

Nora Ali: Shop til you drop. Literally. All right, Melissa, it's been a pleasure talking with you today. Melissa is the CEO of Wizard. We appreciate it. Thanks again, Melissa.

Melissa Bridgeford: Thank you so much, Nora and Scott.

Scott Rogowsky: And now BC listeners, we want to hear from you. We're recording an episode on organizing. Specifically paying other people to organize for you. Are you looking to declutter your life in the new year? Didn't you say that last New Year's? We'd love to hear from you. Your failures, your successes in the organizing space. Send us an email@businesscasualatmorningbrew.com or DM us on Twitter @bizcasualpod. That's B-I-Z, casual pod with your thought.

Nora Ali: You can also leave a voice memo on our website, businesscasual.fm, or give us a call and leave us a message. Our number is 8-6-2-2-9-5-1-1-3-5. As Business Casual grows we are excited to get to know our listeners, old and new. Drop us a line, and don't forget to leave your name and where you're calling or writing from so we can include you in a future episode.

Scott Rogowsky: Business Casual is produced by humans, alas. Katherine Milsop and Bella Hutchins are their names. Additional productions, sound design, and mixing by Daniel Markus. He's actually AI. Alan Haburchak is the director of audio Morning Brew. Sarah Singer is our VP of multimedia and Jessica Cohen is our chief content officer. Music in this episode from Daniel Markus and the Mysterious Breakmaster Cylinder. If you like what you heard, please follow Business Casual on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you go for ear candy. And we'd love it if you would give us a great rating and a review.

Nora Ali: Thanks for listening to Business Casual. I'm Nora Ali.

Scott Rogowsky: And I'm Scott Rogowsky.

Nora Ali: Keep it business.

Scott Rogowsky: And keep it casual.