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Samir Balwani is the Founder and CEO of QRY, a media agency for direct-to-consumer (DTC) and e-commerce brands. They have a media methodology and testing framework that’s helped brands like Delsey and Peak Design scale their business online. Before starting QRY, Samir worked as a Senior Manager of OPEN Brand Strategy for American Express.

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Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • Why Samir Balwani left the perks and comfort of an American Express job to start a business
  • Lessons from American Express that Samir took into agency life
  • Why Samir thinks a flat management structure is a mistake
  • The hardest thing about transitioning from employment to entrepreneurship
  • How QRY uses benchmarking as a data-driven marketing strategy
  • Is a potential recession a threat for DTC media buying?
  • How QRY worked with Delsey to help grow their online revenue
  • What does it mean to grow a DTC brand?
  • The Peak Design 66% online revenue growth case study
  • Why the lifetime value of a customer matters
  • Samir talks about his ideal DTC clients

In this episode…

It’s not uncommon to see agency owners brag about their flat management structure — meaning there are no layers and everybody’s the same. However, Samir Balwani thinks that’s a common agency owner mistake. To him, layers in organizational structure are important.

These layers allow people to lean on someone with more experience, enabling you to celebrate and empower people with more knowledge. This is one of Samir’s many lessons from working in corporate America that’s helping him succeed as an agency owner today. Want to know more?

Listen to this episode of the Inspired Insider Podcast with Dr. Jeremy Weisz featuring the Founder and CEO of QRY, Samir Balwani. They discuss lessons Samir took from American Express into agency life, using data to distinguish your agency, the direct-to-consumer (DTC) media buying landscape, what it means to grow a DTC brand, and more!

Resources mentioned in this episode

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Episode Transcript

Jeremy Weisz 0:19

Dr. Jeremy Weisz here, founder of where I talk with inspirational entrepreneurs and leaders today is no different. We have Samir Balwani of QRY you can find them at And Samir I always like to point out other episodes, people should check out other podcasts. And actually Samir, we’re just talking about tonight, Episode Tony Horton of p90x That’s an amazing episode, where he made his money as a street mime to make food and rent money before he launched p90x. And there’s other ones since this is an agency. I had Vicki Higgins on who was interesting. And she talked about how to secure a $20 million $20 million in sponsorship deals. She negotiated the naming rights for a stadium. And so that was an interesting episode, not your typical agency. And then I Kellee Johnson, who runs a Ballast Group, and she does a lot of communication and PR and strategy for large pharmaceutical companies and large companies in general. So check those episodes out. And this episode is brought to you by Rise25 and a Rise25 we help businesses give to and connect their dream 100 relationships and how do we do that we help them run their podcasts are an easy button for a business to launch or run a podcast. And you know, Samir, for me the number one thing in my life is relationships. And I always thinking of ways of how do I give to my best relationships, I’ve found no better way to do that, than to profile the people and companies I most admire on this planet and have them on the podcast and have them share with the world what they they’re working on what they’re doing. So if you’ve thought about starting a podcast, you have a business you should if you have questions, you can go to Both my business partner I’ve been doing it for over a decade, you can ask us in emails, any questions that you can have under the earth, and it’s [email protected]. And I’m excited Samir Balwani is a founder and CEO of QRY. It’s a media buying agency for E commerce and direct to consumer brands. They’ve created a media methodology and testing framework that’s helped brands like Delsey, and Peak Design scale their business online. And Samir, thanks for joining me.

Samir Balwani 2:34

Thank you for having me.

Jeremy Weisz 2:35

When I look at your background, from American Express, for years, I always think I went to it with a friend to lunch at LinkedIn headquarters. And I was like, Man, I get used to this. There’s like a private there was like a private level of a chef. And I stroll in the office. It’s beautiful. It’s got, like, gaming related thing. And I’m like, I don’t even know, why didn’t I just go work for LinkedIn? Right. So I want to hear some of the lessons you learn from American Express first, and then why go out and start a business?