Instacart adds ad sales VP as it looks to bolster digital marketing business

Tim Castelli, Instacart’s new VP of global advertising sales, comes to the company from ad sales roles at iHeartMedia, AOL and Rolling Stone magazine.
Instacart-Tim Castelli
Tim Castelli is the new VP of global advertising sales at Instacart. / Photo courtesy: Instacart

Tim Castelli is the new vice president of global advertising sales at Instacart, as the same-day delivery platform seeks to grow its product marketing business, the company announced Wednesday.

Castelli comes to Instacart from more than a decade leading sales at iHeartMedia. Before that, he served as SVP of sales at AOL and technology industry director for Google. He also served as publisher of Rolling Stone magazine, overseeing advertising strategy, revenue generation and integrated media program development.

At Instacart, he will lead the advertising sales organization, focusing on building relationships with brand partners and media agencies.

“Tim is one of the most well-regarded advertising leaders in our industry, known for delivering value to partners,” Instacart Chief Business Officer Chris Rogers said in a statement. “He brings the right mix of advertising and media expertise to take us to the next level as we grow our ads business and power the future of grocery with our partners.”

The hire comes as Instacart is working to grow its consumer-packaged goods (CPG) advertising channel, which now includes more than 5,500, the San Francisco-based company said.

“Instacart Ads is a critical part of our business and has grown significantly over the last several years,” the company said. “In 2022, we expanded our advertising toolkit with new products for our brand partners, including shoppable video and display ad units, pages, pop-ups, self-service promotions and new measurement capabilities like sales lift testing.”

Earlier this month, Instacart announced its first major co-marketing campaign with a CPG brand, Michelob Ultra, for a series of ads that ran during NFL playoff games that allowed viewers to shop directly from the commercials for game-day snacks and drinks. It was the first shoppable TV ad for Anheuser-Busch.

Advertising could potentially become an all-important revenue channel for Instacart as its grocery delivery model, which exploded in popularity in the pandemic’s early days, falters due to changing consumer habits and regulatory shifts.

Late last month, San Francisco-based Instacart said it was continuing to phase out in-store grocery shopping operations for curbside pickup orders at select grocers, an expansion of a move that began in 2021 with the launch of the company’s Partner Pick program.

“I’ve been so impressed by the advertising business Instacart is building from the ground up in an industry that’s ripe for continued growth and innovation,” Castelli said in a statement. “Instacart has done a phenomenal job of marrying grocery’s deep roots in advertising with the evolving needs of customers.”



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