In its newest issue, Ad Age profiles RED, The Post’s research, experimentation and development group, and its founder Jarrod Dicker, who oversees commercial innovation  at The Post. RED has built more than a dozen ad tech products that have been purchased by more than 150 clients on The Post and licensed through Arc Publishing.

Dicker is known in ad tech and publishing circles as a brash and charming talker. A scruffy Phish fan, Dicker leads a team that has become the de facto skunkworks unit inside The Washington Post—a tech lab with a direct line to Post (and Amazon) owner Jeff Bezos himself. Since talking his way into the Post as an “individual contributor” for commercial tech and advertising in September 2015, Dicker has assembled a team with more than a dozen members and introduced a suite of 13 products that not only have made the Post vastly more efficient, but opened up fresh revenue streams.
“One of the advantages The Washington Post has going for it is its tech is made by publishers for publishers,” says Susan Bidel, senior analyst at market research outfit Forrester. “Much of the tools available in ad tech and in publishing are tools made by engineers and they don’t necessarily have real working publisher input.”
“All of the products are built to be consumer-first, and facilitate the best experience for brands with their existing assets by leveraging tech,” he says. “Let’s prove it on the Post, but build it to live everywhere.”